How To Choose A Light Bulb For Stretch Ceilings? Nuances Of Connection And Location

Stretch ceilings are installed in residential, office and commercial spaces. They can be used to create an unconventional and practical interior at a reasonable cost. The only problem that may arise - the organization of lighting.

We will tell you how to intelligently pick up light bulbs for stretch ceilings. In the article presented by us, the types of devices used to equip the ceiling structures are described, popular schemes of their arrangement are disassembled. The requirements and rules for the assembly of ceiling lighting systems are given.

Content of the article:

  • Optimal option for stretch ceilings
  • Basic rules of choice
  • Pros and cons of different types of bulbs
    • Option #1 - LED lamps
    • Option #2  - halogen lamps
    • Option #3 - fluorescent lamps
  • Lamp connection rules
  • Requirements for the placement of lamps on the ceiling
  • Lamp diagrams
  • Conclusions and useful video on the topic

The best option for stretch ceilings

The main reasons for installing stretch structures are aesthetic appearance and practicality. They are made of PVC or fabric canvases mounted on profiles.

The choice of lighting fixtures depends largely on the material of this kind of ceiling. Polyvinylchloride film and some types of fabrics do not tolerate higher temperatures. They can deform. Therefore, you have to pay attention not only to the technical parameters, but also to other features of the fixtures.

So, when heated over 50 degrees, the canvas material can change color, dry out and crack. The ceiling will become yellowish and unsightly. Operation and maintenance will be severely hampered. Already in a few months you will need a new repair. These are good reasons to take the time to select the right light bulbs for stretch ceilings.

The type and location of the bulbs determine the lighting effects. They can emphasize the advantages of the ceiling, zoned the space, improve the interior or, on the contrary, hopelessly spoil the impression of the room.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

The lifetime of PVC ceilings depends on the choice of lamps. Incandescent light bulbs heat the surfaces too much and therefore are not suitable for tensioned constructions

When buying, focus on the power and heating temperature. Incandescent lamps are not suitable, so usually choose halogen 35-40W or low-voltage LED variants.

In some cases - energy-saving fluorescent up to 50W. There are also certain requirements regarding the safe location of light fixtures.

Basic selection rules

Everything matters - type, shape, power, placement of fixtures on the ceiling.

The main rules that should guide the selection:

  1. Type and power of lamps. The optimal option is 35-50 watt fixtures.
  2. Distance to ceiling. The critical minimum is 15-20 cm. Placing lights closer to the surface of the material will deform it. For incandescent lamps the distance should be even more - from 40 cm.
  3. The shape of the lamps. The \"plates\" that are so popular with many people have to be abandoned. The rules for their installation require a tight fit to the ceiling surface. It is not allowed in the case of tensioned constructions, because proper air circulation is needed for cooling.
  4. Design. Here everything depends on the personal preferences of the owner of the room. It is important that the devices are installed according to all the rules and provide full lighting.

The variety of lamps is huge, so it makes sense to orientate in the main classifications and find the variant that is best suited for each particular case.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

If you design the lighting correctly, you can achieve stunning color and light effects. They liven up the interior, highlight accent zones and create the right mood

When buying, you should consider the purpose and use of the room, pay attention to the rules of installation, the degree of protection of electric devices, the color temperature characteristic of energy saving bulbs.

Complicated installation leads to higher lighting costs, often unreasonable. The problem can be solved by choosing a different type of lamp.

Pros and cons of different types of bulbs

Fixtures of one of three types are usually used for stretch ceilings:

  • LED ceiling types;
  • halogen miniature devices;
  • luminescent lamps.

Each has its advantages, drawbacks, limitations in operation. To make an informed choice, it is better to find out their features beforehand.

Option #1 - LED lamps

They are semiconductor devices. They give white or slightly yellowish light and do not overheat the air or surrounding objects. One of the most important advantages is that they are inertia-free. This means that the brightness of the light is adjusted immediately: you do not have to wait for the device to \"fire up\" to full power. It is not affected by voltage spikes in the network.

Moreover, there are models on sale whose brightness can be adjusted as you wish - dimmable LEDs. This option allows the development and use of several original lighting options in one design.

All LED devices are considered to be energy-saving lighting devices, since they consume 5-8 times less electricity than incandescent lamps. This is an obvious plus, but the price is still more than high.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

LED devices are safe for the environment. Their bulbs contain no harmful substances, in contrast to fluorescent lamps containing mercury

While noting the high cost of the bulbs on diodes, at the stage of planning the lighting you should still decide on the type of the lamp itself. If it is a model in which the matrix / board with LEDs is integrated, then when it fails, you may need to repair or replace the element.

