How To Wire A Security Light?

How To Wire A Security Light

It is important to know how to wire a security light. This will help you keep your home safe and secure. Wiring a security light can be done in less than an hour with the right tools, knowledge and safety precautions in place. The most important thing is that you have the correct size of wire for the job, preferably 12 gauge or heavier.

You also need wire connectors, which are sold at any hardware store; they’re inexpensive too! Make sure to wear gloves when working with electrical wiring because it can be dangerous if not handled correctly. Follow these steps below on how to wire a security light:

The motion sensors automatically control the outdoor security lights. The model and sensitivity of the motion sensor decide what will activate the light. It is not a time taking task. It can take as long as one hour if you have the appropriate tools and parts. 

Benefits of security lights 

There are a lot of benefits of using security lights. They can light your front door and see who is calling at night. It can also deter potential burglars. The least it can do is to create beautiful visual effects around your plants. 

How to wire a security light 

Things you need 

  • Drill 
  • Spade bit 1 3/8 inch
  • Wire cutters
  • Screwdriver


  • Near the location of security lighting, find an existing source of power. Turn off the power to that source. It can also result in shutting off the circuit breaker. You can also pull the fuse that is supplying power to the electrical circuit. 
  • Use the wire cutter to unplug the existing wire connections. Use a power drill and spade to drill an outlet hole to the exterior sliding. The wire needs to be run from the inside location to the outdoor location. 
  • The fixture has a light bulb and glass lenses that cover it. Unscrew and remove that bulb. Make sure to dismantle those glass lenses or covers. 
  • The electrical box will have the fixture. Extract it from there. Its nuts have to be loosened with the help of pliers, and mounting screws need a screwdriver. Take notice of the electrical connections inside the light fixture mounting box. 
  • The wire connections will have plastic wire nuts. It would be best if you got rid of them. Keep in mind that the power supply is coming from the black insulated wire. The white insulated wire is the electrical system neutral wire. The electrical system grounding wire is the bare copper wire, and it is hooked with the light fixture itself. 
  • Now, look at the wire connections that are present on the motion sensor. Usually, three wires are attached to the motion sensor. Various models have different methods of wiring, so you need to read the manual for instructions. The most common motion sensor is concerned, it uses red insulated wire, a white insulated wire and a black insulated wire.
  • Now you have to reveal the bare copper that is present underneath. For that, you will have to use wire strippers. Get rid of ¾ of an inch of insulation from motion sensor wires. 
  • The outdoor fixture and motion sensor need to be mounted together. The structure of the exterior fixture is so that it is having two ½ inch diameter knock out holes. For making the hole, you will have to use the screwdriver that removes one of the ½ inch diameter metal discs. Through this hole, you have to fit the threaded portion of the motion sensor. 
  • Make sure the motion sensor is tightened enough with the exterior light fixture housing. For this purpose, you will have to place the electrical nut over the threads. Now make use of pliers to get done with the tightening of the electrical nut. 
  • The next step is the connections of wires among themselves. You must take care of the order you follow. Take the red insulated bare copper wire from the motion sensor and connect it with the black wire coming from the light fixture. The pliers will help you in making a stable electrical connection. Now, making a covering with the plastic wire nut. 
  • In the same fashion, you will have to twist the two white wires together. The bare copper wires need to be covered with the wire nut. Make a connection between the two black wires. One of the black wires comes from the motion sensor, while the other one is coming from the power supply circuit breaker or the fuse. Lastly, the bare grounding copper wire is left. It has to be connected with the metal housing on the light fixture.
  • Now is the time for the installation of the fixture onto the electrical box. Replace both the bulb and lenses that are covering it. There are two ways to reenergize the electrical circuit. You can either turn on the circuit breaker or install the fuse. Next, turn on the interior light switch that is controlling the fixture. Take a quick check. Wave your hand in front of the motion sensor. The light will turn on. 
  • For any special instructions and recommendations, consult the manufacturer. 
How To Wire A Security Light


Can security lights be plugged in? 

There are different varieties of lights. If you have a plugin light, it can be inserted directly into the power outlet. But this setting works fine only if you possess a secure and safe outlet and the cord doesn’t become loose. For each light, you need a battery. 

What colour wires go together for a ceiling light?

You have to make a connection between the two white wires. These wires are also called neutral wires. One of them is coming from the fan, and the other one is coming from the ceiling. There is a green wire that is to be connected with your household ground wire. Now, connect the black wires. Afterwards, connect the blue wires. You can also connect blue with black for lights. 

What is the red wire for on a motion detector light?

A two-way sensor switch has many wires. It may have two black or one black and one red wire. In all these cases, a green ground wire is a must. The wire that powers the light fixture is the red wire. If the switch has to operate properly, the red wire must be connected to the switch leg. 

Can you put a motion sensor on any light? 

Nowadays, there are modern kinds of motion sensors so that a remote style motion detector can be a better choice. It can be connected easily to any decorative fixture, even to the ones that already exist. Then, it can be mounted discreetly off to the side. Running the wires that connect the sensor to the light fixtures is the hardest part of this project. 

Where does the red wire go on the ceiling light? 

The red wire is the hot wire. It comes from the switch. You have to wire your fixture into the junction box. All wires come together in the junction box. Now you have to connect them. Connect white to white and ground to ground. The black light fixture wires are to be hooked with the red. Any other black wires are not to be connected directly to your fixture.


First of all, cover the bare copper wires with a wire nut. One of the black wires comes from the motion sensor, while the other black wire is coming from the power supply circuit breaker or fuse. Connect both of these black wires. Last, of all, make a connection between the bare grounding copper wire and the metal housing on the light fixture. 

References: How to fit outdoor lights

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