How To Properly Install a Wall Sconce

By: Carly Anne Crowne

Virtually every home has wall space that could be adequately be filled with a sconce, a wall-mounted light fixture. Because a wall sconce is supported with an electrical box, it provides an unobtrusive way to add light to a specific area.

Light sconces are extremely versatile. Any dark nook, hallway or corner could be a good choice for a light sconce. They work great in the bathroom or kitchen as task lighting. Often working in tandem, sconces are a great way to highlight a work of art or on opposite sides of a hallway.
Occasionally, you will see sconces placed in tandems of three or more, such as over a bathroom sink.
Single sconces can be placed six to eight feet apart in a hallway to light the way for foot traffic.

Sconces come in such a
wide variety of designs , it is hard to imagine them not fitting in with any décor. You can find modern and sleek sconces, as well as antique appearing sconces that seem to be from another century. Whether you are looking for a simple and functional design or something more elegant and sophisticated, there is a sconce for you. And with sconces being widely available, your search to find the perfect fit shouldn’t take long.

Installing a light sconce is a moderately involved process that can be done as a do-it-yourself project. First, let’s discuss the tools you might need.




Tools and Equipment  
• Drywall knife
• Screwdriver
• Drill
• Stud finder
• Tape Measure
• Marker
• Safety glasses
• Electrical box
• Wire
• Wire nuts and connectors

Safety is of the utmost importance. Don’t forget your safety glasses and especially remember to cut the power. To be certain, you should cut the power to the entire home and not just to the room you are working in.

Steps to Attach Sconce 
1. Mark the spot where you want to put your wall sconce. It needs to be directly beside a wall stud because that’s where it will be attached.
2. Cut the hole for your electrical box. Mark the area first by tracing around the box.
3. Cut a channel in the drywall to run wire to a switch. You may be able to avoid this if you can fish the wire through the wall to connect the sconce to a switch and the switch to an outlet or if your sconce comes with its own switch.
4. Connect wires to the junction box and run the wire to where you will install a switch. Remember that the black wire is hot, white is neutral and ground wire will be exposed copper. The ground wire will be attached to a green ground screw on the box. White wire goes to white and black goes to black.
5. Run the wire from an existing outlet to the switch location.
6. Install the switch box, attach it to a stud which is exposed by the hole in step 2 and attach the wires running from the sconce.
7. Install the mounting plate at the sconce plate.
8. Attach the sconce to the mounting plate.
9. Attach the wire running from the switch to the outlet. If there are multiple wires that need to be secured, you can twist them together and secure them with a wire nut.
10. Turn the power on and test the switch. Be careful to avoid touching anything live on the switch.
11. Install the switch plate and reattach the outlet plate.

For some people, this might seem like too advanced work. If you don’t feel safe doing it,
call a professional . But if you are patient and can follow directions, this is a project you should be able to pull off. If you do, you will end up with a functional and beautiful lighting addition to your home.

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