A motion detector is a great way to improve security around your home. A motion detection light works by detecting motion from a person or object, such as a car. The light comes on and stays on a predetermined time, then automatically turns off. A motion detection light is easy to install. Most motion detection lighting comes pre-wired so it’s simple to install yourself. In this article, I’ll give you step-by-step instructions on installing a motion detection security light in a pre-existing outdoor light.
When you work with electricity, always begin by turning off the power and shutting off the breaker. Its wise to test the power is off by using a circuit tester. It’s no fun being shocked. Once the power is off, remove the existing light bulb and old fixture from the junction box. Set the light bulb aside if it’s still good, you can use it in the new motion detector light fixture providing that it’s the same wattage that is required in the new fixture.
Attach the housing plate of the new fixture to the old junction box. Thread the wires through the new plate. You don’t need to thread a ground wire through the plate, simply ground the wire to the junction box. Seal any exposed holes from the old junction box with caulk to prevent any water from entering the housing. Attach the wires to the new motion detector, white attaches to white and black-to-black. Secure each wire with the provided wire nut and press the wires neatly into the housing. Screw the faceplate and motion detection light over the housing plate and fasten the screws tightly to prevent water from entering the housing. Screw in the proper wattage light and turn on the breaker.
To test the light, turn the switch to the “test” position. Set the motion setting to the medium or middle position. Turn on the light switch. The light should come on for about 30 seconds and then turn off. If there’s any motion in the area the light will remain on. Turn the head of the motion detector in the direction you want the motion to be detected. For instance, aim it down the middle of the driveway to turn the light on when a vehicle pulls into your driveway. Test the detection area by walking as far away from the lights as you would like the motion to be detected. If the light doesn’t come on, turn the detection switch to the highest setting. If it comes on to soon, turn the motion detection setting to the low position.
If the lights go on immediately after the motion detector lights shut off, then your bulbs are aimed to close to the motion detectors. Aim them away from the motion sensor at least ½ inch or more. Be careful not to aim the lights up to high in the air. Water may collect in the bulb housing and short circuit your lights.
Return the switch from “test” to the detection setting when you are done setting up the lights. If you’re having trouble setting the detection of the lights, have a test subject walk across the area of detection while you make minor adjustments to the sensitivity. Move the detection switch in small increments as the test subject moves into the detection zone. If you’re having trouble with the width of your detection zone, use electrical tape to cover the edges of the motion sensor. This will narrow the field of detection aloud by the sensors.