How to Remove Bathroom Light Fixtures

Removing the cover from a light fixture
  • 1 hours
  • Beginner
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Bathroom light fixtures can be a problem when remodeling your bath. They tend to look the same as the old design and need to be replaced when you change your motif. This is a task that can be done by a homeowner with a few pieces of basic knowledge and safety measures. You have to decide many things when you are thinking about moving your light fixtures, or even just changing them to a new style.

Safety Concerns

When you begin considering changing out your light fixtures it is very important to acknowledge and respect the electrical circuits you will be dealing with in your removal. Have heavy rubber gloves and insulated handle tools to create a safe work environment. Basic electrical knowledge is also a good idea. Look for electrical safety seminars at your local home improvement store and attend one. Ask many questions. Electricity is not a game.


circuit box

Go to your fuse box or breaker box and find the correct switch for your bathroom. When you find this, test it out and make sure you cut off all power to your bathroom. In this way there is no chance of touching a live wire and electrocuting yourself. If your breaker box is not marked with each area of the house, you might have to turn off each breaker and see what it controls. It is a good idea if the box is not marked to mark it at this time. In this way you will be proactive for any future electrical projects or problems that may occur.

Removal of Light Fixtures

person wiring a light fixture

Remove any light bulbs and protect them for future use. Unscrew any brackets and remove all excess hardware. Once you get to the electrical wires you will need to use an amp meter to ensure there is no current running through the wires. This will give you the assurance there is indeed no electrical voltage waiting in the wires to give you an unpleasant shock.

If the amp meter shows any amperage, then you do need to go back to the breaker box and ensure there is no power going to the bathroom. When the amp meter shows no current, you can cut the wires using your heavy rubber gloves and insulated wire cutters. Cap off the bare wires with wire nuts to make sure you don't accidentally short out your electrical system when you turn the breaker back on.

Items to Consider

When you are considering removing your light fixtures in your bathroom you have to think about what you are going to replace the light fixture with. Will you be putting a similar style of fixture in its place or are you wishing to move the lighting to a different place in the bathroom? Do you need to run additional wires to another location? After you have completed the process of removing the old light fixtures, if you are moving your lights, you will need some sheetrock patching to fill in the hole where the old fixture was attached.