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Recessed Lighting Blog

Popular Recessed Lighting fixtures, new products and field notes and solutions are posted and discussed.

  • Just added 3" GU10 MR16 Recessed Housings & Trims

    3 inch gu10 MR16 recessed lightingWe have just added 3" Gu10 Recessed housings that work perfectly with all our 3" MR16 Gu10 compatible trims. No need to scour the web for Gu10 MR16 3" recessed lighting trims we have put them all in one easy to find place. Choose from 3" baffle trims, 3" chrome trims and 3" adjustable trims like eyeball and gimbal trims. We have also made it easier to find MR16 Gu10 light bulbs by grouping them in their own category under the Gu10 3" recessed lighting category!

    The simplicity of using Gu10 lighting technology is that it provides the flexibility you need in todays ever changing lighting world. Our 3" Gu10 recessed cans don't use a low voltage transformer but rather tap right into the same voltage wired to the housings junction box. So if your input voltage is 120volts the output voltage will be 120volts. Simple as that. No need to waste your time looking at transformer compatibility charts to make sure the light bulb you want to use will work with your recessed light. All you need is a Gu10 base MR16 light bulb that uses the same voltage going into your housing. Now that's easy!

    Our 3" MR16 Gu10 recessed trims and housings will provide you the freedom to choose! If you want to use Halogen technology you can easily use a halogen Gu10 MR16 light bulb. If you want to take advantage of energy saving technologies such as LED you can quickly update your recessed light with the latest LED Gu10 MR16 light bulb. Just remove the bulb and replace. It's that simple!

    Changing the light bulb over a complete trim our recessed light is much more environmentally friendly on so many levels! Get peace of mind knowing your recessed lighting is ready for the next big thing that's coming!

    Find 3" Gu10 MR16 recessed lighting here!

  • Sylvania Ultra RT6 Gimbal LED Trim Overview & Install Video

    Sylvania Ultra RT6 Gimbal LED TrimSylvania Ultra RT6 Gimbal LED Trim

    is a beautiful white recessed lighting trim that only uses 13 watts at 900 lumens, dimmable down to 10%, Title 24 compliant, Energy Star Rated and fits almost any 6" recessed housing including LED specific 6" recessed cans. Available in 2700K and 3000K options, the RT6 gimbal trim is rated at 50,000 hours, is fully and easily adjustable providing bright evenly diffused flood light to virtually any area the trim is installed.

    The LED gimbal ring trim is designed to fit most 6" recessed lighting housings including insulated ceiling (IC) housings, airtight housings and non-IC housings. Fully adjustable with a friction blade design to an almost 360° horizontal rotation and 30° tilt, the Ultra RT6 Gimbal makes it easy to direct the light where you want it.

    The optical design and light output is phenomenal! With low glare, the gimbal ring trim's LED light is evenly diffused with a 80° beam angle that spreads it out beautifully. The color rendering is also worth noting. At 82+ CRI the colors in your space will look and feel the way you would expect.

    Installation is a snap! All you need is a philips head screw driver, a tape measure and a ladder. Sylvania made it super simple to adjust the LED trim with it's well thought out design. Check out our installation guide video below to see how this is done!

    Suitable for both indoor or outdoor dry, damp or wet locations, the Gimbal ULtra RT6 trim will help you reduce energy by up to 87% over incandescent lights. Looking to dim the RT6 trim? Please see the spec sheets on the product pages below as it will direct you to the information you need.

    Watch our videos below on the Sylvania Ultra RT6 Gimbal LED Trim and discover it's simple elegant design and see it's gorgeous LED light. Learn the many features and see how easy it is to install in your recessed lighting!

  • Convert standard 4" & 6" Recessed Lighting to LED MR16 GU10 bulbs

    In our quick overview and installation video guide you will discover how easy it is to convert standard Edison socket 4" & 6" recessed lighting housings with our GU10 Edison socket adapter.

