Updating your kitchen lighting is an affordable way to enhance your kitchen’s atmosphere while improving its functionality. Refresh the look of your kitchen and tailor it to your lifestyle by choosing the right type of lighting. Whether you’re looking to add a decorative touch with stylish fixtures or save money with energy-efficient lighting, The Home Depot has all of your kitchen lighting needs covered.
Follow these four simple steps to decide which type of lighting is right for you:
Step 1. Know Your Space. Different areas of your kitchen have different lighting needs. Before you shop for fixtures, determine which of the following key types of lighting your space requires:
Ambient lighting: General illumination that sets the mood of a room, from bright lights to a mellow glow.
Task lighting: Focuses on a specific work area where tasks are performed, such as a sink or countertop.
Accent lighting: Highlights a focal point or an architectural feature, such as a painting or china cabinet.
Decorative lighting: Emphasizes the light fixture itself as the focal point, such as a chandelier.
You may decide to use one or all four of these lighting types, depending on the size and layout of your kitchen. For example, you may need task lighting over your countertop, sink or stove but prefer ambient lighting above your kitchen table. Updating your lighting to best suit these requirements will make your kitchen simultaneously stylish and efficient.
Step 2. Choose Your Light Fixtures. Once you determine what lighting types best suit your space, there are a variety of kitchen lighting fixtures to choose from:
Recessed lighting: Also called can or pot lighting, recessed lighting is a popular option for opening up small spaces. Both stylish and discreet, recessed lighting can be used as task, accent or ambient lighting and is ideal for small kitchens and low ceilings. Save time and money by picking up an LED recessed lighting kit from The Home Depot today.
Track lighting: The flexibility and easy-to-angle design of track lighting makes it well suited for task and accent lighting. Installing track lighting is a perfect solution for those who want different spotlights from a single light fixture.
Under-cabinet lighting: Providing direct illumination without shining into your eyes, under-cabinet lighting is a great task-lighting solution for common kitchen duties such as meal preparation and dishwashing.
Specialty Lighting: Installing a decorative light fixture such as a chandelier can instantly reinvigorate and add value to your kitchen. Hang one over your kitchen island or dining table for a quick, stylish update.
Step 3. Control Your Lighting With Dimmers. Largely used to create ambient lighting, dimmers are the most versatile option in terms of controlling light intensity and instantly changing the mood of your room. Whether you require full brightness for cooking or want to set a relaxing mealtime glow, dimmers are easily adaptable for any occasion.
Dimmer switches come in a wide variety of styles, from rotating knobs to touchpad controls, and some units even have remote controls. Installing a dimmer switch also helps you save energy and extend the life of your lights, since even a slightly dimmed bulb can last twice as long as one used at full brightness.
Step 4. Invest in Energy-Saving Light Bulbs. To promote the use of more energy-efficient lighting solutions, legislation has been passed to phase out incandescent light bulbs. California will be leading the way in 2011 with the phase-out of 100-watt incandescent bulbs, while the rest of the U.S. will follow in 2012. Start saving today by investing in energy-efficient lighting alternatives such as LED bulbs. The Home Depot carries a wide variety of LED light bulbs that will fit into most kitchen lighting fixtures. Long lasting and eco-friendly, LED lights not only save you money but most are also dimmable, allowing you to enhance your kitchen's ambiance while saving energy.
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