I have a garage where all the lights are controlled by one switch. I want to install a separate motion light from all these lights so that when someone opens the garage door, the motion light will automatically turn on. If I try and use the power from the current light fixtures, that means I have to leave all the lights on in the garage for the motion light to work. Is there any way of accessing the power from the light fixture and have continuous power coming to the motion light fixture?


Yes, but probably not in a terribly convenient manner as you seem to be hoping for.

You'll need to find where the power is supplied to the lighting circuit:

  • It may be power to the switch and then switched power to the lights - in which case you'll need to run a non-switched wire from the power source at the switch to the place you want the new light.
  • It may be power supplied to one of the light boxes, and then a "switch loop" down to the switch - in which case you can tap continuous power at the light fixture where power is supplied on the feed side of the "switch loop." If that does not happen to the fixture you'd like to connect to, you'll need to run a non-switched wire from the power supply to the place you'd like the new light. If it does, congratulations, you've won the terribly convenient lottery.
  • it may be simpler to connect to a non-switched outlet circuit, if there are outlets in this garage as well as lights. If you're looking for one on the ceiling level, look at the garage door opener (or where one would be if there was one.) If none are convenient, again, run wire.

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