Installing recessed lighting is a great opportunity to quickly and relatively inexpensively upgrade your home. Recessed fixtures can provide directional lighting for a specific area of the kitchen, illuminate any room, change the look of your home or emphasize some feature of your interior. Of course, you can provide the installation of lighting to a specialist. But you yourself can also learn how to install integrated lighting.
How to install a recessed lamp
To install, first you need to make a plan:
- Calculate the level of lighting in the room (the number of lamps multiplied by the power of the lamp and divided by 20, the answer is the number of square meters that the product can illuminate)
- Take into account all the light sources in the room (chandelier, sconces, floor lamps, etc.)
- Outline the location of lighting elements in the ceiling (curly, linear, starry sky, spot, etc.)
- Buy the lamp itself
IMPORTANT: Do not cut a hole in the ceiling before buying the lamp itself - the cut out hole may not coincide with that indicated in the characteristics of the model. Ideally, the installation of suspended ceilings and lighting is carried out parallel to each other.
Installation and wiring is an integral part of the installation. It is required:
- Outline a drawing of the circuit, where the number of fixtures is noted, a transformer (if any), conclusions to the switch.
- Pick up the wire. It is important to find an insulated, moisture-proof wire. ShVVP or VVG 3x1,5 are recommended as they are used first of all for connection and maintain air humidity to 98% and temperature to 35 degrees. In our climate, these are optimal indicators. Also, these wires are suitable for installation in the bathroom, as they can withstand being in rooms with high humidity.
- Place the power supply network under the ceiling (suspended, drywall, etc.).
Installation of recessed luminaire in the ceiling (tension, plasterboard)
Installation of recessed luminaires is not performed in concrete flow. This is explained by the inability to fix it inside the ceiling of concrete - the product falls out.
Such lighting elements are built into suspended ceilings. In this article we will reveal the features of the installation in stretch and plasterboard ceilings.
Stretch ceiling. Most often, the use of textile fabric is suggested, which is stretched with a certain margin from the concrete ceiling. An installation ring, fixing the canvas and the lamp itself, is necessarily inserted into stretch ceilings. In plain stretch ceilings, fixtures must be fixed by the installation ring during installation in order to avoid damage to the material.
The ring itself is mounted on a metal “leg” hidden under a stretch ceiling, and the recessed lamp clings to the ring with clothespins. Before this, the wiring is connected.
Plasterboard ceiling. Unlike the tension analog, it does not require the installation of a fixation ring. Enough - cut a hole in the ceiling corresponding to the diameter of the inset. Otherwise, the installation principle is not much different from the situation with a stretch ceiling:
- A hole in the ceiling is cut strictly according to the diameter of the inset of the lamp (written in the technical specifications of the product)
- Wires are connected
- The lamp clings with clothespins to the ceiling
Where do they use recessed downlights?
You can use mortise ceiling lights in any room of the apartment, for example:
In the bedroom or living room for zoning the room. Thanks to the spotlight, you can visually divide the room into zones (work, rest, etc.).
In the kitchen, models with a shallow insert are used to illuminate the working area (where they are cooked).
In the bathroom, spot lighting can be used as the main one, if you correctly calculate the required level of light (the formula proposed above). However, the degree of dust and moisture protection of the IP luminaire must be taken into account in the bath (a level of at least 44 is needed).
In general, recessed lights are used in any room - the location depends only on the desire and imagination of the owner of the apartment.
A large selection of fixtures, chandeliers and other lighting devices for interior lighting can be found on the website of the BasicDecor store. He has a large assortment and allows customers to choose exactly what they need.
Fields of application
The area of use of fixtures is limited by a unique design. In most cases, the light is directed downward, so the devices are used to illuminate horizontal surfaces (floor). However, this does not prevent people from using the device in a number of other areas.
The equipment is installed on staircases for night lighting: on the one hand, the light will not irritate the eyes, on the other, a person will see every element of the stairs, will be able to comfortably move along it and will not fall.