Not every ordinary user will bother to buy a new board and replace it himself. And to call an electrician for this will be expensive - it is easier to buy a new light fixture.

A more interesting alternative is to buy a lamp in which you can change the bulb. There are various models on sale that use lamps with a GU5,3 base. With the rules of choice of lamps for ceiling structures will introduce the following article, to read which we strongly advise.

If such a LED bulb fails, it is sufficient to simply remove the old and put a new one, the cost of which is about 60 rubles. And you do not have to buy the entire lamp. Due to the high cost of lamps from well-known brands, many potential buyers have a desire to save money by choosing cheaper products unnamed Chinese firms.

This benefit is very questionable because of a number of features:

  • price - a good light bulb on diodes cannot be cheap, and inexpensive often without a manufacturer's warranty;
  • life does not always correspond to the stated - only brand lamps can work, declared by the manufacturer, working hours;
  • worsening brightness - LED crystals gradually lose brightness and then completely go out.

Also, before buying should pay attention to the color spectrum emitted by the selected LED lamp. In this matter, you should be cautious and determine in advance whether such light is pleasing to the eyes.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

When designing lighting, you should pay careful attention to the color, location, and direction of the lamps. Mistakes can lead to future discomfort

When designing the ceiling, be sure to carefully select the right color of lighting, calculate the necessary power and cost of devices. This is the only way to make the interior truly cozy and pleasant. If necessary, consult professional designers and electricians.

Option #2 - halogen fixtures

The principle of operation is similar to that of conventional incandescent lamps, only a special grade of tungsten is used to make the wire filament. The only significant difference is the filling of the bulb, which contains oxygen, inert gas, and halogen additives.

Tungsten evaporates from the thin wire when heated and then returns to it again. This ensures that the bulbs do not have a darkening fouling on them. The filament itself is regenerated, which has a positive effect on the life of the lamp.

The tungsten wire heats up to high temperatures, but this is compensated for by the use of special quartz glass, which retains heat and helps increase the efficiency of the device.

Halogen luminaires feature high quality color rendering, brightness, directional light. Another plus is the small size. This allows you to design aesthetic spot lighting.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

Halogen lamps give comfortable light for the eyes. It is close to natural light in many respects, including spectrum composition. So it is pleasant to be in a room with such light

Halogen lamps are not as energy efficient as LED and fluorescent lamps. The service life also leaves a lot to be desired. This should be considered when buying.

Option #3 - fluorescent lamps

They are deservedly called energy-saving. Whichever light fixture is installed, with such fixtures it will automatically become economical. This is due to the design features that make it possible to obtain an excellent ratio of luminous flux to power.

Economic power consumption, good performance and technical characteristics are the advantages of fluorescent lamps. They are flicker-free in the case of compact models with an integrated electronic ballast and operate for long periods and without interruptions. A suitable color shade can be chosen.

Another advantage is the absence of overheating of the surrounding air and objects close to the lighting fixtures. The maximum temperature is 60 degrees.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

Fluorescent lamps are used in a variety of interiors. They can be used to arrange basic lighting and create original colored lighting

Disadvantages too:

  1. Potential health hazards. People with certain medical conditions are unhealthy to be in rooms with fluorescent lighting. If you have a serious diagnosis, it is worth consulting your doctor.
  2. High price. Compared to incandescent bulbs, fluorescent ones are 10 times more expensive.
  3. Sensitivity to on-off. The more often the fixtures are turned on and off, the less they last.
  4. Harm to the environment. Lamps contain unsafe mercury vapor, so appliances need to be disposed of separately. If the bulb breaks, you should ventilate the room thoroughly, collect the remaining glass and treat the room.

Before you buy fluorescent bulbs, make sure there are collection points in your city for end-of-life products. They should not be disposed of in a regular trash can.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

Fluorescent bulbs are large compared to LED babies. Because of their relatively large size, they are not suitable for some types of luminaires

If several fluorescent bulbs are broken at the same time, you will have to call the Ministry of Emergency Situations to give the room a preventive treatment. This is worth considering, especially if there are small children, active bouncing animals, etc.

Lamp connection rules

The type of fixtures in which you plan to mount the lamps is of fundamental importance. By the type of attachment the constructions are different.

Hanging. At home they are called chandeliers. A win-win variant for practically every interior.

All types of lamps can be mounted, because the distance to the ceiling is sufficient to avoid strong heating of the materials. Installation is the easiest. Prices may vary depending on the model, manufacturer, design.

