A chandelier is often the centerpiece of a room – it turns your light fixture into a beautiful, artistic focal point. It looks stunning above a dining table or floating higher above a larger space.
Yet depending on your choice of the chandelier, you might have to make some special considerations to keep it safe.
It may be heavy, or the design may cause it to be prone to spinning, which could tangle some of the crystals.
You can keep a chandelier safe by using a proper mounting bracket designed for its weight. Always use a new mounting bracket rated for the weight if you have an existing one you’re unsure of. You can use a rod to help stop your chandelier from spinning.
In this guide, I’m going to help you keep your chandelier secure by explaining:
- How to hang one safely on the ceiling
- How to stop it from spinning
- Typical chandelier weights
How To Secure A Chandelier On The Ceiling?
How you secure your chandelier to the ceiling varies depending on its weight, but the process is similar.
For now, I’ll explain how to install a typical chandelier that doesn’t require extra support.
Later when I talk through chandelier weights, I’ll explain the additional steps for heavier chandeliers.
Hanging a chandelier is actually relatively simple.
You’ll have a ceiling box where your wiring is located, tucked into the ceiling, and you’ll attach the chandelier’s mounting bracket to that box.
The chandelier should come with its bracket and instructions for how to screw it to the box.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to make it easier.
This assumes you have a junction box in the ceiling already, but I cover this in more detail in my guide on installing a chandelier.
- Screw the mounting bar onto the electrical junction box
- If it is separate, attach the mounting stem to the mounting bar. It’s usually pre-attached.
- Hook the chandelier’s mounting stem onto the mounting stem of the bar.
- There will be a canopy cover that you can then screw into place on the mounting stem to hide the hole in the ceiling.
So in terms of keeping your chandelier secure, it’s that mounting bar supporting it and holding it in place.
How To Stop My Chandelier From Spinning?
Once you’ve hung your chandelier, you might notice a problem, mainly if it uses a chain as its hanging mechanism.
The chains look great, and they’re strong too.
But they are not fixed and so you might find that your chandelier spins back and forth.
It’s not typically an issue for larger chandeliers, but there are plenty of lightweight options which can spin and sway in the breeze.
You might not be concerned, but ideally, you’ll want it to stop.
The chain might wear down if the links are rubbing against each other, and while they should be thick enough that they won’t break, they might rub any painted surface off.
So how do you stop it?
You can’t fix the chain, but you can either replace it with a rod or add a rod as an extra support device.
If you’re replacing a chain, you need to use a metal rod, and you’ll want one with hooks that can hook onto the mounting bar and the chandelier fixture.
But it’s often easier to add a rod alongside the chain.
The rod doesn’t need to be very thick and can still be discreet.
You can choose metal or plastic if you’re supplementing a chain with a rod.
It might be a lot easier to find a cheap plastic rod that matches the color of the existing light fixture.
However, the rod can’t bear any of the weight. So it is only a secure way of holding the chandelier still.
This is a good thing because it means you can use super glue to hold the rod in place.
Superglue would typically never hold the weight of a chandelier, but it doesn’t have to – the chain still does that.
And the superglue can dry clear, hold the rod in place, and help to keep the chandelier nice and steady.
How Heavy Can A Chandelier Be?
It’s crucial to know the weight of your chandelier before you try to install it.
A mounting bar fixed to an electrical junction box can typically hold a maximum weight of 15lb. But is that enough for most chandeliers?
It’s definitely enough for a lot of fixtures.
Many chandeliers weigh between 5lb and 15lb, with some weighing even less.
Be careful when you buy, as there are often different models of the same chandelier design but in different sizes – and crucially, weighing different amounts.
Some chandeliers you can buy for the home can weigh hundreds of pounds. However, most household chandeliers would max out at around 150lb.
But you can get some that are larger, right up to 400lb, usually reserved for entertainment spaces – hotels and the like.
How do you support one of those?
The larger commercial models will have dedicated mounting supports and additional hangers, but your larger household chandeliers can be supported with a specialist mounting kit.
These don’t screw onto your electrical junction box.
They’d pull it out of the ceiling! So instead, you attach them to your ceiling joists.
Before you buy the mounting kit, you need to know whether your chandelier will be located either underneath a ceiling joist or between joists.
If it’s underneath the joist, it’ll actually be a flat mount that screws onto the bottom of the joist.
If it’s between joists, you’ll have a much thicker bar which you’ll insert into the ceiling and then twist.
As you twist it, the bar extends until it hits the ceiling joists.
These bars usually have spiked ends that embed into the ceiling joists. If you twist them sufficiently, they will embed into your joints and become solid support to hold up a chandelier.
Just make sure you buy a mounting kit rated for your chandelier. Don’t take risks. Otherwise, the fixture could fall and shatter, potentially causing injury.
Securing a typical chandelier to your ceiling is relatively easy. Even with heavier fixtures, make sure you buy the correct mounting kit, and you shouldn’t have any issues.
Holding them steady and stopping them from spinning is relatively easy too.
With these steps, you should ensure your attractive chandelier fixture doesn’t cause any headaches.
Have you had any issues getting your chandelier hung? Is it too heavy, or is it swaying and swinging around?