I am a first time homeowner. I removed old light fixture and will be installing a heavier 35 lb chandelier. Will this box hold the weight? I see two torx head screws about 2.5-3 inches long screwed into something hard. Not sure if it is a stud or a ceiling joist. Please see photoenter image description here The box does not wiggle when I pull on it but I am only 105 lbs and not too strong.

WIll this box hold a 35 pound light fixture?

  • How can you tell how long the screws are? Commented Jan 12, 2018 at 4:30
  • I removed one of them to examine the screw and also to see what it was screwed into
    Commented Jan 12, 2018 at 4:34

2 Answers 2


If the screws are course thread and driven solidly into the ceiling joist the box should hold your luminaire without a problem.

You could test it by hanging 35 pounds of weight from the fixture strap for a few days.

Standard ceiling boxes are manufactured to hold up to 50 pounds if they are solidly installed.

Here is the pertinent National Electrical Code Article:

314.27(A) (2) Ceiling Outlets. At every outlet used exclusively for lighting, the box shall be designed or installed so that a luminaire or lampholder may be attached. Boxes shall be required to support a luminaire weighing a minimum of 23 kg (50 lb). A luminaire that weighs more than 23 kg (50 lb) shall be supported independently of the outlet box, unless the outlet box is listed for not less than the weight to be supported. The interior of the box shall be marked by the manufacturer to indicate the maximum weight the box shall be permitted to support.

That is a "pancake" box so your fixture should have a canopy that adds more volume for the wire connections since there is not very much room in that box.

  • They are coarse thread screws. I assume they are screwed into ceiling joists. I didn't check my light boxes for proper weight support prior to blowing in insulation. only sealed them with nonexpansion foam becuase I wasn't thinking. only if I had known...
    Commented Jan 13, 2018 at 15:18

Not knowing the UL number or the model number for said bracket. I would say it would not be safe to have 35 lbs continuously hanging from that bracket. If you are in a space where you have two stud running parallel to each other I would recommend a telescoping ceiling fan bracket like the image attached. It is rated for 50-75 lbs but will take a lot of punishment compared to the bracket in your picture. In the Link will show you a video on how to install in a retrofit situation. https://www.homedepot.com/p/15-5-cu-in-Retrofit-Ceiling-Fan-Saf-T-Brace-0110000/204845572

enter image description here

  • Of course, this would be ideal but I was stupid to get my attic insulated prior to checking to see if all my light fixture boxes had proper weight support. My house is so much energy efficient and much warmer but now, I do not have access to my attic. Ugh! lessons learned from mistakes is just too hard!
    Commented Jan 13, 2018 at 15:13
  • Your insulation retrofit removed access to your attic? That sounds crazy. When we got blown in insulation in our attic they also insulated the access door. It's not as easy to access the wiring - you have to move some cellulose - but it's certainly possible and allows us to reach the electrical if needed. Commented Jan 14, 2018 at 12:07

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