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Garage Lighting Ideas

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 21 Nov 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Garage Lighting Safety Energy Saving Eco

The type of lighting you’ll install in your garage will often be determined by the amount of time you’re going to spend in the garage, what you use it for, at what times of day - and the existing natural light provisions that are in there already.

Assessing Your Needs

Before deciding what garage lighting you’re going to have, you need to assess the purpose of the garage. If it’s simply to park a car or to store things like a freezer or washing machine, lighting may not be a major concern if you’re only going to be spending a few minutes each day inside it. However, if you intend using it as a workshop to carry out car maintenance, DIY projects or a hobby, chances are you'll be in it year round for a few hours and lighting will be more of an issue.

Car Maintenance And Using Your Garage As A Workshop

If you intend to carry out routine car maintenance inside your garage, the light needs to be bright both for safety and convenience. Overhead fluorescent strip lights are your best bet. They come in different sizes and are, the most capable and reliable light sources for a garage.

However, if you are carrying out more intricate tasks and using your garage as a workshop, you might also wish to think about installing moveable task lights. These can come as drop down or clip on varieties and are extremely versatile depending upon what you’re working on.

The other thing to remember with fluorescent lighting is that it gives off a kind of green hue which can affect your perception of colours so they might not be suitable if you’re hobby is art, for example and you're working with colours.

Halogen lamps are also extremely bright though they get extremely hot which can be dangerous if they’re situated near flammable materials. They can also be extremely uncomfortable in the summer months whereas fluorescent lighting is cool.

Energy Saving And Eco Friendly Lighting

LED (light emitting diodes) light bulbs are eco friendly and with energy saving in mind, they are becoming an extremely popular choice for garage lighting. However, they’re not ideal if you need white light and they can sometimes be a little more complicated to wire up. Solar lighting is another alternative if the power of the light isn’t of great significance.

Daytime Light

Perhaps you don’t intend to use your garage at night but will be spending quite a bit of time in it during the day. If that’s the case, the first thing you should do is to assess any existing light you have available. Go out into the garage and check how well the natural light reaches different areas at different times of the day. Perhaps installing additional windows, if that’s practical, will give you sufficient natural light and many people enjoy fitting skylights to give them additional light from above.

Safety Issues

As you would with anything electrical, make sure that any lights you use are fitted by a qualified electrician and if there’s a danger of materials you’re working with coming into contact with the bulbs, put a casing or some kind of wire mesh cage around the light.

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