please tell me I won't hate the recessed lights

ginny20August 8, 2011

After reading much here, I was hoping to put the recessed CR-6's in my galley kitchen between 24" and 30" from the wall (i.e., 12-18" from the top cabinets). The room is 93" wide. Naturally, there was a joist there, running parallel to the wall, so we could choose from 21" or 32". My GC said it was up to me, but he thought 32" would be better, that I would hate 21", so I said yes,32". The cans are installed, and the ceiling is newly drywalled, and they look awfully close to the wall. I measured. 21" to center. He isn't here to ask about it. Maybe he thought it would put the two rows too close together, or maybe he just forgot what we decided, but it's too late now. He actually put the cans in last Thursday and I had all this time to notice, but I didn't. I do have undercabinet lighting as well. But how big a deal is this?


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You know, I just had the same question/issue as you. We probably had a similar-sized galley and had the same issue with joist right where we wanted to put our cans. I wish I could give you a definitive answer... but I can't - we ended up installing only a single row (also, not ideal, but we're happy).

The contractor might have forgotten or maybe it was because he felt they would be pretty close. If they were placed 32" away they'd be about 21" apart rim to rim which felt too close to us (others may disagree).

However, I have seen photos of people who installed lights even closer and they have seemed more than happy with them. You should still have 5" clearance to the rim.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2011 at 5:08PM
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Thanks, Marc. Your answer helped a lot, actually. I have looked at it hard, and I do think in retrospect that 32" might have placed the rows too close together.

Gardenweb is wonderful, but if I didn't know "the rule" of 24-30", he could have put them here and I probably never would have noticed. Sometimes, maybe ignorance is bliss.

I need a martini. And an affirmation: it will be better than it was, it will be better than it was...

    Bookmark   August 8, 2011 at 5:49PM
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I'm with you... deciding on light placement was one of the top stresses in my renovation - for such a seemingly simple task! None of the options seemed to fit the 'rules.' It didn't help that I have textured ceilings and no interest in re-drywalling the ceiling or patching any mistakes.

And yes, I'm sure whatever is done is going to be MUCH better than before. If you're like us and upgrading from a single light fixture in the center, it'll be near impossible to not do better. Even with large crown your fixtures should still have clearance too.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2011 at 7:00PM
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The crown molding is not very big, so the clearance should be fine. I had 1961 recessed lights in the soffits, and there were three switches in three different places to turn them all on, and the light in the hood died a few years ago. So this is going to be light years ahead - no pun intended. You - and the martini - have helped reassure me. Thank you so much.

Did you post your finished galley kitchen? I'd like to see it. I'll post mine in Kitchens some time this fall, I hope.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2011 at 7:37PM
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Haven't - at least not yet. It won't be very spectacular considering the kitchens other are doing, but I suppose smaller kitchens and DIY projects need a bit more representation here. We'll see if I can get the time to compose something soon. I look forward to seeing how yous turns out!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2011 at 11:43PM
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I wasn't going for spectacular, anyway, more like elegant, graceful, and functional. "Lovely." Also easy to clean and well lit. I do think smaller kitchens need more visibility, if only to provide some validation for other small kitchen people when they come on the site. I wonder if it wouldn't be a good thing to add small kitchen as a search in Finished Kitchens Blog.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2011 at 9:36AM
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