Efficient Lighting at Home: Boon or Bane?
Energy-efficient lighting technologies can both beautify a living space and save on the homeowner’s monthly electric bills – but only if carefully applied. Even when they come in a familiar shape and package, new compact fluorescent (CFL) and LED lighting have quirks and disadvantages to watch out for.
Some new, efficient lighting sources may work not at all in some home lighting sockets or they can create off-colors, distracting reflections, and sharp shadows. These shortcomings make living spaces less livable – and drive talented lighting designers crazy.
Lighting.com turns to three award-winning home lighting designers to share their pet peeves, annoyances, and chief complaints where efficient lighting is mis-applied. And provide their tips and tricks to doing it right.
Ann Kale, Principal of Ann Kale Associates, Ltd.; Randall Whitehead, Principal of Randall Whitehead Lighting, Inc.; and Gregg Mackell, Principal of 186 Lighting Design Group, Inc., test and learn to use new, efficient lighting tools every day. By sharing their experience and professionalism in practice, they can help others avoid mistakes while building more sustainable communities.
For instance, though CFL and LED lighting can perform functionally and lend a flattering light, the sources themselves should remain hidden. All three designers agree that the tiny LEDs and swirly CFLs (along with their associated power supplies) should be hidden behind a valence or molding, or tucked up inside a lampshade. Sure, they work well inside a lantern or globe, but use a fixture with translucent or diffused glass; never clear.
Click on the articles below for more hassles and headaches that efficient lighting can bring to the home… and the perfect prescription.
Bonus: Lighting Designer Randall Whitehead Shares His Checklist for Kitchen Lighting
Written by Lois I. Hutchinson