Lighting Updates: Master Bathroom

We have two light fixtures in our master bathroom. The first fixture is over the sink area and the second fixture is in between our shower and toilet. While the fixture over our sink is doing just fine, the other one was not. It’s a basic builder grade light with metal clips that hold the glass bowl in place. Even though we run the fan and often leave the bathroom door wide open when showering, the metal clips were getting pretty rusty. It obviously isn’t rated to be in a wet space.

So, we began brainstorming about what type of fixture we’d like to replace it with. We liked the idea of a light that would sit flush with the ceiling, like a pot light, but with a larger circumference than “modern” pot lights. Something closer to 4″-6″ across, instead of 2″. However, after some research we learned that to install a pot light can we would have to make the hole in our ceiling larger. The thought of drywall cutting, patching, and the ensuing dust was extremely unappealing to us. Strike one.

Next, we found a few pot light converter kits. Getting warmer. But, they required a junction box for a flood light, not a standard flush mount light. Something that is not straight forward to switch out, and, again, would probably necessitate drywall cutting. Strike two.

Then, while at a lighting store making purchases for other areas of our home (still waiting for our order to arrive!) we asked if they had anything that converted a flush mount junction box to an imitation pot light flush mount. And….they did! Success! They had exactly what we we looking for, and it was on sale! This is the light that we got and it is rated for use in wet spaces like bathrooms.

The next afternoon we decided to get to work while the sun was still shining. First, we turned off the power and I took out the original fixture in no time flat. Then, we opened up the new light and read through the instructions. We installed the new light, following one step at a time.

Once all the wires were connected and the new light was working (we turned the power back on to check in case anything wasn’t connected securely/correctly), we tried to fit the fixture and wires back into our box. And thus ensued a 45 minute battle….

See, at the very top of the instructions was a note saying the minimum height required for the fixture to fit was 2.25 inches. Why this isn’t in larger writing I don’t know, since we easily overlooked it when reading everything else. Our junction box, obviously, wasn’t this height. It’s only 1.5″ high.


We were already committed at this point (read: I’m stubborn). So we disconnected some of the new connections and made the wires shorter. Then, we struggled to get the wire connector caps a far away from the centre of the junction box as possible. At some point we were both ready to leave the light hanging in mid-air in favour of our sanity. Somehow though, with our two brains working together, we managed to solve the puzzle of fitting everything in the junction box AND getting the light fixture to sit flush with the ceiling. This was no small feat. There was a good amount of sweating and a healthy dose of overhead arm exhaustion related swearing.

Luckily, it’s a pretty great transformation! Check out the difference! I feel that the space looks and feels much more open/clean now. But, perhaps that’s simply my brain’s way of justifying all the effort it took to install the darn light. What do you think?





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