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Old 04.11.2007, 22:49
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Light Fittings

Hi there,

I have recently moved into an appartment, and would like to attempt to fit the lights that I have bought by myself. Please can you advise on:

A. Is it worth it? Or is it better and safer to get an electrician to do this?
B. Is there a website that will have diagrams to show how I can correctly wire the lights?
C. Anything else that may be relevant.

Many thanks in advance.

Z
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  #2  
Old 04.11.2007, 23:09
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Re: Light Fittings

I don't think it's too hard, if you follow directions online. I had to spend ~CHF 8 on electrical wire for one fixture, which I imagine is much cheaper than getting an electrician. I would say that you need to evaluate how "handy" you are, and how much common sense you have about electrical wires...

Basically, you shut off the power to the wires of choice using the circuit breaker (if you're not sure which breaker to use for your wires, just shut 'em all off for the moment; there's a lot of voltage that could run through your body if you make a mistake here!). Then, connect wires from your ceiling to the wires in your light fixture, making sure the right wires are connected (there's a color code for this, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrical_wiring_%28UK%29). Flip the circuit breakers back on and use your light.

You have to be careful of loose wires in your connection, so often the wires from the ceiling directly connect into slots in your light fixture. Otherwise, your ceiling might have a plastic connection box that will hold the wires from your light fixture in contact with the apartment wires. These plastic doodads can involve a little fenagling (coaxing) to stay in place, which is tedious if you're standing on a chair in a dark apartment.

Good luck!
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  #3  
Old 05.11.2007, 00:41
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Re: Light Fittings

Before you start, buy a tester which you can use to check if the power is really off, it looks like a screwdriver. It is a handy tool to have and could well save your life one day!
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Old 05.11.2007, 01:07
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Re: Light Fittings

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Before you start, buy a tester which you can use to check if the power is really off, it looks like a screwdriver. It is a handy tool to have and could well save your life one day!
True. I'm a cheap grad student, so I opted for the safe but annoying method of shutting down power to my whole apartment while I worked on the light fixtures. 220V shouldn't kill you or anything unless you have a weird heart condition; it will give you a shock to remember, though...Just ask my friend that didn't realize a cow pasture was guarded with electric wires inside of harmless-looking nylon string...
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Old 05.11.2007, 20:20
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Re: Light Fittings

Ha ha was that cow field in Switzerland?

I have only been electrocuted by a hand dryer and that was in Spain!

Thank you so much for you help, cant wait to give it ago at the weekend

Z
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Old 06.11.2007, 08:38
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Re: Light Fittings

Dont forget, you need to be sure the fixtures are securely mounted with proper screws and be careful not to drill into the wires when doing so. If the screws come out, the light will follow, if it is a fan,,,.... well, it will vibrate loose.
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Old 06.11.2007, 09:53
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Re: Light Fittings

And remember that all mess that you make (extra holes, chunks missing from the ceiling etc) will need to be filled and painted before you move out...
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Old 06.11.2007, 10:26
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Re: Light Fittings

I also shifted second time to new house.

My suggestion is

If you want to fix only normal 60 or 100 watts round bulb
then it is easy
* First remove all the fuse related to ur house
* With tester check make sure that the current is not present
* Using the knife remove the plastic coating of the wire in holder
you bought
* Then connect the two wires hanging in the wall
* Finally put the fuses and enjoi

If u wanna to do some drilling,hammering get the electrical route diagram of your house and do accordingly.

If u r scared then call electrician and do all the things
house and
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Old 06.11.2007, 11:52
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Re: Light Fittings

Since the question has already been answered, I just want to add that it's important to make sure that you don't work with live wires. 230V and a fuse isn't enough to guarantee nothing can go wrong.

Electrical fences for cows have a few Kilovolt but a much lower amperage and are less dangerous than household electricity. (A farmer's son once told me that it's "funny" to watch calves when they figure out that they shouldn't touch the electrical fence. )
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Old 07.11.2007, 12:24
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Re: Light Fittings

The basics:

- Brown: hot
- Blue: common
- Green/Yellow: ground (earth)
- Turn off the circuit.

The end.
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  #11  
Old 07.11.2007, 17:17
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Re: Light Fittings

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The basics:

- Brown: hot
- Blue: common
- Green/Yellow: ground (earth)
- Turn off the circuit.

The end.
not the best terms for beginners mate

Hot = Live
Common = Neutral
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Old 07.11.2007, 17:35
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Re: Light Fittings

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not the best terms for beginners mate

Hot = Live
Common = Neutral
Oh well. At least I was cognizant enough to include Brit-o-fide "earth".

Also, it should be noted that not all light fixtures are rigged with ground (again, "earth") wires, at least in my experience. If you've got the yellow/green wire coming out of the wall, good for you. If not, don't sweat it. If the light you are installing doesn't have connector for the ground (I'm not saying "earth" this ti....dammit!) then don't sweat that either.
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  #13  
Old 07.11.2007, 21:06
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Re: Light Fittings

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(A farmer's son once told me that it's "funny" to watch calves when they figure out that they shouldn't touch the electrical fence. )
It was also funny to see my friend figure this out a couple of weeks ago outside of Glarus. Survival of the fittest, I suppose...
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Old 24.02.2008, 14:04
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Re: Light Fittings

We're in a similar situation to this. I was told when we moved to Switzerland that generally apartments that are unfurnished are literally bare - but I didn't expect no light fittings!

