Houston Home Service Experts

Right the Light: The Importance of Lighting in Your Home

There are three things that are of the utmost importance to us in our homes: the HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning), the plumbing, and the LIGHTING. Lighting, however, is the least understood science, and as a result, people ignore it when it comes to renovating and maintaining their homes.

Responses to Light:

Our eyes are very delicate organs and require careful consideration when it comes to the amount of illumination impressed upon it and where it is coming from, not to mention how lighting can completely make or break the interior design of a room.

Did you know that a person’s feelings and moods are affected by light, actually changing the way in which our eyes convert light waves into neural signals to our brain?

It is very important, for our eyes, mind, and heart, to have good lighting in our homes. Since each room in our home is different, the lighting needs to be carefully planned.

The following advice will help you plan the lighting design in your home to reduce damage to yours eyes and brain, save on utility bills, and create aesthetically pleasing lighting that highlights and emphasizes all of the best parts of your home.

Direct v Indirect Lighting:

Many people wear glasses and have eye problems because of excessive exposure to direct light. Direct rays of light are too intense for our eyes. There has been research showing that looking at light from TVs, phones, and tablets inhibits sleep. The light that filmmakers and photographers use is almost always diffused daylight.

Exposed direct lighting is any lighting where the subject and the light source are in direct “sight” of each other. Indirect lighting is when the light source is concealed or diffused. Direct lighting is like being sprayed with a firehose, while indirect lighting is like receiving a fine mist of water from the same nozzle. One damages and leaves you feeling awful, while the other leaves you feeling refreshed and rested.

Although direct lighting is sometimes preferable in certain areas of your home, in general, you should aim to have as much indirect and natural light as possible. You want your rooms lit up without being able to see the light source. In order to do this, use shades and recessed lighting in floors, walls, and ceilings. In this way, you get soft and even illumination. Our lighting should be from concealed sources.

Take Control of Your Light:

Good lighting combines many different kinds of light in different areas around the room to create atmosphere and set the tone. Using a combination of spot lighting, mood lighting, lamps, recessed lighting, and natural sunlight, you can vitalize any room. Ideally, you want lots of control over the sunlight coming into your home using blinds, curtains, shutter, and other diffusers. You should also have as many dimmer switches as possible to maximize your control of the amount of light you need. Dimmers are one of the easiest and cheapest ways to add mood lighting and give you control of your lighting schemes.

Artificial Light:

When you need artificial light, however, there are many options available to you to mimic daylight (maybe too many options). Lucy Martin, Design Director at John Cullen Lighting, gives some examples of different kinds of lighting that are best suited for certain rooms:

For example a laundry or utility room will be well served with glare free compact fluorescent, whereas a study will require particular attention to task lighting. An open plan living/dining/kitchen needs to have several different circuits of lighting, perhaps a mix of LED spots and low level floor washers, LED undercupboard task lights, and mains voltage lamp light to create depth and texture in the space.

Read more here.

Top Tips:

Do not underestimate the power of good lighting! No matter how amazing the other design aspects of your home, it is a waste if there is not proper lighting.

  • To create the best lighting specific to your home, hire a lighting designer to help you plan. It may be expensive, but it will add so much more value to your home.
  • If you want to make some quick and transformative changes, hire a trusted local electrician to install dimmer switches in every room and recessed lighting in strategic areas, especially in your kitchen.
  • Fluorescent lighting is good for task lighting in the basement, garage, and kitchen, and when covered by a shade or other diffuser. Use energy-efficient light bulbs for your shaded lamps.
  • Try to take as much advantage of your natural window light as possible.

Take a look at this article to find out more about interior lighting design, different types of bulbs, and a glossary of terms.

Enhance your home by lighting it up!

Call Universal Home Experts at (713) 364-0226 to get a professional lighting architect to come and install elegant and practical lights for your home. We install recessed lighting and dimmers throughout your home to instantly increase lighting flexibility.