    Now you can utilize the energy saving power of LED technology with LED MR16 GU10 light bulbs. Utilize our GU10 socket adapter and compatible 4" and 6" MR16 recessed lighting trims for both 4-inch and 6-inch recessed lighting cans and quickly harness the benefits of LED! Watch how easy it truly is :)

  • Sylvania Ultra LED Disc Light for Recessed & Surface Lighting

    Sylvania Ultra LED Disc LightSylvania Ultra LED Disc Light is a perfect solution for either recessed lighting or ceiling lighting junction box applications for bringing energy saving LED lighting to virtually any recessed light or light connected to a compatible junction box. See our video below or click here for more details. Discover the benefits of LED and see how simple it is to install the LED Disc Light in both a recessed lighting can or a junction box in your ceiling with our video guide helping you make the transition to LED lighting as easy as possible.

    Currently available in two lumen options of 700 lumen or 900 lumen, the Sylvania Ultra LED Disc light is ideal for use in kitchens, bath rooms, closets, hall ways and in many areas where older incandescent recessed lighting or ceiling lighting is currently being used. The Sylvania LED disc light offers the light you need with the flexibility you want.

    Looking to spice up your lighting with more then just LED light? No problem! Add a bit of designer flare with the optional decorative trim rings available in three different finishes: Bronze, Satin and Black. Watch our video below on how these are installed below or by clicking here.

     

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  • New Sylvania Ultra RT4 & Ultra RT6 LED Recessed Lighting Trims

    Sylvania Ultra 6 baffle trimSylvania has been pioneering the way into LED recessed lighting with their Ultra RT4 and Ultra RT6 trims, making LED retrofit trims that are super easy to install and to customize to fit your recessed lighting application.

     

     

    Sylvania Ultra 4 Reflector Trim

    Sylvania's Ultra RT4 trims and Ultra 4 gimbal trims fit virtually any 4" recessed housing new and old. Designed to fit new modern LED specific 4" recessed cans or older incandescent 4 inch cans with the included Edison socket adapter, the Ultra RT4 gimbal  and standard trim make for an easy install by pushing the LED retrofit trim into 4" can. The compression tabs press against the side of the 4 inch housing holding it securely in place.

    Sylvania Ultra 4 Gimbal Trim

    The Sylvania Ultra RT6 gimbal trims and Ultra RT6 standard trims also fit virtually any 6" recessed can that have torsion spring brackets installed. California Title 24 compliant, the Sylvania Ultra RT6 6 inch recessed trim will fit LED specific housings as well as incandescent housings with the included Edison socket adapter making your recessed light instantly LED!

    Sylvania Ultra RT6 Trim KitsThe Sylvania Ultra RT6 standard trim allows for that additional designer flare with optional trim kits that quickly and easily install over the trim with the press of 4 small tabs!

    All Sylvania Ultra RT4 trims and Sylvania Ultra RT6 trims will fit perfectly in any of our 4" LED specific recessed housings and 6" LED specific housings as well as our 4" incandescent cans and 6" incandescent cans.

    You can find a list of all the Sylvania Ultra RT4 trims and Sylvania Ultra RT6 trims we carry below. Like any of the products we sell at Total Recessed Lighting if you have a question please let us know!

  • The new Soraa GU10 MR16 LED light bulb is Here!

    Soraa has released the new Soraa GU10 MR16 LED light bulb and we have all of them. You can get the new Soraa LED GU10 MR16 in 10°, 25°, 36° and the whopping 60° beam spreads to meet your lighting demands.

    Not only can you get the new Soraa LED MR16 in such a wide range of beam spreads there are also available 2700K, 3000K and 5000K color temperatures to get the color you need in your lighting application.

     

    Go check them out by clicking on the links below!

