Garage Lighting

Garage Lighting

Garage Lighting is often Overlooked

You spend a couple of thousand dollars on garage flooring and storage products only to walk out to your garage to work on a project and you realize you can not see a thing.

So you go down to the local home center pick up a set of $40 lights only to realize you have to modify them before you can ‘plug them in’ instead of hard wiring them in to the garage because, after all, you are not an electrician.

You make the necessary modifications, get the new lights in place. Proudly, you go to turn them on when you realize you don’t have a switch for them. You make yet another round of modifications, the lights are fully functional and you realize you have these awesome bright spots right over your car but you don’t have any light where you need it!

At Garage Flooring, LLC, we can help you plan a well-lit garage and point out a few ideas and other considerations you may not have thought of.

I’ve been in the home improvement industry my whole life. A couple of years ago I began to seriously research lighting and the way it affects a work space. I earned my certifications from the American Lighting Association and begun to study the concept of what makes lighting have the maximum positive impact on a work space.

The seemingly recurring theme is as follows: “Your builder is usually going to install a cheap fixture in the garage. Just like the garage before it and the one before that. If you are lucky, it will be a two bulb florescent. If you are not so lucky, it will be a pair of the dreaded 60 watt bulbs in an unpleasant exposed fixture. When we ask people about their garage floors, we know that no two garages are the same. This is also true about lighting.

Below are very different garage layouts. Each floor is unique. The numbers represent “foot candles”. The higher the number, the more light you have in the area. The first garage represents a garage that has far more light than the average garage, but it is not a mechanics garage by any means. The lighting levels would be more equivalent to what you would see in a household kitchen or a well let hobbyist garage — where supplemental lighting was used to achieve true mechanic work.

Example 1

Garage Lighting

Example 2

The second example is similar in a larger garage. Notice how the placement of the lights dramatically impact the amount of lighting available at the perimeter.

Very subtle changes in your lighting layout — as well as flooring colors, wall colors and ceiling colors– and fixture selection can drastically impactlighting in areas like corners and along the wall.

Well lit garage

In the last example of garage lighting you have an outstanding shop and workshop lighting plan. Very bright and easy to see parts and small pieces. The light is relatively consistent but as you can see you still have areas where the light is stronger than others.

Is all this important?

It depends. I have at least a 6′ section in my garage where my workbench sits. I need good lighting there, but the rest of the perimeter is not as important.

In the last example of garage lighting you have an outstanding shop and workshop lighting plan. Very bright and easy to see parts and small pieces. The light is relatively consistent but as you can see you still have areas where the light is stronger than others.

High end garage lighting

How to plan the lighting for your garage

If you are building a new home, the best way to get appropriate lighting for your garage is to work with a local, ALA certified lighting specialist who can walk through the area and make suggestions. If you are not able to find one, email me a layout, including where your workbench will be, how high your ceiling are, paint colors and how each bay is used. We can work up a plan for you.

If you have an existing garage and you are just looking to add some more light, we have a new series of linkable DIY garage lighting units that plug into the additional outlet by your garage door opener. This lighting will be available for purchase online shortly and we are happy to help you with it now. Just give us a call

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