Lighting offers an opportunity to add exciting elements to your kitchen--but there are rules to be followed. Kitchen lighting regulations can come as general design guidelines or be enforced by the state government. These regulations are most often in reference to light bulb wattage, installation designs and energy efficiency.
LED Lights & Others
Choosing the right kind of light is essential to your kind of kitchen. Light emitting diode (LED) bulbs require very little energy and are used for commercial kitchens. They are becoming more popular in residential building as well. According to the design website KitchenArtworks, to abide by residential kitchen regulations, it is best to choose compact fluorescent LEDs for recessed fixtures for "flicker-free starting" and safe lighting.
Fixtures and Lamps
Various lighting fixtures in your kitchen must often meet different requirements. According to the Lighting Research Center website, architectural valances are fixtures that project light both upward and downward. Valances are usually installed above sinks and cabinetry. On the other hand, suspended down-lights reflect beams toward the floor and are used for ambient lighting. Regulations state that you must use linear fluorescent lamps inside of valances and either halogen or compact fluorescent lamps for suspended down-lights.
Some states require energy-efficient kitchen lighting. California, for example, has instituted Title 24, a major energy-efficiency regulation. As of 2005, according to the California Energy Commission website, Title 24 requires that 50 per cent of kitchen lighting wattage uses energy-efficient fixtures.