How to Install a Light Fixture

Step-by-step guide on how to install a new light fixture -- no handyman necessary!
Related To:

Tools:

light fixture
step ladder
wire connectors or wire nuts
circuit tester
electrical tape
Phillips-head screwdriver

Note: When working with electrical connections, normally the black wire is hot, the white is neutral and the bare is ground. If the wires are the same color or other colors, testing is needed. Test the wires by touching one end of the circuit tester to one of the wires connecting to the light and the other end to the ground. The hot wire is the one that causes the circuit tester to light up. Turn the power off at the breaker and label the hot wire with black electrical tape for future reference.

Steps:

1. If your fixture is wired properly and there's no question about which wire is hot, neutral, and ground, then begin by turning off the power at the breaker.

2. Loosen the screws on the light fixture and remove the wires. Put the old fixture aside.

3. Next you'll install the mounting bracket, securing it with the screws that held up the old light fixture.

4. Connect the white wire in the ceiling to the white wire in the light fixture (neutral to neutral) by twisting the ends clockwise and then screwing the wire nut on clockwise.

5. Then connect the hot wire in the ceiling to the hot wire in the fixture (black to black) and secure it with a wire nut.

6. Finally connect the ground wire from the ceiling to the fixture's ground wire (ground wires are the bare copper-looking wires) and secure them with a wire nut (The ground wire nut might be slightly bigger than the other two.)

7. Next insert the long screws used to suspend the new fixture. Different lights may go together differently; follow the manufacturer's instructions with your light.

8. Slip the fixture into position over the screws and turn it so that the screw heads slip over the key holes and hold the fixture into place.

9. Tighten the screws holding the fixture into place so that it's firmly in position and not moving around, yet not so tight that you break the fixture.

10. Screw the light bulb into the fixture and then screw in the rod that holds the globe in place. Secure it with the final screw or other end piece that came with it.

11. Turn the power back on at the breaker and test your new light fixture!

Next Up

Maximum Home Value Landscaping Projects: Lighting

From LED to solar power to low voltage, landscape lighting comes in many forms and price ranges—and it adds style, value and security to your home!

Maximum Home Value Outdoor Living Projects: Lighting

Learn how landscape lighting can brighten up your outdoor living space.

Maximum Value Budget Projects: Lighting

With many lighting styles to choose from including: ambient, task, aesthetic and accent lighting, there is an abundance of ways to brighten up a room with the best light for a particular space.

How to Choose a Neighborhood

How can you choose the right community? Become a neighborhood detective. Figure out what you're looking for, do research and find the perfect neighborhood.

Deciding How to Move

You're moving! Now it's time to decide how you're going to get there. Before you start filling boxes with your belongings, consider which moving options work best for you.

How To Be a Good Tenant

Develop a good relationship with your landlord and neighbors with these six tips from The Rental Girl, a boutique rental agency based in Los Angeles.

How to Make an Offer for a House

Making an offer on a house isn't a total roll of the dice. There are some basic steps you and your Realtor can take to arrive at a price range and other terms that make sense.

How to Recover From Bankruptcy

Here's what you can expect in the first two years after bankruptcy.

How to Be a Financially Savvy Homeowner

Many property-related actions trigger a tax or tax benefit.

How to Budget for Home Maintenance Costs

Some first-time homeowners are shocked to learn that the cost of homeownership doesn't stop at the closing table. Here's how to plan for unexpected surprises.

On TV

Fixer Upper

7am | 6c

Fixer Upper

8am | 7c

Fixer Upper

9am | 8c

Fixer Upper

10am | 9c

Fixer Upper

11am | 10c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Hawaii Life

8pm | 7c

Hawaii Life

8:30pm | 7:30c

Island Life

9pm | 8c

Island Life

9:30pm | 8:30c

Island Hunters

10:30pm | 9:30c

House Hunters

11pm | 10c

Island Life

12am | 11c

Island Life

12:30am | 11:30c

Island Hunters

1:30am | 12:30c

Hawaii Life

3am | 2c

Hawaii Life

3:30am | 2:30c

Shop This Look

Found a living space you love in HGTV's Photo Library? Get the look in your own home with products from Wayfair.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.