Lighting Installation Tips

So, you’re looking to install new light fixtures? This is an exciting time to do household upgrades and this might include new outdoor lighting, modern hardware, or chandeliers.

As always, our team is standing by to help you with your electrical projects, but for those do-it-yourself folks, or the ones who may be curious about how light installation happens.

Here’s a basic step by step process outlining the basics of installing a new light fixture:

Step One: Check local wiring codes and schedule an inspection. First, you’ll want to research to find the Housing Administration in your city or county – inspections require permits for a lot of residential projects, especially if it is inclusive of new wires – however, simply replacing or upgrading a fixture will not require permits or inspection. If you are adjusting wires, you will want to consult an electrician to help with the permit and make sure this is a safe venture.

Step Two: Confirm or pick out your new fixture – be sure to look at a variety of options to find one or more fixtures you absolutely love! When searching, you’ll want to make sure you are getting enough light to illuminate your room – do you want dusk lighting, a soft glow or a bright all over visual lighting? Determine between a wall-mounted fixture, a sconce or more candlelit version to get the ambiance you’re trying to achieve.

Step Three: Pick the right bulb for your fixture. Often the hardware store associates can be very helpful with this – or an online purchase will have suggested bulbs. For example, a small votive like lighting will need a smaller lightbulb than a traditional ceiling fixture. If you are installing a chandelier, you may need more than one light bulb.

Step Four: Determine Voltage and requirements – the fixture you’ve chosen must be able to operate at the voltage available in that location in your home. Most will be 120-volt, but connecting wires and leaving others disconnected might achieve a new voltage –  you will want to consult an electrician if you’re looking to get into wire work, as we mentioned this may require a permit.

Step Five: Complete your installation with the appropriate tools, such as a drill to install the new fixture – be sure to follow instructions from your new purchase and MAKE SURE ALL YOUR ELECTRICITY IS UNPLUGGED DURING THIS PROCESS! Once everything is in place, including your power source, new bulb, and wiring (with electrician’s help) – re-establish power and turn on your light fixture to ensure everything is working properly.

And, If all else fails Smith Electric is here to help. Call us to schedule an appointment to elevate this nuisance once and for all. Smith Electric & Associates is in Mobile, Alabama. We are licensed to operate in Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, and Georgia and have been proudly serving the Gulf Coast since 1992. Call us for 24-hour emergency service at 251-471-4723! Visit us online at and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter!