Six Tips to Improve the Lighting in Your Kitchen

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The importance of lighting cannot be overstated in a kitchen. Think of all of the chopping involved in making your favourite soup or stew…or how you feel when you think you’ve finished all of the dishes in the sink, and release the water with disappointment because you couldn’t see that you have a few more left. For these tasks (and many others), good lighting is a must for a functional kitchen. Here are six tips to help you improve the lighting in your kitchen.

1. Illuminate Your Counters

Time and time again, we see kitchens using lighting on the floors instead of areas that really need it like counters, sinks and stoves. Recessed downlights are often placed in front of or behind the countertops. You’ll certainly see if you’ve spilled coffee on your way out the door, but it may be harder to see how finely you are chopping an onion (due to shadows instead of direct light) if the lighting in your kitchen is set up this way. Instead, place recessed downlights directly above counters, cabinets and open shelving.

2. Eliminate Shadows

While recessed downlights can create harsh shadows, you can work around this by using smaller downlights instead of larger fixtures above counters, cabinets and sinks. Using more smaller lights instead of one or two larger fixtures will reduce glare and improve visibility in your kitchen.

3. Line it Up

Another option you may wish to consider, particularly in a modern kitchen, is using a long line of recessed lights over countertops and cabinets. This contemporary look has the added benefit of providing even lighting across counters and cabinets.

4. Use Under Cabinet Lighting

Lights under open shelving or cabinets illuminate spaces that downlights will struggle to reach. Similar to recessed downlights, under cabinet lighting should be placed above the centre of the cabinets instead of too far back to get the best results.

For the best overall lighting quality in your kitchen, under cabinet lighting needs to be brighter than your recessed downlights. Look for lights with a lumen count of 250 or more per linear foot.

5. Lighting for the Sink and Stove

Imagine you’re in the middle of a busy week eating a simple dinner and cleaning up quickly before an important appointment. When purchasing lighting for your range food, look for high quality lights ranging from 750 to 1,000 lumens; this will make it much easier for you to see what you’re cooking…and get dinner on the table faster.

One pendant light above your sink, a common lighting solution for this area, is not overly effective. However, installing multiple lights over your sink will help you clean your dishes faster because you will be able to see food, crumbs or grease on them a lot easier.

6. Don’t Underestimate Dimmers

Dimmers are not a very expensive addition to your kitchen, but they can help you get the right amount of light on your counters. For example, you may want more light while you’re slicing vegetables for a salad, but less light to create a more relaxed atmosphere while you clean up.

We hope that you found these tips helpful! We encourage you to ask us for more tips or product recommendations to improve the lighting in your kitchen.