How To Temporarily Extend a Short Pool Light Cord to Replace Bulb


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When you replace a light bulb in your pool light fixture, you should have 4'-5' of extra cord behind your light fixture to be able to set your light fixture up on the pool deck. Sometimes the fight fixture is installed without this extra 4'-5' and the cord is not long enough to reach the pool deck. This guide shows your how to temporarily extend your light cord an extra 4'-5' on the light fixture side.

Step by Step


Step 1

VIEW CORRECT INSTALLATION - This is a view of how your light fixture should have been installed. The 4'-5' of wire you see coming out of the light niche was coiled up behind the installed light fixture.

Step 2

TURN POWER OFF - Before working on your light fixture, be sure to turn OFF power to your lights at the circuit breaker.

Step 3

DISCONNECT LIGHT WIRES - Locate the power junction box for your lights. It will normally be next to the house close to the pool control box. Open up the junction box and disconnect the wires to your light . You may have several light cables coming into this box. Generally they are labeled on the PVC pipes. If not, you may have to disconnect each indepentently and turn the power back on and off to see which cabel powers each light. Mark the pipes for the future.

Step 4

ATTACH CORD TO WIRES - Now you want to attach a cord or special fish tape to the light wires. One way to do this is to bend back the white and black wires to form a loop. Leave the green ground wire out straight. Then attach the cord though the loop. The green ground wire will parallel the cord as shown.

Step 5

TAPE CONNECTION - Tape the wire connection on both side of the joint so that no wire ends are left exposed. A smooth connection will move around any bends in the pipe more easily.

Step 6

REMOVE LIGHT FIXTURE - Remove the light fixture off the pool wall. It is generally secure by one screw at the top of the light fixture.

Step 7

PULL WIRES ON LIGHT END - Pull the light fixture away from the wall. Once it is off the wall, reach behind the fixture and pull the wire out of the wall behind the fixture. Avoid pulling the wire out of the wall by pulling on the fixture. It may break the sealed connection at the back of the fixture. Pull out enough wire to be able to set the light fixture on the pool deck.

Step 8

FEED CORD AT BOX END - As you are pulling wire on the light fixture end, have someone else feed the other end of the wire and the attached cord down into the pipe.

Step 9

PLACE LIGHT FIXTURE ON POOL DECK - When you have enough wire pull though the back of the niche, set the light fixture on the pool deck.

Step 10

REPLACE BULB - See our guide on "How to Replace a Pool Light Bulb".

Step 11

PULL WIRE BACK TO TERMINAL BOX - After you have replace the light bulb, lower the light fixture into the water and pull the light cable back into the pipe by pulling on the cord at the terminal box end of the cable. Have someone feed the cable into the pipe at the back of the pool niche so that it doesn't bind as you are pulling on the other end.

Step 12

RECONNECT WIRES - Pull the cord until the other end of the cable/wires is exposed. Disconnect the cord and reconnect the cable wires to the appropriate terminals in the junction box. Close the junction box.

Step 13

RE-ATTACH LIGHT FIXTURE - Replace the light fixture into the pool niche and re-secure it with the single screw at the top of the fixture.


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 Posted: 12/10/2020 

Pavers ~ 3" have been added to my pool surface & there is not enough cord attached to the light to put it on the pool surface to work on it. In the back of the niche, there is some type of cable clamp that prevents the pool light cable from pulling more cable from the swimming pool junction box. I have never seen this before. Is this sort of clamp that one can loosen the cable clamp screw & then pull more cable?

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 12/11/2020 

I'd have to see a picture of it, but installers normally use a cord stopper and/or epoxy. The cord stopper is just a rubber wedge with a hole for the cord.

 Posted: 3/3/2021 

I can’t budge my cable, seems to be stuck in the conduit. I have enough cable to get the lens and gasket a couple of inches above water. I’m thinking of securing the housing with a bungee cord to hold it above the water and changing the bulb????

InyoPools Product Specialist  Posted: 3/4/2021 

Whatever you choose to do, make sure you flip the breaker to lessen the chance of shock. The bungee cord option sounds like a good compromise, but start at the breaker first.

Anonymous  Posted: 5/26/2016 

Great article on How To


Anonymous  Posted: 4/8/2016 

Thanks not the full solution for my situation but very helpful