Kitchens require good lighting. That’s why installing recessed lighting or pot lights, as they are often called, makes such a good kitchen lighting project. In fact, even if the only kitchen remodeling you do is to install pot lights, you will notice a dramatic difference.
The other advantage of pot lighting in the kitchen is the clean, uncluttered look they provide. Unlike other lighting fixtures they are installed in the ceiling itself, inconspicuous until they are turned on.
Pot lights create a wash of light that brighten the space and can be positioned to highlight specific features, such as a plate collection or kitchen island. Pinpoint pot lights can be used in conjunction with regular units to light a specific area as well.
The basic components of recessed lights are: the housing fixture, the trim and the bulb. Most have a highly polished can, or interior, to reflect as much light as possible down into the room. Halogen or compact fluorescent bulbs work best to create a clean, bright light.
Pot lights are popular in new construction, but well suited for renovators also as most manufacturers make special fixtures specifically designed for that market. These units only require a small hole to be made in the ceiling for the fixture to go in and are rated for safe contact with insulation.
Pot lights in the kitchen should be placed no more than two feet from the cabinets and spaced four to six feet apart, otherwise shadows may become a problem. Most people find a row, or two, of lights works best. The best amount to install in the kitchen depends largely on the space.
Although installing pot lights in the kitchen is not too difficult a project, without sufficient electrical experience it can certainly become a bit complicated. In most cases a new wall switch will need to be installed for each set or grouping of pot lights, with wires running from the switch to each fixture — one at a time and in sequence.
Many homeowners find installing a dimmer switch to adjust the intensity of the light is a helpful option as well.