I've installed a few ceiling fans before and found them to be pretty easy so I'm trying to add them to each room in my house, I don't have great knowledge of electrical work but I can install a ceiling fan, switch a light switch and the basic things like that.

In the one room there is a single light int he ceiling and when I pulled it down there was no electrical box, just a plastic / metal looking sleeve running to it.

enter image description here

enter image description here

I'm not familiar with this wire sleeving and was wondering if I can be told a little about it and if I'm able to cut it and install a fan brace and then an outlet box and run the wires through there and continue installing the fan like I normally would. As I'm assuming that in this sleeve there are just the normal electrical wires in it. I would of tried to look some info up on this wire sleeve but I couldn't figure out what it was called.

  • Sleeve could be either MC cable or flexible conduit with wires inside, probably MC. Point is there is an electrical connection somewhere. Possibly on the top of the can? Junction box near by? The wire does not run from the socket all the way to your switch without a connection. Find the connection and tap into it. – Damon May 9 '15 at 22:27
  • I wouldn't really have a way into the attic and I reached up and couldn't find a junction box, is it possible to cut that sleeve and use the wires that are inside of it? – Greenhoe May 9 '15 at 22:50
  • Yes, then they make fittings for the MC or armored cable. But you need all the length you can get, or you need to add wire from a J(unction) box. If you cut it, you may not have enough wire to reach where you need. – Damon May 9 '15 at 22:54
  • @Damon I took apart the light fixture and there is a black and white cable coming out of the sleeve, I think it's long enough for the fan, can I just add a junction box run the MC cable through it and mount the fan? – Greenhoe May 10 '15 at 0:19

There is a junction box somewhere at the end of the cable, best to find it and start your wiring from there.
You can cut the cable, and use the wires, but it is difficult without the right tool, and then you have to hope you have enough length and use the proper fittings to mount it to the new ceiling box.

  • Thanks brodie for this comment, I've learned a lot since then and was able to do it easily at the time I didn't even know what whip cabling was and I've used it a few times already. – Greenhoe Nov 4 '15 at 4:44

That is a recessed light. That flex whip goes to a junction box mounted on the frame of the light. You need to remove the whole light, after removing the circuit cable from the junction box. DO NOT wire the fan box from that metallic flex whip.

What you have looks something like this: enter image description here

  • Why can't I use the wires in the metallic whip? There are two wires black and white, wouldn't they work like anything else – Greenhoe May 10 '15 at 1:03
  • 3
    Because you would be modifying the UL listed recessed light housing. Plus, once you are done you would be burying the junction box, which is also not allowed and unsafe. – Speedy Petey May 10 '15 at 1:05
  • Not really sure what you mean by that, sorry I'm just starting to learn electrical – Greenhoe May 10 '15 at 1:06
  • @Greenhoe -- the Code prohibits hiding or burying junction boxes in inaccessible places, as otherwise, how would the next electrician who has to work on that circuit figure out where the box they need is? – ThreePhaseEel May 10 '15 at 4:59

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