On Monday I shared with you our summer front stoop. In that post, you may or may not have noticed that we got a new light fixture out front. Well, I am back today to show you the new outdoor wall sconces and to share how to change an outdoor light fixture. My husband actually did this project all by himself, and I would not deem him the most handy person around (he would agree), but he is so supportive of my blogging journey, and he really tries his very best to help me whenever I need him. He was very skeptical about messing with anything electrical, but I asked him to please try to do this project for me, and he reluctantly agreed. Afterwards, he had such a sense of satisfaction that he did this all by himself, and we are both very happy with how it turned out! You saw one of the new light above, so before we go any further, here is a quick picture of the old light. I am not sure how old this light is, but I would not be surprised to find out that it is the original light from when this house was built in 1996. It may have been replaced since then, but it was very faded and old looking, and it was a pet peeve of mine for awhile.
The original plan was to spray paint the old lights and just freshen them up. But that all changed when I was contacted several months ago and offered $300 worth of products, from a website called Westside Wholesale. to complete a DIY project and blog about it. Well, who could say no to that? Not me! I started looking around on the website and noticed that they had a large selection of outdoor lighting, and I decided that would be the perfect thing to spend the credit on. The light we choose was the Kichler outdoor wall mount light in aged bronze. We had a little left over, and we ordered a new shower head for the master bathroom as well (which we are loving), but we have some work to do in the shower area before it will be worthy of blogging about.
These lights were a tad smaller than I would have liked, but we decided to go with them anyway because they were free, and no matter what, they are a huge improvement over the old lights, But, regardless of them being a little on the small side, I really do like the style and quality of them. I feel like they definitely improved out home's curb appeal.
All in all, we are pretty satisfied, and also very thankful to Westside Wholesale for their generosity in making this project possible for us. Are you ready to find out how you can change your own light fixture? I am going to explain step by step how my husband changed ours, but keep in mind that you really should read the instructions that come with your light fixture, not all are the same.
How to Change an Outdoor Light Fixture
The first thing you need to do is to turn the electricity off to the light fixture that you will be working with- be safe! Also- read the instructions that come with your light fixture.
What you need:
After you have the electricity turned off to the existing fixture, you can start by taking the light bulb out of the existing fixture, and removing the old light fixture. My husband used a screwdriver to unscrew our old fixture. Disconnect the old fixture's wires from the circuit wires by unscrewing the wire nuts. When it was removed, it looked like this:
After the old fixture has come down (see above), you will see a metal bracket going across the middle, and three wires, a black one (the "hot" one that will shock you), a white one (the neutral one), and a bare one (the ground one). Our old fixture did not have any wire nuts attached to each of the three wires, but they probably should have. Next, if needed, change the mounting hardware to the hardware that comes with your new fixture. Level the hardware if needed and tighten all of the screws. We did not need to change ours, because the old one just happened to be the same exact size as the new one. Below you can see the old light fixture after he removed it, and the new lighting fixture laying next to it.
It is now time to hook up the new light! I wish I had some pictures of this next part, but my husband was the one working on this, and although I asked him to take pictures while he worked, he failed to get pictures of that. I'll give him a pass on that, because he is not a blogger, and he isn't used to taking pictures as he goes. What you will need to do is hold the new light fixture up close enough that you can connect the outlet wires and the fixture wires. This is where the wire nuts come in. You will connect each of the three wires (black to black, white to white, and bare to bare) and twist a wire nut onto each one until snug (twist to the right). If there is not a bare (ground) wire to mate to, make a loop and wrap it around the green ground screw, and tighten the screw down. Also, make sure there are not any bare spots on the black wire, if so, cover them with electrical tape. Tuck the wires into the outlet box.
Next, you are ready to attach the new fixture onto the mounting bolts and tighten them.
Then turn the breaker back on, put a light bulb into the fixture, and turn the light on to test it. Ours worked on the first try!
After LC knew that the light worked, he attached the bottom part of the fixture, and it was done! So. Much. Better!
We had two lights that we replaced using the exact same process that I just described, and both worked like a charm! The light below is right in between our two garage doors on the front of the house.
I like the glow these lights put off. The glass is a frosted glass that has a subtle pale yellow or cream color, which matches the siding on our home perfectly, and I personally like that you can't see the light bulb.
If you have a light fixture that needs changed, don't be afraid to try it yourself and save some money. No need to pay someone to do something that is so simple! This project gave us the courage to now change the light fixture in our master bathroom, which is on our list of things to do this summer. And before you go, here is a quick side by side of the before and after. Would you agree that it looks much improved? Another DIY project we completed on this front stoop was to paint the stair railings, and you can read about that here.
Thanks for stopping by on this Friday! I hope you found this post helpful, and if you have any questions that I failed to answer, please ask away in the comments. I will ask my husband and get back to you right away. Every little project that we do around here to improve our home give us such a feeling of satisfaction, knowing that we will leave this home in better shape than we bought it. That is the goal, after all, right?
Have a happy weekend!
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