Changing a ceiling box to a larger size

Reply

  #1  
Old 07-23-17, 09:07 AM
P
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: United States
Posts: 10
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Changing a ceiling box to a larger size

I am in an old home, 60s maybe? I actually dont know..

So I want to replace a ceiling light that is currently the type where you have a metal plate up on the wall connected to the screws in the electrical box, then a dome with tension screws.

Anyway, I want to swap it out for a flush mounted LED kit but the problem is the electrical box up there is a small rectangular one, the kind a wall outlet would be in. The LED light kits have a large square bump out that needs a larger type of box to be pushed up into. The rectangle is much too small. I have swapped these lights in many times in different places and even different homes, but this is the first time I have encountered a tiny electrical box in my ceiling.

Stuff like this: Integrated LED - Recessed Lighting - Ceiling Lights - The Home Depot

They all require room to push the control housing up there.

The current box is metal and the conduit coming in is BX, metal. Everything in the house is only two wire, so no ground. I want to swap out the small box for a larger one. Also no stud, its being held up there currently with tension from the drywall and electrical box support clips.

So to do the swap, am I just going out and getting one of the larger rectangular or octagon metal boxes I was looking through at Home Depot, some more clips, and thats it? I would cut the drywall to fit the new size box, punch out one of the holes, pull the conduit through, insert and secure the clips, and be on my way?
 
  #2  
Old 07-23-17, 11:26 AM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 60,874
Received 1,342 Votes on 1,240 Posts
Welcome to the forums neighbor.

Your link shows trims for recessed lighting fixtures. Those require an actual metal can, not an electrical box, to be installed.

Name:  can.jpg
Views: 109
Size:  14.7 KB
 
  #3  
Old 07-23-17, 04:17 PM
P
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: United States
Posts: 10
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Most of them are the kind that replace the can but others are the kinds that just go into a junction box, like this: Halo 5 in. and 6 in. Matte White Recessed LED Surface Disk Light with 80 CRI, 3000K-SLD606830WHR - The Home Depot

They dont need the whole can, so I am trying to find out how to just replace the box up there.

Maybe this is a better link: This week at Cold Comfort: LED Ceiling Lights

See how there is a square up on the top side of the light in the pictures? Thats what I need room to get up there. So I need to replace the small electrical box there now with something bigger. I am used to finding much larger electrical boxes where lights hang, I haven't seen something like a rectangle for an outlet sized up above before.
 
  #4  
Old 07-23-17, 05:21 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 60,874
Received 1,342 Votes on 1,240 Posts
You're seeing what is called a cut-in gem box. It's 2"x3". It's held in with Madison bars or otherwise known as box supports.

That is the only cut-in "old work" box you can use because you have metal clad cable requiring a metal box.

There are several plastic boxes that would work there but they cannot connect to metal clad cable.

Those cut-in gem boxes come plenty deep enough for what you are doing and you can gang two of them together. I'm just not sure the mounting plate will line up with those threaded holes.
 
  #5  
Old 07-23-17, 06:46 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 15,224
Received 105 Votes on 91 Posts
Garmin makes a round cut in old work box.
 
  #6  
Old 07-23-17, 08:42 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 60,874
Received 1,342 Votes on 1,240 Posts
  #7  
Old 07-24-17, 06:58 PM
P
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: United States
Posts: 10
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
That's pretty much the box that I had in my hand when I was at the store.

Replacing my existing box.. I would use a metal box as you linked and as I saw in the store. I have learned, as mentioned here as well, the metal old work box is appropriate as I have metal conduit. When I go to make the replacement, I don't need to do anything fancy or different? Just get new Madison Bars, cut the hole in the drywall to size, punch out a hold on the new old work box, pull the conduit through, and that's it?

The job doesn't sound very complicated. Really the only decision I have to make is how deep of a replacement box to use?
 
  #8  
Old 07-24-17, 08:25 PM
pcboss's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Maryland
Posts: 15,224
Received 105 Votes on 91 Posts
You need to have the face of the box flush with the finished surface , otherwise use a deeper box.
 
  #9  
Old 07-24-17, 08:27 PM
PJmax's Avatar
Group Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Northern NJ - USA
Posts: 60,874
Received 1,342 Votes on 1,240 Posts
Get the deepest box you can. The extra depth can only help you and you should have plenty of room in the ceiling for it.
 
  #10  
Old 07-26-17, 06:51 PM
P
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: United States
Posts: 10
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Do I need to do anything special with grounding or anything? I saw no grounding attachment on the existing box, just looks as if the BX is simply pulled through the punched out hole.
 
  #11  
Old 07-26-17, 08:00 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,583
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
ooks as if the BX is simply pulled through the punched out hole.
It needs to be in a BX connector.

Name:  47ac5c8e-22f9-474c-8d72-3ae482eec1ad_400_compressed.jpg
Views: 83
Size:  7.3 KB
 
  #12  
Old 07-27-17, 05:45 PM
P
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: United States
Posts: 10
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Can I get those at Home Depot too?
 
  #13  
Old 07-27-17, 07:23 PM
ray2047's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 33,583
Received 13 Votes on 11 Posts
Yes. .
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: