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Brighten up a Dark Closet

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By : Paul Escobedo    99 or more times read
Closets can be dark, gloomy places where you go not so much to choose an outfit but amble about blindly removing one article of clothing after another to view them in a better light. This may be a bit of an exaggeration, but it's not far from the truth. If you feel like your closet is more like a cave and are tired of having to constantly change battery-powered lights, help on the way.

This job calls for the installation of a 120-volt fixture which requires a cable to be routed from an electrical junction box in the attic down to a switch, followed by running the wire from this switch to a ceiling box for a light. Alternatively, you could feed the power to the light fixture then down to the switch. In any event, make a hole in a wall, floor, or ceiling and feed a flexible steel fish tape from one point to another. Connect electrical cable to the fish tape using it to feed the cable to its destination. The electrical boxes you'll use must be drywall mountable. With these you'll pull the cable where necessary and slip the box over the cable box to the drywall. This is the reverse of the more traditional method with newer wiring.

For those of you who have done some basic electrical work, this is not as difficult as it sounds. It is, however, time consuming and if you don't have experience, you may want to hire a professional.

A major mistake made by amateurs is operating on the assumption that any attic or basement junction box is suitable for the job. The problem is that a box may not contain any more capacity or have wiring that isn't constantly energized.

Electrical codes dictate closet light bulbs be kept a safe distance form shelves and rods. Bulbs such as the 13-watt Leviton light can be placed within 6 inches of a shelf this is because of the low amount of heat it produces, making it ideal for smaller closets.

Remember to be safe; cut power to any circuit you'll be working on and use a non-contact voltage tester to ensure that the power is dead.
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