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Best Choices For Kitchen Lighting


One of the most critical elements of a successful kitchen design is lighting. After cabinets and flooring are chosen and counter tops and appliances, lighting is often left for last and often gets too little attention. An effective kitchen lighting plan includes three elements, Down Lighting, Task Lighting and Accent or Decorative lighting. Let’s take a look at each element.


Down Lighting:


Down lighting is the general room lighting needed to illuminate the room, this often consists of ceiling mount fixtures. These illuminate the room and combat glare and shadows. In the 70’s and 80’s ceiling mounted recessed florescent fixtures were the very popular using florescent tubes and opaque plastic panels to conceal them. Modern kitchens use a subtler approach that includes can lights and track lighting for illumination.


Task Lighting:

Task lighting is a relatively new concept, these fixtures are mounted behind cabinet molding to conceal them from view. They offer pinpoint lighting in an effective and decorative way. Led fixtures have become the lighting of choice for task lighting, offering excellent surface lighting without glare and the option of USB connections and additional outlets for appliances. There are several choices including strips, pucks, and battery operated units.


Accent or Decorative Lighting:

Accent lighting enhances the environment and adds depth and dimension to the room, these can include track lighting chandeliers and wall sconces. Under counter and toe kick lighting allows nighttime illumination without sending too much light to other rooms.

Pendent Lighting:

Pendent lights long popular in commercial settings have become quite popular in kitchen designs with many models available in modern and retro styles. Another trend is the use of chandeliers in kitchens over islands and as general down lighting. In modern kitchens anything goes and the more creativity the better.

Cabinet Interior Lighting:


Another recent trend is interior cabinet lighting, with lights in drawers and inside cabinets with glass doors to showcase china or crystal.


Tips for achieving the best kitchen lighting.


1. Avoid overly bright lighting, use fixtures with dimmers to adjust the lighting to the task at hand or the time of day. LED task lighting is a good choice for kitchens.


2. Keep a proper balance of down lighting, task and accent lighting. Too many fixtures make lighting the room to complicated and confusing.



3. Look for softer light intensity, 2700k or 3000k soft white works better than 500k ultra bright light which will cause glare and eye strain.


4. Consider toe kick lighting, lighting installed under the lower cabinets add ambiance and doubles as an effective night light, lighting up the room while not sending light to other areas of the home.



Mike, The Home Depot Answer Man


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Posted 2016-11-15T00:07:28+0000  by Mike_HD_OC Mike_HD_OC