The right LED lighting design can make or break a project.
Tips on How to Crush Your Project With LED Lighting!
“A goal without a plan is just a wish.”
― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry Failing to plan is a plan that will fail. When putting a lighting package together it is best to look at the big picture and work backward to narrow it down. Create your plan room by room, know their purpose and function in great detail before considering how to light them.
- What is the room going to be used for?
- What limits and boundaries are existing?
- What mood do you want to create and how practical does each room need to be?
Ambiance and Atmosphere.
Great lighting should fall into the background and not stand part at the expense of other features around the building. A layered approach with a variety of LED light sources across different levels is key. It is the subtly of lighting that has the greatest impact on the unique aspects of the room that you want to bring attention to or from. For example, if you have a big open space do you want to incorporate a big light fixture to make space look smaller in contrast if you have a small space use cove and minimalist lighting to create the illusion of size.
Choose the Right Beam Angle.
This is not a futuristic as it sounds but it can make a great impact on your overall light design plan. Traditional incandescent lights offered little in the way of beam direction. The traditional bulbs were designed to emit light in 360-degree patterns – leaving the direction of the light to be dictated by the shade chosen by the designer. LED light technology changes all of that allowing beam angles of the light fixture to be set to the function of the space. Add to that a dimming system and color temperature features and your options on how to design a stunning room have increased dramatically
The Right Light Fixture.
In order to create an enthralling and enticing space, the right LED fixture is key. Every room has its own personality and function – know what that is and light accordingly. Know you desired and required footcandle count and kelvin requirements. Understand what it takes to combine atmosphere and functionality and pick your fixture accordingly. There is no shortage of variety with LED lights now, just like a good meal is complemented by the right wine pairing so to a good space is made better with the right light.
A staggering amount of LED lighting projects are ruined by poor dimming controls. LED lighting has received a bad reputation over the years because of poor and wrong dimming systems. By their very nature LED lights are smart light but they are only as smart as the system that controls them. Properly installed LED lights should easily and smoothly be capable of dimming from 0-100% with no issues. However, some will flicker from 0-10% because of the low load power consumption – this will not happen with the right dimmer so do your research before you choose what dimming system to use.
Buy Extra LED Light Bulbs
There is a very misleading belief that LED lights do not fail or they last forever. As with all technology, there will be a certain failure rate over time. This brings up to the point that you need to purchase extra LEDs from the same batch when you do your original install. The reasoning behind this has to do with the color temperature on the fixtures themselves. Two fixtures with the same kelvin may have a very different look depending on the batch that they have come from so when you go to replace a fixture it could look very much out of place with the originals. I would recommend for most used lights for example in the kitchen area to buy an extra 10 %of fixtures.
Easy to Access Panels.
If you are planning on using LED tape light to highlight some amazing features such as an Onyx counter or bar top, it is very important to create access panels to reach the power supplies and drivers that run the lights. To expand on this point. You have a beautiful onyx countertop that you would like to highlight with some RGBA color-changing LED lights. Everything is custom built with a nice wireless controller to change the color of the onyx. Then a power supply fails and some if not all your LED lights stop working – where do you access these power supplies? Plan ahead and it will save you many problems down the line.
Less Is Nearly Always More
Unless you are hoping to recreate the famous strip in Las Vegas an important point to remember – less is more. This is a big part of how we approach any project at Smart LED Concepts, we look to the minimum amount of lights that it will take to create the desired look that the client is looking to achieve. There is a flip side to this and that is not having enough lights thus creating an imbalance to the look of the space.
We have been involved in the LED lighting industry for over 15 years and we have learned a lot along the way about this wonderful technology. The main thing to remember is how LED lights can fit into your overall vision for any project. As with any project, there are many considerations including price and style but it is always best to educate yourself and work with professionals in their field. To achieve a striking and spectacular LED lighting package and for it to be truly effective it needs to rely on the factors above along with many more to be discussed in a later post.
Remember lighting is your friend in design – choose well.
Reach out to us today and let us help you create the space of your dreams.