What Makes A Good Downlight?

Downlights are a great option for a lighting setup. They provide well balanced lighting throughout a space, whilst looking streamlined and tidy.

They are ideal for most rooms in the house. Available in a number of different styles to suit your requirements.

To help you with your next downlighting purchase, we discuss the things that make a good downlight, and the specifics to look for.

What Makes A Good Downlight?

Aesthetics aside, there are a number of factors to look for in downlights which will arm you with the technicalities that make the difference between poor quality, and good downlights.

Fire Ratings – Compliance

Perhaps one of the most important things to look out for is the fire rating of a downlight. According to the Electrical Safety Council, fire rated downlights should be used in all ceilings, no matter what type of building in which they are installed.

Fire ratings will usually be rated at 30, 60 or 90 minutes, or all three. This rating depends on the size and structure of the building. A top floor flat would likely require at least a 90. Whilst the bottom floor may need 30 or 60 minutes.

IP Ratings – Compliance

IP ratings determine the levels of sealing effectiveness of electrical enclosures against intrusion from foreign bodies. This is an important rating to look out for when you’re looking to light certain rooms in your home.

If you’re looking to furnish a room such as a bedroom or living room, downlights with an IP rating of IP44 + will be suitable.

When it comes to areas that are subject to damp and moisture such as a bathroom, you’re going to need something a bit higher. The bathroom is split into various zones which depict their level of moisture. You’ll normally see this as Zone 0, 1 or 2. Zone 0, which represents the space inside the shower would require an IP rating of IP67 which is total immersion proof.

CRI – Colour Rendering Index – The Quality of Light

There’s more to choosing the colour of lights than you think. Colour rendering index or CRI is the measurement of how faithfully an artificial light represents the full colour spectrum of natural sunlight. The higher the CRI, the better clarity of colours. High CRI lighting enhances the true colour of foods to aid preparation, can help with colour-based tasks such as painting, improved clarity and definition of images and text and lift your general mood and home life.

When looking for downlights, look for the highest CRI downlights available. Anything from 97-100 CRI represents the closest to natural daylight which will greatly improve the clarity of the activities you carry out in your home, and your mood.

At Elesi Lighting we are delighted to offer The Soho Lighting Company range of high >95-97 CRI downlights. Their high CRI output makes them the perfect choice for kitchens and bathrooms. As well as rooms where activity, reading or relaxation takes place.

LED Lighting

Where possible, look for LED downlights. When compared to halogen bulbs, LED lights can provide a whole host of benefits including reduced electricity bills and a longer lifespan.

Many halogen bulbs have now been banned in the EU due to energy efficient reasons. But it’s still an important consideration to take into account.

Take a look at our full range of downlights to find the perfect lights for your home.