How to Install Ceiling Lights

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Installing a new ceiling light will have many benefits for your home.
Installing a new ceiling light will have many benefits for your home. (Image: ceiling light view2 image by askthegeek from Fotolia.com)

Installing new ceiling light fixtures in your home has many benefits. Many of the newer light fixtures are energy-efficient. A new look might be something you are going for. Perhaps your room needs more light. Department and hardware stores offer a variety of lighting options. Many homeowners want to update the look of their homes. Modernizing a home allows the resale value to increase. Installing a new ceiling light is relatively easy.

Things You'll Need

  • Light fixture
  • Standard screwdriver
  • Phillips screwdriver or drill
  • Electrical tester
  • Stepladder
  • Pliers
  • Hanger bars

Locate the ceiling light that is in need of replacement. Turn off the power switch to the light. For added security, turn off the breaker from the main circuit box. Remove the existing screws from the light around the base. Remove the globe of the light.

Underneath the globe on the main housing of the light, there are two screws. Loosen the screws halfway; do not remove the screws completely. Turn the main fixture counter-clockwise, and pull down the fixture gently. The wires will be showing once the fixture is detached.

Remove the wire nuts from the wires. Use the electrical tester to test the black wire (hot wire). Make sure there is no power to the wire. An electrical tester can be found at many hardware stores.

Follow the light-fixture instructions for the light you purchased. Connect the black wire (hot wires) to the black wire hanging from your ceiling. Cross the black wires into a crisscross formation. Turn the wires in a clockwise formation until both wires are tightly wrapped together. Replace the wire nut included with your new light fixture. For the white wires (neutral wires) and green wires (ground wires), follow the same steps.

Turn on the power for a moment, even though the light is hanging freely. This is to make sure everything is working properly. If working properly, turn off the power to the light. Line up the new ceiling light screw holes with the screws from the existing light fixture (in the light box in the ceiling). Turn the ceiling light clockwise until the screws go into the smaller track on the new light, and tighten snugly. Replace the globe light dome over the new light. Some lights come with screws (usually three) that insert from the outside of the light fixture. If you have this type of light, screw it into place gently until snug. If you screw the light in to tightly, you risk breaking the new light globe. Another dome type has clips on the light fixture. Simply snap the clips in place to hold your light fixture in its new home.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always turn off the electricity before performing any electrical work.

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