Friday, October 8, 2010


This is old news by now, but JH came over last week and we finally put up that new track light, replacing the old one. For whatever stupid reason, I found that there are several kinds of light/track combinations and none of them match up. In other words, if you want to change the lights, you generally have to replace the track unless you can find an exact match. I ran into this problem.

I went to Home Depot to get some replacement lights, and of course it was way too easy. They didn't fit, and I figured it was because I went cheap and the previous lights were higher quality. I took one of the lights off and went to a high end lighting store, whose prices, for the record, shocked me. The guy there was knowledgeable but said he needed to know the exact brand of lights before he could find a replacement.

These lights were made in the Dark Ages, and the labels are completely missing, thereby making them impossible to identify. I asked him if there was any way, but he said the only way was if there were any labels still leftover on the unit, which there wasn't. In retrospect, any lights this guy carried or ordered would have cost us several hundred dollars, so maybe this wasn't a bad thing.

The conclusion was to replace the whole track, which would mean doing some re-wiring. This is something that terrifies me, but not when JH is there to run the show. With his magic bag of tools, I feel invincible... standing right beside him while he does all the work, of course.

He came over and we set about getting the job done. I figured it would take an hour or two at most, but it seemed to take a lot longer than I anticipated. Part of the problem was finding the right electrical box. I was at Home Depot and spoke with a guy who actually an electrician in another lifetime, and he walked me through what I'd need to do. He even handed me the box I'd need.

When JH came over, there was some discussion as to whether it was the right one, and if we needed on in the first place. He was fine to go either way, but in the end, I felt better putting a box in. Not only was this more code-friendly, but it seemed safer, as well.

We ended up driving all the way to Woodstock Hardware to find the right box before concluding that we did in fact have the right box. We finally came home, JH took a knife and cut open a hole, and he went about wiring the thing, explaining the difference between black, white, and green wires.

Once we got the wiring done, we had to install the track, which actually wasn't too bad. One of the screw holes actually hit a stud, so we we lucked out on that one, but for others we had to use drywall fasteners that PR recommended. They went in easily, and we were in business.

With the track in place, I now had to make an executive decision regarding which lights to choose. I'd purchase 3 different kinds and tried them out (the light worked, BTW), but only one seemed to fit the look of the kitchen. The others were too hip/trendy for a rustic kitchen.

This called for a trip to Home Depot to return/purchase lights, which we did, and suddenly, our kitchen has a new look to it. It's actually brighter and more cheerful. Go figure.

While the whole endeavor took longer than I thought it would, it sure feels good to have a brighter kitchen. I need to adjust the lengths of the cords, but I'm thinking even a real-man in training like myself can do that... yeah right. This should be good.

Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to ilker for the pic.

No comments: