Are you buying a new home or sprucing up your existing place with renovations?
Since there is so much selection today compared to the old single-dome light fixtures, not only will you have plenty of fun choosing the proper lighting, but also, you might be overwhelmed with all the choices. In order to make the best possible selection, here are some points that you might want to think about.
Lighting on the ceiling generally serves a functional purpose. Older homes all had a light on the ceiling of each room with a light switch on the wall because it was the easy way standard homes were built. Nowadays, homeowners choose lamps and other types of lighting instead of relying on ceiling lights alone. While many individuals automatically flick the light switch as they walk into a room, often, the lamps and other light fixtures are also wired into the main switch. But, typically, the electrical system works by having the main wires in the ceiling. So at the very least, you will need a simple fixture to cover that spot.
Indeed, the purpose of the room will be a major factor when choosing your lights. The dining room is a perfect example, as many people like to have a chandelier above the dining table. How elaborate or how plain will depend on your budget and personal tastes. It will also rely upon the existing theme of the room. If the walls are covered in paneling, for instance, you may want a light fixture in the shape of a wagon wheel. Your lighting will provide the atmosphere for the space and will help accentuate your decor.
Chandeliers are also used in large entrance ways and open hallways. Just remember that the longer the pendants on the lighting, the more space you need. Guests and family should be able to walk comfortably under the bling without smacking their heads every time they walk near the chandelier. And when you have spent the money for something so beautiful, you certainly do not want it damaged.
Moving to the bathroom area, you want a light fixture that is quite bright and lights up the whole space. Spotlights work well in this area. So do light fixtures directly above the mirror which is often placed above the sink. The fixture here normally comes out from the wall and has one, two or three large globes with bright white light bulbs. Again, the lighting can match the design of the bathroom. If you are using white porcelain tap handles on shiny chrome fixtures, then a chrome finished fixture will be attractive. As far as pricing is concerned, typically, the more lights in the fixture, the more expensive the lighting will be. An important point to consider with bathroom lights is the safety rating of the fitting. Its important that you get lights safe to be installed in bathrooms due to the extra risk of electric shock.
Recessed track lights, pot lights or canister lights are lovely in areas where you want subtle lighting. They have a warmer feeling and are not bright at all. One area where recessed lighting is best suited is the family room. While everyone watches television, this type of lighting is much easier on the eyes. It is light enough to play board games and even read, but it is not blaring like in the bathroom or office. Often, ceiling lighting has a dial on the wall so that the brightness can be turned up and down to different levels.
Fluorescent lighting encased in a nice valance has traditionally been used in the bathroom or kitchen. It is also quite common to see these types of light fixtures in the laundry area, as well as any work areas, such as in the basement or garage. While there is some controversy nowadays about the health risks of fluorescent light bulbs, they still have their purpose and millions of homes display these types of lights without anyone experiencing any ill effects. The problems have mostly been found in commercial offices where employees have complained of migraines due to the large and excessive lighting. Few, if any problems, have been found with their use in homes.
Interestingly, there is a new style of lighting called top view lamps or ceiling lamps. Customarily, lamps are not stationary lighting, but rather can be plugged in wherever there is an electrical outlet. With ceiling lamps, however, the fixture is hardwired on the ceiling of the room. The design is much larger and more involved than the regular ceiling fixtures. In fact, many are considered art worthy. They are often sold in art galleries and fancy boutiques. But, the regular hardware stores also sell mass produced models which are less expensive and can provide the look you are searching for.
One final comment about ceiling lights. Outdoor lighting, such as those light fixtures found at the front and back doors or under the awning of the porch or veranda, is rated for outdoor use because of weather exposure. Do not install an indoor light fixture outside, as it could become a fire or electrocution hazard.
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