diy recess lighting

DIY Recessed Lighting: How to Upgrade Your Home’s Lighting System

Have you ever found yourself in a room with poor lighting and wished you had brighter, more efficient lights? If you live in a home with outdated or inadequate lighting, you may be in luck! With a little bit of DIY effort, you can upgrade your home’s lighting system by installing recessed lighting. The installation process is not as difficult as you might think, and the results are sure to impress.

In this article, we will guide you through the steps of upgrading your home’s lighting with DIY recessed lighting. We will discuss the benefits of recessed lighting, the tools and materials you will need, and how to install it step-by-step. We will also answer some frequently asked questions regarding the installation process and address any concerns you may have.

Benefits of Recessed Lighting

Recessed lighting has been gaining popularity in recent years as a popular lighting solution for homes and businesses alike. Some of the benefits of recessed lighting include:

– Provides ambient lighting: Recessed lighting provides overall ambient lighting without taking up space in your home.
– Saves space: Recessed lighting is installed into the ceiling, which means that it doesn’t take up any floor or wall space.
– Provides directional lighting: Recessed lighting can be angled in any direction, providing directional lighting for specific areas or features in your home.
– Energy efficient: LED recessed lighting is energy-efficient, meaning that it can save you money on electricity bills in the long run.

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Tools and Materials

Before we get started on the installation process, let’s first review the tools and materials needed for the project.


– Drill
– Hole saw
– Fish tape
– Wire strippers
– Screwdriver
– Pliers
– Drywall saw
– Voltage tester
– Safety glasses


– LED recessed lights
– Remodel-style recessed light housings
– Electrical wire
– Wire connectors
– Junction box
– Drywall anchors
– Drywall screws
– Insulation (optional)

Installation Guide

Now that you have your tools and materials on hand, we can begin the installation process. Follow the step-by-step guide below to install your DIY recessed lighting.

Step 1: Plan Your Lighting Design

Before you start cutting holes in your ceiling, you will need to plan out your lighting design. Determine where you want your lights to be placed, and create a layout. Keep in mind that recessed lighting should be spaced evenly apart and should be placed at least three feet away from walls.

Step 2: Turn off the Power

Safety should always be your top priority when working with electricity. Locate the circuit breaker that controls the power to the room you will be working in and turn it off. Use a voltage tester to verify that there is no power running through the wires before proceeding with the installation.

Step 3: Cut Holes in the Ceiling

Using your hole saw, drill holes where you marked your lighting design. Be sure to cut the holes carefully, avoiding any electrical wires or plumbing pipes that may be in your ceiling.

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Step 4: Fish the Wires

Using your fish tape, fish the electrical wire through the holes in the ceiling and to the junction box. Be sure to leave enough wire hanging out of the holes for easy installation of your recessed light housings.

Step 5: Install Junction Box

Mount the junction box to the ceiling joist using your drywall anchors and screws.

Step 6: Connect the Wires

Using your wire connectors, connect the wires from the electrical box to the wires from your recessed light housings. Be sure to match the colors of the wires.

Step 7: Install Recessed Light Housings

Insert the remodel-style recessed light housings into the holes you cut in the ceiling. The spring clips on the sides of the housing will secure it into place.

Step 8: Install LED Recessed Lights

Insert the LED recessed lights into the recessed light housings. Secure the lights in place by following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Step 9: Turn on the Power

Turn on the power to the room and test your new recessed lights.


1. How much does it cost to install recessed lighting?

The cost of DIY recessed lighting installation depends on the size of the room and how many lights you plan to install. On average, DIY recessed lighting installation can cost anywhere from $200-$500 for parts and materials.

2. Can you install recessed lighting without attic access?

Yes, you can install recessed lighting without attic access. By using remodel-style recessed light housings, you can easily install your recessed lighting from below the ceiling.

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3. How far apart should recessed lights be placed?

Recessed lights should be spaced evenly apart and should be placed at least three feet away from walls.

4. Can recessed lights be installed in a sloped ceiling?

Yes, recessed lights can be installed in a sloped ceiling. However, it may require specialized housing or trim to ensure that the light is angled correctly.

5. Can recessed lights be installed in a bathroom?

Yes, recessed lighting can be installed in a bathroom; however, it is important to make sure that the lights are rated for use in damp environments.


Upgrading your home’s lighting system with DIY recessed lighting is an excellent investment that can provide a host of benefits for years to come. By following the above guide, you should be able to tackle this task with confidence and ease. Not only will your lighting be brighter and more efficient, but you will also have a more modern-looking home. Happy DIY-ing!

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