An inexpensive way to update your home is by creating a lighting plan that brightens up the house, adds safety features and creates more visual appeal. With a variety of lighting types and styles, you can mix lighting in rooms to create a more interesting living space. Here are a few ways that you can use lighting to update your home.
You Have More Choices in Lighting Types
With the retirement of the incandescent bulb as the primary source of light in the home, you have three other light sources that can be used for different purposes in each room:
- Compact fluorescent lights (CFL) - These have become the general purpose lighting used in homes. They are more energy efficient than the old incandescent bulb and produce less heat. They can produce light in a variety of ranges from a soft blue light to full-spectrum sunlight.
- Halogen incandescent - These are used as task lighting, illuminating specific areas for working or highlighting portions of a room. Often used in recessed lighting or as hanging lights, they are good for drawing focus to a particular area.
- LED lights - These low-energy consumption lights are used to accent portions of your home and add safety to darkened areas. These lights come in flexible strips and tubes that can be used indoors or out.
A Creative Lighting Plan Room By Room
By varying the use of these lights in each room, you create areas that are more functional with emphasis on specific design features in your home.
- Kitchen - Use full-spectrum CFLs in the overhead light fixtures. Place halogen bulbs in hanging lights over countertops and the island. LED strips behind splash panels and above kitchen cabinets create a soft glow in the kitchen when the work lights are off.
- Bedrooms - A CFL ceiling light is useful when cleaning these rooms. Use recessed lighting with halogen bulbs to brighten up dark corners in the room. These are useful as spotlights shining on wall hangings or other artwork on display in the room.
- Dining room - Dimmable CFLs can be used in a chandelier over your dining room table. Use halogen spotlights to highlight a buffet or curio cabinets displaying your crystal pieces.
- Living room - Use CFLs in overhead fixtures. Position halogen spotlights on artwork on your walls. Halogen lights in recessed cans on dimmer switches allow you to control the amount of light in the room depending on the activities taking place.
- Stairways - LED strips can be placed on stair risers and handrails to create a safer pathway through a dark stairwell.
- Ceiling highlights in any room - Cove style ceilings create a feeling of depth to the ceiling. Use LED strips above the ceiling trim to shine up on the ceiling. This gives any room a soft glow when the primary lights in the room are off.