Home Improvement Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for contractors and serious DIYers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm replacing some outdoor lights. The old ones were metal, and the earth wire was connected to a screw on the base. The new fixtures are plastic, and there's no earthing screw. Where should I connect the earthing conductor when installing the new fixtures?

share|improve this question
Maybe you could expand the description with some more specifics, or include a photo? – wallyk May 20 '14 at 20:22

When connecting a fixture in a plastic box, the bare ground (earth) wire is connected to the bare or green conductor of the fixture or a metal screw on the fixture itself. If for some reason you have a very old fixture with no bare or green ground wire, opt for buying a new fixture rather than leaving the source ground wire not connected.

share|improve this answer

If the new fixture is listed and new, just leave the earth wire not connected. This is perfectly fine, especially since the manufacturers got the fixture listed to be installed this way. We wire smoke detectors this way ALL the time.

If the box is metal you must leave the earth connected to the box.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.