There’s nothing quite like the feeling of finishing a successful DIY project at home! From the sense of accomplishment that comes from completing it, to the fun of seeing a creative vision come to life, you may find yourself itching to start the next project as soon as possible. Of course, they can’t all be sweeping successes: once in a while, you’re bound to run into the frustrations of a failed DIY - especially when it comes to electrical wiring and lighting fixture installation!
This is especially common, unfortunately, when it comes to lighting projects. Dealing with electricity, confusing wires, switch installations, and more can be overwhelming if you don’t have the help of a professional, no matter how capable you are.
If you’re thinking about getting started on your own DIY lighting fixture installation project, here are some common mistakes you’ll want to keep an eye out for.
DIY Electrical Wiring
Sure, it’s called a do-it-yourself project, but that doesn’t mean you have to do it all by yourself. In fact, it may be a dangerous call when installing an overhead or heavy light fixture. If you don’t have someone else there to support the old light fixture as you uninstall it, or to hold the new one as you complete the installation, you might wind up in some trouble. To avoid overextending yourself, losing your balance, or damaging the fixture itself, ask a friend or family member to spot you. Or, even better, choose the safest route and hire a licensed electrician to help set up your new lighting fixture.
Choosing a Fixture Without Enough Light
When you are buying the light fixture for your space, it’s completely understandable to prioritize style and size, and how it will look in the space. However, all too often people forget to check to make sure that their selected light will give off enough light to really illuminate the room the way they need it to.
Luckily, there is a rule of thumb you can follow to give you an idea of how much light you’ll need. In general, a bedroom needs around 10-20 lumens per square foot, while a bathroom or kitchen needs around 70-80 lumens per square foot. Once you have calculated the amount you need for the room you are lighting, you can look for a bulb and fixture that can do the job.
Issues with Electricity
Most people who are worried about installing their own light fixtures express this as a top concern. After all, faulty wiring can lead to serious consequences, even electrocution.
Before you begin with the installation, make sure to carefully review the wire connections required by your light fixture. Turn off the power at the breaker before doing anything, and have a clear idea of whether you need to connect your junction box wires to your light fixtures wires, or to screws on the light fixture.
Dealing with a Difficult Assembly
When you find the perfect light fixture for your home, your first instinct is likely not to check how complicated the assembly is. Some fixtures have many parts and pieces that need to be put together before you can even hang the light, while others require special tools or more intricate wiring to properly install.
If you find the chandelier or wall sconce of your dreams, but don’t know that you can properly assemble it without frustration, contact an experienced electrician for guidance.
Installing Switches or Dimmers
Dimmers are extremely popular additions to a room’s lighting, allowing you to control the light's intensity. Many homeowners try to install their own along with their new lighting fixtures but run into issues with finding the right dimmer switch to pair with their light, or removing and reinstalling a new switch.
These things can lead to dangerous wiring issues if you don’t have any experience with electricity, the least of which is the dimmer switch not properly working.
MSS-Ortiz and Your Lighting Fixture Installation
Considering undertaking a major DIY lighting fixture installation such as an outdoor lighting or a smart home installation setup? MSS Ortiz Electrical Services in Durham can help install your new lighting fixtures. While we are headquartered in Durham, North Carolina, our licensed electricians are spread across the state and will travel to the surrounding areas including Raleigh, Greensboro, Pittsboro, Holly Springs, Garner, and more!
Whether you want some advice from expert electricians in North Carolina, or you’re looking for a team to complete the project for you, the experts at MSS-Ortiz are here for you. With over 70 years of experience as electricians, we can help you find and install the lighting fixtures and switches to create the room you’ve always wanted. Contact us today by filling out a form or (919) 382-0832 call us to get started.