If you are considering something new for your home and are interested in creating a clean, streamlined look recessed lighting can be a great solution. Recessed lighting not only increases the amount of light in a room, it adds an element of style and personality. It can also emphasize artwork and make spaces appear larger. Recessed lighting is great for kitchens, living rooms, hallways, and anywhere else concentrated light is needed. But, just like any home improvement project, before you tackle this DIY adventure, it is important to do your homework first.
Here are Bill Beazley Home’s basic tips and solutions for installing recessed lighting.
First, Know the Housing from the Trim:
There are two basic parts of recessed lights, the trim and the housing. The housing is the fixture itself. It is installed inside the ceiling and contains the lamp holder.
The trim is the visible portion of the light, and there are a few things you need to know about it before making a decision. Because the trim can be seen when looking up into the fixture it should reflect your unique style and preferences for the space. There are several different types of trim including baffle trim, reflector trim, adjustable trim, lensed trim, and decorative trim. Each one serves a specific purpose, so make sure to read the labels prior to purchasing.
For example, baffle trims feature large uniform grooves which are designed to absorb excess light. They work best in large living spaces such as dining rooms, dens, and family rooms. Reflector trims on the other hand are the preferred choice for kitchens. Lensed trims are designed to protect the bulb and the interior from moisture and are the preferred choice for bathrooms and closets.
Make Sure to Plan Ahead:
Once you have selected the trim that is best for you and your space, you will need to decide where to place the recessed lighting fixtures. Use a blueprint of the room to plan where you want the recessed lights to be installed. Before you start, take measurements of any furniture in the room so you’ll be able to see exactly where the light will fall.
Choose a Focal Point:
If you have a particular spot in mind for direct recessed lighting, such as a bookshelf or painting, make this spot your starting point. Center the recessed lighting fixture or fixtures about 12 to 18 inches in front of that object. Recessed lights used for reading or task lighting should be carefully placed overhead so your head and shoulders will not block needed light.
If you prefer to simply space the recessed lighting evenly around the room without any particular focal point, place your first light in the center of the room and go from there.
Space Your Lights Out:
There are a few different methods for determining how far apart to space your recessed lights.
The first is to determine the spacing by matching it to the size of the fixture. 4-inch fixtures should generally be placed at least 4 feet apart and 6-inch fixtures about 6 feet apart.
The second method is based on the height of the room. You can find this spacing by dividing the height of the ceiling by two. For example, if a room has an 8-foot ceiling, you should space your recessed lights approximately 4 feet apart. If the ceiling is 10 feet, you’ll want to put about 5 feet of space in between each fixture.
Both these methods should be use as a baseline. Depending on the brightness or darkness of the décor in the room, the type and wattage of light being used, and the purpose of the recessed lights you may want to space the lights either closer together or further apart.
You will want to avoid placing recessed lighting fixtures too close together or in rows down the center of the room. This can have the same look and feel of an airport runway. You will also want to avoid shadows in the corners by placing your recessed lights at least three feet away from the wall. As long as the lights reflect on the wall at the appropriate distance, they will make the room seem brighter and larger.
Bill Beazley Homes is the homebuilder of choice in the CSRA. For more information call 706-863-4888.