Are you renovating your house? This small room that accommodates racks, shelves, and drawers, holds your essential stuff. It might be combined with a bathroom. Meanwhile, how to organize the best lighting for walk in closet? It is to maximize space, ensure comfortable ambiance. Your clothes, footwear and jewelry are to be well-lit, enabling your optimal dressing choice every day. What are the best colors of light? Which type of bulb would you use in your wardrobe? Let’s try to answer these questions, letting you facilitate your closet arrangement.
How Many Lumens Do I Need for a Closet?
Walk-in wardrobe is a special room within your house. It’s handy to store all your stuff in a separate place, keeping it well-organized and uncluttered. Nowadays, spacious closet that is used to store clothes, is not a symbol of luxury or wealth anymore. Quite, naturally, it is to be:
- spacious enough to walk inside;
According to the California Building Codes, the minimum size is 4ft x 3ft. This space allows you only to sit when you need to put your shoes on. 28 inches that is 2,33 feet are considered to be the bare minimum width of a water closet. Standard width is from 5 to 12 ft. Additionally, medium-sized room is 5-17 ft. deep. Master walk-in closets are from 7*14 to 10*17 ft. Wardrobes that are more than 100 sq. ft. by size exist. They comfortably fit 2 or more users. Meanwhile, how bright should a closet light be?
Walk-in Closet Lighting Code
Foot-candle is the basic unit of illuminance. It measures the amount of lumens per sq. ft. Thus, as a traditional, incandescent bulb produces 1,500-1,700 lumens, best lighting for closet should include only several light sources to be installed in this utility room.
What Type of Lighting is Best for Closets?
Natural light is the best. It lets us feel healthy and alert. However, as closet is usually a room with no windows, artificial light is to be arranged. So, even if your room is small, one or two ceiling lights are essential. They provide the necessary illumination and elegance. Overhead lighting solutions are:
- Bright enough to check, choose and organize your stuff.
- Enabling essential comfort level to the eyes.
Due to their top position, ceiling lights efficiently illuminate wide area of the room. Ambient lighting is necessary to ensure security and visibility. Hardwired LED closet lights enable easy and safe traffic in the closet. That is, when you enter the limited space of your wardrobe, any risk of injury is eliminated.
Permanent and Portable Solutions
Quite naturally, permanent lighting solutions are indispensable in commercial and public spaces, such as schools, libraries, offices, hospitals and hotels. In your special room, portable lights could be easily applied. Using wall mount closet light fixtures that are portable or wired is beneficial. If you wonder, how to light a closet without electricity, use battery-powered fixtures. They are easy-to-install, versatile and long-lasting.
Whenever you don’t read in the closet and don’t strain your eyes, overhead illumination might be sufficient. Meanwhile, sometimes, you re-organize your clothes, take inventory of your stuff or you are in search of special jewelry to wear this evening. So, task lighting could be used not only in the offices. It helps you to avoid eye fatigue and strain.
Additionally, LED strip lights for closets might be used. Position them under shelves, vertically or horizontally. Flex tape is flexible, easy to install, dimmable, and equipped with remote control feature. So, together with puck lights, these strips provide elegant accent illumination.
How to reach in closet lighting?
In hallways or utility spaces like laundry rooms or bathrooms, flush-mount fixtures are preferable. Recessed lights in closet are beneficial, as they make the room feel bigger, look modern and elegant. They illuminate all your stuff pretty well, highlighting key-not areas. Additionally, they are virtually not visible, stylish and safe (waterproof).
Quite naturally, LED lighting for closets is highly recommended. What are the main reasons? Are the lights aggressively promoted by sellers due to their comparatively high prices? Of course, not. LED bulbs are:
They enable beneficial flexibility in design. To clarify, what kind of light bulbs go in recessed lights? LED bulbs of all shapes and sizes are available. Due to their low-voltage nature, these devices are safe. They can be used outdoors, at any weather conditions. Additionally, they are available in a variety of colors. So, you are free to select warm or cool light for closet, according to your preferences and needs. Just select proper wattage, according to the brightness you want to provide.
Best Way to Light a Closet
So, alternatives exist. Other types of bulbs are available on the market. They fit various fixtures, including recessed lights. However, are they safe and cost-efficient?
What Lights Are Allowed in Closets?
As you remember, incandescent bulbs are already discontinued. According to NEC (National Electrical Code) requirements (point 410.16), traditional bulbs in open lamps are not permitted in clothes and walk-in closets. They are to be properly sealed, covered or lensed, to prevent fire.
Incandescent bulbs are the devices we used to install. They provide warm light, enriched by reddish tone. Is warm white or cool white better for eyes? Quite naturally, warm white is more relaxing. It reduces imperfections, softening skin tone. If you look at yourself in the mirror to make sure that everything is ok, it’s not the best choice.
Installing a bulb that heats up significantly near the shelves and racks with clothes, would be too risky. Therefore, minimal recommended clearance from the storage space is:
- 12 inches, in the case of surface mounted luminaires;
- 6 inches in terms of recessed fixtures;
- 6 inches in both cases if fluorescent bulbs are installed.
So, compact fluorescent bulbs might be used. They are allowed. However, they contain mercury. If a bulb of this kind is broken, it’s dangerous. Additionally, CFLs would look outdated and ugly under shelves or counters. What about halogen bulbs? They are a bit more efficient and long-lasting than traditional ones. However, they still fall into the incandescent bulbs’ family. They have the same drawbacks.
General Impression: Best Type of Lighting for Walk-in Closet
So, what type of lighting is best for closets? LED bulbs are the safest and the most durable. The luminaires are to be properly sealed, located at a sufficient distance from the shelves. Warm light with color temperature of 3000-3500 Kelvins would be comfortable and suitable. Meanwhile, full-spectrum bulbs are preferable. They provide perfect visual performance. So, select any safe options, according to your walk-in closet design and enjoy using this well-organized and well-lit space.