How to Determine the Ceiling Light Size for a Room

A ceiling light adds to the ambiance of a room.

The lighting used in kitchen areas needs to be stronger than that used in a den.The lighting used in kitchen areas needs to be stronger than that used in a den.
Choosing the correct size is an important consideration in order to see clearly and avoid straining your eyes. While different areas of your home require different wattages, the size of the room, amount of sunlight and your budget also play important parts in helping you determine the final purchase of a ceiling light fixture. Many ceiling lights are available with ceiling fans; this feature can help lower your utility bills and keep you and your family more comfortable.

Measure the length and width of the room where you want the ceiling light fixture.

Look around the room and determine how much natural lighting comes in through the windows. Trees and shrubbery may block sunlight during most of the daylight hours and this consideration will help determine how many watts are necessary for the individual room.

Use your room measurements to identify how much wattage your fixture needs to hold to properly light the room. Multiply the length times the width and then multiply the result by 1.5 to calculate the wattage of lights necessary for the room area. This formula is for an area where intense lighting is not necessary, such as a baby's nursery or a den. Other rooms, such as a kitchen or workshop area, require brighter lighting; therefore, multiply the length and width together, and then multiply the result by 2.5 to calculate the room's wattage needs.

Look for light fixtures that look aesthetically pleasing in your room area. Ensure that the size of the light fixtures complement the room's size. For example, a tiny fixture is generally not appropriate for a very large room, while a large fixture often does not look best in a tiny room.

Match the light fixture with the style and decor in your room. A rustic ceiling fan light fixture does not match the style of a formal room. Conversely, a beautiful chandelier fixture will not coordinate well with a country room with a lot of rustic features. Once you determine the right style for your room, you can read on the box to see if it will provide enough lighting.

Read the instructions on the box of the light fixture that you are thinking about purchasing. It will give you the maximum wattage you can use. Add up the total maximum wattage to calculate whether the fixture will provide enough lighting for your room.

Things You Will Need

  • Tape measure
  • Pen and paper
  • Calculator (optional)

Tip

  • Consider your budget when choosing ceiling light fixtures. Many home supply or discount stores have attractive ceiling lights that are relatively inexpensive.

About the Author

Chelsea Fitzgerald covers topics related to family, health, green living and travel. Before her writing career, she worked in the medical field for 21 years. Fitzgerald studied education at the University of Arkansas and University of Memphis.