Want to add recessed lighting

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  #1  
Old 07-30-04, 10:53 PM
kamandscot
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Question Want to add recessed lighting

Hi,

I want to add receessed lighting to my living room.

Currently there is one switch plate with two switches, one for and outlet and one for the porch light. There are no existing light fixtures.

My question is would it be safe to add a series of six or eight lights to the power coming into the existing switch, or should I run a new line from the breaker box?

Ideally the recessed lights would be broken into two or three groups with dimmers.

Chico on Divine Design makes it look so easy....

Any advice will be appreciated. When I approach my wife with the idea it will help if I sound like I know waht I'm talking about.

Scot
 
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  #2  
Old 07-31-04, 10:20 AM
J
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Typically a recessed can is fitted with a 65-watt or 75-watt bulb. So eight lights would amount to 600 watts or less. This is only one third of the capacity of a 15-amp circuit, so it's not a huge load. Even though this is probably okay, it is always wise to figure out everything else that is on the circuit. Only then will you know if the circuit can support it.

Eight recessed lights in an average size living room will light it up like an operating room, so I'm glad to see that you are going with the dimmers. You won't be able to get these dimmers in the existing box (and due to heat buildup, you wouldn't want to even if you could), so you'll need one or more new boxes.

If you don't already have some, pick up two or three books on home wiring. These books will give you lots of invaluable tips for this kind of a job.

Note that depending on how the existing switches are wired, it may or may not be possible to tap power from this box. Shut off the breaker and gently pull out the switches without disconnecting anything. If both switches are single-pole (i.e., not 3-way or 4-way), and there are no white wires connected to the switches, then you can probably get power here.
 
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