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Blank opening for an outside light next to a front door

Old Exterior Light Fixture

Dear Mr. Electrician:  How do I install new wiring for an old exterior light fixture? Answer:  Installing new wiring for an old exterior light fixture will vary according to the structure. NOTE: Some text links below go to applicable products on Amazon.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.  Using my links helps to keep this website FREE. The original wiring was probably installed when the building was constructed, and the walls were open.  It may be possible to install new wiring in the walls without causing too much damage to the existing walls and ceilings.  I have fish tapes and fiberglass rods for wire pulling. A new cable can be fished by drilling a hole up or down into the wall when a basement is below the exterior light or an attic is above.  Measurements must be taken to locate the exact spot in the basement or attic that coincides with the existing old exterior light fixture. Below is a simple example of a job where I could easily install a new Romex cable to a light fixture that was missing for a long time. OLD EXTERIOR LIGHT FIXTURE WIRING I was called to install an exterior light fixture next to the front door.  Below is what I found when I arrived. The client had no idea how long the old exterior light fixture wiring had been like that, but they wanted the new light fixture to be controlled by the wall switch inside. The existing switch box for this light was located behind it and down approximately three feet inside the house.  I could not pull out the old BX cable, but I could fish a new cable into the switch box. A new metal switch and receptacle box fit perfectly in the hole, and I was able to screw it to the wood using #6 wood screws. I grounded the new electrical box using the grounding conductor in the Romex cable; however, the National Electrical Code no longer permits this.  A separate grounding pigtail for the box must be installed. See my blog post about grounding switches and outlets for more details about metal box grounding. The existing three-gang switch box had some old wiring in it that was in good condition.  The original installer did not remove the unused cable clamps inside the electrical box. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || ).push({}); An old three-gang switch box with the new Romex cable that I installed for the new old exterior light fixture.  I could easily fish a wire down after pushing my fish tape up through a knockout in the electrical box.  I used a Romex clamp to secure it. I snipped the old wires that went to the light fixture so they would never be used again and to give me room. The three-gang box was grounded through the BX cable armor, an approved grounding conductor.  I used a machine screw, grounded the Romex ground to the box, and left a pigtail to connect to the new switch.  As I mentioned previously, this grounding method is...