Recessed Lights...

Discussion in 'Electrical and Wiring' started by Jordi88, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. Jan 4, 2008 #1

    Jordi88

    Jordi88

    Jordi88

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    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?
     
  2. Jan 4, 2008 #2

    travelover

    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-Wireless-Wall-Switch/dp/B00022OCDW
     
  3. Jan 4, 2008 #3

    wightie13

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    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. :)
     
  4. Jan 4, 2008 #4

    ToolGuy

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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.
     
  5. Jan 15, 2008 #5

    GabeT

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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.
     
  6. Jan 15, 2008 #6

    ToolGuy

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    No problem, the more the marrier. Oh, and welcom to the forum. :D

    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. ;)
     
  7. Jan 15, 2008 #7

    GabeT

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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.
     
  8. Jan 15, 2008 #8

    Hack

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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.
     
  9. Jan 16, 2008 #9

    guyod

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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
     
  10. Jan 16, 2008 #10

    travelover

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    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.
     
  11. Jan 25, 2008 #11

    travelover

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    Glad it worked out. I thought I was the only one that ended up taking 5 times as long to accomplish a task as I initially estimated...........
     
  12. Feb 1, 2008 #12

    tdavis

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    Guyod-

    There is a relatively easy way to do a 3 way wireless switch and we do it here in Salt lake once a week or so on different properties. There is a switch made by enocean that will control a receiver from around 100 feet. the cool part is the switch doesn't need batteries or wires, it powers itself with some crazy german engineering. we get ours from www.enoceanwireless.com but there are several places that sell them. they work great for lathe and plaster set-ups
    :)
     
  13. Feb 1, 2008 #13

    guyod

    guyod

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    Thats pretty neat. . $180 for a set seems steep but when you factor in all the work to wire a 3 way its priced right. I would have to get 2 sets because i would break one set taking it apart to figure out how pushing the switch generates enough power to send a signal.
     

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