Your kitchen cabinet layout, what surface you’re lighting, and what kind of lighting pattern you want to see determines how far apart you space your recessed fixtures.
To figure out how far apart to space your recessed lighting, first answer these questions:
1. What are you lighting? Are you lighting a vertical surface such as your cabinet surfaces or wall or, a horizontal surface such as island sink, or floor?
2. Do you want to see a smooth, even wash of light on your vertical walls and kitchen cabinets? Or, oval pattern of light, often referred to as a light scallop?
While each kitchen lighting plan differs here are some rules of thumb for how far apart to space recessed lighting:
If you want an even wash of light on a vertical surface, select an recessed downlight fixtures with wallwash reflector and place them equal distant apart and 1x -1-1/2x that same distance out from your wall surface.
Example: If the drip edge of your countertop is about 2’ from the cabinet or wall, then you would space your recessed open downlight fixtures with wallwash reflector 2’ to 3’ apart.
If you want an “uneven” light pattern but still a soft wash of light on your upper kitchen cabinet, select the same recessed downlight fixture (with the wallwash reflector inserted) and place it centered over your upper cabinet’s door opening.
If you want the scallop of light to show, you would select a
recessed downlight and place it centered over your cabinet width where appropriate on your recessed lighting plan or space them closer together so the scallops of light overlap to cancel out each other's sharp edges.
If you have wide, 5’ wide aisles in your kitchen layout, center your recessed lighting in the walkway. Using a general service incandescent “A” lamp or CFL light source you would space them about 4 feet apart and no more than 5 feet to give you an even spread of light.
NOTE: For specific information unique to your kitchen lighting layout, bring your kitchen layout to a lighting reseller who has a staff lighting designer.
Although every attempt is made to ensure this information is accurate
and up-to-date, this publisher is not responsible for errors or omissions nor
are we engaged in rendering any professional service.
If a solution specific to your unique lighting situation is required, the services
of a lighting profeesional should be sought.