Replacing the exterior lighting on your front porch, patio or garage is a quick and easy weekend project that will add a lot of appeal to your home. Although installing outdoor lighting isn’t complicated, there are some safety tips to know before you begin.
Although exterior lighting varies by type and manufacturer, there are a few key factors that are consistent with most. Outdoor lights typically have three wires: black or red (hot), white or gray (neutral), and ground (usually green or bare copper). Once you’ve identified these, it’s easy to connect the wires to your new outdoor light. Be sure to connect black to black, white to white and ground to ground.
If your fixture is not flush with the wall (but the gap does not exceed 3/16 inch), use clear silicone-based caulk to seal the gap so water does not leak inside. Seal the top and sides of the fixture so that if any water gets into it, it can drain out through the bottom. If the gap is greater than 3/16-inch, the fixture must be corrected. Check that the junction box is far enough into the wall, that the wires are tucked in and that all screws are securely fastened.