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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
The AC outlet in my ceiling above where my chandelier hangs is going bad. I need to replace it. But I can't get to it! The mounting bar that supports my chandelier blocks me from getting to it. It's a small space. The geniuses that designed this made it so I can't just unscrew the mounting bar either. It's pretty much fixed in there. Seems ridiculous to have to tear parts of my ceiling out just to replace a little AC outlet. It seems even more ridiculous to give up and settle with a chandelier that I can't use. There must be an easier way around this. Any suggestions?
 

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The AC outlet in my ceiling above where my chandelier hangs is going bad. I need to replace it. But I can't get to it! The mounting bar that supports my chandelier blocks me from getting to it. It's a small space. The geniuses that designed this made it so I can't just unscrew the mounting bar either. It's pretty much fixed in there. Seems ridiculous to have to tear parts of my ceiling out just to replace a little AC outlet. It seems even more ridiculous to give up and settle with a chandelier that I can't use. There must be an easier way around this. Any suggestions?
From your photo and your description it is still not clear (to me) what is going on.

You stated "The AC outlet in my ceiling above where my chandelier hangs is going bad. I need to replace it. "

From the photo, I can see two "figure 8" pairs - one white and one clear - plus a bare copper earth wire going somewhere, but these do not appear to be going to that which you describe as "The AC Outlet". ( Is this [cylindrical] "AC outlet" an Edison screw socket and is it in use - since a bare copper earth wire could not connect to such a fitting? )

I gather that the chandelier is mounted on a threaded tube which is fixed by two (?) screws (one of which is NOT shown in the photo) to a metal support above it. While it is not clear how or if the support above is fixed in place or how it might be removed, would not removing the two screws allow the threaded tube and its "base" to be slid forwards or back and the fitting lowered to the ground - pulling out the two pairs and earth in the process.
(It is almost certain that you would need the assistance of another person for this procedure.)

Somewhere, those wires must connect to the wiring of the premises and I suspect that, when these wires are extracted from the ceiling - which you should be able to do without removing the chandelier, you may find several connectors (wire nuts ?)

In addition (as a "plug" for an organisation with which I have no connection) I draw your attention to a UK made "Maestro Plug-in Ceiling Rose", made by Lewden in that country. They are rated at 230 V, 6 A and, hence, should "pass muster" in North America - Maximum weight is 5 kg (11 pounds)

I have two of these and they enable the chandeliers concerned to be taken down for cleaning (when required) and "plugged" back in without disturbing any wiring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
From your photo and your description it is still not clear (to me) what is going on.

You stated "The AC outlet in my ceiling above where my chandelier hangs is going bad. I need to replace it. "

From the photo, I can see two "figure 8" pairs - one white and one clear - plus a bare copper earth wire going somewhere, but these do not appear to be going to that which you describe as "The AC Outlet". ( Is this [cylindrical] "AC outlet" an Edison screw socket and is it in use - since a bare copper earth wire could not connect to such a fitting? )
The white cord has prongs on one end, and two split wires on the other. You plug it into the AC outlet/socket in the ceiling then splice the two chandelier wires with it.
 

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"Settle with a chandelier that I can't use"

Is the circular pattern on the ceiling around the opening a single piece (separate rose or medallion) that can be taken down all in one piece not cracking up into little pieces while exposing a larger hole to work on the wiring from?

You can hook up the new chandelier to the old wires in the same way the old chandelier was hooked up.

If you can't find a replacement for the old nonstandard receptacle behind the mounting bar, you could get rid of that and hard wire the ceiling wires directly to the new chandelier wires.

If you can't access the old wires up in the ceiling you have no choices other than to fish a new cable up from the panel or to tear open the ceiling more.
 

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Here's what it looks like:
Your AC outlet looks like a socket on another light fixture. This is a hack installation and the only remedy to correct it may be to take everything apart and start over.

The correct electrical installation of this chandelier would have a round electrical box in the ceiling that the bar would attach to. The wires would be spliced together with wirenuts, not a plug and outlet. Ideally the ceiling electrical box would be flush with the medallion.

On this page are pictures of what a ceiling light installation should look like: http://www.mrelectrician.tv/questions/question-InstallSwitchLight.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You can hook up the new chandelier to the old wires in the same way the old chandelier was hooked up.
That's a great idea! I'll give that a try.


If you can't access the old wires up in the ceiling you have no choices other than to fish a new cable up from the panel or to tear open the ceiling more.
I suspect this will be what ends up happening. I'm doubtful that I can access the wires in the ceiling but it is worth a shot. The receptacle is definitely out of reach.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Your AC outlet looks like a socket on another light fixture. This is a hack installation and the only remedy to correct it may be to take everything apart and start over.l
It looks like it in this picture, but it is a receptacle for a two pronged plug.

I was thinking that whoever put this together did a poor job since they made it near impossible to access this receptacle. You agree?
 

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... looks like a socket on another light fixture ...
The receptacle could be an adapter shaped like a screw in fuse that screws into an ordinary (Edison medium) lamp socket.

If you are lucky, any problems or arcing are within the adapter so putting in a new adapter of the same kind plus a new plug whose cord is connected to the new chandelier wires will solve the operational problem although not bring the installation up to code.

LED converters for incandescent ceiling can lights sometimes come with a similar screw in adapter instead of being hard wired to the can using wire nuts. A common problem with the original socket is the tab at the bottom being compressed down too far so it does not make good contact with the adapter tip (or a light bulb). This problem is sometimes fixable by reaching into the socket with a straigtened paper clip with a tiny L bend at the end. A difficult problem is a corroded rivet that holds the socket parts or wires together.
 

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It looks like it in this picture, but it is a receptacle for a two pronged plug.

I was thinking that whoever put this together did a poor job since they made it near impossible to access this receptacle. You agree?
I surmise that there is an old recessed light fixture above the medallion. Rather than remove it and install a regular electrical box, a medallion was used to cover it up. Then a screw-in adapter was put in the old light fixture's socket and a plug was put on to connect the new chandelier.

Is the wire that is feeding the existing recessed light socket large enough to handle the load of the new chandelier? That was originally designed to handle one light bulb. Sockets can be rated 300 watts or 600 watts.

How is grounding of the chandelier accomplished?
 
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