How to Add Lighting to a Freestanding Carport
Many people enjoy the use of a freestanding carport rather than a garage for keeping their vehicle out of the weather elements. A carport is much cheaper to build and gives the homeowner a great deal of versatility as to where it will be located. A carport does not have to be a bland item. Many people will customize the freestanding carport with items such as gutters and lights. Here are some steps to take in adding lighting to a freestanding carport.
Step 1 - Determine Placement of Lights
Before you start to work on the installation of the freestanding carport lights you should first determine where you want them. Most of the time homeowners will place the lights in the front of the carport and along the interior roof. Locate the points where you want to install them and mark the locations.
Step 2 - Drill Hole for Wire
In order to power your lights at the carport you will need to run a wire from your home's circuit breaker. To do this you will first need to drill a hole in your home for the wire to go through. Choose a point near the top of your foundation just above the sill. Drill from the inside out with a drill and 1/2 inch bit.
Step 3 - Connect Wire
Strip back the insulation of the wire with the wire strippers and connect them to an empty circuit box. Once the connection is made, run the wire out through the hole. Use some caulking around this hole in order to keep water from settling inside the foundation.
Step 4 - Lay Conduit
To get the wire from the home to your freestanding carport you will need to locate it under ground. Call the local utility company to help you locate any underground wires or other utilities before digging. Dig a trench from the home to the carport that is about 12 inches deep. Lay the metal conduit into the hole and start to run the wire through it as you go along. Once you get to the carport, bury the conduit.
Step 5 - Install Electrical Box
Install the electrical boxes where you have marked for the location of the lights. These should be in a place where you can easily run the wire without any problems. If you are going to have multiple lights in your freestanding carport you will also need to install a weatherproof junction box. The best location is under the eaves. You will also need to install a box for the light switch.
Step 6 - Run Wire to Box
Run the wire from the ground conduit to the junction box. Use a wire stapler to secure the wire to the post without puncturing the sheathing. Once at the junction box, make the necessary cuts in order to run wire to each of the electrical boxes. Join the corresponding wires together and secure with wire nuts.
Step 7 - Install Lights
With the wires in place, install the light fixtures according to their directions. Connect the wires to the light fixtures. Install the light switch and cover with a face plate. Turn on the power at the circuit breaker and test your new lights.