Replacing light bulbs in a high soffit

I have recessed lights along the exterior soffit every 10 feet or so. The soffit runs from 10' above ground to about 20' above ground at the highest point then back down.
There is a light at about 13' up and another one about 18' up, about 3 feet off the wall.
http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w67/143house/exterior/bulb.jpg
The bulbs are not exposed, they are shielded by a trim with a piece of glass in the middle, you remove the trim by pulling it down for an inch or so, then on each side of the trim there is a spring which "hooks" onto a slot on the inside of the can, only if you unhook the trim cover can you access the inside of the can to change the light bulb, so I can't use those 20' long bulb changer.
The springs in the trim require two hands to unhook.
I am not looking forward to climbing a ladder 18' tall, then lean out 3 feet to reach a trim to unhook two spring to change a light bulb.
There must be a better way to do this?
MC
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote in

Extension ladder against that wall looks good to me. Just find a good comfortable placement. Sometimes moving it just a few inches makes a world of difference.
Many other options $$ impractical. The least of the impractical is hire someone to change a lightbulb. But if you're just plain not comfortable doing it, it isn't so impractical. Bet you don't have 9 pins in your ankle like I do.
That's kinda a fib. I had the screws taken out. The heads were just below the skin and hurt like hell with high top tie workboots on. Now it only hurts half the time...every other step.
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It depend how good you are at levitation. You can get ladder standoffs which will both better support the ladder and get you closer to the fixtures

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convert to a very long life bulbs or fixtures.
so how many watts are these lamps?
or add some other wall wash lamps that are ground based and easy to service.
save the hard to service lamps for special occasions or home resale time.
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On Tue, 12 Feb 2008 13:23:20 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com

Nasty.
Cherry picker (bucket lift truck) or similar hoist.
scaffolding.
rappel down from above.
hire it out.
Whichever way you change those bulbs, I'd suggest putting in compact fluorescent or extended life incandescent (usually very inefficient and yellow light, since they are typically designed for a higher voltage and get their long life by operating under-volted). You might even want to "burn in" your replacement CF bulbs for a few days, including several on/off and rest cycles. This will reducce odds of infant mortality necessitating a quick second replacment.
sdb
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On Feb 12, 6:31�pm, sylvan butler

CFs arent good if exposed to sub zero temperatures.
if indascent bulbs you can make them last many times longer by dropping the voltage slightly by say putting on a dimmer and running at 90% of rated watts.......
but ground based lamps, perhaps low voltage work fine easy to install too
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might check LED lamps, suggest stop at lighting speciality store not big box
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wrote:

Never had a problem with CF (regular fluoro's are a pain unless you have a low-temp ballast). Sometimes cold CF can be slow to start and come up to full brightness, but in an enclosed fixture they operate fine after that. And according to the OP, these are enclosed fixtures.
sdb
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Depending on the brand and model housing, you may be able to change the trims so that the bulb is exposed and thus be able to use an extension pole.
Several years ago I was walking by a house near me and saw a guy using a small boom type man lift to clean the second story gutters. The base of the lift was the size of a riding lawnmower plus the outriggers. It was incredibly compact and I thought that it was perfect for a homeowner. I am still kicking myself today for not stopping and finding who made that machine. I have not been able to find it anywhere.
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