How To Pick Your Light Bulbs

Select Lights for perfect Ambience

Soft White / Warm White:
Best for bedrooms and living rooms; providing a traditional warm, cozy feel to them 

Bright White / Cool White:
Best in kitchens, bathrooms or garages; giving rooms a whiter, more energetic feel 

Best in bathrooms, kitchens and basements; good for reading, intricate projects, or applying makeup – provides the greatest contrast among colors

Determine the Needed Lumens
lumen is a unit of measurement of light. A lumen is a way of measuring how much light gets to what you want to light. To determine the needed lumens, you will need to multiply your room square footage by your room foot-candle requirement. 

For example, a 100 square foot living room, which needs 10-20 foot-candles, will need 1,000-2,000 lumens. A 100 square foot dining room, which needs 30-40 foot-candles, will need 3,000-4,000 lumens. 

The more lumens, the brighter the bulb. A typical home bulb produces about 800 lumens, which is the equivalent of 60 watts. So how many lumens do you need for each room? That’ll depend on how big your room is, what color your walls are, and, obviously, intensity of lighting you prefer. Use this calculator to come up with a specific number, based on your home and preferences. But here’s a general breakdown, via HouseLogic:

  •  Kitchens: 5,000-10,000 total lumens
  •  Bedrooms: 2,000-4,000 total lumens
  •  Living rooms: 1,500-3,000 lumens
  •  Dining rooms: 3,000-6,000 lumens
  •  Bathrooms: 4,000-8,000 total lumens
  •  Home offices: 3,000-6,000 lumens

Keep in mind, these are very rough estimates and account for having different types of bulbs and lighting options in each room. Kitchens are typically brighter and include a mix of ambient light and task lighting, for example. Bedrooms and living rooms are typically less bright.