Anyway, we have holes in the ceiling, with a metal hook hanging down to hook a light fitting on (so far so good). We also have some of these with the plastic "socket" with 2 holes to receive the lighting wires (and the other 2 holes hard-wired into the apartment).

So I bought some cheap 3CHF light fittings from Migros which seem to work well here, as they have 2 wires too. BUT I have one of these sockets with 3 holes rather than 2. Am I right in thinking the third will be the earth (there is a green/yellow wire) and that I can wire into the other two wires and just leave the green/yellow unwired? Is this good practice?
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Old 25.02.2008, 17:18
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Re: Light Fittings

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T220V shouldn't kill you or anything
WRONG!

220V is life threatening and dangerous. Do not be complacent, 220V does and will kill.

Never work on live equipment, ALWAYS unplug the appliance, or if working on fixed installations, switch off the main switch AND verify the power is off.
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Old 25.02.2008, 17:21
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Re: Light Fittings

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BUT I have one of these sockets with 3 holes rather than 2. Am I right in thinking the third will be the earth (there is a green/yellow wire) and that I can wire into the other two wires and just leave the green/yellow unwired? Is this good practice?
Yes, the colours are:

Brown or red: phase (power)
blue or black: neutral (power)
Green or green/yellow: earth (safety)

For metal light fittings that dangle down to a height that it can easily touch people, connecting the safety earth is wise.

If the light fitting has an earth terminal, and you have an earth wire present, then you should connect it as a matter of course

However most light fittings require just the phase and neutral to be connected.
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Old 25.02.2008, 20:06
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Re: Light Fittings

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Brown or red: phase (power)
blue or black: neutral (power)
Green or green/yellow: earth (safety)
Be very cautious when shouting out colors.

This is not true in every case, it depends on what some electricians have on hand the day they did the job as well. Uncaring apprentices, licensed professionals, handymen, DIY people can and will use whatever they have sometimes without caring.

Black is standardized and legally used for the live wire and not a neutral.

Green without the yellow trace can be used for a live wire as well in Europe. In North America, it is ground only!

Best be safe and buy a multimeter, or ask a pro to check it.

Be safe and shut the fuses off. If any doubt, ask for help, electrical fires that have been found from DIY people are not insured, you loose everything and possibly a life from one simple mistake.
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Old 27.02.2008, 10:43
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Re: Light Fittings

For the benefit of those who are not DIYers, or who simply do not have the correct tools, we just had an excellent experience with LumiMart installation. We purchased a series of lights from there and requested installation. We were able to set an appointment within a week. The electrician stopped by LumiMart and picked up the last light that we had purchased but was on back order, and did not charge extra for the delivery. He installed five ceiling lights in 2 1/2 hours, although admittedly they were fairly easy jobs but did require drilling. LumiMart will be billing us at a rate of CHF 90 / hour, which seems a good bit lower than what we have seen independently. He even installed one light that we had purchased elsewhere (we had asked in the store if that would be okay and received a green light).

Now, whether we paid a premium by buying the lights at LumiMart that offsets any savings in the installation is another question, but we were pleased with our purchases. We are likewise pleased that the evenings will no longer resemble cave-dwelling....
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Old 27.02.2008, 10:49
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Re: Light Fittings

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Electrical fences for cows have a few Kilovolt but a much lower amperage and are less dangerous than household electricity. (A farmer's son once told me that it's "funny" to watch calves when they figure out that they shouldn't touch the electrical fence. )
It's even funnier when you see a kitten jump up to play with it. They only do it once! (it isn't dangerous BTW, they are usually only 9 volt and send a charge through every 2 seconds or so)
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Old 27.02.2008, 10:57
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Re: Light Fittings

2 things not mentioned here:
If you are fitting a light that requires a hook in the ceiling and have no hook, you need to buy one from lumimart/Interio/co-op etc. Do NOT use this type of hook it will pull down part of the ceiling if the light is too heavy.

I can't find an image of the one you need and have only found them in Switzerland, if is basically a hook attached to a flat grip that expands when the hook is turned. You insert it into the hole in the ceiling (that the electrical wire comes out of), turn the screws and it expands to grip the plasterboard. This will hold a decent sized light.

If you are fitting a light that requires you screw it direct into the ceiling
You MUST use the correct raw plugs for the type of ceiling you have, do not screw direct into the ceiling or it, and the light, will come down. Find the correct raw plugs (Jumbo/Obi etc) they will have instructions on what screw and what drill bit to use on the back.
  1. Line up light in position on ceiling and mark screw holes
  2. Drill hole correct size for raw plug
  3. Tap in raw plug gently with a hammer
  4. Screw light fitting into raw plug
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