What light to use for different home environments? A guide on available technologies and suggestions for proper lighting

The lighting is the most widespread electrical application in the domestic sector and constitutes little more than 10% of energy consumption in the home. For over two centuries the bulbs were invented many. Among the most common ones still in use include:

1. Incandescent bulbs, where the production of light takes place bringing a metallic filament of tungsten to incandescence, at a temperature of 2700 K, by the Joule effect. In incandescent bulbs, only 5% of the energy that feeds them is converted into light, the remaining 95% is wasted as heat. On 8 December 2008, the European Commission for Energy has approved, however, the ban in all Member States, according to a progressive replacement program starting in September 2009 with completion by 2012.

2. The most commonly used alternative to the filament lamps are LED lamps, fed by a dedicated electronic circuit, the purpose of which is primarily to reduce the mains voltage to a few volts required by the LEDs. The light is produced through a physical process in the junction of the diode, called "electron-hole recombination" that gives rise to the emission of photons, color employee well defined by the energy released in the recombination.

It is now well-established use the monochromatic LEDs such as red, yellow, green, and blue, and all their combinations, only recently has it been possible to make LEDs that produce white light. Unlike incandescent bulbs that end their lives with the burning of the filament, LEDs degrade slowly with a loss of brightness drops to 20-30%. From an economic point of view the LEDs are more expensive than filament bulbs, but the duration of operation of an LED, which is around 50000-80000 hours, is far superior to the life of a conventional bulb. From the energy point of view, LEDs are much more efficient than filament bulbs since 50% of the energy absorbed produces lighting and therefore the amount of energy wasted in the form of infrared radiation and the heat released in the environment are very low compared to conventional lighting technologies.


3. The fluorescent lamp, however, is a special type of discharge lamp in which the visible light emission is indirect, that is not emitted directly from the ionised gas, but from a fluorescent material (hence the name). This type of lamps are erroneously called neon lamps or neon tubes, but do not always contain neon and in fact their operation is mainly due to the presence of mercury vapor and fluorescent materials, not neon. The fluorescent material of which is covered with the tube, hit by such radiation, in turn emits visible light. Since visible light has a frequency and thus a lower energy than ultraviolet, the transformation produced by the fluorescent material involves an inevitable loss of energy, in the form of heat, which determines the heating of the tube. A different composition of the fluorescent material can produce a light warmer or colder.


4. Finally, there is still not widespread, but destined to become the predominant technology of organic polymers. It is based on plastic materials (polymers) able to emit light by electroluminescence if crossed by electric current. A particular class but not the only one of these materials are OLEDs. The main advantages lie in the economy of exercise in good luminous efficiency and the ability to work the lighting in sheets of arbitrary shape. May for example papering the ceiling or walls, generating a diffuse light of varying hue, not dazzling and without shadows. With this technology will be able to convert light in more than 70% of the electrical energy that is consumed, but at the time the system turns out to be much more expensive per lumen output, compared to other systems.

We now turn to useful tips for home lighting, dividing them according to the various rooms of the house.



On the work bench. We need a light that allows you to see well and that does not distort colors of foods. Under the roof, to have a direct illumination on the work surface, it is best un'alogena. It can be uniform, given by a channel about 24 watt fluorescent that runs along and under all furniture. A new feature is the light panel: you put on the wall behind the stove where, usually, there is a ceramic and ensure good lighting throughout the floor. Work very well even small halogen spotlights placed as (30 watt) under the wall units, because they are a beautiful white light. Please note that the lights used in cooking are certified in accordance with: they must withstand splashes of water, be safe and secure.

The same goes for the sockets. On the work mettetene more than one: the right position is at least 60 cm from the sink and stove. It is also useful to prepare, when possible, a compartment 90 cm wide, enclosed by one door. in which to hold small appliances. If you do not have the wall units can illuminate the work area by installing the ducts below the shelves with diffused light, provided by a fluorescent lamp. Otherwise you can use the spotlights to be placed on the ceiling, or a group of spots at the two corners of the room showing a good point light (ie direct) on the work surface.

Above the table: the light here must reconcile the pleasure of being together, so it must be hot. Select lamps reflected light, not dazzling chandeliers or adjustable in height, which will have to get very close to the table and illuminate only the ground, leaving a 'penumbra around. The bulbs are suitable for those with 100-watt incandescent or halogen lamps with dimmer (dimmer), even 200 watts.

Ceiling lighting. In place of the suspension you can put a 150 watt spot light that only a limited radius the table. And if you want to create a relaxing atmosphere you put a light source behind the curtain (see map). Just a fluorescence tube, positioned at the top, under the dumpster or ceiling, which may be lit all night, because it is low consumption. How does it feel? It is as if it had always day.

On the walls: put an applique that lights up grazing. Will give a good luminous effect especially if the beam is directed both at the bottom than at the top. But beware: the wall must be uniform and perfect, otherwise the light reveals the flaws. You can choose between the energy-saving lamps, halogen lamps that make a beautiful white light, but consume, and incandescent bulbs. The recommended power? At least 100 watts.