    For recessed lighting go here: http://totalrecessedlighting.com/recessed-lighting-light-bulbs/led-bulbs/soraa-led-bulbs/soraa-2-gu10-mr16-light-bulbs.html

    For track lighting here: http://totaltracklighting.com/track-lighting-bulbs/led-bulbs/soraa-led-bulbs/soraa-2-gu10-mr16-light-bulbs.html

    For bulk go here: http://totalbulklighting.com/led-lamps/mr16-led-bulbs/soraa-led-mr16-lamps/soraa-2-gu10-mr16-light-bulbs.html

  • Lighting Your Kitchen Like Pro

    Whether one is doing a kitchen remodel or starting from scratch, the lighting design is frequently the last thing considered and often the first thing to get cut from the budget. Design and planning should be phase 1 of a kitchen project whether you are starting from scratch or remodeling. If you want your lighting to look like it was done by a pro, choosing the right light and the right placement of the light will make all the difference in the world. And, these decisions need to occur in the initial stage of the project and not as a 'hindsight is 20-20' kind of thing.

    Lighting designers say that using three types of lighting functions is paramount to good lighting design-whether it is in your kitchen or elsewhere. It is a 'layering' technique:

    1) general light source

    2) task lighting

    3) drama or accent lighting (also known as focal lighting)

    Some designers like to incorporate dimming systems in their lighting design. Our designer recommends that dimming systems be avoided in most cases-with the exception of dining rooms and media rooms. Here are some reasons why a dimming system should be avoided: 1) color temperature shifts 2) bulb does not dim in the full range and will drop out around 15-20% 3) flickering. Halogen bulbs experience color temperature shifts when being dimmed-not to mention that they require more energy to run and create unwanted heat. Fluorescent bulbs do not have a filament-which translates to it not being conducive to being dimmed-they drop out at 15-20%-which in turn, does not give you the full range. Fluorescent bulbs will also flicker when being dimmed. LEDs do not have a filament either, and suffer from the same things that fluorescent bulbs do; dropping out at 15-20% and flickering. Flickering is a bigger deal than one would initially think: it can cause neurological disturbances, headaches, fatigue, eye strain, affects your perception of motion and is a distraction, to name a few of the problems. Hopefully, we've succeeded in talking you out of using a dimming system.

    You can achieve a more pleasing effect by using the layering technique. You can also keep your lighting costs down by using fixtures that can perform multiple functions.

    General Light Source

    6" recessed cans are a great choice for the general lights-and will give you the most choice by way of lamps/bulbs that fit into the fixture. When I did a kitchen remodel in my own home in 2008, LED lights for 6" recessed had just been introduced to the market. Yes, initially, LED bulbs cost more than their counterparts. However, I have no regrets to making that choice. For one, it takes less energy to have it on and keep it on. The bulbs provides up to 60,000 of continuous light that is cool burning nor does it have to warm up first. No other bulb can do that! LED is also the most 'green' choice you can make in keeping your carbon footprint down. Initially, we tried out LED bulbs that had a color temperature of 27K. We found these to look too 'yellow' and ended up going with a brighter, slightly cooler color temperature of 30K. Much better!

    LED 6" recessed kitchen lights

    Here is an example in my kitchen with just some of the recessed lights on-this is my 'everyday' lighting choice. The lights are LED bulbs in 6" recessed cans (my camera did yield some unwanted lens flare from pointing up in to the lights-those reflections are not really there on the ceiling).

    LED 6" and 4" CFL recessed kitchen lights

    In this example of my kitchen lighting, I have all of the recessed lights on. All decisions for the lighting source and placement were intentional. We looked for a light that had a broad, white, diffused, bright, even light-one that did not have 'edges' to the beam spread. This reduces the shadows on the work surfaces and the amount of glare. The LED lights we chose met that criteria. Track lighting was not a good choice because it is harsh, directional and creates lots of shadows. It wasn't appropriate for our application (you might have call for a directional light in your kitchen layout, however).

    My lighting designer wanted all my work surfaces to be evenly lit. Notice the distance of the recessed lights in relation to the cabinets. They are place 18" out from the cabinets so that it would light the cabinets and allow the light to light the inside of the cabinet when opened. This distance also minimized shadows cast in the area of the work space when standing at the counter. The space between each recessed light is about 2 feet-allowing for a well lit room. Notice too, that one is placed over the doorway.

