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spyguy 01-16-2007 12:03 PM

Installing recess lighting
Hello to all of the DYI members! First of all I just wanted to say how awesome this form is, I'v learned allot just reading all of the differnt post.

I 've recently tackled on a new project of re-doing my basement and I have a question regarding the installation of recess lighting into my basement.

My current set up is a tracklight in the center of the room, that I would like to remove and replace with Six recess lights. What is the easiest way to do this? Can I use the current set up and daisy chain off of this for all of my lights, or would i have to run new wiring from the junction box?

Also! what would be the best way to get an exact cut-out for the recess lights once I replace the sheet-rock to the celing

Thank you all

KUIPORNG 01-16-2007 02:04 PM

You can use existing tracklight wires for the recess lights , daisy chain them. that means you would use the same switch to control the newly installed recess lights, all on/off at the same time...

to cut recess light holes, the best is to use the rotery tool (drywall cutter) you can't beat that one with anything else for cutting holes like recess lights, you just approx estimate the center of the light, the cut a hole from it using the tool, the technique is you need to have gut to follow the edge, any doubt or suspecious or soft hand will make the cicule being cut not perfect, it is not end of the world if it wasn't cut perfect, but with determination and holding cutter tight and strong and following the outside edge of the light, you can make a very awesome hole...

spyguy 01-16-2007 02:10 PM

Thank you KUI****G!
As for measuring where the holes will be after the housing and sheet rock as been installed, is there a trick to this?

Thank you

KUIPORNG 01-16-2007 03:17 PM

You only need to measure roughly how much the center of the light to the edge, say 9", then mark down a line on the edge, write 9, then once rock setup, measure 9" from the line on the edge then drill in with the router, as the light diameter is 5" say, you have a tolerance of 9 +/- 5 , no way you will drill outside of the light....

spyguy 01-17-2007 01:49 PM

Thank you very much, that makes so much sense! I have another question. For the purchase of my housing, is there a check list that i should go through before I buy my housing? I am aware that from the top of my celing to the end of the "joist", (not sure if that is the correct term) that it measures 7inches. What size housing should I purchase for such a small height, and should take sheet rock thickness into account?

Thank you,

KUIPORNG 01-17-2007 02:05 PM

You are right on that, there are many out there couldn't fit, I have similar situation, those I bought only barely just fit, you need a minimum distance between the wood and the fixture for safety reason, as they are non-insulated. I forget how far, but the fixture documentation should mentioned that, it is somthing like 0.25 inches or 0.5 inches... Anyhow, the best is get one you think is quite close from HD then try it by just putting there and refund and try another if it does not fit, drywall thickness do not need to be considered here as it is going to be installed similar to electrical recepitcal which is flush with the drywall surface....

spyguy 01-17-2007 02:14 PM

Good idea! Now is there min or max that the recessed lights need to be away from the wall? And there was no insulation in my celining, should i still purchase IC housing or would that be a waste?

KUIPORNG 01-17-2007 02:18 PM

IC housing is much more expensive, it is ok if you are only to install one or two recess lights, but if you are like me installing somthing like 30 lights, definitely not a way to go, also IC housing may require more space as well depends on the model, I didnt install IC one before so cannot say whether they are easier/more difficult to install... but non-IC one also have two types, one is for remodel, one is for newly constructed, installing newly constrict ones is easy, just mount on adjucent joists, if there is none or too far apart, you need to put some blocking in the joists.... etc... but normally the distance between the light and the wall is not a concern as it normally much bigger than 0.5 inches and it is not a concern, ....

spyguy 01-17-2007 02:26 PM

Wow 30 lights, That is quiet the project. Fortunately for me I am only installing around 6-8, maybe 9 lights, hopefully my circuit will be able to handle this, how do I test that the circuit will not overload? I think that I will go with the insulated models, for peace of mind and the wife not killing me.

KUIPORNG 01-17-2007 02:36 PM

non-Ic is perfectly safe if you don't have insulated materials around the light, I wouldn't spend triple the price for IC ones... there is really no need, there is no dangers at all.... and when I looked at the IC model recess light fixture, I alreay have headache, it is so bulky, I wouldn't surprise it is more difficult to install...

spyguy 01-17-2007 02:40 PM

So is there a way to test the circuit to see if it will support the the extra lighting and if not is low voltage recommended?

KUIPORNG 01-17-2007 02:46 PM

You need to find the load map of the circuit you talked about, then by mathematics to figure out... say if the circuit is currently support only two lights , there would be no problem for you to add 8 more lights...etc.

spyguy 01-17-2007 03:24 PM

Kool! Thank you so much. I'm very excited to get this started. I will keep you informed on my progress.

Thanks again.

smallcrpt 01-17-2007 07:10 PM

just found this website...

they have really cheap housings for both ic and non-ic and also gfci's there... have fun, i think i'll be using them instead of a big box store...

good luck

KUIPORNG 01-18-2007 08:28 AM

This indeed very good pricing by looking at it roughly, you just need to make sure it fit... I bought mine from HD, those contractors series where they come in 12 in a box, is about similar price... but you can't bid HD for refund policy....

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