Tag Archive | downlight

Kitchen Lighting – Is your kitchen bright enough?

Is your kitchen bright enough?

“Many older kitchens aren’t bright enough after the sun goes down. The most pleasant kitchen lighting comes from several sources. Lighting designers classify kitchen lighting as either task lighting, general – or ambient lighting – lighting, or accent lighting. That doesn’t mean you need three different types of fixtures; many light fixtures can handle more than one lighting job at a time.”

The Kitchen Idea Book, Joanne Kellar Bouknight

This is my kitchen. It’s a tiny little kitchen, but I still have a ceiling light over the sink, light and vent from microwave over stove, undercabinet lighting in the corner, so I can measure coffee in the morning, a lighted ceiling fan, light from the window and the sky light and the three pendants over the bar.

My Kitchen

My Kitchen

Count the types of lighting in this kitchen from Better Homes and Gardens December 2014/January 2015 issue.

Better Homes and Gardens December 2014/January 2015

Better Homes and Gardens December 2014/January 2015

There’s plenty of natural light from all of the windows. Then there’s the goose neck fixture over the sink, a pendant over the bar and a series of mini pendants over the banquette.

Country Living December 2014

Country Living December 2014

This kitchen from Country Living’s December 2014 issue has lots of bright sunlight. A salvaged window frame is used instead of curtains. A mini chandelier is hung over the sink and track lighting illuminates the entire small kitchen.

A mini chandelier is hung over the sink

A mini chandelier is hung over the sink.

track lighting illuminates the entire small kitchen.

Track lighting illuminates the entire small kitchen.

Guidelines for Lighting the Kitchen

Guidelines for Lighting the Kitchen

This graph from The Kitchen Idea Book by Joanne Kellar Bouknight demonstrates Guidelines for Lighting the Kitchen.
(This whole book is an excellent resource!)

  • In-cabinet can be handled by low voltage puck lights or strings of tiny bulbs.
  • To avoid shadows on work surface, place ceiling task lighting fixtures no more than 12” from cabinets or 28” from wall.
  • A cleanup sink requires lots of light. Here, two 75-watt recessed incandescents do the job.
  • A pendant light over an island provides both general and task lighting.
  • An accent light illuminates objects or a wall.
  • Where there are no wall cabinets, put task lighting in ceiling, a lowered soffit (as shown here), on tracks, or on the wall itself.
  • Place under-cabinet lighting close to front edge of cabinet to conceal the fixture and cause less glare in countertop.
  • Task lights can be continuous or placed about 12” on center.
  • General lighting can be provided by recessed or ceiling mounted fixtures, track lighting, pendants, or low voltage cable lights.
  • Range hoods require built-in or added lighting.

