Home / How To Change A Downlight
Downlights are widely used in homes and businesses across the world. Their popularity over traditional light bulbs is due to the sleek, more modern looking design, versatility, and increased energy efficiency.
While downlights generally last longer than many traditional light bulbs, they do still need to be replaced now and then. Because these lights are fixed into the ceiling, this may seem like a complicated task. However, the good news is that changing a downlight is actually relatively simple. Keep reading for a step-by-step guide on exactly how to replace downlights in your home or business quickly and safely.
Before jumping into how to change a downlight bulb, you’ll need to identify which bulb needs to be changed. To do so, simply turn your downlights on at the switch and check each one to identify which one (or more) has stopped working. Easy as that!
If you’re here to learn how to change LED downlights, don’t fret – the process is exactly the same!
Since changing a downlight is pretty straightforward, you’ll likely have most of the equipment you need at home already. All you’ll need is a ladder, a screwdriver, and replacement bulbs or fixtures.
Before purchasing a replacement bulb for your downlight, make sure you know what size and type is right for your fixture, to ensure it fits your existing wiring and socket.
If you’re not sure what type of bulb you need, you can remove it from the fixture (see ‘remove the old downlight’ section below) and bring it with you to a hardware or electrical store, where the staff should be able to help you find the correct replacement.
Once you’ve purchased the correct replacement bulbs and have all your equipment ready to go, it’s time to get to work. Before starting any electrical work, always make sure to turn off the power. Generally, turning off the switch at the wall is sufficient, but for extra safety, we recommend turning off the breaker switch that controls the power to that room. Once you’ve done so, test the lights to ensure the power is off.
Now that the power is off, it’s safe to remove the old downlight. If you’re not sure how to remove a downlight, keep reading.
First, remove the bulb or LED strip. If your light fixture has a cover, take this off in order to access the bulb. If it’s just the bulb that needs replacing, you shouldn’t need to detach the fixture from the ceiling or disconnect any wiring.
If the fixture does need replacing, use a screwdriver to remove any screws or clips holding it in place and gently detach it from the ceiling. Then, disconnect any wiring by gently and carefully pulling apart the connections. Keep in mind that the downlight may be hot or contain broken glass, so it’s best to handle it with care.
To install the new downlight, you’ll essentially be repeating the previous process but in reverse.
Begin by connecting any wiring to the new fixture, matching the wires’ colour to the corresponding wire on the new fixture. Once the wiring is connected, secure the fixture to the ceiling with screws or clips. Finally, insert the new bulb or LED strip into the fixture.
Remember, if you’re only replacing the bulb or LED strip, leave the fixture as is and skip straight to the last step.
There you have it, your new downlight is installed and ready to go. All that’s left to do is make sure it works!
To do this, turn the power back on either at the breaker switch or the wall switch (wherever you turned it off), and switch on the light. If the new downlight is functioning correctly, the light should turn on.
If the light doesn’t turn on, turn off the power and double-check the wiring connections. If the problem persists, it’s best to consult a professional electrician to avoid electrical shock or damage to the fixture.
Knowing how to change downlights is a handy skill, but it’s important to always keep safety in mind. Remember to turn off the power before beginning any electrical work and to handle the old and new downlights with care.
Alternatively, if you’re not confident in your ability or just want to leave the work in the hands of a professional, it’s best to call an electrician.
Orange Electrical offers a wide range of electrical services, including downlight replacement and new downlight installation. We can Design, Roll-out and Deliver electrical projects all over Queensland and even internationally. Get in touch with our team for a quote for your project today. Get in touch: (07) 3357 8618.