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Thread: Grounding a fluorescent light fixture

  1. #1

    Default Grounding a fluorescent light fixture

    I have installed a small fluorescent fixture in my kitchen. The lead wires from the old light do not contain a ground wire. How do I create a ground so that the fixture lights when I turn on the switch? Currently (no pun intended) we never know when the light will finally come on.

  2. #2


    in order for any light fixture to illuminate (or work) only a hot and a neutral are needed. Usually a black and white are common. The bare ground seen in newer wire such as nm cable (romex) is an equipment ground for added safety. If your light has an equipment ground it wont be used, unless you happen to install a ground to that electrical box.

  3. #3


    The equipment grounding wire of a fluorescent fixture aids in the ignition of the gases inside the fluorescent bulb by inciting the gases to ignite.

    If you have an older wiring system sometimes the fluorescent fixture will still light up, sometimes it won't. It may help for the light to ignite the gases if you do have an equipment grounding wire. To do this with a two wire non grounding system you would need to run a 12 awg green equipment grounding wire from the first fixture metal frame to each other fixture metal frame then run as close to the older existing wiring as possible all the way back to the panel equipment grounding bar. Be sure to check that you have a ground rod or metal water pipe ground in contact with earth for 10' minimum or you will have to install a new grounding electrode system for that panel before that green wire has anything to connect to.

    Hope this helps


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