Which ceiling light is best?
Changing up lighting is one of the easiest ways to alter the ambiance of a space. Ceiling lights are popular among consumers because they’re affordable and energy efficient, but with so many options, finding the right one for your home can be a daunting prospect.
The Lithonia Lighting White LED Wraparound Flushmount is a great choice because it’s easy to install and provides at least 50,000 hours of bright LED light.
What to know before you buy a ceiling light
The first thing to consider when shopping for a ceiling light is how you intend to use it. Do you need a light for an efficient home office or a comfortable living room? Lighting can have a significant impact on both relaxation and productivity, so think about the following three types of lighting before making a selection. For more information, check out the complete ceiling light buying guide from BestReviews.
Ambient: This type of lighting provides uniform illumination throughout an entire room. Ambient lighting is usually rather warm and nondirectional, so many people like to combine it with other light sources to personalize the ambiance of their space.
Task: Usually found in a kitchen or home office, task lighting provides targeted illumination on a particular space like a desk or a stovetop.
Accent: Similar to task lighting, accent lighting highlights decor like a bookshelf or painting. Accent lighting is only occasionally found in the form of a ceiling light.
You can mount ceiling lights in a variety of ways, depending on your design preference and the intended surface area.
Flush and semi-flush: Flush lights only extend a few inches from the ceiling. Semi-flush lights suspend a little more, usually about 6 to 8 inches from the ceiling. Flush mounts are ideal for ceilings less than 8 feet high, while semi-flush mounts are better suited for rooms with particularly high ceilings. Flush and semi-flush mounts are typically used for ambient lighting.
Recessed: These lights mount inside the ceiling itself, so they’re particularly suited for small rooms with low ceilings. Installation is usually costly and complex, so expect to pay more for this type of mount. Recessed mounts are perfect for task lighting and often found in kitchens or workshops.
Hanging: Usually found in the form of a chandelier or pendant, these lights are often stylish or highly decorative and serve as statement pieces in a room. Hanging lights are perfect for task lighting and usually combine with one or two other light sources.
Track: Almost exclusively used for accent lighting, track mounts appear as multiple lights built into a track that runs along the ceiling. The direction that these lights point is usually adjustable to highlight certain items on the wall.
What to look for in a quality ceiling light
If you plan to use a space for a variety of activities, consider a dimmable ceiling light. This feature lets you adjust a room’s illumination with a dial or slider. Since dim lights use less electricity, this kind of ceiling light can also save you money on your power bill.
Some models come with a motion sensor feature. These lights turn on automatically when they detect movement in the room, making them perfect for a bathroom or basement. You may also want the motion sensor feature for home security purposes.
You might come across a ceiling light that has an Underwriters Laboratories or Energy Star certification. These indicate that the product was manufactured to the highest safety and energy-efficient standards. UL tests the safety of consumer products, while Energy Star-certified ceiling lights are guaranteed to use less electricity than other light fixtures.
How much you can expect to spend on a ceiling light
The cost of a ceiling light can vary dramatically depending on the installation, size and type of fixture. You can expect to pay between $20-$150 for a midrange ceiling light.
Ceiling light FAQ
Why is my ceiling light flickering?
A. Flickering usually indicates that something is loose. Try tightening the light bulb or replacing it with an LED light bulb.
What are lumens?
A. A lumen is a unit of measurement used to determine the brightness of a light. Most rooms require 10-20 lumens per square foot.
What’s the best ceiling light to buy?
Top ceiling light
What you need to know: This LED flush-mounted light is bright and easy to install.
What you’ll love: This powerful light is much brighter than most fluorescent bulbs, using 2,900 lumens of uniform illumination. The LED light lasts for 50,000 hours, and this fixture is UL-certified to meet safety standards. It’s also Energy Star-certified for efficiency.
What you should consider: The diffuser cover is brittle and can crack or break easily during installation.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top ceiling light for the money
What you need to know: This affordable hanging light is simple to plug into the wall during installation.
What you’ll love: Stylish and versatile, this pendant light features a timeless design and comes with an adjustable hanging cord. Installation only requires hanging the piece with the provided hooks and plugging it into an electrical outlet.
What you should consider: A high-watt bulb could potentially damage the pendant’s plastic dome.
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This stylish pendant light is chic but small.
What you’ll love: This ceiling light boasts an attractive design that features handblown seeded glass and an oil-rubbed bronze finish. The industrial appearance would match well with an Edison bulb and is perfect for a kitchen or reading room.
What you should consider: The light is a bit dim and some users report parts breaking in transit.
Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.
Patrick Farmer writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.