Simple home projects like installing a light fixture don’t always need the help of an expert. You just need relatively easy electrical skills applied to other projects like lighting switches or replacing outlets.
The next discussion provides a step by step guide on how to install a light fixture.
Switch off the Power
To avoid electrical injuries, it is important to turn off the circuit breaker associated with the fixture you want to work on. If the circuit in the panel is not labeled and you can’t locate the control for the light you are working on, switch on the existing light and turn off the power for each circuit until the light goes out. Alternatively, you can turn the main breaker off before working on the light fixture.
Remove the Old Lighting Fixture
Remove the casing that covers the old fixture along with the dated wire connectors and disconnect the fixture from the wires. If the canopy is round and has a broad casing lying flush to the ceiling, undo the screw holding it. Undo the screw holding the canopy or other mechanism used to attach it to the ceiling.
Undo the Wires
When installing the light fixture, you are connecting three wires of the ceiling to the three wires of the fixture, then mount the fixture hardware. Thus, when you have removed the canopy, you will see the three wire sets- green (or copper), white and black that you need to disconnect so that you can remove the old fixture. To do this, undo all wire connectors and detach the fixture wiring from that of the ceiling.
Remove the Old Lighting
When you have disconnected the wires, remove the old lighting. They are usually attached to the electrical box using one or two screws. You don’t need to use anchors as they are fixed firmly to the ceiling. If the lighting fixture is heavy, you may ask a friend to help you.
Fix the New Bracket
Light fixtures usually have standard-sized pre-wired electrical boxes on the ceiling from where the wires protrude. For most homes, the boxes are designed as base plates that serve as the mounting hardware for the light fixture. The breastplate may be circular or a single bar strap, though the circular plate makes a more universal mounting bracket. Modern place lighting fixtures come with instructions to help you install the bracket.
If the lighting comes with a new bracket that is specially designed for the fixture, you should use it instead of purchasing a new one.
Join the Wires of the New Lighting
You connect the wires by twisting the frayed threads at the end of the black wire to the open end of the existing black wire. Repeat the procedure for the white wire. The green or copper wire connected to the lighting should be joined to the green grounding screw. Sometimes, however, you may need to connect it to a copper wire extending from the electrical box or ceiling. Be sure to go through the manufacturer’s instructions.
Fix the lighting to the ceiling
Here, you also refer to the manufacturer’s instructions as lighting fixtures have different mechanisms. Secure the new fixture using some screws to the ceiling and turn on the power to check if the light is working.