    Look carefully at the bank of recessed lights above the table (far top right of image). These are 4" shower trims with a CFL bulb in each of them. "Why shower trims?", you ask. Shower trims were selected because of the glass insert is frosted (esthetics) and shower trims are offered in many attractive trims. Using the 4" trims also breaks things up and adds interest-we didn't need as much light over the table area.

    With the 6"recessed cans, our lighting designer put them on two switches so that you could just have some on and at other times, have them all on when you want it to be brighter. That provided two levels of general lighting.

    Task Lighting

    The next layer of lighting in my kitchen is task lighting. Right above my kitchen sink is a light to provide me with an additional layer of light-by way of a fluorescent fixture.

    kitchen sink task light

    Fluorescent light fixture over the kitchen sink for additional task lighting (I turned the general lighting off so that you can see this light source better).

    My stove top area also has two MR-16 halogens (soon to be switched over to the SORAA LED MR-16).

    task lighting over the stove top area achieve by way of halogen MR-16s

    Additional task lighting over the stove top achieved by way of two MR-16 halogen lights.

    Accent Lighting (for added drama)

    Accent lighting in my kitchen was achieved by way of additional fixtures under the cabinets (and how I wish the LED under cabinet fixtures were available then-instead I have fluorescent fixtures). The LED under the cabinet fixture is a great choice over a fluorescent since it lasts longer, is more energy efficient AND has a lower profile. Not to mention that the color rendering is much better. However, most LED under the cabinet fixtures require special wiring and hiding a transformer-not something that is easily done after the fact. Had this product been available when I did my kitchen remodel, I would have included it in the design. The LED under the cabinet is a specular light source-it gives an added dimension that a fluorescent bulb cannot. Think of it as adding more 'bling'.

    under cabinet lighting

    Under cabinet lighting achieved here by way of  fluorescent fixtures.

    cabinet lighting specials

    Pictured here are the fluorescent under the cabinet lights and MR-16 halogen lights in the upper cabinets. We do experience a problem with the halogen MR-16's in the cabinet-even when using the lowest wattage of 20 watts, over time, heat builds up in the cabinet and the lights go out. On our list of things to do is to replace it with a  1-3 watt LED MR-16 which will easily remedy the situation.

    Of course, it goes without saying, that if you have natural light to work with, by all means incorporate that in to your lighting design. Natural light always makes a home more appealing. When trying to achieve natural lighting with lighting fixtures, be sure to use bulbs that are described as 'daylight' instead of those described as warm-that way the color temperature is more closely matched.

    Hopefully, by sharing what went in to the decision making process for lighting choices in my kitchen remodel, you will have at least a better starting point. Avoid using a dimming system and avoid trying to light the entire room with just one light source such as a ceiling mounted fixture.  Please feel free to contact us for solutions to your lighting challenges-we are here to help!

    If you found this article to be helpful, please send us your before and after photos and a brief description of your experience-we'd love to share your success story!

  • Unequivocally, the most perfect LED MR-16 you can buy

    MR-16 LED

    We have all waited a long time for technology to catch up to our expectations of the perfect LED MR-16. The wait is over as the SORAA team took performances issues head on in their design and development of this bulb and conquered them all, we might add.

    Here are the top ten reasons why the SORAA LED MR16 lamp is on the top of our list:

    1) Perfect fit. SORAA conforms to the ANSI standard, so they do fit standard lighting fixtures (MR16) when used as specified.

    2) No noise. Performance, performance, performance. These bulbs do not blink, they do not buzz. SORAA lamps turn on and operate properly with both magnetic and electronic transformers.

    3) Fully UL listed. What does this mean to you? It means that you can trust them to work safely as a retrofit lamp in UL listed fixtures.

    4) Dimmable-SORAA lamps work properly with many commonly installed leading-edge and trailing-edge dimmers.

