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Old 01-04-2008, 01:05 AM  
Jordi88
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Default Recessed Lights...

My house was built in 1915. It has an updated electrical panel. In my kitchen the only source of light is a ceiling fan with a chain to turn on the light. There is no light switch. The only light switches in the kitchen turn on outside lights in my backyard. The bathroom adjacent to the kitchen is one of the four rooms with a light switch.

I am wanting to add six recessed lights total (four in my kitchen and two in my bathroom). Of course I would hire an electrician as electricity scares me. My question is, how much work would be necessary to accomplish this task?

Would it be cheaper to get the lights added to the bathroom first and then when money is falling from the sky (it happens here in Kansas) have the lights added to the kitchen?



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Old 01-04-2008, 08:20 AM  
travelover
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I'm no electrician, but I'd guess it would be cheaper to have it all done at once, since there is a certain cost to setting up a job, getting materials, estimating, etc.

Another solution for no wall switch is to go with wireless switch. See link for example:

http://www.amazon.com/X10-RSS18-Wire.../dp/B00022OCDW



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Old 01-04-2008, 09:24 AM  
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Default Great tip

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Originally Posted by travelover View Post
I'm no electrician, but I'd guess it would be cheaper to have it all done at once, since there is a certain cost to setting up a job, getting materials, estimating, etc.

Another solution for no wall switch is to go with wireless switch. See link for example:

http://www.amazon.com/X10-RSS18-Wire.../dp/B00022OCDW
That is sweet. That wireless switch could save a ton of time on a lot of jobs. Plus it is so much more convenient. Great tip.
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Old 01-04-2008, 09:34 AM  
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What Travelover says is right. Like any trade, an electrician is going to charge a premium for a small job like the bathroom lights. For that matter, the kitchen lights as well. Do them both and pay the premium only once.

As for installation, they should be able to install retrofit cans, or remodeling cans as they're called. These can be fit into the round hole, rather than opening up the ceiling and having to do a ton of patching. Of course, they'll have to make some holes to run the electric and switch, but for a good electrician that should be minimal.

There may be some patching to do as the wood lath plaster in your home may fall apart when they're trying to make perfect round holes. The will surely be the case if they use a reciprocating saw. If they use a hole saw on a dril, it's far less likely to disturb the rather delicate wood lath plaster.

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Old 01-14-2008, 11:05 PM  
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Question would the depth of the inner ceiling matter? The reason I ask is, because my house has a flat roof and there is only 8 inches to play with as far as depth goes. Sorry for hijacking this thread.

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Old 01-15-2008, 01:05 AM  
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Question would the depth of the inner ceiling matter? The reason I ask is, because my house has a flat roof and there is only 8 inches to play with as far as depth goes. Sorry for hijacking this thread.
No problem, the more the marrier. Oh, and welcom to the forum.

Note, if you're asking for your own project then you should start a new thread. But in reply, yes it might matter. Is that 8" measured from the ceiling surface or the depth of the joists. Modern 2x8 joists would only be 7-1/4" deep, so I'm guessing that's from the ceiling surface. In that case, some cans would not fit, but they make shallow cans for that purpose. Best to know how much space you have to work with before going shopping.
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Old 01-15-2008, 02:06 PM  
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Thanks for the reply ToolGuy. I just got back from Home Depot and they told me the same thing. I got a shallow can and it fit with room to spare.

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Old 01-15-2008, 02:21 PM  
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I'll second what ToolGuy said about lath and plaster. Our house is old as well, and I'm extremely careful when cutting holes in plaster, especially on the ceiling. The keys tend to separate from the plaster, leaving it hanging by a thread. Depending on how much "fill" they had (our plaster has horse hair in it to hold it together) it may fall away from the ceiling pretty easy.

Using a large hole saw will minimize the pain.

I also agree that you should have it all done at once. You'll be happy you did.

Do you know what type of wiring you have? Just because your panel has been updated, doesn't mean any of the interior wiring has been updated. Our house had a newer panel when we moved in, but still has knob and tube wiring in some places. We replace it whenever and wherever possible, but still have some K&T in the house.

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Old 01-15-2008, 07:01 PM  
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Educator: I tried figuring that wireless thing out too. looked cool. but confussing here is a simple one
http://store.diyhut.com/wirligsocswi.html
real simple as long as your light fixture as the extra room in it.

1. Screw Receiver fixture. 2. Screw bulb into Receiver 3. Mount Transmitter at desired location with tape or screws provided.

there is a battery in the light switch. and it sends a signal to the light socket.

It wont be prefect since there is already a switch to that light. The real light switch will have to be left in the on position. you need a 3 way switch for it to be done right. which im pretty sure you cant do wirelessly

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Old 01-16-2008, 10:01 AM  
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Originally Posted by Educator View Post
Hey travelover,

I'm no electrician either. However, can you explain hot this wireless switch would work? How does it know which ceiling light to turn on / off?

In our 20 year old house, the inside entrance from the garage to the house is through the laundry room. Unfortunately, and why I don't know, there is only one wall switch in the laundry room for the ceiling light. Of course, the wall switch is not at the end with the door to the garage.

How exactly would this device work? What I would want to do is to place it on the wall near the door to the garage so it turns on / off the ceiling light.

Thanks very much!

There are two parts to a wireless switch. One part is a transmitter which looks like a wall switch stuck on the wall, the second is the receiver, which wires into the box with the power supply wires for the light that you want to control. The box has an adjustable code so you can have multiple wireless switches, each matched.

Another company that makes remote / wireless switches is X10. I have used these for 15 years or more to control lights all over the house with a plug in controller. Very handy to do an all lights off or all lights on from my bedside.

http://www.x10.com/activehomepro/remotes.html

A second thought, in my basement I installed a motion detector to operate the light, since I usually have my hands full as I enter. You can buy these that just screw into the light fixture.


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