Sign up to get your daily dose of Miss Mustard Seed:

Installing a Light


I usually focus on bigger projects and overlook little things…small details that would make a big difference if I just took the time to do them!  We’ve lived in our home for almost eight years and I hardly ever notice this sad light that hangs out by the side door.  It looks faded, dirty, tired.  The finish has worn away and it is almost the color of the siding.  I finally decided to get it over with, order a new fixture and get it done.


The current light had a slightly nautical feel to it and I decided to go with something a bit more traditional.  I selected the Westinghouse Wall Light Fixture from True Value.

I have wired lights myself before, but I asked my dad if he would come help.  He’s become my go-to guy when it comes to stuff like this.  Here’s how we tackled the project…

First, we shut off the power to the fixture at the breaker.  This is an important safety step, for obvious reasons.  Once it’s confirmed that the power is off, remove the existing fixture.  In this case, it involved removing a few screws and disconnecting the white and black wires as well as the ground wire.


The bracket holding the fixture was loose, so we decided to replace it with the new bracket, even though they were almost identical.


We installed the new bracket and reconnected the wiring.  Twist the black wire from the fixture to the black wire in the outlet and repeat with the white wires.  Twist the plastic caps over each pair of exposed wires.  We wrapped the ground wire around one of the metal screws.


Slide the fixture onto the bolts coming out of the bracket and secure with provided decorative screw caps.


It probably took us less than 10 minutes to make this simple change and it looks so much better.  Now, I’d love to replace that door, but that’s waaay at the bottom of the DIY list, so don’t hold your breath!


For now, I’m happy with the light.

For more tips and inspiration on quick-fix projects, stop by your local True Value for advice or visit them on Facebook and Pinterest.

I was one of the bloggers selected by True Value to work on the DIY Squad. I have been compensated for my time commitment to the program as well as my writing about my experience. I have also been compensated for the materials needed for my DIY project. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.

Related posts:


  1. Maryann says:

    I agree, the new light does look so much better, love your choice! If you don’t like the door why don’t you paint it.. maybe black. Just an idea.. you’re the pro! take care, Maryann

  2. I like the sad little lite but I love the new light! Looks muchly better.
    Totally understand what you mean about the door. It’s not the door itself but
    the style of the door that doesn’t work with your house. Yep. Been there.


  3. It looks so nice. I agree with painting your door, it will look like a new one! But if you’re like me, it’s just another thing to paint!

  4. I found this post hitting close to home! I have been telling my husband our outdoor lights are pathetic, sad, and so ugly. They are similar in style to your “nautical” one! Ours look like a lantern an old fisherman had carried and was retrieved from the bottom of the sea because it is so rusted out. How can he think they are fine? Of course I think the whole house needs a paint job, new shutters, and new lighting…..and within a few short years (perhaps this year!) I WILL get my way. (Because he knows it needs an overhaul and updating.) 😉

  5. Lol. It must be a Dad thing. I ask my father in-law to do my light fixture changes. I think they feel special knowing that we need them too.

  6. We had that exact same fixture when we moved in to our house 7 years ago. Needless to say, it was one of the first things I had to change! Unfortunately, I still have the exact same door as you do and I desperately want to change it, but it’s not way up there on my list of things to do right now. Maybe I will change mine when you change yours! :-)

  7. shelly b. says:

    After 8 years, I just changed out our lights too! I found some great ones at the Habitat for Humanity store here locally. I changed out 3 lights in about an hour. My husband didn’t even notice! Lol!

  8. Jeanine C says:

    Kept our lights because the shape was fine. I sprayed them with Rustoleum Oil Rubbed Bronze and bingo…4 new looking front lights for about $7.00!

  9. Fresh and probably brighter! We did the same thing last summer in this 100 year old house. I still love them! Good job with the tutorial – I leave electricty to my husband. I would be burning candles;) I smiled that you had 500 comments for the free giveaway and only 8 for the home improvement….

  10. Beth G. says:

    Love the new light! It makes such a difference! We have that same front door, and I want it gone, the list is sooo long!


  11. JaneEllen says:

    I guess a few of us have same instant thoughts. As soon as i saw new light first thought was then why don’t you paint the door, fix problem quickly and more easily than buying new door.
    Love new light. Happy Spring

Leave a Comment