Lighting 101: Preventing and Dealing with Lighting Emergencies or When UPS and FedEx Turn Evil


Don’t be like Grumpy Cat! Plan ahead!

So, the Acme delivery service has just arrived with your lighting from your favorite online lighting retailer (why,, of course).  It’s a good thing, too, because you scheduled your electrician to be there the second the lighting fixtures show up since you also scheduled your house to close the next day.  As the Acme delivery man comes up, he smiles, hands you the package, and then takes off in a full sprint to his van, peeling out as he jets down the street to get as far away as possible.  Perplexed, you stare at the box in your hand to see that it has a big piece of tape with the words “Acme repack.”  You quickly open the box to discover the original box was mangled in transit and repackaged into Acme’s box.  And worst of all, several pieces of glass are broken!

Horror of horrors!  Now everything you so perfectly planned is ruined!  The electrician has to be sent away and the house-closing rescheduled.  How did this ever happen?  And what do you do with the fixture with the broken glass? (Screaming is a perfectly acceptable reaction).

Sadly, as hard as online retailers and manufacturers try to package your lighting so it will survive its trip to you across country, sometimes UPS, Fedex, and the Postal Service turn evil and decide to play kickball with your box (note to lawyers:  only figurative language.  We do not state, condone, or imply that you guys play kickball with packages.  Though it sure looks like it sometimes).  When that happens, and your new light arrives damaged in some way, don’t panic and follow our simple guide on what to do.

Don't be like Grumpy Cat!  Plan ahead with your lighting!

Planning ahead with your Lighting

Now, dealing with lighting emergencies begins by not making them emergencies.  What do we mean, exactly?  Some sort of cryptic Zen “there is no spoon” sort of thing?  No, not this time.  As with most things in life, planning ahead will save you a world of trouble down the road.

  • Order your lighting well in advance of when you need it.  This way, you won’t be panicking because you’ve got electricians coming the next day and something went wrong.
  • Fully inspect your lighting once you receive it.  You might not be hanging for three months, but if you inspect everything now, it will save you headaches later if something turns out to be handled too rough by the delivery driver or the factory.
  • Don’t schedule your electrician because you’ve got a tracking number.  Sometimes, you have to do last-minute lighting orders.  We understand (and love to help!).  But, there can be unexpected delays in shipping due to weather, disasters, mechanical breakdowns, or Godzilla.  These things are rare, and the major carriers are extremely good about getting your package to you on time.  HOWEVER, things do happen, so it’s best to not count your eggs before they’re scrambled (or something like that).
  • If your lighting isn’t going to be hung for awhile, be sure to store it in a safe place where it will not be constantly moved or jostled.


When Lighting Accidents Do Occur

As we all know (well, except for Congress), all the planning in the world can’t prevent disasters from occurring.  But handling them doesn’t have to be a disaster in itself.

  • When a light arrives with broken glass, in most cases, the glass itself is easily replaceable.  Just give a call to your friendly favorite online lighting retailer (that’s us!), and they’ll be happy to send out replacement glass for you.  Note that some outdoor fixtures may require a whole new fixture, as in some pieces, the glass isn’t replaceable.
  • If the fixture itself is damaged, it’s still the same easy process.  Give us a call, and we will be glad to have a new fixture sent out and will send a prepaid label for the old one.
  • If a product becomes defective after use, the first thing you’ll want to do is call the manufacturer and troubleshoot the problem.  They’ll be able to tell you if you need a specific part, and what that part is, or if you need a whole new replacement fixture.  At that point, let us know, and we’ll be glad to handle all the warranty paperwork for you!

Accidents and problems do occur, but with a little preparation, they don’t have to be full-blown emergencies!

Also, big thanks to the Grumpy Cat for the pictures!  Please note, Grumpy Cat and his owners/chauffeurs, masseuse, and publicist do not endorse Lighting and Locks, because, as we know, Grumpy Cat hates everything.


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