REPLACING A CEILING ROSE

All diagrams in this post can be ‘clicked on’ to enlarge and can then be printed out if required.

Replacing a ceiling rose is a job that can be carried out by a competent DIYer, but as always if you are not confident use the services of an electrician.

Tools required :- Side cutters (snips), an insulated medium size screwdriver, an insulated terminal screwdriver, wire strippers, marker pen and either test lamps or a meter to confirm the electrical supply to the ceiling rose is isolated.

Start by switching off the consumer unit and removing the appropriate circuit fuse / miniature circuit breaker.

fig 1

fig 1

Fig 1 shows the most common way a ceiling rose is connected assuming that the wiring is in the ‘old’ colours of Red – Live, Black – Neutral, Green / Yellow – Earth.

Cable A and Cable B are the live, neutral and earth loop to each of the ceiling roses / lights in the circuit, they remain ‘live’ regardless of the light switch position, hence why the circuit needs to be isolated.

Cable C is a twin red and earth which is connected to the light-switch.

1 and 8 are the live and neutral conductors that connect to the ceiling rose lamp holder.

2 is the return live (switch-wire) from the light-switch.

3 is the live feed to the light-switch.

4 and 5 are both live conductors.

6 and 7 are both neutral conductors.

9 is the earth terminal for each of the earth conductors from each cable, the earth cables must be connected to the terminal, so must the earth at the light-switch if there is a metal back box or metal light-switch.

When the circuit has been isolated and tested it is a good idea to mark the insulation on the three live conductors (3,4,5) with a dot from a marker pen to make them easier to identify, these are the conductors that most DIYers connect back up incorrectly, the two conductors 2 and 3 can be reconnected the wrong way round and the switch will still work correctly, the neutral conductors 6 and 7 are obviously easily identifiable but must be connected to ‘their own’ terminal block within the ceiling rose. Another simple idea aside drawing how the ceiling rose is connected is to take a photo on your mobile for reference later.

Loosen the terminal screws one at a time and pull out each conductor, take care not too loosen the screws too much if the ceiling rose is going to be re-fitted as they are very small and trying to find them after they have fell on the floor can be a great source of amusement for everyone but you trying to find them. Remove the fixing screws and take down the ceiling rose. When the replacement has been fixed in place ensure all connections are tight and all earth conductors are reconnected, replace the fuse / miniature circuit breaker and check the light works as it should, don’t forget to check other lights nearby are also working correctly as any errors made in reconnection can affect them too.

Below are diagrams of other common ways a ceiling rose will be connected.

fig 2

fig 2

Fig 2 shows a common occurrence where the electrician has installed twin and earth for cable C (Red and Black) instead of twin Red to the light-switch, the Black conductor should at least be sheathed with red sleeving to show it is a live conductor, you must mark this conductor with either Red sleeving or Red tape to avoid problems when reconnecting the ceiling rose.

fig 3

fig 3

Fig 3 shows the last ceiling rose on the circuit and therefore there is only two cables present, cable A is the live, neutral and earth supply, cable C is the twin Red and earth to the switch, but once again Red and Black could have been used instead of the twin Red.

fig 4

fig 4

Fig 4 shows the same configuration as fig 1 but this time using the ‘new colours’ for electrical installations, i.e. Brown is the live conductor, Blue is the neutral conductor and Green / yellow is the earth conductor.

fig 5

fig 5

Fig 5 shows as with fig 2 that the electrician has used twin and earth for cable C instead of twin Brown and earth, once again the Blue conductor should be either sleeved or taped Brown to show it is a live conductor to help to avoid problems when reconnecting the ceiling rose.

fig 6

fig 6

Fig 6 shows in the ‘new colours’ the last ceiling rose on the circuit with only two cables present, cable A is the live, neutral and earth supply to the ceiling rose, cable C is the twin Brown and earth to the light-switch. But once again Brown and Blue could have been used instead of twin Brown.

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Comments

  1. Liz says

    This article was so helpful and I have sucessfully changed my ceiling rose in the bathroom. The bayonet fitting broke but had I to replace the whole thing but this site gave me the confidence to do it with clear sensible instructions. Thank you.

  2. Shaun says

    Cheers mate, I took down a light fitting a few weeks ago and just had a bayonet fitting while decorating and in the period since its been unable to be switched on/off at the wall, had to use the circuit but …….. hey presto thanks to your site I have managed to put a new light up and subsequently managed to correct the fault. Bobby dazzler!!

  3. says

    Dave – you are an absolute star. The front room light has been permenantly on for the last 4 days and the wife was getting a little irate!!! sorted in 10 mins flat – cheers

  4. David says

    Fig 3 – thank you! We have a 2-way rose which I attempted to replace today with a modern light from Dwell, and in my zest I neglected to note the original connections. In our case, connection 3′s wire is coloured black (I suppose the red cover came off or was never added). Anyway, I was able to figure it out thanks to your explanation and replacing the new light’s connectors with the old rose’s blocks.

  5. Todray1 says

    Well done mate. I love the step by step guide made simple work of a difficult job as they say easy when you know how.
    Now am looking forward to my next challenge.
    Thanks again Dave
    Regards
    Todray1.

  6. RAY says

    About the best i’ve found yet,very easy to follow diagrams and text,you’ve left nothing out,superb, many thanks.

  7. says

    Thanks Ray, I always appreciate feedback about my articles. Glad the diagrams came in useful too. Keep us bookmarked for future reference. Dave

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