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Often times when replacing a ceiling light, it is too heavy for your junction box. Brent Holland of Build.com shows you a quick and easy step-by-step process for reinforcing your junction box in your home. 
Don't do this if the box you're using is plastic. There is a reason a UL listed fan or chandelier rated box is metal. The screws you use to mount and heavy fixture to a box with strip out of the plastic. 10-24 screws I belive are whats listed in the NEC on metal boxes.

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