Recessed lighting is a commonly used lighting option, especially indoors. It is installed directly in the ceiling and allows the look of a well-lit home without the fixture being too visible. Recessed lighting is highly functional, versatile and contemporary. If you are thinking of adding new lighting to your home, we recommend recessed lighting. When it comes to the exterior of your home, you can still consider recessed lighting, especially for your porch. A well-lit porch is necessary to ensure your safety, especially when you’re coming back home at night and you have little lighting. If you are considering adding recessed lighting to your porch, here are some options the pros at Roman Electric recommend!
1. First Things First: Choose LED Lights
Yes, we have recommended LED lights countless times, but that’s only because of how great they are! LED lights have many options, are dimmable and often come in shatter-proof encasings. In addition, LED lights use up to 75% less energy than incandescent lights and can last 25 times longer. So, if you’re considering what kinds of bulbs you should use for recessed porch lighting, we recommend LED lights!
2. Use Outdoor Lights Only
This usually goes without saying but we still want to mention it here because it’s very important: Only use lights that are meant for outdoor use. If you use indoor lights outdoors it will expose these lights to moisture and debris – which they are not designed to handle. This can most likely end up being dangerous for you and your lights, so make sure you use outdoor recessed lights. You can usually tell which lights are meant to be used outdoors as they will have labels that say “For Damp Locations” or will have a proper UL rating.
3. Consider Lighting Controls
Lighting controls such as dimmers, motion sensors and timers are great because they create energy-efficient lighting and save a significant amount of money. However, if you want to install recessed lighting with lighting controls, it is best to consult a professional before you do it. Many recessed lights are not meant to be used with lighting controls. For example, if you use recessed lighting with no dimming capability with a dimmer, these lights won’t perform well. In fact, they might continue using the same amount of energy while giving you a poorly lit porch. So, do your research before you add lighting controls to your recessed porch lights.
4. Consider Recessed Lighting Techniques
There isn’t just one way to add recessed lighting to the exterior of your home. There are various downlighting, sizing and spacing techniques to consider. In addition, when it comes to recessed lighting you want to consider the different lighting “trims.” The trim is essentially the shape or cut of the fixture in which the bulb sits. There are various trims such as flangeless trims, flanged trims, adjustable trims and wet location trims. These options give homeowners the chance to play around with the aesthetic they want to achieve with the appearance of their lights.
Trims also have functional purposes—adjustable trims are better for sloped ceilings whereas wet location trims are better for areas where there is moisture and humidity. Baffle and specular trims can reduce glare to prevent harsh lighting whereas open reflector trims emit a higher degree of light.
Before you look into all these options, techniques and trims, consider the type of porch you have and the ambience you want to create. Ideally, you want your porch to be well-lit without too much of a glare. So, a baffle or specular trim might work for you. Since a porch is a wet location, you might want to consider recessed lights with wet location trims as well.