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I need info on how to install recessed lights in a drop ceiling

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Dan_J_H., Sep 9, 2005.

  1. Dan_J_H.

    Dan_J_H. Well-Known Member

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    I need to know what type of recessed can lights will work in a drop ceiling. I also would like to know how to install these lights. I'm having a hard time finding any good info on this. If someone could show me some pictures of this installation that would be great. I have not put up the drop ceiling yet. This is a basement HT with 7" tall joists.
     
  2. chuckg

    chuckg Well-Known Member

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    The friendly folks at Lowe's can show you examples in the store. I presume the folks at Home Depot could do so, also.
     
  3. Jim Mcc

    Jim Mcc Well-Known Member

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    It's really easy Dan. I bought my recessed lighting at Home Depot. They just get nailed or screwed into the sides of ceiling joists at the proper height. I installed them, then had an electrician do the hookups. If you want the light to wind up in the center of ceiling tile, you need to layout the ceiling tiles first. After they're up, you just need to cut the holes in ceiling tiles. When you see a fixture at the store, you'll see just how they mount.
     
  4. Dan_J_H.

    Dan_J_H. Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys, but,

    The guy at Home Depot does'nt know his a$$ from a hole in the ground! He told me to not connect the fixture to the joists or grid, just set it on the top of the ceiling panel. This does not sound correct, is it? If I connected the fixture at the lowest part of the joist it still would be too high because the ceiling grid will be 3" to 4" below the joists.

    My guess is, extend the 4 connectors to attach or rest on the support grid.
     
  5. chuckg

    chuckg Well-Known Member

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    Yesssss. that's why I prefer Lowes. Or "Louies" as I like to say.

    Usually, lights for drop ceilings just span across the little "T" grid between the tiles and sit there. Nailing them to the ceiling joists first can result in mis-placed lights. Normally you run wire to a box NEAR where you want the light, and a short bit of flexible armored cable to the light itself. Some drop-ceiling lights just sort of clamp onto the ceiling tiles, but these can work loose and fall on your head. Not my preference.

    If you can't find a knowledgeable person, just open a box and read the instructions for yourself!

    Happy hanging.
     
  6. ChefRalph

    ChefRalph New Member

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    Dan,

    I have the same problem you had... My can lights have the bars that all you would do is to nail them into place between the joist. This would install them 3" or so above the drop ceiling...How did you work around this...

    Did I need to get special can lights for drop ceilings ?
     
  7. Leo Kerr

    Leo Kerr Well-Known Member

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    To the guy from the Home Despot's credit, I've seen installations using a fairly rigid ceiling tile, where a trim-ring was cut into the tile, and the fixture just sat on the tile. These being low-voltage, they had a fair amount of "outside of the can" stuff that extended out beyond the edge of the hole.

    On the other hand, I didn't have a whole lot of faith in them, even if they were installed in a public building that sees ~10,000,000 people/year come through the doors...

    Leo
     

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