A Woman’s Guide to Installing Outdoor Light Fixtures

A Woman's Guide to Installing Outdoor Light Fixtures

It’s easy to tell that fall is here. Not only is the weather getting cooler, but the kids are looking forward to Halloween, the husbands are enjoying football and hunting season, and the days are getting shorter. Before they get too short and you run out of time for outdoor project, you might want to consider getting those new outdoor light fixtures you’ve been thinking about.

Replacing Outdoor Light Fixtures

It can be done in less than an hour, and can give the front of your home a facelift, while adding more light to greet your guests and welcome your family home. They can be purchased from your local home improvement store, as well as online. While your light fixtures should come with installation instructions, just in case they don’t, let’s take a look at how to install your new fixtures.

Try to convince your husband to do it for you, unless of course he isn’t very handy with tools and electricity. If he isn’t, or if you can’t convince him to do it for you, move on to step two.  Find your home’s circuit breaker, and flip the breaker that controls the outdoor lights to off. If you aren’t sure which one that is, just kill power to the whole house. It won’t be off for too long, and there’s no need to electrocute yourself.

Remove the screws that are holding the old light fixture up. Let it hang there by the wires while you use a test meter or light to check for a current. If there is no electricity flowing through the cable, continue. If there is, and you’ve already killed power to the whole house, back away slowly, and call an electrician.

Remove the wire nuts (which will probably be yellow, red, or black), and undo the white and black cords attaching the light fixture to the house. Also, undo the ground wire, which should be the only wire left.

Assemble Your New Outdoor Light Fixtures

Clamp the white wire from the fixture to the white wire from the house, and the black wire to the black wire. Reattach the remaining ground wire, either by twisting it and putting a wire nut on it, or reattaching it the way it was attached before.

Screw the new lighting fixture to the wall bracket. You might have to pre-drill new holes into the wall first. If you can’t get it screwed in for some reason, get yourself a drink and call a handyman to finish it.

Put a new lightbulb in, turn the power to the house back on, and see if your new outdoor light fixtures works. If it doesn’t, go over your steps and check your work, or just skip to the end of step seven and call and handyman.