Is It Safe To Replace Light Fixture? (Let’s Do It Right)

Replacing a light fixture is a must whether you’re looking to upgrade your interior or deal with a non-functioning light fixture. Hiring someone to change the light may seem like a quick solution, but it can cost more. If you want to replace the light fixture yourself, read on. We have lined up the best methods and processes to replace a light fixture.

In case you’re wondering if it’s safe to replace a light fixture yourself, here’s your answer:

Replacing the light fixture is entirely safe as long as you follow the safety measures and avoid direct contact with the electrical connection. Light fixture owners need to maintain a reasonable distance from direct electrical contact and follow the necessary safety measures for replacing a light fixture. 

Can You Replace Light Fixture?

You can replace a light fixture by incorporating the proper steps. That means first ensuring safety measures and then proceeding to light fixture replacement. There’s no need to call a professional every time you need a replacement, and it’s understandable if you do not have experience with light replacements.

The best part is that light fixture replacements are quick and easy. In addition, light fixture replacement is almost a universal process. Learning proper replacement steps can help you change any light fixture. 

What Makes Light Fixture Replacement a Simple DIY Task?

The lightboxes in any ceiling are similar and have the exact size as others. So if you learn to replace one, you can replace just about any other light fixture. 

In addition, fixtures always have three wires connected and disconnected to the system. As long as the bulb type fits the fixtures properly, you don’t have to make the effort of researching particular a particular light fixture type. Therefore, property owners can buy and replace any light fixture if one already exists there. 

Here’s how you can replace light fixtures in a few minutes.

Turn off the Previous Light Fixture

Start by locating your power panel for the light fixture you wish to replace. Turn it off by flipping the switch, and the old light fixture should turn off. 

Some people have labels on the switch panel to assist them, but they aren’t helpful for everyone. Turning off the old light fixture ensures that you do not get an electrical shock during the replacement process.

Remove the canopy (if you have one)

Canopy is the plastic or metallic cover placed over light fixtures to conceal the wiring underneath. Note that canopies have different designs. Some have screws, while some have an easy click and pull mechanisms.

You can easily remove the canopy by figuring out its mechanism to expose the wiring. The canopy will drop down as you undo it, allowing you to access the electrical connections.

Note the Wires inside the Canopy

You will see different wires when you open the canopy inside. These wires are white, green (copper), and black. This wiring connects the old light fixture to the ceiling’s electrical connection. Disconnect the fixture by unscrewing the fixture and separating it from the ceiling connection.

Unscrew the Wires

The three electrical wires have screws attached to them to help keep them in place. One of these wires is copper, whereas the other two are black and white for most light fixtures. Each of these connections is held together with a red wire connector. 

So, all you need to do is connect the three wires from the light fixture to the three wires leading to the ceiling. You can mount the fixture hardware once all the connections are intact.

Remove the Old Fixture

You can easily remove the existing light fixture after disconnecting the wires from the primary connection. Note that there’s no universal method for removing the old fixture, but most of them have one or two screws. 

These light fixtures do not have anchors, which can be a problem for heavier light fixtures. But, you can always get an extra pair of hands to help you hold the light fixture in place while disconnecting the wiring from the electrical box.

Install the New Bracket (If Needed)

All light fixtures have a pre-fixed wired ceiling box. The three wires come from this box and connect to the electrical power. Most brackets have a baseplate that helps with the light fixtures’ mounting process. 

Most of these light fixtures have a bar strap or a nipple screw in their designs, which are easy to remove. The best way to find the exact design variation is to check the customer’s guide listed on the packaging for the light fixture. However, it’s best to install the bracket if your light fixture has one. Do not bother buying a new one separately.

Connect the Fixture Wires

Once the bracket and the fixtures are in place, it’s time to seal the electrical connections. The new wires have silver ends that connect directly to the electrical power. You can twist the silver end of the wire on the existing black wire and repeat the process for the others.

However, the green (copper) wire is slightly different from the other two. The green wire can connect to a dedicated copper wire connection or a grounding screw.

It’s essential to connect the copper wire accordingly, or you could risk the light fixture blowing up or failing to connect securely.

Moreover, it would help if you always refer to the instruction manual of your chosen light fixture. These instructions come with a step-by-step guide for your specific light fixture type, allowing you to speed things up. 

For instance, there’s a chance that you may have a copper wire pre-connected to the power source. It’s easy to connect the wire to the primary connection by wrapping the new copper wire around the small screw mounted on the light fixture.

Secure the Fixture Chain (If there’s one)

Some light fixtures have a chain to adjust their lengths and aesthetic purposes. If you replace light fixtures with a chain, you’ll have to adjust their length accordingly. 

Each light fixture has different methods of adjusting the chain length, so it’s best to check the instruction manual that comes with it. In addition, you can also hide any extra wiring popping out of the canopy.

Restore the Power to the Light Fixture

You can turn on the light fixture’s power once you’ve correctly followed the steps mentioned above. Ensure that the light fixture reconnects appropriately and there is no interruption in the power supply before concealing the wiring.

Is It Hard To Install New Light Fixtures?

Installing new light fixtures with the right preventive and safety measures is not tricky. You need to ensure:

  • Turning off the existing light fixture before disconnecting it
  • Removing the canopy to expose the current connections
  • Lining up the three wire connections and disconnecting them from the screws
  • Reading the instructions manual for the light fixtures before reconnecting it
  • Tightening all connections before turning the power on again
  • Avoiding direct contact with electrical power

How Do You Replace A Ceiling Light Fixture?

Property owners can easily change a ceiling light fixture by following the steps mentioned in our guide. However, replacing a ceiling light fixture may require removing the glass globe as an extra step. The rest of the steps should be similar, but you should always check the instruction manual that comes with the ceiling light fixture.

Bottom Line

Replacing light fixtures yourself is a quick and easy job as long as you remember the basics. The exact process may vary for some models, but you can replace most light fixtures through the steps mentioned in this comprehensive guide.