Recessed Lighting

Recessed lighting planning made easy

Recessed lighting is one of the hottest trends in lighting schemes, and it also happens to be one of the most practical. Recessed lighting refers to light fixtures that are set into your wall or ceiling, rather than hanging from it. A recessed lighting design provides a streamlined, unobtrusive look that is great for modern decor but can also be used with any other design scheme.

Recessed lighting is also perfect for targeting light to specific areas. For example, you may want light over a specific piece of art or over the kitchen sink, but you don't want the light to be the focal piece. Recessed lighting will give you the light you need without overwhelming your decor.

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Types of Recessed Lighting

Leading brands in recessed lighting include Panasonic, Rheem, Honeywell and Halo recessed lighting, but no matter which brand you choose, there are typically two models of lights to choose from:

  • Stationary Recessed Lighting. Stationary recessed lights run flush with your ceiling and direct a beam of light directly downward. Be warned: these lights can often be very powerful, so you may want to consider low-voltage recessed lighting if it will be stationary.
  • Directional Recessed Lighting. Directional recessed light fixtures protrude slightly from the ceiling in order to point the light beam at a certain angle. Many of these are adjustable, so you can point them where you like, while others are already fixed in place. High-voltage recessed lighting may be okay in these instances, as light can be directed away from your actual target.

Recessed Lighting Planning

Because recessed lighting isn't always a one-shot deal (like hanging a chandelier), you'll need to do some recessed lighting planning before you buy or begin installing these lights. If you're going to be installing more than one light, careful measurement is a must. Be sure to consider where in the room light is most necessary, how you can evenly disperse the light around the room and also whether you want to have separate control over each light or all lights on a single switch.

There is also a distinction between the type of recessed light you'll use for new and old construction. For new construction, you'll have easy access to the area where you need to install the light before the ceiling goes in, so you can use models that suspend from or screw into ceiling joists. In old construction, where a ceiling is already in place, you'll want a model that clips directly to the drywall itself, with a faceplate to cover the mount.

Opting Out of Recessed Lighting

Even the best-laid recessed lighting plans can go wrong, and you may decide after a while that you don't like the look. If this is the case, look for conversion kits such as the Portfolio recessed lighting conversion kit that allows you to hang pendant lighting over the hole left by your recessed light.