When looking for cost-effective ways to enhance your home's interior, opting for a renovation or repainting are tempting options. However, lighting is a commonly overlooked solution that can radically transform a space's appearance and functionality.

Balanced, customized interior lighting can make your home or place of business inviting, comfortable, and energizing. But with so many options, knowing what's right for your space can be overwhelming.

In this blog post, AArdvark Electric Service, Inc.'s electricians discuss a comprehensive approach to selecting new lighting that's suitable for your space. We explore some major considerations when investing in new lights and highlight the role of quality lighting in residential and commercial spaces.

The Importance of Appropriate Interior Lighting

Any interior designer will tell you that lighting is about more than just illuminating a space; it's about creating an atmosphere. Proper lighting, that is, lighting that suits your space, can transform a dark, dull room into a warm, welcoming space. The right lighting setup can make spaces appear larger, highlight architectural features, and influence mood and productivity in residential and commercial buildings.

Here's how lighting can impact your space:

Residential Settings

  • Lighting enhances mood and ambiance.
  • Task lighting facilitates cooking, cleaning, grooming, and working.
  • Well-placed lighting impacts the perception of your space, making rooms appear larger and more inviting.
  • Energy-efficient lighting solutions can reduce energy consumption, lowering utility bills.

Commercial Settings

  • Lighting contributes to your brand's visual identity and can create a memorable atmosphere that attracts clients and aligns with your business's character.
  • Effective lighting strategies highlight merchandise, guiding customers' attention and enhancing their shopping experience.
  • Adequate lighting in workplaces can improve employee well-being by reducing eye strain, boosting concentration, and creating a warm environment.

How to Select an Ideal Lighting System

Now that we've established the importance of appropriate interior lighting, we can explore some significant considerations for selecting your next lighting system. Whether you're tired of looking at an outdated chandelier or hoping to transform your workspace to improve company morale, there are some key areas you should explore before making a decision.

We recommend that you evaluate the following:

Assess Your Lightning Needs: Create a Whole-Home Plan

A crucial first step to ensuring that your lighting choices meet your aesthetic and functional needs is to conduct an assessment and create a lighting plan for your entire space. Going room by room, consider the activities that take place in each space and make a note. Some rooms may be for reading, others for getting ready, and some will be used exclusively for entertaining friends and family.

Different activities require different types and intensities of light. For instance, bathrooms typically require bright, task lighting, whereas ambient lighting is often preferred for dining areas. It's also important to consider the amount of natural light each room receives.

Once you've figured out how you use your space and have a checklist of the intensity of light needed, you can consider some more technical aspects of lighting.

Understanding Light Bulb Basics: Warmth and Energy Efficiency

One of the most vital aspects of choosing a new lighting system is figuring out the types of lightbulbs you will use. The two most important factors to consider when selecting new lightbulbs are warmth (color temperature) and energy efficiency. When choosing a bulb, wattage matters, as you don't want to blow a fuse unnecessarily, but you also need to pay attention to lumens, which measure total light output.

Here is a quick breakdown of commonly used bulbs:

LED Bulbs

  • Warmth: LEDs are available in various color temperatures but are usually colder light and typically have options for colored bulbs.
  • Energy efficiency: LEDs are the most efficient bulbs on the market. They use 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs and have long lifespans.

Incandescent Bulbs

  • Warmth: Incandescent bulbs produce a warm, inviting light.
  • Energy efficiency: They have poor efficiency and are broadly being phased out to comply with energy regulations.

Halogen Bulbs

  • Warmth: These produce a very bright, white light.
  • Energy efficiency: They're better than incandescent but less energy-safe than LEDs.

Fluorescent Bulbs

  • Warmth: These are often cooler and are not popular in homes, as they're widely used in commercial and industrial settings
  • Energy efficiency: They have good energy efficiency but can't compete with LEDs.

Vintage/Decorative Bulbs

  • Warmth: These emit a warm, amber light.
  • Energy efficiency: They're pretty inefficient, especially compared to modern alternatives.

Matching Light Fixtures to Your Home's Interior Design

Once you've identified your lighting needs and the types of bulbs you want, it's time to select light fixtures.

Now, fixtures don't need to be chandeliers or hanging lights; they can be incorporated as pot, track, recessed, wall mounts, in-panel, lamps, and accent lighting. However, selecting materials and systems that align with your existing interior design is essential for aesthetic cohesion.

Consider if you want your fixtures to stand out or seamlessly light your space without drawing attention to themselves. You can consult with a designer or electrician for recommendations, but taking time to understand your ideal aesthetics can simplify this process.

Layered Lighting: What It Is and Why It Matters

Another popular choice in modern homes is layered lighting. This approach involves using multiple light sources at different heights and intensities to achieve a balanced, versatile scheme.

It typically includes three types of lighting: task, ambient, and accent. Task lighting adds directed brightness in areas where activities like reading, cooking, and working occur. Ambient lighting provides the overall illumination for your space. Accent lighting adds depth and dimension by highlighting architectural features and decorative elements with discrete fixtures and spotlights.

Layered lighting allows you to adjust the lighting to suit different moods and activities, creating a dynamic, personalized environment.

Discuss Your Lighting Needs With AArdvark Electric Service, Inc.

If you've considered these steps and are ready for an installation, or if you want professional advice on your next lighting system, contact the electricians at AArdvark Electric Service, Inc.. We're passionate electricians with years of experience serving residential and commercial clients.

Call (630) 789-1949 to schedule a friendly consultation with our team.