The Cost to Install New Light Fittings & Fixtures

All you need to know about installing new light fittings in your home including costs of materials, labour and time frames.

Light Fittings

What the job entails

Choosing the lighting fixtures for your home is one of the details you need to plan when decorating or planning a simple makeover or even a larger renovation project. You need to think about what type of lighting you need (ambient, accent or task lighting), then decide on the type and size of fittings and fixtures to make the most of your budget. This article is designed to be a basic guide to the costs involved in having a contractor install various different lighting options, as well as providing some background information which will hopefully help you make an informed decision about your lighting needs.

When removing old light fittings, you almost always will have to re-decorate and perhaps re-plaster afterwards. Occasionally, you can get away with it if the new fitting is the same size and shape (or larger), but it is unlikely. In the case of wall mounted downlighters and other new lighting where the wiring has to sunk into the plasterwork, you will definitely need to re-plaster after the wiring is in place. This is normally covered in the lighting quote, but the decorating most likely will not be (even if you ask for decorating work to be included, electricians do not normally want to get involved managing other trades, so would rather leave that up to you).

Ambient lighting (aka background lighting), substitutes for daylight and is usually provided by a central pendant type of light fitting, this is popular though bland by modern standards, but you can supplement this general lighting with other types to great effect. Accent lighting adds focus to general lighting using a mixture of spotlights, downlighters, up-lighters, strips and table lamps. Task lighting is simply the light required to do a specific job and needs to be focused on the area you're using. A good lighting plan will feature ambient, accent and task lighting elements, using a combination of light fittings to good overall effect.

You really should not be messing about with wiring if you do not have a good understanding of electrical work. There is no requirement for an electrician to carry out simple electrical tasks that do not involve additional wiring (such as replacing light fittings), but mistakes made can not only be costly, they can be very dangerous. So, if in doubt, get an electrician in to do the job safely! Find an electrician using the "Get Quotes" button on the page.

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The Installation Cost of New Light Fittings and Fixtures

The prices mentioned below have been collated via a number of online resources and should only be used as a rough guide. Although they are accurate at the time of publishing, prices vary tremendously based on your location and the type of fixtures and fittings chosen.

The average material cost of installing light fixtures will ultimately depend on how many lights and what type of light fixture you choose for the required room. For example, spotlights, downlights, pendants, chandeliers, tubes & more!

Most electricians will usually charge around £150 to £200 per day in labour. The tradesman will normally take anywhere between 1-4 hours depending on how many light fixtures will need to be installed and any additional wiring. The tradesperson will typically charge a standard call out fee which is usually around half a days work.

Below are some estimated costs of hiring an electrician to supply and install new light fittings and fixtures:

Job Description Avg. Cost Duration
Single lightweight pendant/chandelier £80-£100 2-3 hours
6 lamp lighting grid in kitchen with new wiring £800-£1000 3-4 hours
4 dimmed wall lights in the living room £500 2-3 hours
Ceiling or wall lamp replacement with no extra wiring £60-£100 1-2 hours


Cost Breakdown

Individual costs of fitting 4 dimmed wall lights in the living room - Total Cost: £500

65%

Materials
£325

30%

Tradesmen
£150

5%

Waste Removal
£25

FAQ's

This is often just a matter of personal preference, some people prefer bright light, whilst others like the lighting more subdued. It may be worth considering fitting a dimmer switch to any new lighting so you can control the level of light to suit everybody. But a basic way used to determine how much light you need, is to calculate your room size in square metres then multiply by 25 to give the wattage of lighting required for standard bulbs, though if using halogen bulbs you can reduce the multiplication to 19. For example, for a room with an area of 20 square metres, then if using conventional bulbs you multiply this by 25 to give a total wattage of 500 watts (or around 5000 lumens). This is of course only a rough guide as you generally want more light in a kitchen and less in a bedroom.
Again, largely a matter of personal choice. But lights that point up will reflect most of their light off the ceiling so need white or pale coloured ceilings to work really well. With downlighters the opposite is true, lighter flooring will work better as more light will be reflected up into the room. The shades chosen make a huge difference too, lights with glass shades will allow light through regardless of whether they are pointing up or down.
Most experts agree that you should position your wall lights about 5 feet above the floor, but this is nothing more than a rule of thumb - there are no hard and fast rules and much will depend on the actual room and the light fittings chosen.
Yes, great care needs to be taken when choosing a bathroom light as all bathroom electrical fittings must conform to certain safety regulations. Bathrooms are wet areas and electricity and water do not mix well! Because of this increased risk regulations regarding bathroom lighting are quite specific. The legislation divides bathrooms into zones and light fittings are classified by a two digit number. The first number is concerned with the degree of protection against dust particles, but the second number represents the degree of protection from moisture and ranges from 0 up to 8, with 8 being for a light that can be totally submerged in water. Zone 0 in a bathroom is inside the bath or shower tray and any light here must be a 7 or above. Zone 1 is above the bath or shower up to a height of 2.25 metres ,a rating of 4 and above is required for this zone. Zone 2 is the area immediately outside zone 2 out to 0.6 metres outside the bath and again a light fitting with a rating of at least 4 is needed.