lighting shiny backsplash and counter

gwbr54May 26, 2010

My kitchen has shiny ubatuba granite countertops, and a light toned but shiny backsplash. Kitchen cabinets and floor are light maple. The L-layout kitchen is about 10x12, with a dropped ceiling covering about 7x12. Nearest source of natural light is about 25-ft away.

My preliminary plan is to install LED undercabinet lighting and recessed par20 downlights. One row of downlights would be located between the upper cabinet and the edge of the countertop, and spaced about 3-ft apart. A parallel row would be spaced about 42-in. away, in the open area of the kitchen.

One concern is about all the reflection in the ubatuba countertops. I am wondering if instead of downlights over the work surface, it might make sense to use wall washers aimed at the upper cabinets. Another concern is whether either plan will adequately light this kitchen, which basically has no natural light source.

Any comments or suggestions gratefully accepted!

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I won't worry about reflections. Rather, I'd try to ensure that I can get enough lighting in the room.

Wall washers may not provide sufficient task lighting since they are usually used for decorative purposes.

Copied from another thread
The rule I used was to achieve ~ 35 lumens per sq ft.
Take the light output from the individual components that will make up the main lighting. eg - 1 recessed can. Assume ~ 600 lumens per can
Calculate the total sq footage of the kitchen * 35 and divide that by the output per can.

Adjust as necessary - lower lumens per sq ft?
Higher luminous output for individual cans?

Note that the formula I used grossly simplifies things.
For instance
1. It assumes that the light sources are not directed spotlights.
2. The distance from the light source is not taken into consideration.
3. The spread of the light beam is not considered as the actual placement of each light source is subject to other considerations.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2010 at 11:04AM
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Thanks, David -- using that formula, and counting only the cans, I would say that I need 2 more cans. But including the under-cabinet lighting (and an unmentioned wall washer and a couple of small pendant lights), I'm feeling more comfortable.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2010 at 1:47PM
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To lessen the glare impact on the granite, used frosted face bulbs in the downlights over the counter tops. The LED undercabinet lighting should also have a frosted cover. The Ubatuba granite will act just like a mirror and be very distracting. Minimize this with the frosted bulbs & covers. The 50par20's are available in frosted. There are also LED undercabinet fixtures with frosted covers designed for this application.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2010 at 8:07PM
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Thanks, Ginger - I'll look into that.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2010 at 9:37PM
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I have a fairly reflective backsplash and Black Galaxy granite counter top.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2010 at 1:33AM
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