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The ultimate guide to kitchen lighting

  • Electrician Malvern

Lighting matters, no matter the room. However, it’s especially important when it comes to the “functional” parts of your house.

In the past, our Malvern electricians have talked about bathroom lighting tips.

However, that isn’t the only room in the house where lighting is so important – this time, we’ll be shining a light (excuse the pun) on the importance of kitchen lighting.

Need ideas for your kitchen renovation? Looking for ways to brighten up your kitchen and improve functionality without compromising style? 

Today, our Melbourne electricians explain some of the most critical considerations inherent to kitchen lighting.

The importance of kitchen lighting

Never underestimate the power of kitchen lighting!

As any professional trade knows, good lighting design in any room of the home is important. Kitchen lighting in particular is especially critical.

As an aside, it’s also important that you leave the job to a qualified Melbourne electrician.

Electricity is dangerous, and you should never DIY – if you need a sparkie, you can contact Briggs Electrical on 1300 300 222 or lodge a job with us here.

But first: what makes kitchen lighting so important?

Kitchen lighting can improve home safety

Accidents can happen in any room – however, they’re especially common in the kitchen!

It makes sense. In the kitchen, you’ll typically find yourself working with knives, stoves, grates… the list goes on.

While it’s no substitute for safe kitchen habits, proper lighting can go a long way towards making the kitchen a slightly safer place.

With good lighting, you’ll be able to better avoid accidents when cooking, chopping, frying, and dicing.

Strategised lighting solutions improve aesthetic value

The kitchen is a functional room first and foremost – but that doesn’t mean that appearance should be neglected.

The right lighting can make your kitchen feel considerably more spacious and warm.

Not to mention, in many houses, the kitchen shares a space with the dining and living areas. As such, the aesthetic in your kitchen spills over and affects how your living and dining areas feel.

5 critical considerations of kitchen lighting

From aesthetics to functionality as well as the latest trends and styles

As electricians in Melbourne, Briggs Electrical have worked on many kitchen improvement projects, renovations, and new builds.

While some ventures have progressed smoothly, others have faced significant challenges. A common thread? Insufficient planning.

Many homeowners rush into kitchen upgrades without thorough preparation, resulting in poorly executed lighting schemes often relegated to last-minute additions.

1. Wiring and circuitry

Often, people overlook the necessary planning for kitchen lighting wiring. This leads to surprises when your electrician reveals the need for extensive rewiring and circuit upgrades.

If you’re unsure about the lighting requirements for your kitchen, it’s wise to consult with an electrician. They can provide guidance on achieving your desired lighting effects.

If you’re unsure what the lighting aspect of your kitchen plan involves, we suggest seeking help from an electrician. These experts can give you advice on the lighting effect that you want to achieve for your kitchen.

The key here is bringing in an electrician during the planning phase. We’ll look over your plan, and conduct an inspection of your current electrical wiring.

Based on this, we’ll provide qualified advice about how the work required to bring your plan to life.

2. Optimising light placement and location

When preparing ingredients, adequate task lighting is essential for precision. However, conventional kitchen lighting often results in frustrating shadows, hindering visibility and increasing the risk of accidents during cooking.

Typically, kitchen lights are centrally located on the ceiling, which fails to address the practical layout of most kitchens where workspaces align with the walls. 

To get around this, we suggest spreading your lights out more. Instead of a single light fixture in the middle, consider strategically dispersing lighting with  downlights throughout the room.  

With some lights closer to the outer walls, you will reduce shadows and improve visibility and safety.

3. Ambient, task and accent lighting

Did you know: when it comes to kitchen lighting, there’s more than just one type of light!

In fact, there are three main types of light, each of which serves a distinct purpose:

  1. Ambient
  2. Task
  3. Feature

When it comes to your kitchen, you’ll need to think about each of these different types of lighting, and which of them meets your kitchen needs.

1) Ambient lighting

Otherwise known as global lighting, ambient light is the main source of light in your kitchen (or any other room, like the bedroom or bathroom, for that matter).

While it includes your main kitchen lights, during daylight it also includes natural lighting and windows.

How much ambient lighting you get installed in your kitchen depends on how bright you want your kitchen to be.

For example, say you choose dark colours for your kitchen such as charcoal and maroon, with dark floorboards. This has the effect of making your kitchen feel smaller than it really is; as such, your kitchen lights will have to compensate.

2) Task lighting

Ambient light is great for navigating around the kitchen. However, it often leaves shadows in areas that require more focus.

One solution is to distribute ceiling lights throughout the kitchen.

Another is task lighting.

Like the name suggests, these are dedicated lights installed directly above kitchen benches, cooktops and sinks – where most of the action takes place.

They can take the form of hanging lights, as well as compact lights installed directly underneath cabinets and cupboards.

Controlled by a separate switch altogether, these lights help you focus on the task at hand.

And since they’re separate from your main lights, you can also stand to save quite a bit of electricity when preparing dinner!

3) Accent lighting

Do you have a collection of fine wines, a chic piece of artwork, or a stylish kitchen island adorned with decor? Accent lighting is the perfect way to showcase these focal points!

Similar to task lighting, accent lighting comes in various forms, such as angled downlights or pendant lights. With accent lighting, you can effortlessly highlight unique features of your kitchen and dining space, adding a touch of style and personality.


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4. Light switch placement

Consider those late-night kitchen visits for a snack or early mornings before dawn. Anyone who has stumbled in the dark knows the perils of bruised knees and stubbed toes.

Navigating in pitch darkness is made even more challenging by the hunt for the elusive light switch.

Strategically placing light switches or investing in voice-controlled lights can mitigate these hazards, ensuring safer and more convenient access to illumination when needed.

5. Dimmer switches

Full-powered lights aren’t always necessary, especially when natural light is abundant during daylight hours.

Have you considered incorporating dimmer switches, which allow you to adjust the brightness of your lights to your preference?

Depending on external conditions, you can set the lights to an appropriate level, providing ample illumination without overwhelming brightness.

Another consideration is assigning different lights to separate switches.

This is particularly useful for brightening darker corners or controlling various types of lighting individually, such as ambient, task, and accent lights.

Not only does this offer enhanced control, but it also contributes to energy conservation, ultimately reducing power consumption.

Upgrade your kitchen lighting with the help of Briggs Electrical!

Whatever your kitchen lighting plan involves, it’s important that you get any work carried out by a professional.

Whether you’re renovating or building your new kitchen, Briggs Electrical can help!

Our Melbourne electricians don’t just provide you with qualified advice and skilled workmanship – we’ll also help you choose the right kitchen lighting solution for your home.

You can always trust our reliable, experienced, and skilled electricians in Melbourne to add value and function to your kitchen!

Contact Briggs Electrical on 1300 300 222 or book a job with us today.