How to Replace a Ceiling Light Institution

Table of Contents


• WORKING TIME 1 hr- 1 hr, 30 mins
• TOTAL TIME 1 hr- 1 hr, 30 mins
• SKILL LEVEL Intermediate
• ESTIMATED COST$ 10 and over

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Replacing a ceiling light institution is frequently necessary because an old institution has worn out, but it’s also generally done as part of a scenery overhaul. A new light institution can make a huge difference in the look and sense of a room. The work itself is generally relatively easy, though anytime you’re working with electricity there’s some peril. DIYers should have a introductory understanding of how electrical circuits work, and some experience with analogous repairs, before trying light institution relief.

Like plumbing, electrical repairs are frequently fairly simple if the system is fairly new and follows accepted practices. But they can come veritably delicate veritably snappily if the wiring system turns out to be old or in poor condition. Any time you take on wiring systems, be willing to call an electrician to bail you out if effects get complicated.

Before You Begin

Turn the wall power switch controlling the light institution to the OFF position. If there’s any chance another person could turn on the switch while you’re working(e.g., children or a partner), also turn off the power at the main service panel.
What You will Need

Outfit/ Tools

• Screwdriver
•Non-contact circuit tester

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• New ceiling light institution
• Line connectors( line nuts)
• Electrical vid( if demanded)


1. Remove the Old Light Institution

Remove the institution shade or globe. How you do this will depend on the type of institution you have. It can involve loosening little screws holding the shade in place, unhooking some mounting clips( as shown then), or just coiling a glass shade from the base of the institution.

Once the ceiling institution shade is removed, separate the institution base from the ceiling box by coiling the mounting screws or the knurled clump that holds the institution to the ceiling box.

2. Test for Power and Dissociate the Cables

Once the institution base is separated from the ceiling box, check for power by using anon-touch circuit tester to make sure there’s no current flowing to the cables.

Dissociate the light institution from the circuit cables by coiling the line connectors. The institution may also have a bobby grounding line attached to the mounting swatch on the box or to the circuit grounding line. Dissociate this, as well. Set away the detached light institution.

Eventually, remove the old underpinning swatch that’s secured to the ceiling box. The new institution will come with its own underpinning swatch.

3. Prepare the New Ceiling Fixture

Unbox the new ceiling institution. Precisely remove the glass shade and set it away in a safe place. Remove the plastic bag containing the tackle and set it away, as well. Remove the institution base from the box and examine its cables. Generally, it’ll have three line leads a black hot line, a white neutral line, and a green or bare bobby ground line.

Still, the black and white cables for each socket may not yet be connected together, If the light institution has two or further beaconsockets.However, join the white cables together with a line connecter( generally included with the light institution), If this is the case. Join the black line leads together as well.

Read the light institution instructions to determine how your light institution will be mounted to the ceiling box. This can vary, depending on the size and weight of the light institution. Occasionally, it’ll be a simple matter of deforming the light institution base directly to the ceiling box. With other styles, a mounting swatch is first attached to the ceiling box, also the institution base is squinched to a mounting swatch. With heavier institutions, a threaded mounting tube is squinched into a hole on the mounting swatch, also the institution base is threaded over the tube and secured with a screw- on clump.

4. Install the Mounting Swatch

Still, first examine the swatch included with the new light institution, If your light institution requires the use of a mounting swatch( it generally does). It’ll have several small threaded screw holes in it, some of which are used to attach the swatch to the ceiling box, others which will be used to support the light institution base. The swatch also has a larger threaded hole in the center; this is used if the light institution is supported via a threaded mounting tube that screws into the swatch.

Position the swatch against the base of the light institution to determine which screw holes will be used to support the institution.

Also, attach the mounting swatch to the ceiling box, using whatever screw holes line up with the ceiling box. The light institution instructions may also give you guidance on the proper way to attach the mounting swatch.

Still, squinch the threaded mounting rod into the center opening on the swatch, If your institution requires it. This is generally used for heavier lights, similar as chandeliers and other hanging light institutions.

5. Check the Circuit Cables

In utmost cases, the circuit cables you preliminarily disconnected will be suitable to attach incontinently to the new light institution. You’ll see one line with white sequestration( this is the neutral), another with black sequestration( this is the hot line), and another that’s bare bobby or covered with green sequestration( this is the ground line). The circuit ground line may be connected to a green ground screw in the reverse of the box.

Still, the color coding may not be clear, or the sequestration on the cables may be cracked or old, If the wiring in your house is veritablyold.However, support the sequestration around the old cables by belting them with electrical vid, If necessary. The electrical vid should cover the sequestration up to the exposed bare bobby at the end of the line.

6. Connect the Ground Cables

The ground connection on a ceiling light institution can vary, depending on the type of institution and ceiling box you have. Just remember that the light institution’s ground lead must have a essence pathway to the circuit grounding line. It’s dangerous to install a ceiling institution without this ground pathway.

Still, also the situation is easy Just attach the circuit ground line directly to the institution’s ground lead, using a line connector, If your ceiling box is plastic.

It’s a little more complicated if the ceiling box is essence. Then, both the box and the light institution need to be connected to the circuit ground line. A common way to do this is to circle the circuit ground line around a green ground screw on the mounting swatch or on the essence box, also attach the free end of the ground line to the institution’s ground lead. Alternatively, if the circuit ground line is formerly attached to the essence box, the light institution’s ground lead can be attached to the mounting swatch.

Making the line connections for the light institution can be a little tricky since you’re holding the institution in skyline at the same time you’re trying to connect it to the circuit cables. Having a coadjutor on a alternate graduation hold the institution while you make the line connections can make this much easier.

7. Connect the Neutral and Hot Cables

Join the circuit neutral line to the institution’s neutral lead( both cables generally have white sequestration), using a line connector.

Do the same with the circuit and institution hot cables( both generally have black sequestration).

8. Mount the Institution Base

With the cables connected, the coming step is to attach the institution base to the ceiling box. Depending on the style, the base may be attached with two long screws that thread into screw holes on the mounting swatch, or with a knurled clump that screws onto the threaded mounting rod after the institution base has been slipped over it.

When the installation uses long screws, it may take a bit of maneuvering to get the screws through the sequestration in the base of the institution and threaded into the ceiling box. The institution may have keyhole- shaped screw places that allow you to first fit the screws into the ceiling box, also push the institution over the screws and twist the institution slightly to cinch it onto the screws. Formerly in place, strain the screws down forcefully so the institution base is tight against the ceiling.

9. Install Light Bulbs and Shade

Complete the job by installing light bulbs( do not exceed the total wattage standing of the institution). Turn the power back on, also turn on the light switch to test the operation of thefixture.However, install the globe or shade, as directed by the manufacturer, If the institution operates rightly.


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