Fitting fire hoods
fire hoods may be required when using some types of lights although many of the newer fittings are already fire rated which means that you do not need to fit fire hoods.
|Before working on any electrical circuit you must ensure that it is isolated correctly and cannot accidentally be switched back on. Please read the article on safe isolation procedures before doing any electrical work. If you are not 100% certain what you are doing call a qualified electrician. Building regulations are changing all the time and modifying your home electrics could be against new rules and could invalidate your home insurance, if in doubt check first!|
Switching off the light at the light switch does not isolate the electricity to the ceiling rose or light fitting. You must isolate the circuit that you are working on from the consumer unit or fuse box!
Often when fitting spot lights / down lights fire hoods may be required. Building regulations dictate whether or not fire hoods are required. If you are unsure as to whether or not you need to fit fire hoods then it is best if you do. Fire hoods are made from intumescent material and so when there is a fire the fire hood will melt and seal the hole and prevent the fire from spreading.
This is the view of a loft where down lighters have been fitted in an en suite bathroom. To the left of the picture is the loft insulation, this cannot be replaced until the fire hoods are fitted as the halogen lamps in the down lighters generate a lot of heat and so it is much safer to have fire hoods fitted. Here we are fixing the fire hood in a false ceiling and so it will be fastened to the plaster ceiling above the cladding. It is often easier and cheaper to buy fire rated down lighters in the first place!
Firstly we need to remove the spotlight from it's recess. This type of light normally just pulls right out of the recess.
Insert the fire hood through the hole, so that the two metal fixing straps are hanging down. Ensure that the wire to power the light is still present and is fed under the fire hood. Hold the two metal straps and using a blunt instrument, such as the handle of a screwdriver, push the fire hood into shape. If you can gain access above then you can pull it into shape from above.
Here you can see that I have bent the two retaining straps so that they touch the plaster. Screw a screw into each of the straps so that it holds the fire hood in place.
This is the view from the loft after the fire hoods have been fitted from below. A couple of these need pulling into shape before we re fit the insulation.