Three pendant lights hanging from living room rafters
This article was updated on 10/11/20.
Installing a pendant light fixture is a DIY project that will add to your home equity. When the weather is too lousy to build your deck or do some exterior painting, tackle your interior home projects!
Pendant lights are proving to be popular in the home remodeling market this year. These are lightingfixtures that will add grace, elegance, equity, and curb appeal to your home.
The residential housing market was depressed a while ago because of bad Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage loans (sub-prime loans coupled with ARM loans, or Adjustable Rate Mortgages). Some people are being repossessed due to not working because of COVID-19 virus pandemic. With the uncertainty, it may or may not a good time to sell a home, but it is a prime chance to jump into remodeling projects to raise your homes value.
Maintain the Re-Sale Value of Your Home
Why not engineer and build a backyard deck, give a bathroom a face lift, or even install a pendant light?
You might have heard them called swag lights. Even though theyve been around for quite a while, they have an appeal that continues to sell. They can be independently located or configured with a rail system.
I have heard it said that theyre a recent and sleeker version of those ornate chandeliers from yesteryear that only the well-to-do could afford. Or not. Either way, these are affordable.
If you would like to have a local craftsman do the work in question, be sure to check references. From a frugal standpoint, this is an easy DIY project. Either way, research your local electrical building code. You may or may not need to pull a permit.
The first step is to to consider the best location of your new lamp/s. Some areas of the home need a lot of illumination for activities such as preparing and eating meals, entertaining, or reading. Of course, you do not really need extra light if you are enjoying your Amazon Kindle, like I do.
Other places in your home use lighting for accent effects or modern decor. In many cases, these kinds of areas are already furnished with an overhead light. In other situations, this is not the case. For example, a dedicated pendant light over your home office desk is a capital idea.
Note: Before you undertake any electrical task, ensure that the proper circuit breaker or fuse has been de-energized and that the circuit tests dead using either a Multimeter or a Fluke VoltAlert!
Adding a New Light Fixture or Replacing an Old One
Considering the second case mentioned, where theres no existing light, a wee bit more work will be needed in the installation process. Youll have to enter the attic space and use Romex wiring (in most cases, so check your local building code), to tie into an existing power source.
There will usually be some sort of light fixture; perhaps just a bare incandescent bulb used for utility purposes. Then, secure an electrical box to a ceiling joist, or to a cripple located between two joists.
Hint: To mark the proper location, poke a long nail through your drywall ceiling from downstairs prior to entering the attic. Of course, if you have a lot of insulation on your attic floor, it might behoove you to stick something long through the hole so you can spot where the insulation "tents up."
Now, Install Your New Pendant Light
If you have a can or recessed light just where your new swag (pendant) light will be located, theres a work-saving option. Theres a product named the instant pendant light by Worth Home Products.
To install it, you just unscrew your can light bulb or floodlight, then adjust the length of your hanging wire. Then screw in the instant fixture and push up the cover plate. Easy peasy, not too cheesy.
If this is a replacement fixture, first flip the breaker off and verify that its dead. If your breaker is not clearly marked on your circuit breaker box, just turn the light to the on position and then test each breakers until your light goes off.
Next, take out your existing fixture. Secure any mounting bracket that came with your new fixture to the electrical box. Match up the wires on the pendant light fixture with the old wires and connect the ground to the electrical box or the bracket, whichever the instruction manual indicates.
Use electrical wire nuts to secure the bare wire ends together. Screw in the bulb (consider a compact fluorescent bulb or a halogen bulb for lower wattage use and energy efficiency), and then turn on the circuit breaker, and test it out! That's all there is to installing a pendant light.
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About the Author:
Kelly R. Smith was a commercial carpenter for 20 years before returning to night school at the University of Houston where he earned a Bachelors Degree in Computer Science. After working at NASA for a few years, he went on to develop software for the transportation and financial and energy trading industries. He has been writing, in one capacity or another, since he could hold a pencil. As a freelance writer now, he specializes in producing articles and blog content for a variety of clients. His personal blog is at I Can Fix Up My Home Blog where he muses on many different topics.