Our kitchen has a pair of fluorescent light fixtures (2 lights each / 4 foot long) in a ceiling mounted wooden box. They are hard wired to a switch.

I purchased a pair of plug-in LED shop lights. I've installed one light (everything works) but have a question about the ground.

The original (hard wired) lights were in a metal case and the ground wire was attached to the case with a metal clip. The new LED lights don't even have a case, but a small plastic housing at each end. The blue is (was) a polarized two prong plug - no ground wire.

Do I need to use the ground wire coming out of the ceiling in any way? It was clipped to the old metal lighting fixture, but the new fixture is plastic.

What I ended up doing was taking the ground from the ceiling and screwing it into the receptacle housing.

  • Was that necessary?
  • Did I solve the problem or did I just do something that looks like I solved the problem but I need to do something else?

As I stated, the light works but I'm confused about how to manage the ground wire.

  • 1
    The junction box that was in the ceiling. Is it made of metal? Aug 31, 2021 at 7:33
  • 3
    A picture of how you have it wired now would be most helpful. Did you cut the plug off the end of your shop light to install it in this permanent, hard-wired solution?
    – FreeMan
    Aug 31, 2021 at 11:34
  • Harper - yes, the junction box (what I called the receptacle housing :) is metal.
    – Robert
    Sep 1, 2021 at 4:36
  • FreeMan - I did cut the plug end off, separated the left side from the right side and attached one side to black, the other to white.
    – Robert
    Sep 1, 2021 at 4:37
  • If your kitchen light was hardwired, where did you plug in your new LED shop light? (Also, why did you put a shop light in the kitchen—are you single?)
    – Huesmann
    Jan 26, 2023 at 12:46

3 Answers 3


For what it's worth, my solution was to install outlets in the ceiling box, using a faceplate designed for the purpose, then just plug in.

  • Likewise, I did exactly the same thing.
    – FreeMan
    Jan 27, 2023 at 16:54
  • What the heck a code violation but let’s all do it because I saw it on the internet!!! No down vote because this site is a joke.
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 8, 2023 at 1:01
  • 1
    @edbeal: What part of code do you think I'm violating? I freely admit that I don't know code in depth, but I'd like specifics so I can learn.
    – keshlam
    Feb 8, 2023 at 2:51
  • All receptacles in a garage are required to be GFCI protected I saw shop lights so after re reading +
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 9, 2023 at 14:23
  • 1
    Not in a garage, in my case. And how do you know I DIDN'T have a GFCI? Pointing out that specific concern would have been useful; snark is not.
    – keshlam
    Feb 9, 2023 at 15:03

As I read the question the new lights are plastic. The plastic lights do not require a ground even pendant lights that are plastic do not require a ground. So there is no problem regarding the light grounding. There is no requirement for the lighting in the kitchen to be grounded. So you have no issues.

  • A much delayed thank you for your help! It is grounded anyway :)
    – Robert
    Sep 10, 2021 at 3:22
  • There are indeed issues, but not because the fixtures lack grounding.
    – kreemoweet
    Jan 26, 2023 at 1:05

It is contrary to the prevalent electrical codes to use the flexible cords attached to fixtures, tools, or whatever, as fixed-in-place permanent wiring. It is also a violation to cut the plug off like you have because that voids the approval/listing that every light fixture is required to have. There may also be violations stemming from the manner in which the cord was secured/connected, but you gave no info on that subject. There is no problem with the lack of grounding, because not all light fixtures need that, and it seems your fixtures do not.

  • 1
    There is a specific rule in the NEC that permits the use of cordage pendants/swag drops to feed luminaires (it's in NEC 400.10 point 2) Jan 26, 2023 at 4:39
  • I presumed so, given that swag lamps are still marketed.
    – keshlam
    Feb 8, 2023 at 2:43

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