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-   -   Installing Garage Fluorescents (http://www.diychatroom.com/f18/installing-garage-fluorescents-154982/)

puttster 08-27-2012 09:39 AM

Installing Garage Fluorescents
 
I brought home a T8 four-bulb tandem strip flush mount fluorescent fixture for my 10' off-white garage ceiling. Though it's not all that heavy it is 8 feet long. Now that I have it out of the box I am looking for some hints on how to do a one-man lift and install.

Also I am wondering how much more light I would get if I exchange it for one with a reflector. I did not go that way because the reflector looked like even more trouble for installation. If any one has done a comparison I'd like to get an opinion on that.

puttster

raylo32 08-27-2012 09:49 AM

Take it back and get a couple of 4 footers. You can run a stub of conduit between the 2 and wire them together of fthe same switch. Still a bit awkward upon a ladder but easier than an 8 footer.

Quote:

Originally Posted by puttster (Post 997334)
I brought home a T8 four-bulb tandem strip flush mount fluorescent fixture for my 10' off-white garage ceiling. Though it's not all that heavy it is 8 feet long. Now that I have it out of the box I am looking for some hints on how to do a one-man lift and install.

Also I am wondering how much more light I would get if I exchange it for one with a reflector. I did not go that way because the reflector looked like even more trouble for installation. If any one has done a comparison I'd like to get an opinion on that.

puttster


Jim Port 08-27-2012 09:56 AM

If you measure between the mounting holes you can use a toggle bolt to hold up one side while you move to the other end.

silversport 08-27-2012 10:37 AM

do you have a family member, friend, or neighbor willing to help? That would be the easiest solution.

curiousB 08-27-2012 10:41 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jim Port (Post 997345)
If you measure between the mounting holes you can use a toggle bolt to hold up one side while you move to the other end.

Use the sheet rock hangers trick. Cut a couple 2x4s just slightly longer than the height of the garage ceiling minus the thickness of the fixture (they usually make a T on the drywall end but you probably don't need to here). Use these to prop up fixture while you fine tune position and anchor to rafters.

BShow 08-27-2012 10:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by curiousB (Post 997372)
Use the sheet rock hangers trick. Cut a couple 2x4s just slightly longer than the height of the garage ceiling minus the thickness of the fixture (they usually make a T on the drywall end but you probably don't need to here). Use these to prop up fixture while you fine tune position and anchor to rafters.

That's what I was going to suggest. Make a T out of 2x4's. You could also put a hook in the ceiling and put a loop of rope or wire or something around it to hang that end of the fixture through while you work on the other end. If you can't manage that or the T, then I would push it up into place and drill through the middle of the fixture to hold it in place which would allow you to work your way to the end of the fixture. Just make sure that you use some washers when you're screwing it into the studs. Your drill will pull the screws right through the cheap metal fixture.

Really the best option is to get a friend to help. With a friend, it'll take 5 minutes to install. By yourself, it's a pain in the azz - not to mention, it can be dangerous because you'll be off balance on a ladder.

I just installed four footers instead of the 8 foot units for exactly the reason that you're finding out... they're a pain in the ass to handle and install. Also, you can place the four footers independently.

puttster 08-27-2012 11:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by silversport (Post 997369)
do you have a family member, friend, or neighbor willing to help? That would be the easiest solution.


No, only my wife :no:

hammerlane 08-27-2012 01:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by puttster (Post 997334)
I brought home a T8 four-bulb tandem strip flush mount fluorescent fixture.....I am looking for some hints on how to do a one-man lift and install.

You could rent a scissor lift from the local equipment rental place:laughing::laughing:

silversport 08-27-2012 02:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by puttster (Post 997381)
No, only my wife :no:

Perfect! You get a helping hand AND you log a few minutes of quality time with the wifey....

biggles 08-27-2012 03:31 PM

mark out the ceiling where the light will be mounted..catching one wood beam or one on both ends.take a piece of wire or string and nail the lenghts like slings...again both ends .getting up on the laddr slip one end of the light into the sling then the other end.so now the florecent it hanging in the sling catching that beam wood screws philpe head with drill and screw bit zip the metal frame into the beam...if you want bightness paint the floor bright white

notmrjohn 08-27-2012 04:17 PM

Speakin of brightness that biggles has good ideas. Hang one loop from an L hook that you pre-bent to be slighty V hook that will pass through the mounting slot in the fixture. Do the one end other end thing in the loops, Raise one end to the ceiling,screw the hook to pull fixture up close to ceiling turned so it supports fixture. Go to the other end and screw it up, uh..mount it with a screw. Go back to hook end, remove hook and screw it up. Hmmm. Using a hook on one end helps keep it from swaying around and keeps the fixture closer to level while you're workin.

puttster 08-27-2012 05:31 PM

Got it up. Went the the hook and wire idea.

That fixture, the Lithonia tandem strip, was laterally stronger than I expected. If I do one more I will try Bshows suggestion of just screwing it up in the middle and then working on the ends.

notmrjohn 08-27-2012 05:43 PM

Glad to see that you screwed up that job. Ya know, you could these great long screws and....no, then you'd have to patch the roof.

ddawg16 08-27-2012 08:11 PM

Wow....you guys were nice to the OP.....(sort of).....

Just an FYI....some of those lights are not rated to direct contact with the ceiling.....in other words, you need an air space between the fixture and the ceiling. I think this is less of a case with the newer electronic balasts....but just an FYI....

Other note....being a garage guy....the more you spread out the light...the better the lighting.....2 4-foot fixtures would have given you better light....and....installing the 8' fixture against the ceiling would have been a lot easier if you remove the cover....take out the ballasts and then install the bare shell...then stuff everything back in.....adds maybe 5 min of work....but makes the 1 man job a lot easier.

notmrjohn 08-28-2012 10:33 AM

dddddddawg, no reason not to be (sort of) nice. Too often I see someone ask for advice and get criticism instead. raylo suggested trading it for 2 four footers instead of flaming,
" You idiot! Everyone knows two 4 footers are the only way to go! Hire a pro, you don't know what you're doing!" puttster asked for advice and he got it. I think he was expecting the unit to be heavier and flimsier than it turned out to be.
Regarding you "air space" ya know putt coulda screwed a couple of hooks into the ceiling, attached a lite weight chain harness, upside down Y's at each end of the fixture and then just hung the thing. sorta like all that sling stuff but with permanent slings, instead of one end then the other then the first end then.... I allways think of closing the barn door after the mare's run off.
As for your spreading out the light with two 4 footers. YOU IDIOT! Oh, sorry. He mentioned "next time," with two 8 footers there's gonna be enuff light to film movies. Add smaller work lights at benches or where needed, a drop light for under the hood work and it'll be great out there. Hmmmm, whyn't you and puttster come over and illuminate my garage? The only lite I have out there is the one in the beer fridge.


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