~We’re busy working on the bathroom, so this week’s DIY post is un-related to that. Sorry! Check back next week because we hope to have some progress!
One of the items on the House Makeover Agenda for 2015 is to update some of the horrendously-dated lighting that is all over the house. We won’t replace all of them, but the plan is to update most of them this year. We’ve pretty much figured out which ones to attack, and what the plan is. Earlier this year, we decided to start with the 3 light fixtures in our stairwell.
These fixtures were ugly and dated. 2 of them matched, one didn’t. They hung down, but were exposed to the hallway & playroom. I was always afraid my son would throw things at them or pretend to be Tarzan. They had to go. Here’s the view from the entryway downstairs:
The plan was to just replace the junction boxes with recessed cans and use LED recessed lights. So, that’s what we did!
This job is relatively easy and cheap, but it does take some time. You can do it all from below, but we did the connections from above, because the stairs made them hard to reach.
We already had a 6″ round saw bit for our drill, since we did this in the last house, so all we needed were the cans and the lights. We also picked up a drywall patch and some ceiling texture since we were going to be moving one of the lights to center. We needed to patch the hole where the old junction box was. Since we were just replacing the existing lights, we didn’t need any additional wiring.
We turned the power off at the breaker, removed the old lights & junction boxes, then used our drill to saw a 6″ round hole in the ceiling.
Check out that difference! So much brighter, and uses less electricity to boot! Honestly, those old lights with all of their facets gave me a massive headache. Now, there’s not as much glare and shadows on the walls. It’s so much cleaner! The plan is to add some more lights on the catwalk/hallway next to the stairs, but that’s probably a project for the fall.
This job took us the better part of a day to complete, because there’s always something. In this case, it was the clips on the cans. They are tricky to lock into place. Make sure your can clips have the soft, spongy material on them, and you might need a flathead screwdriver and a hammer for extra leverage getting those in place.
Here’s the list for the stairwell/upstairs hallway:
Change Light Fixtures to Recessed Cans
- Add Recessed Cans to Hallway
- Move/Add Switches
Paint Walls & Trim
- Add Crown Molding
- Add Built In Bookshelves
- Possible New Window/Window Seat?
- New Balusters
- Open Up Stairwell Wall
- Remove Carpet/Add Wood Risers & Treads
- Wood Floors
- Gallery Wall
Have you updated any lights in your house? Which was your most challenging? Have a favorite light fixture? Tell us in the comments!
Check out all of the Stacy’s Savings Total Home Makeover posts here!