Around the mirror lights most appropriate to avoid shadows and they will not be as white as corpses are those filtered (protected by a screen) that illuminate so widespread throughout the area and do not fire in his eyes. If you have a mirror with a nice frame that you want to highlight choose a single lamp, center, with pipe opal, to be 3-4 cm above the mirror. Or two wall lights positioned at the top, the corners of the mirror, slightly protruding. If you prefer to side lights, the only solution is a row of light bulbs opal. But in this case the mirror must not have the frame, otherwise it will create shadows. The power of the bulbs depends on the height of the mirror and on whether or not to approach the same: for the central lamp goes well un'alogena 150 watt: while the side lights just three 40-watt incandescent bulbs.

Under the shelves: if you have shelves in masonry or plasterboard inserted in the bottom of the directional halogen spotlights that have good moisture resistance wings. The power depends on the effect you want: generally are 60 watts each.

Secure sockets: as a rule must be 65 cm away from the water point and at a height of about 110 cm. Expect a socket for the hairdryer and razor and a switch for the light of the mirror. One power outlet 1 vacuum cleaner can be positioned low down near the door in a safe place. It is mandatory by law a bell installed in the shower and on the tub wall with a rope.


The lights for the night and for reading. If you want to read in bed without disturbing those around you is important to find a solution that does not bother neither your eyes nor to those who try to rest. Abandoned the traditional lamps resting on the table, not recommended because they diffuse light that illuminates the entire room disturbing those who sleep: the ideal lighting for reading is given by hanging lamps direct light. It is a wire, on which is engaged a small lamp. that hangs down to about 50 cm from the bedside table. The light from above does shadows, creates a cone beam light around the table, the book illuminates a great time and bothers to those around you. The bulbs used are those dichroic (with built-in reflector), wide-angle 35-watt.

To see well in cabinets: the best solution, and also the cheapest. is to put the microswitch to the hinges of the doors. They are like little sensory switches that turn on the light when you open the door. You can decide to put these lights at a later time, even on an old wardrobe, to illuminate shelves installed under í linear fluorescent lights, that you find on the market (produced by Philips and Osram). each of 6 watts.


All over the room: you can choose to put a ceiling of halogen spotlights direct light, wide beam, which lead dieroiche 50-watt bulbs each. They offer a pleasant effect and you can also turn on while watching television. To leave no gray areas and have a good brightness, the lights should be positioned in a certain way. How? The circumferences of the light beams must overlap with each other and go to touch the walls of the room. It is usually preferable to put more files spotlights of lower intensity (six 20 watt each. Instead of three 50-watt spotlights): so you cover more areas and you have an even more enjoyable. For illumination relaxing two wall lights are perfect for indirect lighting that illuminate the entire room, 360 degrees. with opal glass diffuser. Better if they have the dimmer that is controlled through a wall switch, usually found near the bed. The bulbs are halogen 75-100 watts. In place of the wall you may want to put a floor lamp for indirect lighting with a 150-200 watt halogen bulb and always with a dimmer. Must have the diffuser with opal glass (satin, sandblasted or amber), because all the refracted light beams homogeneous and spreads them around the lamp.

For the space of the trick: if you want good lighting in the toilet area lamps positioned around the mirror or on the wall above it. They are good one or two wall lights with opal glass, similar to those of the dressing rooms of theaters, small and not too powerful, because they have to light only in the area where you rigged (are sufficient halogen bulbs 60 watts). Even in this case it is important to the dimmer and the switch of variation puts directly on the mirror.



Reading area: is the area where you spend moments of relaxation and you're with friends. Here it takes a lamp to illuminate the corner reading and conversation, on the table or floor lamp with glass shade or fabric and 100-watt incandescent bulb. To read a table lamp is fine, with dual light source and incandescent or low voltage. Better if equipped with dimmer to adjust the light intensity.

In the area telly: watch TV in the dark is not good. Put a light near the equipment: support from the library, or a small spotlight from above with a faint beam (25-watt fluorescent) that touches the wall. The important thing is that it is a diffuse light: the bulb must be hidden by a screen or a blackout shade.

To illuminate the paintings: use the applique. Choose them with small halogen bulbs or less powerful and put them on the big picture at a distance of 20 cm / 25. These lamps must have a protruding arm and adjustable to exceed the thickness of the frame and avoid ugly shadows. Another solution is to put a ceiling above the couch five spotlights, with beam tilted at 45 degrees that illuminates the walls where there are paintings. A star-studded ceiling if you have a ceiling and you can invest between 500 and 1,000 euro reward yourself with a starry sky. It is fiber optics that create a stellar appearance very pleasant, with a soft light, almost palpable. You can have them with white light or with special filters that allow you to change color according to your mood. What made? The first decision to make is to establish the position of the lights, so you have to already have an idea of the furniture. In general it is best to set up outlets all over the walls, because the house is always changing. Expect the sockets for the vacuum cleaner, industrial type, in well-defined points, convenient for reaching every corner.

Avoid energy-saving lamps in the rooms of the house where you spend only a short time, for example in the transit areas. After a day in the office under fluorescent tubes need to rest your eyes in a different light (incandescent). Create a relaxing atmosphere sacrificing light of the euro for spending more, to invest in a better quality of life. The savings you will get it using halogen lamps with 12 volt transformer: only consuming 50 watts you will have a light equal to that of a 100 watt incandescent bulb.

By following these tips you will have a really good light where it is needed, allowing a good living comfort and significant energy savings in the home.




Translated via software



Italian version of ReteIngegneri.it

Seguici su Facebook