Converting ceiling bulb socket to power outlet

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Old 01-13-06, 07:44 AM
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Converting ceiling bulb socket to power outlet

Hi,

I have a finished basement with a drop ceiling. The drop ceiling has recessed lighting on four corners and a light fixture in the center. I am planning to hang a projector in place of the light fixture.

I was wondering if I can use a bulb socket power adapter to use as the power source for the projector. Is this safe or do I have to add a power receptacle?

Thanks
 
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Old 01-13-06, 08:08 AM
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If your projector has a two prong plug I would say it is safe. However it is very simple to place a receptacle in place of the light fixture. They make a cover plate for round box that hold a receptacle.
 
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Old 01-13-06, 08:09 AM
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Obviously this idea will work. Is it a good idea? No. Those bulb adapters are designed for temporary use, like extension cords. They are not designed for permanent use. There is also the issue of proper grounding. If the projector needs a ground, that adapter won't have it.

You really should install a proper receptacle. Since you have to run wires for the video and audio, it shouldn't be too much trouble to run wires for a new circuit.
 
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Old 01-13-06, 08:17 AM
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The projector has a 3 prong plug. I could use a 3 prong adapter for the bulb socket adapter. If this is still a bad idea, could I just re-wire the bulb socket to a receptacle. It looks like the wire to the bulb socket is 3 wire 14 gauge. Of course, the problem now is that the new receptacle would be switched.
 
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Old 01-13-06, 08:44 AM
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The three prong adapter, like the screw in adapter, is designed for temporary use. Further, you won;t have a ground for the projector, and it obviously needs one, since it is three prong.

Yes, you can put a receptacle in place of the lamp socket.

But why? You are running wires anyway, run new wires and install a proper receptacle that won't be switched.

Or at the very least, replace the lamp socket with a receptacle, and make it not switched.
 
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Old 01-13-06, 08:52 AM
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Could I use an existing wall outlet and extend wiring from it to create the new receptacle in the ceiling? What is the best procedure for this? Of course, I would be leaving the wall outlet in place to meet code requirements.
 
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Old 01-13-06, 09:28 PM
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IMO, extending a general outlet up their would be best.
 
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Old 01-14-06, 05:19 AM
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If you will installing the receptacle above the suspended ceiling, you will not be able to run the cord of the projector up to it, and connect (code). Be sure the receptacle will be positioned in the suspended ceiling, so the cord does not extend through a hole in the suspended ceiling (face down or pendant).
 
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Old 01-14-06, 08:06 AM
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Three-prong adaptors are a bad idea 99.9% of the time. The only reason that they are even sold is for that 0.1% of the time that they aren't.

And socket adaptors are also usually a bad idea. The bulb socket is probably designed for 60 watts. So using this adaptor is only justified when the load is no more than 60 watts and does not require ground.

There are many possible good solutions. Heed the advice in this thread, and don't settle for a bad one.

The proper way to extend a receptacle to a new receptacle is a very common (probably the most common) topic of home wiring books.
 
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Old 01-14-06, 10:30 PM
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Many thanks to you guys for all the great suggestions.

I have extended a power receptacle to the ceiling from the last receptacle in my basement's power circuit. To meet code, my plan is to move the receptacle down to the ceiling tile level and cut out a hole in the ceiling tile to accommodate the outlet box.
 
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