If you are in the process of planning your kitchen remodel and are wondering what your options are, you are on the right path to having a great remodel project. Main reason being is that proper lighting can make a room feel warm and inviting. Since a kitchen is commonly known to be the heart of the home, it is critical that you put the right type and quantity of lights in this area of your home.
There are several choices for lighting your kitchen ceiling, but if you are looking for the one that will be timeless and help your home look current, you should consider recessed lighting for your kitchen lighting.
One of the best reasons why homeowners like recessed lighting is that it helps a room appear larger, since the lights are actually recessed into the ceiling. This gives the kitchen area a feeling of more space and helps you focus on other features of your kitchen such as cabinets and appliances. This can make the room more warm and inviting, if you choose the right type of lights.
Soffit vs. Flat Ceiling
In South Florida, you will find that not all kitchen ceilings are created equal. There are a lot of ceilings that have what is known as a cove ceiling that has outdated fluorescent lights all around and a ceiling fan in the center of the ceiling. The next popular type of ceiling is the one with the plastic panels, and is known as a dropped ceiling. Another common type of ceiling is your basic flat ceiling, with a light fixture in the center. A flat ceiling can be concrete, as in most South Florida condos or it can be a drywall flat ceiling.
Cove Ceiling good basis creating a soffit
The cove ceiling with plastic panels was created to provide height in the kitchen area and still allow you to hide all of the old wires and to hide an unfinished ceiling in the center. It was very common at one time for South Florida Builders not to finish a ceiling and to hide wires in this area. Since everything was covered by this area, there was no big reason to finish the area off. The builder and the electrical contractor would typically install fluorescent lighting behind plastic panels and sometimes would put a ceiling fan in the center as a final accent to the kitchen ceiling.
Creating a Soffit in the new recessed lights
If you decide to have a soffit ceiling in the kitchen area for your recessed lighting, there is a multiple step process. First you need to remove the old kitchen ceiling. Next step is for the electrical contractor to install the essential wiring in the soffit area, so that the soffit area can receive recessed lights. After this is inspected, you will need to complete the framing and have the framing and rough electric inspected. Next comes the installation of the drywall and inspection for the drywall screws. After all the rough inspections are passed by local inspectors, the drywall cab be finished with mud, sand, prime and paint.
If you want to have your recessed lights in a flat ceiling, then you must create an area that can accept a recessed light housing. Sometimes you may be limited by the space in the area and may be required to use what is known as a shallow recessed can for the recessed lights.
The first step is to remove all of the plastic panels and the old existing electric wiring. Next you will have your electrical contractor install the necessary electrical wiring that will be required for the new recessed cans. It is wise to only have a licensed electrical contractor to perform this work, since it is involving electricity. Also, you will want to make sure that the electrical contractor confirms that the electric panel has enough circuits for this new electric wiring and that everything is corrected properly.
In South Florida, after the electric is done by your licensed electrical contractor, you will have this inspected by your local municipal electrical inspector. Once this works passes inspection, next comes the framing inspection. After the framing inspection passes, the drywall can be installed in the kitchen ceiling. Once the drywall screws have passed inspection by the local structural inspector, you can then have the drywall properly finished with the mud, sanding, prime and paint. Your flat kitchen ceiling will be ready for your new recessed recessed lighting in your kitchen area.
Lighting: Ambient vs. Task vs. Decorative vs. Accent Lighting
It is important to understand the 4 commonly used types of lighting when planning your kitchen remodel project.
The more common type of lighting in the home is ambient or general lighting. This is what most of your recessed lights are used for in the kitchen remodel. This illuminates the general area of the kitchen.
Your next commonly used type of lighting is known as task lighting. Task lighting is exactly as it sounds, it is a directional light used during a specific task.
Types of Light bulbs for your recessed lights
When you decide on using recessed lights for your kitchen remodel, you have lots of options for light bulbs. If you want the most energy efficient type of light bulb for your kitchen remodel, you will want to use LED Bulbs.
When choosing the type of light bulb for your recessed lights, you need to consider the following options when making your decision.
- decide on the shape of the bulb
- determine the brightness and energy efficiency
- select the color temperature
- make sure that the light bulb base matches the fixture
The next thing that you have to decide on is what type of light bulb you plan on using. A few options to consider are:
- LED Bulbs
- Halogen Par Bulbs
- Standard A or Bulbs
- Low Voltage – MR16 Halogen Bulbs
When you are searching for your recessed lighting bulbs be sure to take note of the label. There is valuable information on the label for you to have in your kitchen remodel project. Take a look at a lighting label below for an LED light bulb. It provides a lot of valuable information on energy, watts and light output.
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