Friday, 22 August 2014

Guest Post: A Step-by-Step Guide to Installing a New Pendant Light Fixture

Installing a new pendant light can be as easy as removing an old fixture and installing a new one. There are two issues that can help make your installation easier. First, with the exclusion of large heavy chandeliers, most pendant lights are lightweight and fine for a standard ceiling box. This makes them easier to handle or to momentarily suspend from a ceiling box with a DIY wire hook. Additionally, with the exclusion of most track lights, pendant lights usually hang from a canopy. This gives you the opportunity to support your fixture on your ladder or an interim hook, leaving your hands free to adjust the electrical and mechanical linkages.

Tutorial: DIY pendant light installation

How To Install a New Pendant Light Fixture

Remember to make sure that the power is turned-off at your home’s circuit box. Place a covering over the switch to make sure that it won’t be turned back on while you’re working. Keep a circuit tester near to make certain that the power is off before touching any electrical wiring.

Step 1: Remove the Existing Fixture

Remove the existing fixture. If you have a ceiling fan, be sure to take away the blades from the fan first. Loosen the screws while holding the fan still. Lightly pull the fixture away from the mounting bracket. Carefully remove the wire nuts from the wires, separate the fixture, and take out the mounting bracket.

Step 2: Affix the Mounting Bracket

To suspend your new pendant light, affix the new mounting bracket to the junction box. Most of the time, older mounting brackets use screws from the bottom; however, the newer versions have open bolts on the base that are topped with a cap nut.

Step 3: Affix the Wires

Affix the wires to the new pendant light following the manufacturer’s directions. This is normally white-to-white, black-to-black, and ground-to-ground.

Step 4: Firmly Fix the Connections

Firmly fix the connections with wire nuts, and then affix the bare ground wire to the green ground screw on the mounting bracket. On a number of fixtures, the neutral wire may be black with a white stripe. Slip the new pendant lamp over the bolts in the mounting bracket, and then fasten the mounting cap nuts.

Don’t forget to put the light bulbs in last; however, wash your hands first. This will help give your light bulbs a longer lifespan. Now you can climb down from your ladder and marvel at your work. Whether you’ve installed it as part of a living room remodel, or just because, we’re sure you’ll be seeing your room in a whole new, better light.

Check this YouTube video for a visual step-by-step guide.

Tim Smith writes for Modernize.
Photo by Chris Patrick Interiors.