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Old 02-16-2011, 11:26 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
1,819 posts, read 2,369,539 times
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Has anyone successfully retrofitted can lights (recessed lights) in place of a typical light fixture? I had one lighting store tell me that even the retrofit kits don't usually work because the old box above it is typically mounted to a beam and therefore, after it is removed, the beam blocks clearance for the new can light. In other words, they said it would probably require cutting a new hole and replacing drywall. Is that true? Thanks!
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Old 02-16-2011, 11:41 PM
 
Location: Alaska
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On one I did, the 2x4 was off to one side. Since the can was larger than the existing hole, I was able to enlarge it away from the support, so it wasn't in the way.
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Old 02-17-2011, 02:54 AM
 
Location: Columbia, California
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It will be different in each app. I had to remove some 2' by 4' fixtures, I had to use more drywall.
As far as the recessed make up boxes, they tend to be nailed to the side of a joist.
The recessed light fixtures need more clearance.
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Old 02-17-2011, 07:35 AM
 
99 posts, read 204,709 times
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Default recessed light

good morning, i had can lights in the kitchen and went with the adaptor kits from lowes, an easier way out for me, certainly not as nice as some of the new fixtures, but sure looks nice now, my type have adjustable height as well.
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Old 02-17-2011, 08:14 AM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
6,833 posts, read 21,956,687 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoisjongalt View Post
Has anyone successfully retrofitted can lights (recessed lights) in place of a typical light fixture? I had one lighting store tell me that even the retrofit kits don't usually work because the old box above it is typically mounted to a beam and therefore, after it is removed, the beam blocks clearance for the new can light. In other words, they said it would probably require cutting a new hole and replacing drywall. Is that true? Thanks!

Yes, no, and maybe.
A lot of that depends on location. The general idea is to center a fixture box. If a joist is pretty close to that position electricians nail a box to the side. If not, they nail a bridge board between the joists and nail the fixture box to the bridge.
So, every location could have a different scenario requiring different methods to install. And the amount of existing wire could effect the location of the can. Do not- I repeat, DO NOT BURY A WIRE NUT JUNCTION in a ceiling. Your connections must be within the junction box.
Believe me- I've seen it done.
Here's a website that might help:
Recessed Lighting

For most DIY'ers- plan on some d/wall repair. Here's an install sheet for a Halo brand fixture. This should give you a little bit of info as to the actual installation procedure:
http://www.cooperlighting.com/webDB/...st%20sheet.pdf

For the recessed fixtures themselves- styles and sizes run the gambit.
5" and 6" round are all but a cliche- the smaller 2.5 and 3" are the new. Along with square and rectangular with multiple gimbal heads. And of course there are IC, non IC, incandescent, CFL, LED, line voltage, and low voltage.
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Old 02-17-2011, 05:10 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
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You might want to consider some of these pendent light conversion kits. Very easy to install. Amazon.com: recessed light conversion kit

Here is one example
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:15 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, GA
6,833 posts, read 21,956,687 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CptnRn View Post
You might want to consider some of these pendent light conversion kits.
Might want to consider re-reading the OP post.
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Old 02-18-2011, 06:33 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
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Thanks for all of the info. It looks like I need to take all of the old fixtures off and do some investigating before I buy anything. I really don't want to have to re-drywall.
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Old 03-10-2011, 04:56 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
14,518 posts, read 21,161,315 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whoisjongalt View Post
Has anyone successfully retrofitted can lights (recessed lights) in place of a typical light fixture? I had one lighting store tell me that even the retrofit kits don't usually work because the old box above it is typically mounted to a beam and therefore, after it is removed, the beam blocks clearance for the new can light. In other words, they said it would probably require cutting a new hole and replacing drywall. Is that true? Thanks!
Actually the old box is usually mounted off to the side of a joist or truss, being off to the side provides more flexibility in adjusting the height of the box. But it also could mean that you will need to cut a larger hole, off to the side of the joist. Which could be a problem depending on how you need to align the fixtures in the room below. You should explore that joist configuration before you buy the can's.
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