    5) Flexible. The SORAA LED MR16 works in both NEC Class 1 and Class 2 transformers. While most LED lamps are designed to work only with Class 2 systems, SORAA lamps are UL listed for both systems.

    6) Single source light output. Why is this important? The SORAA design allows for a high lumen density which in turn gives you more light output from a single source. Which in turn, gives you more design flexibility and control. Isn't that what you want? A Halogen MR16 lamp have multifaceted reflectors which in turn, do not project crisp shadows as does the SORAA single source light.

    benefits of the SORAA LED MR16

    (left) SORAA single source (right) other LED MR16 multi source

    7) More natural light. SORAA lamps are designed to replicate halogen illumination with one color and one shadow.

     

    8) Elegant (and smart) design. The thermally optimized heat sink (all LEDs are designed to have heat sinks) mimics the Halogen counterpart:

    9) Lightweight. SORAA lamps are the same weight as standard halogen lamps.

    10) Energy efficient. Are you thinking green here? Green as in energy efficient and green as in the money you will save on your utility bill-not just by way of this bulb requiring less energy, but lowering the cost of cooling your space. Here is a chance to make a difference on your carbon footprint.

    Still not convinced? Check out our video here that does a side by side comparison of the SORAA MR16 lamp against the Halogen MR16 lamp:

     

    Total Recessed Lighting currently carries the SORAA Premium and Vivid bulbs.You can find the selection of lamps under our "bulbs and accessories" section in recessed lighting.

    The premium lamp line is the choice for when you want a quality, 'no compromise' LED solution for a 50W halogen MR16 lamp. If you need a high quality output for interior applications that is energy saving, choose the SORAA premium lamp.

    When high color rendering is of utmost importance, the SORAA Vivid lamp line is the lamp of choice. With a CRI (color rendering index) of 95, it will yield rich, saturated colors along with color stability. These lamps are designed to replace standard 50W MR16 Halogen lamps with a savings of up to 75% of the energy that halogen lamps require. Now you not only can choose a superior light quality as well as save on your energy consumption.

    At long last. The perfect LED MR16 lamps has arrived."

  • Eliminate the Guesswork with Recessed Lighting Kits

    You can make your next recessed lighting project less frustrating and more efficient with the recessed lighting kits that Total Recessed Lighting has put together. We find that a lot of people aren't sure about which trim goes with which fixture and bulb, so we've put together recessed lighting kits in hopes of eliminating the frustration and guesswork.

    These recessed lighting kits include a lighting trim, a housing and a light bulb. The kits are available for 2", 3", 4", 5" and 6" recessed lighting fixtures.

     

    new construction low voltage 5" recessed lighting kit recessed lighting kit

     

    If you are ready to make your recessed lighting projects easier, be sure to check out the recessed lighting kits that we offer.

  • The PAR 38 LED versus Halogen Bulb-which is the one for you?

    Questions. We get lots of questions. When we get a lot of questions in one particular area, this always prompts us to address it in a more global manner. Such as, the questions we get about LED Par 38 versus Halogen PAR 38-and which one is the better bulb. People want to know if  the LED PAR 38 is brighter than the Halogen PAR 38. Is the LED a good option? Folks are taking a good, hard look at LED as an alternative to Halogen because they know they are energy efficient and last longer, but they are not sure if they will be happy switching over. Does this sound like you?

    Our team here decided to take it to the test-what they think is a real test-not a fancy, scientific test. We'll just call it an empirical test since it is based on actual experience instead of an experiment. In plain language, it was a shootout:

    In this video, our team did a side by side comparison of a 24 watt LED 5000K PAR 38 against a 90 watt 2800K Halogen PAR 38 which should will help you decide if the LED bulb is the one for you and if it will save you money.  We cover wattage issues, color temperature, which one puts out more foot candles (a measurement of light intensity),  and more!

     

    We welcome your comments and hope that they are presented to us in a constructive manner so that we can incorporate it in future videos and blog postings. Send us your 'before' and 'after' project pictures! We'd love to be able to talk about your process so that others can benefit from it too.

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