K&T question for ceiling fixture

embethAugust 29, 2011

I am wondering how to handle installing a new fixture in my dining room, wired with K&T. We just moved into our house a few months ago and had most of the K&T removed by a professional electrician. He didn't update a few fixtures because they were functioning fine and hard to access the wiring in the wall, one of which was the dining room.

I am now ready to install a new fixture in the room (the old one isn't really appropriate for the room), and I have found that there is the old gas pipe and the two K&T wires coming right out of the ceiling, with no electrical box.

I am not sure how to proceed. A surface mount box? (This is what the other remaining K&T ceiling receptable has.) Cut in a new box and just run the wires into it? Something else?

Also, I'm not sure if this is something I can handle myself or if I should hire this done. (I have limited electrical experience, but I do have relatives who can assist. I am willing to pay for the professional if there is something tricky about this, but I would like to avoid extra expense if I can.)

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Ron Natalie

You need an electrician on this. Many fixtures are NOT going to be compatible with the wiring here. Yes you need some kind of box. The problem is a surface mount fixture generates a lot of heat up into the box/wiring and this is going to damage the K&T conductors (and they ar probably not it all that great shape to begin with).

This one is going to take some examination of the existing conditions and it's hardly something that can be explained DIY on the net. If you want to do it yourself, my suggestion is to replace it with some modern wiring (NM or whatever). Even if you hire an electrician, that is more likely than not what he'll end up doing.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 10:08AM
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Thanks for the reply. I was thinking this was probably the case, but it's helpful to to have more information.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2011 at 11:14AM
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