Another area of application is corridors. It can be additional or main lighting. The principle is significantly different from flights of stairs, where the lamps are placed at a height of no more than 20 cm or mounted directly in the risers. In the corridors, the devices are at a height of about 50 cm, which allows to achieve similar goals: a good, non-irritating lighting of dark rooms.
Lamps are installed in the courtyard of a private house. Lighting devices for lighting garden paths look great. The principle of operation and the choice of installation location are similar to the corridor one, with the only difference being that the devices are located outside.
Often, built-in devices are used for decorative lighting of fences, while installation is possible both in the lower and upper parts of the support posts. This is not a simple decoration: light sources will help to organize monitoring of the territory perimeter at night when using video cameras.
Thus, floor-mounted luminaires can have a number of other purposes. It’s right to even say - installation sites. They can be placed at any point, but used exclusively for lighting the floor. Equipment can be turned upside down and directed light to the ceiling, but it is pointless to do this, since there are more interesting and attractive methods for solving such problems.
Classification of recessed luminaires
In total, there are three main criteria for classifying wall-mounted luminaires - light source, shape and purpose. Let's consider each of them separately:
- The light source is a bulb that will be installed in the lamp. Despite the huge variety of such devices, the choice is small. You can place small-sized halogens or LED lamps, characterized by minimal energy consumption. Whatever side you look at, the most appropriate solution is to use led sources. Yes, and manufacturers often make lamps with built-in LEDs, for which you do not need to buy additional bulbs. This is very convenient, but if the diodes fail, then you have to replace the entire device.
- The form produces a wide variety of products, and the choice sometimes determines the installation location. Rectangular oblong luminaires are best used in risers, and round point-type sources are mounted in the wall, on the side of the stairwell. Rarer are oval devices, considered universal and used everywhere. The assortment is not limited to these geometric figures.
- Place of installation. It is an indoor or outdoor application. The main difference between one type and another is protection against dust and moisture. Outdoor appliances or devices mounted in a bathroom or other room with high humidity should be airtight. They are complemented by a protective plastic or rubber sheath. It is not necessary if the device is used in a room with a normal level of humidity. The product may include a plastic case solely for ease of installation.
As you can see, the range of fixtures built into the wall is small. For this reason, manufacturers are trying to diversify the appearance and expand the range due to various tricks - the use of glass inserts and unusual coatings, or by molding intricate shapes.
The luminaires built into the wall are characterized by high functionality. It is possible to choose a device of certain power, color temperature (on which the color of the glow depends), overall dimensions and shape. They allow you to place emphasis on interior items, so they have become popular among designers around the world. They are used to illuminate exhibition halls, pedestrian walkways, as decorative elements of landscape design.
These are irreplaceable devices if soft lighting of a steep staircase or a dark and inaccessible threshold in the house is required in order to avoid injury. In the bedrooms, equipment is installed instead of floor lamps and wall sconces.
When lighting stairs, it is advisable to lay electrical wiring before installing frame structures. A separate box and moisture protection elements are required. In this case, the lamps are used as primary or secondary lighting, or for emphasis.
It is strictly forbidden to use conventional incandescent lamps, which become very hot during use and can become a source of ignition.
LED devices are used not only in the house, but also outside for street lighting of the gazebo, garden paths, artificial waterfalls.
The assortment is small, but as diverse as possible. For example, Armstrong lamps are often used in shopping centers.
Technical and operational characteristics
To choose a quality lamp you need to decide on three aspects. First, decide where the device will be mounted - in the house or on the street. Secondly, calculate the appropriate overall dimensions, including width, height and installation depth. Thirdly, select the desired brightness.
Most of the luminaires built into the walls are characterized by the following technical parameters:
- They are connected to an alternating current network with a voltage of 220 V. Much less often are safer models for lighting at 12 V. The latter are useless for outdoor use.
- The power of the devices depends on the light source and the overall dimensions. At the same radiation intensity, the LED power will be several times lower compared to halogen or fluorescent lamps.
