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How to Repair an Antique Crystal Chandelier

An antique crystal chandelier can be a dramatic focal point for any room. Unfortunately, crystal is quite fragile. The wiring of the chandelier also can malfunction and leave the lighting fixture's arms with unlit bulbs. If you're having these problems with your chandelier, there's no need to call a professional. You can easily rewire burnt-out arms and repair the chandelier crystal arms in your own home.

Switch off the power at your breaker box. Remove the bulb and the sleeve from the burnt-out arm. Detach the wires from the socket. Unscrew the socket.

Install new wires by twisting them onto the ends of the old wires and securing them with electrical tape. As you pull the old wires out of the arm, thread the new wires at the ends back into the arm. Remove the tape and twist the old wires off.

Unscrew the decorative cap and the nut that holds it in place. Detach the wires in the burnt-out arm from the main chandelier wires.

Connect the new wires to the main wire. Cap them with a plastic connector. Replace the centre nut and the decorative cap.

Screw in the new socket. Add the socket sleeve and the light bulb. Restore the power.

Remove the chandelier from the ceiling. Carefully lay it on a flat, stable surface.

Trace the shape of an unbroken arm onto the craft foam. Carve out the shape from the foam block.

Place the broken arm onto the foam. Place it 1/2 inch away from the broken end of the base. Draw a line of glue around and inside the base.

Keeping the arm on top of the foam, fit the broken edges together. Wrap one end of the wire around the arm and the other end around the base to hold them tightly in place.

Let the glue dry for at least 36 hours. Unwrap the wire and return the chandelier to the ceiling.

Tip

Always clean the chandelier with an alcohol solution before repairing it. Research the brand and model of the chandelier. If the chandelier's manufacturer still is in operation, contact with the company to determine if it can provide replacement parts. If that's not possible, scout antique stores and online stores for spare parts.

Warning

Do not spray the alcohol solution directly onto the chandelier. Do not use commercial cleaners on the crystal. Get someone to help you when removing the chandelier from the ceiling.

Things You'll Need

  • Wire cutters
  • Electrical tape
  • 2 plastic screw-on connectors
  • Replacement light socket
  • Block of craft foam
  • Pencil
  • Scissors or craft knife
  • Instant glass glue
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About the Author

Megan Robb has been writing professionally since 2007. She loves art and literature, as well as volunteering for her local animal shelter. Megan's work has been featured on Cracked.com, "The Bushwick Review," GlobalGolf.com and Divot.com, as well as her own blog, Megan Robb: Writer Extraordinaire. She currently lives in Raleigh, N.C.