Kitchen Lighting, Cabinet Lights, Under Counter, Task   Lighting

Kichler LED DiscsKichler LED Discs
Sleek, practically invisible and versatile Kichler LED Discs have advanced technology, superior optics and a pure, even light all packed into an untra thin 3/8″ profile. Simple, versatile installation included. Z-Wave Technology allows your home electronics to talk to each other, and to you, via remote control.
LED Mini Star 2 Lighting LED Mini Star 2 Lighting
Available as single fixtures or kits, these die cast aluminum ultra-thin square, LED surface mount LED are ideal for under-cabinet, in-cabinet or display light uses only They put out 3.26 watts per fixture.
Kichler Dimmable LEDKichler Dimmable LED
Design Pro LED Direct Wire offers trouble-free, energy efficient operation along with the simple installation of a self-contained unit. The dimmable version is designed and tested to work with a wide variety of dimming switches for a true range of light level control. Kichler Design Pro LED Direct Wire delivers high-tech LED at a value. It’s proof that unprecedented long life, unmatched energy savings and beautiful light don’t have to break the bank.
Kichler Modular LEDKichler Modular LED
This remarkably sleek unit tucks cleanly under the cabinets. so all you see is warm white light. The ultimate in energy savings and 40,000 hours of life; unprecedented when compared with alternatives such as fluorescent and xenon. Efficient for builders, remodelers and other professionals looking to build today’s residential and commercial structures with products that are Energy Star qualified and can support LEEDs certification and National Green Building Standards.
NSL LED Hard StripNSL LED Hard Strip
LED Hard Strips Series combines high output LED’s in a unique linkable extrusion ideal for under cabinet, showcases, and incabinet applications. LED Hard Strips is available in three sizes, three color temperatures (WW-3000K, NW-4200K, and CW-6200K) and RGB. Four mounting options provide a seamless even distribution of light delivering outstanding light output and low power consumption. LED Hard Strip is dimmable when powered by appropriate LED driver or dimming device.
NSL Xenon Task Lights
Self-contained, complete Xenon surface mount 120VAC under-cabinet light uses 18 watt wedge base Xenon bulbs in 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 light fixtures. 12V transformer is built into each fixture. Hardwire can be parallel wired (“daisy chained”) up to 1188 watts (66 bulbs). White, Bronze, Black or Aluminum finished fixture with numerous knockouts and frosted glass lens with low-profile release hinged to aluminum frame; easy to install hardwire or with optional power cord. ETL Listed for damp locations. Hi/Lo switch, Dimmable!
Track Lighting & Track KitsTrack Lighting & Track Kits
Ceiling mounted track lighting with adjustable spotlight fixtures and pendants are an excellent choice for both residential and commercial use. There are an unbelievable variety of attractive and functional fixures available.Track lights make it easy to make changes in your lighting. You can mix pendants and track heads to direct light on specific areas.
Antique Reproduction Mini PendantsAntique Reproduction Mini Pendants
Smaller Pendants in Antique Reproduction style combine historic elements in diffused down-light. Hang a small pendant over your kitchen sink to coordinate with your chandelier. Hang a Series of Antique Reproduction Mini Pendants over your bar, kitchen island or long dining table.
Art Nouveau Mini PendantsArt Nouveau Mini Pendants
Art Nouveau and vintage Italian Tole style mini drop pendants are perfect for a shabby chic interior. These unusual small pendants can be used alone or in a series. They are a focal point however they are used.
Contemporary Mini Pendants (Up to 7 inches)Contemporary Mini Pendants (Up to 7″)
Less is more. Brushed finishes with sleek design lines are characteristic of this style. These mini pendants coordinate with your Contemporary, Eames or Post-Modern Style interior. Use these small contemporary pendants alone or use a series of them over a bar or island.
Modern Mini PendantsModern Mini Pendants
Modern Mini Pendants bring brushed steel, chrome and glass to a modern interior. Combining form and function, these small pendants can be used alone to fit a small room or area or collectively to light a bar or island.
Eclectic Mini Pendants Eclectic Mini Pendants
Eclectic style draws from a variety of sources. If you are looking for something surprising and different, these are the pendants for you.
Rustic Mini Pendants Rustic Mini Pendants
These small pendants include hand-forged iron branches climb, twisting around artisan glass or natural materials. Pendants using rustic materials and finishes are selected for this page to coordinate with Adirondack Style, Lodge Style or fit into your log cabin.
Pot Racks & Lighted Pot RacksPot Racks & Lighted Pot Racks
This collection of potracks and lighted potracks has the perfect choice for your interior. Keep your pots and pans where you can find them. Some of these even offer a combination of lighting and storage! Available in any a variety of metal or painted finishes with glass or shade options, these pendants beautifully add light and storage to your kitchen.
Clearance Pool Table & Island Pendants
This page has a constantly changing assortment of pool table lights and island pendants at clearance prices. These items move fast, so if you see something you like, call right away.
Art Deco, Art Nouveau & Eclectic Pool Table Lights & Island Pendants
Taking inspiration from historic sources or new eclectic concepts in lighting, these pool table lights and island pendants are far from ordinary.
Contemporary Pool table or Island LightsContemporary Pool Table or Island Lights
These linear pendants are suitable for lighting a pool table, bar or island. Brushed finishes with sleek design lines make this style work with almost any interior.
Modern Island Lights
These linear pendants light a pool table or add functional light for an island, bar or Table without giving up utilitarian functionality for clean aesthetics.
Rustic Island Pendants
Rustic pendants and pool table lights for your log cabin or lodge or to add a rustic feel to any home.
Contemporary Island ChandeliersContemporary Island Oval Chandeliers
Contemporary Island Chandeliers are oval in shape. They are ideal for over an island or a long dining room table.

