Discover how to layout recessed lighting with our expert guide. Learn how to achieve optimal lighting in your space effortlessly.
Knowing how to layout electrical is part of the home construction process that can send any inexperienced home builder into sweats.
Before you meet with your electrician, it would be a good idea if you consider a few general lighting best practices when planning the light layout of your recessed fixtures.
The size of the room, the type of light you want, and how many watts you need for different color temperatures are all important factors for your lighting plan and a good rule of thumb to follow. You will also need to decide where to place the recessed lights and what type of fixtures you want.
How to Layout Recessed Lighting in Simple Steps
Before you begin, the first thing that is important to understand is the different types of recessed lighting trims. There are nine main recessed lighting trim types that you will want to consider.
- Wall wash trim. In order to focus the remaining light in the manner of a wall wash or feature light, this type of trim uses a shield to block some of the light emitted by the bulb.
- Open trim. The lightbulb is almost perfectly flat with the ceiling when using this style of trim. As a result, the interior of the light source is hidden from view.
- Reflector trim. Inside the lighting fixture, this style of trim has a reflecting surface. This amplifies the recessed light bulb’s output.
- Gimbal trim An eyeball trim alteration where the lightbulb is set deeper into the ceiling. When you change the gimbal trim’s bulb, a portion of the light will be blocked by the housing.
- Canless trim. There is no need for an electrical box with this kind of lighting trim. The light instead plugs straight into the electrical wiring of your house.
- Eyeball trim. The lighting can be angled in various ways thanks to this adjustable trim.
- Shower trim. Recessed lighting that will be installed in a wet area needs shower trim. Tempered glass will be used in this design to cover the lightbulb, keeping water out.
- Baffle trim. The most popular kind of recessed lighting where the light bulb is housed inside a black enclosure with ribs that reduce reflection and glare.
- Pinhole trim. With this trim, all of the light from a bulb is directed down a slender channel by recessed lighting. This gives the specific area a cold, harsh aspect.
Step By Step Guide for Laying Out Recessed Lighting
Now that you know the different types of recessed lighting trims, it’s time to learn how to lay out your recessed lighting.
1. Decide what kind of light you need
The first step is to decide what type of light you need. There are three main types of light: ambient lighting, accent lighting, and task lighting.
- Ambient light is general or overall lighting that illuminates a large area. It’s often used in living rooms and bedrooms but is great for any living space.
- Accent light is used to highlight certain features or objects in a room. For example, it’s often used in art galleries or display cases.
- Task light is used for specific activities such as reading or cooking. It’s often used in kitchens and offices.
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2. Determine the wattage you need
After you’ve decided what kind of light you need, you’ll need to determine the wattage. The wattage will depend on the size of the room and the type of light you want.
- For ambient light, you’ll need about 30 watts per square foot.
- For accent light, you’ll need about 50 watts per square foot.
- For task lighting, you’ll need about 70 watts per square foot.
3. Choose your fixtures
Now that you know how much light you need, it’s time to choose your fixtures. There are a variety of recessed lighting fixtures at the online lighting store to choose from, so be sure to pick the right one for your needs.
- For ambient light, you’ll want a fixture that diffuses the light, such as an open trim or reflector trim.
- For accent light, you’ll want a fixture that focuses the light, such as a wall wash trim or pinhole trim.
- For task light, you’ll want an adjustable fixture, such as an eyeball trim or gimbal trim.
- Keep in mind if your ceilings are not white, say wood, you may want a brown trim.
4. Determine the placement of your fixtures
The next step is to determine the lighting placement. Again, you’ll need to consider the size of the room and the type of light you want when deciding where to place your fixtures.
- For ambient light, you’ll want to place the fixtures around the room’s perimeter.
- For accent light, you’ll want to place the fixtures above or below the object you’re trying to highlight.
- For task light, you’ll want to place the fixtures near your activity, such as over a desk or stove.
- This is an EXTREMELY important meeting you should have with your contractor and/or electrician.
5. Choose your bulbs
After you’ve chosen your fixtures, it’s time to choose your light bulbs. There are a variety of recessed lighting bulbs to choose from, so be sure to pick the right one for your needs.
- For ambient light, you’ll want a bulb with low wattage and high lumen output.
- For accent light, you’ll want a bulb with a high wattage and a high lumen output.
- For task light, you’ll want a bulb with a high wattage and a low lumen output.
6. Install your fixtures
Now that you’ve chosen your bulbs, it’s time to install your fixtures. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing your fixtures.
7. Enjoy your new recessed lighting!
Once you’ve installed your recessed lighting, you can sit back and enjoy your new lighting system!