- Luminous flux (brightness). The value depends on the installation location and the area of the illuminated surface. The higher the lamp is placed above the floor, the higher the level of required brightness.
- The dimensions of the device depend on the individual preferences of the customer and the tasks to be solved. In this case, you need to focus on the place and depth of installation, the height of the placement above the floor.
- Case material. It can be metal, glass or plastic. For outdoor installation, it is desirable to use metal structures.
There are two main light sources used in wall-mounted luminaires:
- LED light. The most preferred and economical option. Often, products are available with built-in diodes, but when broken, they change completely.
- Halogen. Efficiency is significantly lower; there are a number of limitations for outdoor use.
Important. When buying LEDs, choose third-generation products, which have eliminated many shortcomings.
Place of installation and installation
In this case, the place of installation should not be understood as what wall or risers the lamps will be installed on, but where exactly - on the street or indoors. For street lighting, it is necessary to choose devices with high moisture protection. Usually the equipment is hidden in a protective plastic case, complemented by a rubber layer. This allows you to create the most airtight device, protected from dust, dirt and moisture. The cost of fixtures for outdoor use is much higher than those devices that are used at home and do not need a high level of protection. The exception is lighting for the bathroom, kitchen or indoor pool.
The installation method of lighting devices of this type is as simple as possible. Follow the instructions below:
- build a special niche in which the lamp will be located (the dimensions of the holes should match the dimensions of the light source itself),
- lay the cable along the wall along the strobe, securing it with alabaster,
- if the device is mounted outdoors, then do not forget about grounding,
- install the device case in a niche (like mounting an outlet), fixing it with clamps or alabaster,
- connect the wiring to the lamp and fix the device in the installed housing.
The mounting method depends on the specific model. It can be latches or ordinary screws. The latter method is most relevant for street lighting.
The main difficulties in the installation of luminaires built into the wall are related to cutting a niche and laying a cable. For this reason, many builders recommend placing additional wiring during repair work, which may come in handy in the future. It is much simpler to install lighting fixtures in walls finished with drywall.
Advantages and disadvantages of recessed luminaires
We list the main advantages of these light sources:
- Quality lighting. Light is directed and scattered, while at night the rays "do not hurt the eyes."
- Great variety. Devices differ from each other in shape and color, which makes it possible to choose the most suitable product depending on the individual preferences of the user and the characteristics of the room.
- Profitability and long service life. LED light sources last up to 8–10 years. The only thing to do during this time is to periodically wipe the case from dust.
- Functionality - these can be sources of primary or secondary lighting.
The disadvantages of lighting devices are much less:
- high cost of quality products,
- for individual models - the need for special fasteners or a power supply.
Devices for lighting stairs
A variety of lighting fixtures can be used to illuminate the stairs. Can be combined by adding neon or fiber optic tape to the main lighting. One of the best options is the installation of fixtures built into the wall and located at a small height from the floor. Most often, point devices are used, less often with a rotary mechanism.
Lamps can be placed on the stairs or in the wall opposite the march. More original look devices installed under the stairs.
When changing the direction of the light flux, it is necessary to ensure that the light is less bright, does not interfere with movement and does not blind the eyes. In the case of risers, lamps can be located on each step or through one. Depending on the overall dimensions, the equipment can occupy the entire width of the step, installed at the edges or in the center.
Since the staircase is not the main element of the interior, in order not to distract attention from the main details, its lighting should be as dim as possible, but sufficient to move freely without fear of injury. Brighter fixtures for the staircase are needed, provided that it is in the unlit corners of the room or made of dark materials.
The appearance of fixtures built into the walls has significantly expanded the possibilities of creating a unique, original or sophisticated interior of a room, decorating courtyards, garden paths. The mass of advantages of lighting devices is blocked by the only drawback - a relatively high cost. As always, before buying, you need to carefully study the technical and operational characteristics and make sure that they comply with the standards and recommendations.