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Albuquerque Light Fixture Installation Basics

Albuquerque Light Fixture Installation Basics by Add On Electric 505-804-9534

A light fixture can instantly brighten up any room in your home. Learning how to install one is a simple DIY project that requires no advanced skills or equipment, if the fixture is similar to other ceiling-mounted fixtures out there.

The steps are basically similar for this type of job – though you should consider whether an electric junction box will support whatever lighting device(s) you’re planning on putting into place first before starting anything major. You’ll find our guide below with tips about wiring them, as well as replacing lights when needed.

Project Preparation

Don’t forget to protect yourself from electrocution when working with light fixtures. Make sure that power is off and then test it out by using a voltage tester on each fixture before you start any work. Do not rely solely on your switchboard for protection. Place globes, glass panels etc., away until after they’re installed so as not to cause injury if there’s an accident during installation process.

Consider the weight limit of each item (for example: do I really need another chandelier?).  Typically, junction boxes hold up to 50 pounds, so if the new fixture has a similar weight to the original, you may use the existing electric box. However, if the new fixture is heavier, you will need to install a box that will hold more weight.

You may need help to hang the fixture. Create a work surface by screwing platforms onto ladders, which will position it close enough for wiring without too much difficulty.

One person should secure both ends of your new lighting system while another protects their eyes with protective glasses or sunglasses (you don’t want any hardware flying into them).

Heavy fixtures like this pose safety risks because they require careful coordination between two individuals. However, if no other options are available, then simply hold on tight – after a while even holding up some light fixtures becomes its own form of exercise!

Removing Existing Fixtures

If you are removing an existing fixture, have one person support the weight of your old light while another unbolts anything that is attaching it to the ceiling. Then disconnect wires by twisting off connectors or untwisting connections, making sure these belong together when reconnecting them with new lights in place.

A standard box will have three sets of electric wires connected, but there may be the black or red current wires that are always live. The white neutral wire should also still be attached to this circuit as it provides an insulation barrier for all other colors.

If this is a new fixture and there is no previously installed fixture:  You will need a noncontact voltage tester or a circuit tester to make sure none of the wires are live in the junction box.  Just touch each wire to the tester and if the light is red, the wire is live.

Assembling The Light Fixture

Follow the specific instructions provided with your new light fixture when assembling its parts.

  • Spread components on a flat, clean surface to make sure everything matches up correctly and is in good working order before connecting it all together.
  • Assemble each section carefully so as not damage any of them during installation.
  •  If there is a chain included, use pliers or a screwdriver-style utensil that will best fit what you’re doing at the time – there should be an opening for these tools near where they attach onto something solid (screw collar).
  •  Once secured, adjust the length by matching links from the longest end towards the shorter end until perfect balance has been achieved. You can then hang either horizontally or vertically using appropriate hardware hooks.

Tip:  Remember, you will need to slide any necessary parts over the wiring and hanging chain.

Wiring A Light Fixture

Installing a light fixture can be tricky. Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for specific direction, but here are some general tips:

• Newer fixtures may have black and white wires – twist these together for them to stay attached at all times before tucking them away from view into junction boxes.

Installing a new light fixture is relatively easy compared to installing an older one. Be prepared for the lack of color coding. You’ll need two wires: black and white/ceiling illumination or bare copper ground wire depending on your home’s wiring.

Connect these with electrical tape so they don’t get pulled out. Once connected securely at either end make sure all other strands are tucked away before tightening up screws once again. You need to ensure that this time that they go inside their respective sleeves, but also connect well into position by hand.

Hanging Your Light Fixture

Lining up the screw holes in a light fixture can be tricky, but don’t worry! It is very easy with these steps:

  • Unscrew your old mounting strap from its socket on top of an electrical box or junction box.
  • Check if any of the wires are damaged or frayed. Use wire cutters (or pliers) with about 3/4 inch of insulation removed from them then strip away as much protective coating on each individual strand until only bare wire remains exposed.
  • Thread one end through until it meets back where you started – this keeps them together when installing a new strap.

Tip:  It is always safer to perform this work with someone else present for safety reasons – specially to hold your ladder.