Recessed Home Lighting Design

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Recessed Home Lighting Design Considerations

Recessed lighting fixtures, can serve many functions in the home. They may showcase and accentuate works of art or attractive home elements like shelving or fireplaces. They can provide quality, focused task lighting wherever it's needed. And recessed lighting is a perfect choice in the bathroom, especially when used to illuminate showers or tubs.

Before installing recessed accent lighting, be sure that you've settled on a somewhat permanent room arrangement. A recessed fixture used to light a family portrait won't do much good if you decide to hang the picture elsewhere at a later time. That doesn't mean you can never rearrange. Just be sure to designate the fixture's purview as a place where you'll always have something to light.

Recessed lighting can also make small rooms seem bigger in a couple of ways. First, recessed lighting eliminates hanging or protruding fixtures, clearing wall and ceiling space of sightline obstructions. And using recessed fixtures to wash the walls with light can make an entire room appear larger than it actually is.

As task lighting, recessed lighting is often best used in tandem with other light sources. A recessed light placed directly overhead of a work area may lead to shadows being cast by whomever is doing the work, obscuring desks or countertops. If possible, situate your fixture so that it is at least a foot in front of the area where the work will be done.

If you're installing the fixtures yourself, be sure you have a solid plan from the outset. Symmetry is an important factor, but it may be abandoned if the central focus in the room is not located on, or equidistant from, the center line. Proper distance from the wall should be maintained - usually at least two feet away, and farther in homes with higher ceilings.

Of course, there are limits to the where recessed lights may be placed. You may have to account for ceiling joists, ducting and plumbing. If placed near insulation, the fixtures must be IC rated for safety. And if your ceiling is extremely solid or decorative in its own right, you may want to consider other options - track lighting can offer similar effects.

Consulting a professional electrician can take a lot of the worry and hassle out of recessed fixture installation. Not only will your ceiling be sure to remain intact, but your electrician may have some bright ideas of his own about how to get the most out of your home's recessed lights.

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