Learning how to install kitchen lighting fixtures is an easy do-it-yourself project when making use of existing pre-wired sources. All local codes require house wiring to be installed according to specific type, size and voltage requirements. Unless you are a licensed, experience electrical contractor, wiring for a new fixture in a new location should be left up to the professionals. However, once wired, installation of kitchen lighting fixtures should not be a complicated task.
Step 1: Type of Installation
Installation directions will vary according to type of fixture and location. Many under-cabinet units simply plug in to an available electrical socket. Others, like ceiling fixtures will wire directly to your electric control panel on its own circuit. For purposes here, installation of a new kitchen ceiling fixture is the topic at hand.
Step 2: Locate Circuit
If there has been no fixture installed previously and the breaker for your new fixture is not indicated on the breaker box, you will need to determine which circuit will power the lighting. Have a helper turn switches off and on while you apply a voltage tester to the exposed wiring in the ceiling where the new fixture will locate. Once you have determined which circuit will power your new fixture, mark the breaker and turn it off.
Place masking tape over the breaker so no one turns it on while you are installing the new fixture. Once the breaker is off, recheck the wire with the voltage tester to ensure you are working safely. Checking it even though the breaker is off is wise because working with live wires can be deadly.
Step 3: Assemble the New Fixture
Follow the manufacturer’s directions to assemble your new fixture. However, leave any lamps or bulbs out of the fixture until it is properly installed. This will help to eliminate possible breakage when installing the fixture. Make sure you locate all ceiling studs where the fixture base will be secured.
Step 4: Connect the Fixture
Install the new fixture brace or base to the ceiling studs with a drill or screwdriver. Make sure to connect color-like wires to one another completing the connection using wire nuts. Mount the new light fixture to the brace or base with hardware provided.
Step 5: Bulb Installation
Install any extra fixture elements like tracking or other individual sockets that share the same wiring connection to the overall fixture. Place all bulbs in the new fixture making sure you have tight connections.
Step 6: Power Up
Turn the breaker on and examine to see if the new kitchen lighting fixture operates correctly. Make sure to label the breaker box with a specific name identifying the new fixture.