Electric Lamps

As soon as electricity is concerned, the regulations become more complex. But, as an alternative to producing a complete lamp, you may want to consider creating just the lamp base, letting your customer add the electrical side (easily done from kits available from a number of suppliers) and the lampshade.
At present I'm just covering the UK/EU regulations.

Lamp Wiring Tips

Stability: minimum 6° tilt angle
Cable: for strength, cable cross-section at least 0.75mm², except if weight is less than 1kg and cable length is less than 2m then 0.5mm² is OK.
Cable should be to BS6500 or marked with <HAR> in the UK.
Use plastic grommets where the cable comes into contact with any ceramic or metal or other sharp edges to protect the cable.
To prevent the cable being pulled out, use a cable clamp that will withstand at least 60N force.
Lamp holders need to be to BS5042. This is marked on plastic holders, but not metal.
Class I holders (generally metal) require earthing with a 3 core cable. Class II holders (generally plastic) are non conducting, so only need a 2 wire cable and no earthing.
The lamp fittings need to be secured to withstand at least 2N force - a hard twist. Look at glueing components in place as a backup to retaining screws.
Plugs will be marked to BS1363 or ASA. Only use a 3A fuse.
Testing: just continuity and resistance testing with a multimeter, and PAT testing, is not enough. Test every item just before packaging it.

Regulatory Requirements

When looking at the EU regulations, you need to be aware that they refer to the light bulb as a lamp, and to what we call a lamp is referred to as a luminaire.
Lighting Europe check list and requirements for luminaires in the EU
ComplianceGate info on LED Lighting in the EU
PAT Testing Training guidance on making and testing lamps

EMC and Low Voltage Directives

These are for the CE mark required by all electrical products. For luminaires, the key points are:

  • Compliant CE and WEEE markings, manufacturer's info etc
  • Rated voltage, and maximum wattage of replacement bulbs
  • Class II symbol if the luminaire is not earthed. If it is earthed (Class I) are all metal parts exposed to the user earthed?
  • Does the lamp holder comply with the relevant standards
  • Is the user protected against access to live parts, either when in use or when changing the lamp?
  • Is the power cable protected against sharp edges, e.g. where it enters the luminaire? Is it protected against being pulled or twisted? And is there the correct plug fitted to the end?
  • Safety and lack of interference from electronic controls, dimmers etc. - if you source these from reputable manufacturers they shouldn't be a problem

The good thing about these directives are that for many products, including luminaires, you can self-certify compliance rather than paying a test house to do this.
Note that after Brexit in the UK the CE mark will need to be replaced with the UK equivalent one.


This is concerned with keeping electrical and electronic products out of landfill. Luminaires come under Category 5, and have been included since 2019.
If selling to consumers, or manufacturing products for them, you need to comply with the WEEE directives. Assuming you are classified as a "very small producer", producing less than 5 tonnes of luminaires a year, you can register directly with the Environment Agency; if you export to other EU countries, you need to register in each one. There is no minimum threshold for small producers. You then need to make periodic reports on the weight of luminaires sold, take back old lamps from customers, and meet recycling targets for products that reach their end of life. You'll also probably recognise the WEEE symbol of the crossed-out wheelie bin.
The requirements for recycling lamps are much more complex and onerous than for luminaires, due to the presence of mercury and other toxic substances, so it is probably in your interest not to provide bulbs with your products, and not to use an built-in LEDs.
Unless you aim to produce large quantities of luminaires, then the onerous load of WEEE regs will probably be more than enough to put you off doing this.
EU web site on WEEE directive requirements
UK web site on WEEE requirements
ComplyDirect WEEE compliance scheme - for larger manufacturers that cannot simply register with the Environment Agency
Valpak UK Distributor Take-back Scheme
UK Office for Product Safety and Standards WEEE Page

Eco-Design Requirements

These regulation are primarily to make lamps more energy efficient by using low energy light bulbs instead of the old incandescent type. They apply to non-directional domestic lamps, though there are exemptions for very high or low brightness lamps, or a few specific colour ranges such as UV lamps. There is also a temporary exemption for halogen bulbs with G9 or R7 sockets.
As far as you are concerned, you need to ensure that your luminaire can take at least one of the bulb types labelled A+ in efficiency. Also, it would not make sense to design for halogen bulbs with G9 or R7 sockets, as when they are phased out your customer will have a useless lamp!

Energy Labelling of Electric Lamps and Luminaires

You need to make customers aware of the compatibility of your luminaire with energy saving lamps - which energy saving category bulbs may be fitted, and if it has non-replaceable LEDs their energy saving level. If you supply a lamp with the luminaire, you need to inform the customer of its energy efficiency. There's a standard label design for this.

Luminaires Testing

BS EN 60598:2015 (8th Edition) Luminaires. General Requirements and Testing (7th edition valid until Date of withdrawal 20/10/17).

Commission Directive 98/11/EC of 27 January 1998 im­plementing Council Directive 92/75 with regard to energy labeling of household lamps (3

Summary Legislation and Standards

Directive or RegulationName
2006/95/ECLVD - Low Voltage Directive
2004/108/ECEMC - Electromagnetic compatability
2012/19/UEWEEE - Waste from electrical and electronic equipment
2009/15/EC, 245/2009, 347/2010, 1194/2012Ecodesign
2010/30/EC, 874/2012Energy labelling

Low VoltageEN 60598-1
EN 60598 2-1 or 2-2 or 2-4 or 2-7
EN 62493
Electromagnetic compatabilityEN 55015
EN 61000-3-2
EN 61000-3-3
EN 61547

Retailer Requirements

Once again, the larger retailers may have their own additional requirements, based on experiences from their customers.

Tilt Test

Testing stability at 6°, 12° and 15° at all angles of rotation. If it fails the test at 6°, then an additional thermal test is required to make sure nothing gets too hot and is damaged by the heat, or causes a fire.