light in closet

SamanthapApril 5, 2005

Our bedroom closets have sinle light bulbs operated by a string attached to the tiny chain. pretty cheap and easy. But also a bit ugly! what would be more attractive--the light works fine and inside a closet is not where I want to spend $!

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An electrician could run a line to create a wall switch.

You should also know that in some areas it is against code to have lights in closets because of the danger of fire. I ran a foul of this reg. once myself. I was able to get the lights installed but it required enclosing them in a wire cage to make sure nothing could fall against them from a shelf.

Replacing the strings with something prettier shouldn't be a problem.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2005 at 3:25PM
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If you perform any changes you will likely need to bring the fixtures up to code.
The rules for lights in closets are relatively strict now, including the location.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2005 at 8:33PM
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Just a thought. I have 10 foot ceilings in my closets. As you can guess changing a light bulb was quit a production. I moved my closet light to the front wall of the closet just inside and over the door. Much easier to change a bulb. And now the light shines on the front of my clothes instead of being blocked by the closet shelf. And since no one can see it, it doesnt really matter what you use.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2005 at 4:32AM
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"And since no one can see it, it doesnt really matter what you use."
I hope you mean from an appearance standpoint only.
No one can see the wires in the walls either. Save some money and just use zip cord.
Over the door is one of the prefered locations for closet fixtures since it stays clear of the shelves and the piles of flammable stuff that seem to accumulate. Closet fixtures for incandescent lights must fully enclose the bulb.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2005 at 8:27AM
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There are several kinds of clip-on shades which make that kind of bare-bulb ficture look like a different kind of fixture without any rewiring. No idea how safe closet lights are, just thought I would pass this along. This site (I have oredered from them before) has several other types as well.

Here is a link that might be useful: One example

    Bookmark   April 12, 2005 at 9:24PM
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Sorry. Didnt know I had to spell it out. Let me try again.

If you put your light fixture over the door you can change the bulb without standing on a ladder. And you can use a cheaper fixture since no one can see it. I use one with a pull cord myself. I have my light over the door and to the side so that the pull cord runs beside the door.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2005 at 12:42AM
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My closets had no lights at all. We paid $7.99 each for some cheapy fully-enclosed fixtures, intended to be low-end fixtures for hallways. No switch. It took me about an afternoon to drill holes, mount boxes, add a switch to the wall just outside the closet. We put the lights in the ceiling, only because I could get to the ceiling from the attic. The fixtures are rated for 60W bulbs, and we installed 40W bulbs, which are fine for the closet. We followed all the code regarding putting a cage over the top of the fixture box so that attic insulation would not build up on it and cause it to overheat.

Fixtures don't have to cost much. We just waited for the local Home Depot to put something on sale.

I agree that if I could have access the walls easier, I'd have put the fixture just over the door. With the light in the ceiling, the light is blocked by things on the shelf, so the hanging clothes are not well lit.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2005 at 4:35PM
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As I recall, without looking it up, the National Electrical Code requires that the light in a closet be either a covered incandescent fixture (standard light bulb protected by glass enclosure) or a flourscent fixture. Flourscent fixtures are a major pain and give poor light so find a simple fixture with a glass cover.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2005 at 10:11AM
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Found a solution: Aubuchon Hardware's automatic closet light, # 661455. Uses a bare incandescent light; likely does not meet many local codes. Safer installation hint: mount it high along the inside of the closed door frame, so the bulb won't get hit or broken and risk a fire. And don't tell the local building inspector about it.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2008 at 11:00PM
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