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Replacing Florescent Kitchen Light With Can Lights

20 January 2011

Replacing Florescent Kitchen Light 
With Can Lights
contributed by Deck Out My Home 

I didn't actually get a picture of the "before" light. I tried to photoshop a picture just to give an idea of what it looked like before. I don't know who decided the best light for the kitchen was a florescent {shop} light. I looked at getting some sort of faux track light to minimize the wiring that we would have to do. After talking to many lighting experts (they all told us it was a bad idea, since track lights are meant for accent lighting-not for primary lighting) we decided to go for it and do can lights. I would have it no other way, I LOVE our can lights.

1. Figure out how many can lights {and where to put them}
Our kitchen is about 12' by 12'. Five of these babies make it look like noon-day in the kitchen. We probably could have gotten away with 4, but I like how bright it gets in the kitchen.
Placing the can lights is a little trickier. The "remodel" cans come with a template to draw on your ceiling. I pinned the templates where I thought I wanted them. I had to adjust, readjust, adjust again, and adjust again. Mainly finding a mirrored layout that didn't get messed up by trusses was the tricky part. I finally got it and went for it, attacking the drywall with my drywall knife. (you'll want safety glasses, insulation to the eye doesn't feel good).
2. Install cans {REMEMBER: turn off the breaker!}
I don't know how many people feel comfortable doing their own wiring (you might want to hire an electrician). I am not entirely experienced, but in order to get my Construction Management degree I did take an electrical systems class. I felt comfortable doing my own wiring. With the help of my husband, we "daisy chained" from the original light box to our 5 new cans up in our attic. 
 3.Finish 'er off
The rest is easy. Install the bulbs and trim and your new lights are done. I had a little of repair to do from our old light. First off, it wasn't centered in the room, so I had to patch over the old "box", do my own little texturing of the ceiling and paint. I took one of the circles that I had cut out of the ceiling and took it down to Sherwin Williams to have them match the paint. I painted houses professionally for 3 Summers. I do not trust anyone else to match paint, and again they gave me the perfect color/sheen.

Before:                                                  After:
Looks pretty awesome right?! My husband had to drag me out of the kitchen that night, I couldn't stop looking at how great they look!
Total Cost: About $100


Maximum January 20, 2011 at 5:18 PM  

I'm so glad you posted this. I just blogged about what needs to be done in my kitchen and I was thinking of switching to this lighting. The previous owners put three florescent lights together in my kitchen, check it out if you want...its a real beauty, haha!


I can't wait to show my hubby this one!!

Lisa January 20, 2011 at 6:29 PM  

I am totally jealous! We have the shop-look going on here in our kitchen. I want cans!!

Maybe I really can do this...

It looks awesome.

About Last Weekend January 20, 2011 at 6:39 PM  

Hi nice to meet you! It looks so fabulous! Amazing what a change of lighting can do and how clever of you to keep it to $100 - Well done you!

Mrs Lemon January 20, 2011 at 6:45 PM  

Yes, we have a florescent light in our kitchen too, and although you can't see that it is a fl light from the living room, you can tell from the dining area. We're planning to replace it and reuse the fl light in our laundry room when we finish it, which is a 8x10-12' room lit by a single bulb :) geniuses, I tell ya :)

lisaroyhandbags January 20, 2011 at 10:12 PM  

What a difference! We've got one of those ugly fluorescent lights in our laundry room that I'm dying to switch out too! :)

Lisa January 21, 2011 at 7:57 AM  

The lights look great! We did this in our family room and I definitely want to do the rest of the house as well. It's so much more modern and clean.

lauren January 24, 2011 at 9:03 AM  

What a great improvement! It makes the kitchen looks newer.

Lauren from www.charlesandhudson.com

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