For modern homes, downlights are one of the most common lighting fixtures. This is due to its ability to provide a wider range of lighting colour and temperature than the tradition lighting fixtures. In particular when combined with LED lighting, it will also be able to save you on energy costs while providing the same if not higher beam of lights. See our article on five things you need to know before you switch to LED lights.
The other main reason for seeing many downlights in modern home is due to their design and appearance which in many cases allows it to either be hidden inside ceiling roof or can be fixed to elevate the style of the room.
The three most common types of mounting when it comes to downlights are:
Recessed mounting is when there is a specific hole size cut out in the ceiling that the downlight is directly installed into. These downlights tend to have side fittings that clips into the hole which will hide and keep fixture in place. These can be an option for practical cases where lighting is required when the ceiling is low. But in many cases, it will give the lighting a sleeker and cleaner aesthetic look.
Surface mounting is as its name suggests, the fixture is mounted on a flat surface and protrudes on the surface. This option is typically easier to be installed as there is no need for holes to be measured and cut out of the ceiling.
Similar to surface mounting, suspended mounting has the fixture mounted on a flat surface but is instead hanged down from the ceiling by cords, wires, straps, etc. Examples of these are LED Pendant lightings which are great for achieving a specific look and feel.
Fixed or Adjustable
It is worth considering that some downlights come in an option for the downlight to be moved in different directions. For recessed fixtures this is referred to as gimble frames that allows you to adjust the direction of the light which may be useful for certain lighting situations such as kitchen, study areas or bathrooms. For surface this is simply mentioned as adjustable where the fixture is able to be moved.
In traditional lighting you would typically look at the wattage when determining the brightness. Wattage measures how much energy the light will take to work, for example a generic halogen light bulb would be around 55watts, whereas your LED will be only around 4.45 – 14 watts due to its energy saving technology.
For LED the brightness is determined by lumens. The higher the lumens, the brighter is the LED downlight. However, it is not always necessary to select the highest possible lumens, rather you should take into consideration of the room’s style and ambient that you are trying to create. For common areas we would recommend anywhere 9W and 15W.
The colour temperature of the light is also important to consider as it will determine the colour of the light beam. Colour temperature is typically measured in Kelvin (K), the higher the value the colder the white colour, whereas the lower the value the warmer (yellow) the colour will be.
Typically, there are 3 temperatures that you will see while browsing, 3000K (warm), 4000K (cool) and 5000K (daylight/natural).
When it comes to choosing the colour, it really depends on your preference and the ambient style that you are trying to achieve for the room.
Beam angle is the spread of the light that comes from the light source, it is measured in degrees. The wider the beam angle the softer the light will be and is more suitable for general purposes. Conversely the narrower the beam angle the more concentrated and sharper the light will be, this is typically used as spot lighting when there is a need to show case or focus on something.
Dimmable or Non-Dimmable
Many downlights come with the added dimmable feature to control the level of light output. It gives you the flexibility to be able to set the mood for the room. For instance, if a room is used for both entertainment and relaxation you might want to dim the lights down when watching a movie or brighten it up when guests are over.
Ingress Protection (IP) rating is the classification for the degree of protection that the downlight has against solids and liquids such as water and dust. This is important to consider as depending on the environment that the downlight is installed you may need a higher rating. For example, if the downlight is installed outside near coastal areas, you will most likely need a higher IP rating downlight.
Ready to light up your room with style? See our wide range of LED downlights at unbeatable prices or come into our store and our friendly team will be able to help you.