Recessed Lighting for Kitchen (Placement, Layout & How to Install)
You need a well-illuminated kitchen all day long to enjoy cooking. A well-illuminated kitchen also boosts your mood when preparing your best food. But this is only possible with good lighting, such as recessed lighting.
The recessed lights add visual appeal to the room and act as accent lighting. But before installing these lights in your kitchen, you need to have a plan which helps you know their layout, placement, and size to use.
So, are you planning to install recessed lighting in your kitchen? Here’s everything you need to know.
Kitchen Recessed Lights Placement
Knowing where you’ll install the recessed lighting for the kitchen is advisable to get the desired effects that make this space lovely. Remember, recessed kitchen lighting can be installed throughout this room, depending on your choice. But you have to consider certain areas within the kitchen that should have adequate lighting throughout.
If you’re fixing the recessed lighting in the kitchen for task lighting, ensure the light is well-positioned above your workstation. Don’t put it above where you’ll be sitting, as it will create a shadow. Also, mount the lights away from the walls. This can be at least 2 feet from the wall.
You can fix these lights in your open kitchen to make it more appealing. Recessed lighting is also good for the island bars, countertops, or stovetops. If you want to make the counter areas in your kitchen the center of attraction, the recessed lights are also a good choice.
Note that the recessed lights for the kitchen can work with or without the flush mount ceiling lights. So, you need to decide on this before they’re fixed.
Recessed Kitchen Lighting Layout
Before fixing the recessed lighting in your kitchen, you need to plan to have a rough idea of the outcome. You can achieve that by drafting out the kitchen layout and identifying where you’ll fix the recessed lights. But this should not include areas with range or ceiling lights. Also, plan for the recessed lights to complement the fixtures in the kitchen.
Another thing you need to bear in mind while planning for the recessed kitchen lights is that installing too many of them can make the space too bright or dark. Also, be ready to pay more electricity bills.
To help you know the right area to fix the recessed lights for the kitchen, divide the kitchen ceiling’s height into two. For example, if your ceiling is 6 feet, you should install the recessed lights after every 3 feet.
But if you’ll use only the recessed lights in the kitchen, it’s best to install them after every 4 or 6 square feet. This will help make your kitchen have equal illumination and improve the visual appeal.
Alternatively, you can place the recessed lights around the kitchen’s perimeter. This will help illuminate areas like the sink, countertop edges, and counters. Installing this lighting in this area also reduces the shadows created when someone is working at the kitchen counter.
Then fix the kitchen recessed downlights 12 inches apart. Give a room between 12 to 18 inches from the cabinets to enable light to reach the counter.
When designing the recessed lighting layout, don’t forget to consider the effect you want to achieve. Also, identify the type of lights and the configuration before installation. Your choice of light can depend on the installation location in the kitchen and the desired effect you want to achieve.
Remember to figure out whether you want recessed lights for accent lighting, whole room lighting, or both. You should do good planning for this entire process to prevent your kitchen from having poor uneven lighting.
Which Kind of Recessed Kitchen Lighting Should You Use?
After settling for the layout of the recessed lighting, you need to identify the type of recessed lights to use. You need the best quality recessed lighting to save on maintenance costs. The LED recessed lights win in this case as they’re energy savers.
These lights run at cooler temperatures than the standard bulbs meaning they don’t produce heat. The LED lights also have a longer lifespan, giving you value for your money. What’s more, the LED lights also have varying color temperatures allowing you to go for what suits your kitchen.
You can also go for the halogen bulbs, which produce bright light but with a controlled beam for your kitchen. These low voltage halogen light bulbs require a low voltage housing and transformer to work. The bulbs are energy savers and last longer while producing quality light.
Recessed Lighting Housing and Lights for Your Kitchen
You also need to identify the type of housing you’ll use for your kitchen recessed lighting. If your kitchen ceiling is insulated, the best type of housing for it is IC-rated housing. This is because it blends well with an insulated roof. However, the non-IC housing best suits a newer kitchen with no insulation on the ceiling.
Then the type of lights majorly depends on what area you want to illuminate and your purpose of installing them. You can blend wide-angle lights with narrow beam lights to create ambiance in this space and lighten areas like counters.
Should You Add Dimmers in This Space?
If you want to control the brightness and mood of the kitchen, consider having dimmers. Dimmers are also good energy savers and enable the recessed lighting to last longer. However, it would be best if you had different switches for the dimmers in your kitchen.
Have a switch for the kitchen island and another for counters or under the cabinet. Doing this will help you reduce your house’s electricity consumption as you only light certain areas when in need. It also makes you creative and gets to have various lighting options in the kitchen.
Cost Of Installing Recessed Lighting
The cost of installing these lights varies depending on the type of materials you’re using. Remember you need to buy wiring and other essentials. Then you’ve got to cater for installation costs which depend on the professional you’re working with. The number of days this work takes can also affect the total amount you use.
How Many Recessed Lights Should I Install in The Kitchen?
The number of recessed lights you need in the kitchen depends on the size of this room. But you can know this by measuring the kitchen’s dimensions. Then calculate the kitchen’s square footage by multiplying the length by the width. After that, multiply the kitchen’s square footage by 1.5 to get the overall wattage you’ll require for this.
Note that the LED bulbs will need less wattage than traditional bulbs. For example, if you’ve got a huge 4-inch downlight bulb, its wattage is 8.5. This will produce equal light to that of a 62-watt traditional bulb.
This whole calculation can be simplified by;
If you have a 160 square foot kitchen, you multiply it by 1.5.
160 X 1.5=240
So, if you’re to use the 60-watt bulbs, it means you divide 240 by 60, which indicates you’ll require four recessed lights for your kitchen.
Size Of Recessed Kitchen Lights to Use
Most residential homes opt for recessed lights of 4 inches or 7 inches for their kitchen. However, this size largely depends on the distance between the ceiling and where you want to illuminate it. If, for example, you’ve got a ceiling that hangs 8 feet away, a 4-inch lighting fixture will work well and ensure equal light distribution in the kitchen.
How Far from The Wall Should You Install the Recessed Lighting for The Kitchen?
You need to install the recessed lights some feet away from the wall. However, the purpose of fixing the lights affects the distance. For instance, if you aim to use the lights for task lighting, place them 24 inches away from the wall.
Also, the height of the ceiling affects this distance. If your ceiling is 9 feet high, fix the recessed lights 2 or 3 feet away from the wall. Then give a space of 2 or 3 feet between them.
Many people opt for recessed lights these days, which are fixed in the drywall holes. This lighting system makes the room beautiful and helps you maintain the focal point in the kitchen. However, the layout and placement of these lights largely determine your kitchen outcome.
So, you need to choose the right type of recessed lights which align with your purpose of installing them. Also, do space them well and at least 2 feet away from the walls. But don’t forget to fix dimmers and have different switches for easy operation and saving on energy.
Also, avoid placing the recessed lighting in a way that will create shadows as you work in the kitchen. If possible, work with a professional who understands electrical wiring and will likely offer quality results.