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Old 02-01-2009, 08:53 PM   #1
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


When attempting to install a new dining room light fixture, I discovered that the previous fixture was installed against electrical wire that is simply sticking through a hole in the overhead drywall - no junction box.

I would like to correct this, but am not that gifted at such repairs. What steps do I take to fix this? My dining room is on the first floor of a two story house, so all repair will be done from within the room itself and not the attic.

I will need to cut the hole in the ceiling drywall for the junction box. How do I do this? I assume I need to keep the hole adjacent to a ceiling rafter? How do I attach the junction box to the rafter? Does it matter if I use a plastic or metal junction box?

Any help appreciated, as by now it should be evident I don't (yet) know what I am doing.

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Old 02-01-2009, 09:42 PM   #2
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


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Originally Posted by AdamsHouseCat View Post
When attempting to install a new dining room light fixture, I discovered that the previous fixture was installed against electrical wire that is simply sticking through a hole in the overhead drywall - no junction box.

I would like to correct this, but am not that gifted at such repairs. What steps do I take to fix this? My dining room is on the first floor of a two story house, so all repair will be done from within the room itself and not the attic.

I will need to cut the hole in the ceiling drywall for the junction box. How do I do this? I assume I need to keep the hole adjacent to a ceiling rafter? How do I attach the junction box to the rafter? Does it matter if I use a plastic or metal junction box?

Any help appreciated, as by now it should be evident I don't (yet) know what I am doing.
You can use an old work ceiling box. An old work box has tabs that fold out and as you tighten the screws the tabs move in and pinch the box between the back of the drywall and the flange on the front of the box.
This box is plastic. When you cut the proper size hole in the ceiling (be careful that you don't cut the hole too big) make sure that you don't cut the wire that is up in the ceiling. Is that clear enough for you?

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Old 02-01-2009, 10:50 PM   #3
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


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You can use an old work ceiling box. An old work box has tabs that fold out and as you tighten the screws the tabs move in and pinch the box between the back of the drywall and the flange on the front of the box.
This box is plastic. When you cut the proper size hole in the ceiling (be careful that you don't cut the hole too big) make sure that you don't cut the wire that is up in the ceiling. Is that clear enough for you?
OK I have seen this type before. Is "fixture weight" a possible concern using a juction box of this style?
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Old 02-01-2009, 11:02 PM   #4
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


Definitely not a ceiling fan or a heavy light fixture. Other than that it should be fine. Use your best judgement.
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Old 02-02-2009, 11:20 AM   #5
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


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OK I have seen this type before. Is "fixture weight" a possible concern using a juction box of this style?
Yes it is. I wouldn't hang any light fixture off of an old work box.
I think the new code requires ceiling boxes used to hang fixtures have a 50 pound rating.You need to cut the drywall giving yourself enough room to mount a suitable box to the rafter. Then patch the drywall(tape, spackle, sand etc.) paint the ceiling, probably the whole ceiling in that room. Then hang your fixture. Good luck.
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Old 02-02-2009, 11:37 AM   #6
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


I'd recommend using a Westinghouse 1100 Saf-T-Brace Ceiling Fan Support Brace. I've used them before in such a situation with good results. Basically, you disconnect the box from the lateral brace and use it to trace a hole in the ceiling. Once you have the hole cut, you feed the brace up into the ceiling and set it down on the drywall (it has trapezoidal "feet" that rest on the hidden side of the sheetrock). You then twist the bar which causes it to elongate and eventually, teeth on both ends with engage the joists. Once secure, you can pull the romex through the box and mount it to the brace with the included hardware.

You can pick these up at most Home Depots for about $15.

Jimmy
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Old 02-02-2009, 11:57 AM   #7
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


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I'd recommend using a Westinghouse 1100 Saf-T-Brace Ceiling Fan Support Brace. I've used them before in such a situation with good results. Basically, you disconnect the box from the lateral brace and use it to trace a hole in the ceiling. Once you have the hole cut, you feed the brace up into the ceiling and set it down on the drywall (it has trapezoidal "feet" that rest on the hidden side of the sheetrock). You then twist the bar which causes it to elongate and eventually, teeth on both ends with engage the joists. Once secure, you can pull the romex through the box and mount it to the brace with the included hardware.

You can pick these up at most Home Depots for about $15.

Jimmy
Great to see you back Jimmy. Excellent suggestion. Just what the doctor ordered.
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Old 02-02-2009, 12:03 PM   #8
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Light Fixture installed-no junction box?


If the cable is coming thru the drywall right next to a joist, you can

A) use a pancake box (4" round x 1/2" deep) and screw it right on the face of the joist.

B) Drill a couple holes in the side of a 4" octogon x 1 1/2" deep box and screw it to the side of the joist.

If the cable is midway between joists you can use a simple cut in box for a lightweight fixture (3 pouinds???) or a brace style that expands between joists.

I consider the brace style boxes a pain in the ass.

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