Recessed lighting is ideal for kitchens because they brighten working areas and create a dramatic atmosphere by illuminating cabinets or your kitchen island. While you might consider installing a new fan or light in the ceiling by yourself, recessed lighting is a different matter. Unless you have a lot of experience in home improvement skills, you should probably hire an electrical contractor to put in recessed lights. Here is an overview of the installation process.
Plan The Lighting Design
The first step is deciding the placement of the lights. You'll install multiple lights with this type of lighting system and you need to determine their best location. Consider if you want a light directly over a counter work area or stove. If you have interesting décor in the kitchen, you may want a light positioned above it to provide downlighting. Lighting spaced evenly throughout the kitchen provides enhanced illumination for food preparation. Once you've decided where you want the lights, you may want to mark the spots on the ceiling so the electrician knows where to start.
Check For Obstructions
Recessed lighting is placed in hollow areas above the ceiling. If an area you chose is under a joist or positioned where insulation or other obstruction is present, the location may need to be altered slightly. You can tell if the spots you pick are in good places by tapping on the ceiling and listening for a hollow sound when compared to the sound you hear when knocking on a joist. You can also use a stud finder to locate the ceiling joists so you can avoid them when choosing the locations for your lights.
Drill The Holes
It's necessary to drill holes to install the lights. The electrician may start with a tiny hole that can be used to test the hollow space to make sure it's appropriate. This is done because it is easy to close a small hole if necessary. If the location is good, then a larger hole is created with a saw. The recessed lights should come with a template that shows how large the hole should be to fit the light housing. Your electrician will probably saw out holes for all the lights in the first step rather than drill and assemble the lights one-by-one.
Wire The Lights
The electrician runs a wire from the switch to the closest light fixture. The other fixtures are then wired to each other in a chain fashion. This requires the wire to be looped through each hole so it is ready for attaching to each individual light. This may be tricky and require fishing the wiring through the ceiling. If your attic is above the ceiling, your electrician may work from above your kitchen as this makes it easier to run the wire. Your electrician will choose wiring that matches your old wiring so the lights won't strain the electrical circuit.
Assemble The Lights
Installing the lights is a matter of attaching the wiring, inserting the housing, screwing in the bulb, and then finishing with the trim. Once all the lights are assembled and wired together, they will be tested for proper function. Depending on the type of lights you put in, they can act as spotlights, downlights, or mood lights. Recessed lighting is not only functional, it also adds beauty and value to your kitchen.
Contact a company, like Powell's Electric Service, Inc., for more help.