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I, located in Canada, bought UL-listed surface mount ceiling spotlights with diameter of about 6.5cm from Italy. My builder says it is illegal to install the cylinder body directly to the ceiling surface like indicated in the instruction. My ceiling is prepared with regular junction box. Could anybody help me with this please.

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  • When you say that your "ceiling is prepared with regular junction box", what do you mean exactly? Line-voltage wire connections must be made inside of an approved enclosure like a round/octagonal ceiling electrical box, so ceiling lights are typically attached to those boxes with the wire connections inside. Are you saying that you have ceiling boxes available... but you do not intend to mount the fixtures to those boxes? Mar 19, 2022 at 0:18
  • I meant those octagonal ceiling electrical box is prepared. The problem is that the size of my light fixture is way too smaller than the electrical box.
    – Terumi
    Mar 19, 2022 at 17:59

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The one thing you cannot do in the US (Canada's electrical code is very similar to the US's and I'd imagine is 100% in agreement on this), is to install this without an electrical box by putting some sort of wall anchor in the ceiling as shown in the instructions. Your electrician was 100% correct on that statement.


To install this fixture, you'll need 2 things:

  1. A way to hold the light onto the ceiling. Often, a cross bar that you will attach to the screw holes on the back of the fixture then mount the bar to the two screws on opposite corners of the box is supplied with lights designed to go on US boxes.

  2. A rose or cover plate that will cover the parts of the junction box that are not covered by the light fixture itself. If the manufacturer doesn't supply them you'll have to come up with something that will work.

Something like one of these might work:

round outlet box cover

round metal mud ring
All images courtesy of Lowes.com. No endorsement intended or implied.

One of these would be great. It's plastic and would be easy to drill the right size hole through. However, I don't believe you're allowed to modify it and still have it be within code

round plastic cover

This one might be your best bet. You can knock out the knockout to run your wiring through, then drill the appropriate mounting holes to actually mount the fixture to this, then use the mounting screws on the box to mount the cover & fixture to the box. It would, in effect, cover requirements 1 & 2 at the same time. You can modify metal boxes for mounting like this (see the 5th paragraph of this answer).

round metal cover plate with knockout

Of course, any of these could be painted to match the ceiling or fixture.

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  • In comparison, recessed "puck" or "pot"-style lights are mounted directly to the ceiling (drywall) not to the junction box. The electrical connection is made in a supplied junction box either as part of the pot, or place loose on the ceiling near the puck. I thought it would be up to the manufacturer, not the NEC/CEC, thus allowing this if the manufacturer specifies it. If they are not cUL listed then they cannot be used regardless.
    – P2000
    Apr 15, 2022 at 19:28
  • These lights are made in Italy, @P2000, so they're probably not made to US/Canadian specs.
    – FreeMan
    Apr 15, 2022 at 19:35
  • Well, OP writes "UL listed". I saw no proof in linked instructions but let's take that at face value. Aside from it not being cUL, does that not allow installation per instructions, directly into ceiling material?
    – P2000
    Apr 15, 2022 at 19:42
  • The puck lights you mention have a "box" built in or at the end of an armored cable allowing it to be remotely mounted. This light seems to have neither. I'll leave it for the more experienced/knowledgeable to quote exact code citations, but I'm 99.99% sure this cannot be mounted following the instructions. And yes, I agree that we're taking the OP's word that these are "UL Listed".
    – FreeMan
    Apr 15, 2022 at 20:27

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