How to Install Spotlights on the Ceiling

How to Install Spotlights on the Ceiling

Installing spotlights on the ceiling allows you to multiply the light sources and enjoy discreet and efficient lighting.

There are several types of spotlights. The most commonly used are recessed and cable spotlights that can be installed in any room in the house.

The choice of spotlights will depend on the type of ceiling concerned:

    – recessed spots can only be installed in a false ceiling;

    – the spotlights on cables can be installed on all types of supports.

If you have decided to install spotlights on the ceiling of one of the rooms in your house, follow this step-by-step guide on how to proceed.

Case 1: install recessed spotlights

How to Install Spotlights on the Ceiling

Recessed spotlights are only installed in false ceilings, generally made of plasterboard. Their installation is quite simple, provided the electrical installation has been done before installing the false ceiling.

Important: You must cut off the power before installing the spotlights for safety reasons.

Mark out the locations

To begin, mark out the locations as follows:

    – Measure the ceiling length where you want to install the spots.

    – Divide the measured length by the number of spots + 1.

Example: to install 3 spots on a length of 4 m, divide 4 by 4 (3 + 1) = 1. The spots will be installed every 1 m from the starting point. This allows an even spacing between the spots.

    – Based on the measurements obtained, mark the exact location of the spots with crosses.

    – Drill a hole with the recommended diameter on each location using a hole saw.

Assemble the spots

Once the action of materialization is done, assemble the spots:

    – Assemble the elements of each spotlight by referring to the instructions provided.

    – Loosen the screws of the cable gland on the connection box.

    – Catch the electrical wires previously passed in the false ceiling.

    – Fold back the ground wire that will not be used.

    – Strip the 2 other wires and connect them to the cable gland of the spotlight (in case of doubt, refer to the instructions).

    – Connect the connection box to the metal part of the spotlight.

Embed the spotlights

You just have to embed the spotlights, and it is relatively simple:

    – Lift the clips and embed the spots in the holes drilled previously.

Note: it is necessary that there is a slight resistance when fitting the spot in the hole.

    – Once the spotlights are installed, screw the bulbs in by turning them 1/4 turn.

    – Pinch the metal fixing ring and push it into the spotlight.

Case 2: install spotlights on cables

The spotlights on cables come in the form of a kit including :

    – cables;

    – spots;

    – wall fixings;

    – a transformer that changes the 220 volts into 12 volts.

This type of lighting has the advantage of being able to be installed on all wall supports. You will simply have to provide the routing of the power supply cables to the transformer.

Cable-mounted spotlights also allow you to customize your lighting by directing the light sources. 

Determine the location of the cables

Before you do anything else, carefully determine the location of the cables:

    – To begin, allow:

        ◦ a space of about 15 cm between the ceiling and the cables ;

        ◦ a distance of 15 cm between the 2 cables.

    – Draw a marker point with a pencil and drill with a suitable drill bit.

    – Insert the supplied plugs.

Please note: if you are fixing the cables in a plasterboard wall, it is necessary to use special plugs. 

    – Insert the fasteners into the plugs.

Prepare the cables

After choosing the location of the cables, prepare them:

    – If necessary, cut the suspension cable in 2 (measure the distance between the 2 walls + 50 cm).

    – Insert a piece of the cable in a cable clamp and pass it through the eye of the tensioner.

    – Form a loop by passing the cable back through the cable tie.

    – Tighten the loop and secure it by tightening the nut on the cable tie.

    – Do the same thing at the other end, creating a loop that passes through the strain relief only (no turnbuckle at this end).

Install the transformer

The transformer can be mounted on the ceiling or wall:

    – Turn off the electrical power if it has not already been done.

    – Connect the power cable to the transformer’s domino.

    – Attach the transformer box to the wall or ceiling.

Put the cables in place and connect them to the transformer

Here is the final preparation step before you can install the spots:

    – Hang the end without the turnbuckle on the fastener.

    – Hang the end with the turnbuckle on the other wall, leaving the turnbuckle unscrewed as much as possible.

    – Slide the loop through the clamp to the required tension and screw the turnbuckle to the other end.

    – Do the same with the other cable.

    – Make sure the tensions are equal on both sides.

    – Cut the excess cable and put it aside.

    – Cut 2 pieces of cable; they will be the link between the transformer and the tensioned cables.

    – Strip the ends of the cables with pliers and connect them to the output domino of the transformer.

    – Connect the other 2 ends to the tensioned cables using the ferrules provided in the kit.

    – Close the transformer box.

Install the spotlights

Everything is now ready for you to install your spotlights on the ceiling:

    – Depending on the number of spots you have available, distribute the locations evenly. To do this, measure the distance from wall to wall and divide this distance by the number of spots + 1.

Example: for a wall-to-wall distance of 6 m and 6 spots, divide 6 by 7 (6 + 1) = 0.85 m. The spots will be installed every 0.85 cm starting from the wall.

Tip: To mark the spots on the cables, you can use clothespins or pieces of adhesive tape as markers.

    – Slide the spotlight frame into the wires to the markings.

    – Screw it tightly so that the screws pierce the plastic around the wires, connect to the power supply, and carry the power to the spots. 

Materials needed to install ceiling spots

Flat wrench


Tape measure


Wire stripper

Cable cutters

Hole saw

Phillips screwdriver


How to Install Spotlights on the Ceiling

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