Wall Sconces for a Small Bath Room

The Rosetta Wall Sconce from WAC Lighting’s European Collection on either side of a mirrored medicine cabinet. Bella figura, Rosetta offers fine Italian styles that combines a classic profile with multiple murine glass patterns that will enhance any setting with a perfect mix of form and function.

The Rosetta Wall Sconce from WAC Lighting’s European Collection on either side of a mirrored medicine cabinet.
Bella figura, Rosetta offers fine Italian styles that combines a classic profile with multiple murine glass patterns that will enhance any setting with a perfect mix of form and function.

WAC Lighting’s new decorative low profile sconces with glass shades boast a truly exclusive look with exceptional quality. Each sconce canopy is designed with timeless style and plated in Chrome and Brushed Nickel finishes.

Even in the smallest bathroom or powder room, good lighting and good switches and dimmers make all the difference! Once you have light control in your bathroom, you will wonder how you ever lived without it.

Have one switch for ceiling lighting, whether it is recessed lighting or a ceiling fixture. Have the mirror lighting on a separate switch with a dimmer. I use it at the lowest setting to enjoy a relaxing bath or when I get up at night or first get up until I am ready for the morning.

Wall sconces on either side of a mirror or medicine cabinet provide both decorative and task lighting.

“Stick to a style and finish that is compatible with the other elements in the room. Coodinate the style of the sconces near the vanity with that of the cabinet, for example.”

Bathrooms: The Smart Approach to Design by the Editors of Creative Homeowner, Home Decorating

The best light for applying makeup is shed from the sides of a mirror. The best for shaving is from above. In both cases, there are many ways to do this effectively. Plan your bath lighting for how you will be using the bathroom. And don’t forget that the right switches and dimmers make all the difference!

“Wall-mounted light sconces are a good way to provide adequate lighting without overwhelming a small space, so they’re a good choice in a powder room.”

Bathroom Remodeling For Dummies (Paperback)
by Gene Hamilton, Katie Hamilton

Lutron Plates, Switches, Dimmers and Accessories >
WAC Lighting Quick Connect Wall Sconces >

WAC Lighting Bath Wall Sconces & Low Profile ADA Wall Sconces >

Landscape Lighting for Winter

Isn't this a welcoming site to come home to? Landscape lighting is easy to install and makes your home safer and more welcoming.

Isn’t this a welcoming site to come home to? Landscape lighting is easy to install and makes your home safer and more welcoming.

Landscape lighting isn’t just a Spring project. The longest night of the year is December 21/22. It is dark already when you come home and often still dark when you leave in the morning. Here are some ideas for outdoor lighting for safety and security that are easy to install and don’t use a lot of electricity to operate.

Create a landscape lighting plan. Draw a sketch or map of your yard.

Be sure to position fixtures so lights won’t shine into people’s eyes, into windows or into other people’s yards.

  • Pathways
  • Steps & Stairs
  • Entrances
  • Lawn Ornaments
  • Fountains or Water Feature
  • Natural Features
  • Areas an intruder might hide

Mark on your plan any areas you don’t want to feature.

  • Garbage Cans
  • Heating or Air Conditioning Units
  • Fuel Tank
  • Dog Run
  • Wood Pile

Draw in the areas you want light. Then decide how to light them. There are a lot of options.