Ideas To Create A Stylized Ambience With Contemporary Lighting
Unbelievably, even in a posh, high-end home, you won’t be able to leave much of an impression unless you have the appropriate lighting to set a “stylized” mood.
Naturally, selecting the best choice for the ideal contemporary lighting is never a simple task. It establishes a welcoming, cozy, and opulent feeling, making it one of the most crucial elements of home design.
The technology used in modern lighting lends itself to producing such a lovely atmosphere. It’s simpler than ever to make significant improvements to the interior of your home. Just flip the switch!
You can utilize contemporary lighting to hide defects and just emphasize the beauty, or you can use it to make your living room look dramatic or highlight specific decorative items.
It’s all in the switch! A mood that can range from intimate to vibrant can be created by using the proper lighting to truly bring out the color schemes. You can have everything. Modern lighting comes in various forms, patterns, sizes, looks, and finishes.
Contemporary lighting is hot right now, so go with fancy metallic accents, and smooth, translucent glass, or try recessed or track lighting.
It’s interesting to note that the idea of interior lighting has been “in style” ever since man first lit his cave with crude oil lamps made from rocks and animal fat about 70,000 B.C.
Then, as a result of advancements, the first torch, the first portable lamp, and the first designer lamp gave rise to the current trend of modern indoor light fixtures.
Today, there are countless options for lighting fixtures for use in both homes and offices. Interior lighting performs a range of purposes and comes in a mind-boggling array of styles suitable to fulfill any specific need, from wall sconces and chandeliers to track lighting, recessed cans, and floor lighting alternatives.
Let’s look at why a well-lit home is appealing and how you may make your house a fashionable, cozy space that will make your neighbors green with envy!
It Is All in the “Light” Design
You may be familiar with the terms “fashion design,” “interior design,” and even “furniture design,” but what about “lighting design”? Most likely not! But when selecting light fixtures for your home, this is just what you need.
You may not entirely realize that the type of lighting is the starting point, or the focal point, of a room. But it really can be. The best placement of lights is an easy way to achieve the ideal level of brightness in your house as well as help with room designs.
Your home can appear to be a warm, pleasant, and cherished place, or it can look the opposite completely. The wonderful ornamental things you have on display can also be significantly altered by lighting design to look stunning and captivating. People don’t tend to notice the type of lights you have in your house, but they may notice random dark shadows or the visual effect that your lights make, even if they don’t subconsciously notice.
Lighting is no longer just about installing fluorescent lights on the walls and the height of your ceiling. Beyond just focusing on direct light and having enough light, it now considers the particular lighting needs of each room, nook, and cranny in the house.
Visual Drama and Contrast
Each space should have a touch of visual drama, which you may generate by using contrast. The fundamental goal of lighting design is to create contrast, which is often accomplished by using various types of lighting in various settings. This means you need to think about the whole room when considering lighting.
Consider your living or dining room as an example. While a chandelier may give ambient light, recessed halogen lights can be used as task lights to draw attention to particular areas of the room, and wall sconces can add an accent and provide respite.
Try not to use ambient light as your primary illumination source since it usually serves as a room’s overall illumination source. Instead, compare your ambient light source to stronger task and accent lights that offer intense illumination and highlighting effects for specific uses.
The task lights, which provide 6–10 times the level of ambient light, can be important sources of illumination. Checking the characteristics of each unique room is, of course, the most important element to consider when selecting contemporary lighting, especially in rooms with higher ceilings.
These characteristics include the space’s dimensions, ceiling height, architectural details (such as a bay window or a dormer), interior design, the quantity of natural light the space receives, and the light source’s intensity.
Contemporary Lighting and Ambience
Modern lighting places emphasis on clear, angular lines and a variety of metallic base finishes. Simple white or off-white colored globes, which are typical of this style, provide a ton of ambient light without detracting from any space’s most crucial aspects.
The simplicity of the design, which is unobtrusive and blends with the area to make it appear warm, accessible, and user-friendly, is what makes contemporary lighting so beautiful.
While it’s true that a lot has changed since the days when people burned animal fat for light, our demand for interior lighting hasn’t.
Only now do we have modern lighting fixtures in various shapes and styles, one for every event. Therefore, be sure to get the lighting fixtures that you believe would best complement your home’s decor when shopping.
We know that lighting is much more than just being about a power source. The amount of light, the type of bulb, the square feet of the area where your lighting is, and more are all important when deciding how to layout recessed lighting. It doesn’t have to be a difficult process though.
Start small with specific tasks, or start with the small areas and then work your way up in the house. This will set you up for success!