Light Bulb Bases Guide Part 4: Lock-Out Base Light Bulbs

Lock-out screw bases are used in CFL and CCFL light bulbs to make them compatible with sockets that have had a lock-out disc inserted into them.

About Lock-Out Discs and Bases

Utility companies will provide rebates and incentives to companies for retrofitting their properties with energy-saving compact fluorescents. However, the utility company wants to ensure that once the rebate is given, incandescent light bulbs cannot be placed inside the socket at a later time. Lock-out bases and disks are incorporated in some CFL and CCFL light bulb models to provide a simple, cost-effective retrofit to qualify for utility rebates.

lk_base_lodiskIn order to make sure incandescent light bulbs will not work in the socket, a small plastic disc is inserted into the socket. A small hole is located in the middle of the disc. CFL and CCFL lock-out screw bases have a small peg sticking out from the bottom that contains the top solder. This peg fits inside the small hole in the disc. The lock-out base light bulb is then able to make contact with the electrical voltage at both solder points on the light bulb.

Lock-out bases are not manufactured on incandescent light bulbs. If an incandescent light bulb is placed in a socket where a disc has been inserted, the disc will impede the top solder from making contact with the voltage, and the light bulb will not light. Thus, the socket can only be used with energy-saving light bulbs with lock-out screw bases.

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