  • Path Lighting
  • Step Lighting
  • Accent Lighting: Direct light at an object or area.
  • Downlighting
  • Uplighting
  • Silhouetting: If you wash the area behind something, you make it stand out.
  • Spot Lighting: Direct the light directly at something.
  • Reflecting: If you have a body of water, light something near it. It will be reflected. This is a really beautiful effect.
  • Underwater lights

The higher the fixture is mounted, the wider the area that can be lighted with a single fixture. You can control the light using a shroud or a lens. A shroud cuts off the light so that it doesn’t intrude where it is not wanted. A spread lens spreads the light to a wider area. A linear spread lens elongates the beam.

Many lights can accept light bulbs with varying beam spread. A flood will light a larger area. A spot will narrow the beam and the light will appear brighter.

So, now draw onto your landscape plan the location of the fixtures. Decide where you can locate your transformer. Draw a line from the transformer to each fixture.

This is a landscape plan from Hadco. The dotted line is the cable.

Landscape Lighting Plan from Hadco

Landscape Lighting Plan from Hadco

“Draw a dotted line from the power console to each fixture to denote the cable, remembering to center feed each group of fixtures. Try to avoid running the cable under walks and drives more than once to help eliminate the need for extra work when installing.”  Hadco’s Landscape Installation Guide (PDF will open in new window)

Design your cable layout. Avoid straight runs or the lights closest to the transformer will be brighter than the ones further down the line.  If your runs are going to be very long, use higher gauge cable for the main leg.

Measure your cable. Be sure to get extra so it isn’t tight. It’s not that expensive.

Add up the wattage of the fixtures. Your transformer should handle this much wattage. If you might add more lighting later, get a bigger transformer.

Decide how much you want to spend and the quality of product you can afford.

You don’t have to do everything at once. Purchase the transformer for your ultimate plan, then add the fixtures little by little. Or buy low cost fixtures now and upgrade to higher quality longer lasting fixtures later.

Consider adding:

  • A timer to turn the lights on and off at predetermined hours.
  • A Photocell switch to turn the lights on at dusk and off at dawn
  • Remote Control
  • Motion Detector to turn the lights on when someone approaches, then turn the lights back off.

Installation is easy and fast

Follow any instructions that come with your lighting.

1-      Screw the transformer to the wall near the outlet one foot above the ground.
If you have a photo cell, mount it away from any artificial light sources, such as street lights or light from your windows.

2-      Lay fixtures as close as possible to where they will be installed.

3-      Lay out the cable along your plan. Be sure to keep it loose.

4-      Connect the cable to each fixture and to the main cable using cable connectors.

5-      Connect the low voltage cable to the transformer.
Plug in the transformer.

6-      Test the system. Make sure everything is lighting up before you bury the cable. You might want to wait until the sun goes down to make sure that everything is right.

7-      Cover the cable with mulch or gravel where it runs through beds.
Cut a slit in the grass and push it in where it crosses the lawn.

Simple Kit to Convert Recessed Lighting to LED

Hallway with Eurofase 25081 6" LED Conversion Kit

Hallway with Eurofase 25081 6″ LED Conversion Kit

Convert your existing recessed lighting to super energy efficient LED with a new easy-to-use kit from Eurofase.

The kit includes everything you need to convert a typical 6 inch recessed can that uses a 150W Incandescent R40 to PAR 38 bulb. The LED driver is powered by screwing into the bulb socket. The 14W LED SHARP 120V/277V LED is provided.

The LED Kelvin 3500K emits a warm white light.

The beam angle is adjustable up to 120 degrees to highlight artwork or graze walls.

LED lamps have a much longer life than incandescent lamps. They do not emit UV rays. They put out very little infrared or heat. They are ideal to light artwork or photography that is sensitive to UV or temperature. LEDs are highly energy efficient offering significant savings on electricity bills. Their longer lifespan reduces maintenance time and costs, making them ideal for hard-to-reach places.

Eurofase Recessed Conversion Kits >

Eurofase 25081 6" LED Conversion Kit

Eurofase 25081 6″ LED Conversion Kit 6″ 14 watt LED Conversion Kit converts a typical existing recessed fixture into a new 14 watt LED downlight.