How To Install Motion Sensor Floodlights

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If you want extra lighting outside, replace existing outdoor lights with motion sensor floodlights. Motion sensors activate upon detecting movement and switch off after several moments. Floodlights operate similar to car lights, which focus the light on a specific area through parabolic mirrors..

The floodlights with motion sensors allow you to better see to do night work in your yard, and they provide a layer of security.Here are tips to install motion sensor floodlights.

Prepare to Work

For this project, you need:

  • work gloves
  • ladder
  • multimeter
  • screwdriver  
  • pliers
  • ratchet
  • wire nuts
  • motion senor floodlight

Find out if you need a permit before replacing lights. Shut off power to the lights you want to replace from the breaker box, and set the wall switch to "OFF". If you don't know which one shuts off the lights, keep trying breakers. 

Test the breaker with a multimeter to ensure no current exists. If you get a beep, wait several minutes and try testing again.

Remove the Old Lights

Decide which lights you want to replace. Set a ladder on flat ground away from overhead wires, and get an assistant to hold the ladder. 

Floodlights are commonly secured by long bolts. Use a proper size ratchet to detach them, then remove the wall screws with a screwdriver. Avoid pulling the screws too hard.

Run the multimeter over the area again, before you detach wiring. Unscrew the wire nuts from the wires by rotating them to the right with pliers or by hand. Wire nuts are plastic caps that keep moisture form getting on the wires. Discard old wire nuts.

You should see three wires: black negative wire, white neutral wire, and green or copper ground wire. The hot wire in older homes could be yellow or red. Use the pliers to disconnect the wiring.

Install the New Light

Buy lights that have a waterproof cover on the electrical box, which is required by electrical law in some states. Determine the correct size electrical box by counting the wires. Add three to the number of wires, then multiply this number by two to get the square footage you need.

Set the new motion sensor floodlight so the sensors can view in each direction. Attach the strap or bracket using the screws provided. Install the gasket around the edge of the new light, then slide it over the wiring. 

Connect the wires by matching colors, twisting them, and adding a wire nut. Press the new light gasket and wires into the electrical box, and screw the fixture  bolts in place. Add a bead of caulk around the edges that touch the house.

Restore power and test the lights. If they don't work, contact an electrician like Morris Electric Contracting & Service, Inc..

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7 June 2017

Learning About Projects Completed By Electricians

Hello. I am Jeffrey. I would like to use this site to talk about projects you can hire electricians to complete. Not all of the renovation jobs around your house can be completed by general contractors. Sometimes you must hire an electrician to do the work to ensure it is up to code and covered by all of the right permits. My site will cover these specific jobs in detail and discuss the permits you will need to secure to keep your home abiding by the local building codes. Please feel free to visit my site anytime to learn about this important subject. Thank you for coming by.