Countertop. Such designs require the laying base with electrical wiring prior to the installation of the stretch ceiling. Then they put special rings, in which they fasten the lamps. For them, LED lamps are best suited - with a minimum temperature of heating. On the plus side is the low cost of designs.

Constructed. The only difference from the surface-mounted luminaires is the mounting method and the presence of a decorative panel, thanks to which the design of the device is almost indistinguishable from the surface of the suspended ceiling.

The advantage is the low price of these structures. Ideal for office space, minimalist interiors. Depending on the number of light sources, a distinction is made between spot and cascade fixtures. The first type has only one lamp, and the second - several.

Point structures have to be installed in rows due to the modest light area. Cascade fixtures have an extensive design potential. Thanks to them, beautiful effects can be created.

There is a distinction between static and rotary luminaires. The names reflect the special features of the designs: the former are stationary, the latter allow adjustment of the direction of radiation.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

The purpose of lighting is taken into consideration when mounting the devices. If it is general, the optimum angle of radiation should be 60-90 degrees. If it is local (zoned) - from 40 degrees

The type of material used for the ceiling itself is also important. If it is a cloth, the choice of lamps is almost unlimited, but it is better to install LED devices on PVC foil.

Requirements for placing lamps on the ceiling

There are several simple rules when planning the lighting:

  1. The first row of lamps is planned so that it is at least 20 cm from the wall.
  2. If there is only one pendant light, it should be installed in the center of the ceiling.
  3. The seams are the weak points of PVC constructions. At a distance of less than 15-20 cm from them there should not be any light sources.
  4. When calculating the lamps, you can focus on the average indicators: 1 device per 1.5-2 square meters of area. If high-power lighting is required, the first figure should be used. If you do not need extra brightness - from the second figure.
  5. With symmetrical arrangement of the lamps, account for distances between them, clearances from the wall.

Windows are sources of natural sunlight. When calculating light bulb layouts, they must be taken into account, but there are no special requirements. The main thing is to keep the distance from the walls.

Light source arrangement schemes

There are several design ideas that allow the most advantageous placement of devices. Before inventing new ways of lighting fixtures on your own, it is worth looking at existing ones.

How to choose a light bulb for stretch ceilings? Nuances of connection and location

The presented schemes are well-proven. They allow for a complete lighting of a whole room or a separate zone. The best variant depends on the interior

The most popular arrangement of light bulbs on the suspended ceiling is as follows:

  1. Oval. Light fixtures are placed in the form of an oval inscribed in the rectangle of the ceiling. The center is either decorated with a chandelier or left slightly darkened.
  2. Circle. The lamps look like a large circle on the ceiling. The advantage of this arrangement is the uniform illumination of the entire area.
  3. Rectangle. The devices are installed along the perimeter, which creates the optical effect of expanding the space.
  4. Duga. An excellent option for emphasizing the accent zone of a room.
  5. Wave. The arrangement of lamps in the form of a wave is well suited for rooms with non-standard configuration. This scheme allows to visually correct the shape of the room.

In rooms with niches, projections or original furniture can look well with arbitrary drawings. Often the lamps look chaotically arranged, but create the necessary effects.

If you decide to design the ceiling in this way, you must carefully calculate the necessary number of light sources. The choice of layout may depend on the purpose of the room and the personal preferences of the owner.

Image gallery

Photo of

Lighting of the hallway with suspended ceilings

Lighting of the large Lighting for a spacious kitchen

Lamp placement in the nursery

Lamps for the stretch ceiling in the bedroom

There is no perfect lamp arrangement, that suits everyone equally. The light decoration of every room should be done individually.

But there are general recommendations that will help you find the right choice.

Conclusion and useful video on the topic

Selecting and placing light fixtures is a difficult task, but you can cope with it if you follow the recommendations of experienced designers. Here is a selection of thematic videos that will help in this.

Video #1. Unobvious pros and cons of different kinds of lamps:

Video #2. Calculating the number of lamps:

Video #3. Detailed description of lamp layouts:

Video #4. Options for choosing light fixtures for stretch ceilings:

Fortunate lighting effects can transform even the most banal interior, while the wrong ones will negate all design efforts.

Tensioned ceilings are a good solution if you take the time to find the right lamps and calculate the best layout for their placement. If you can't do it yourself, don't hesitate to get advice from electricians.

Please write comments in the block form below, post photos and ask questions about the subject of the article. Tell us about how you chose bulbs for your own suspended ceiling. Share useful information and arguments that were decisive for your purchase.

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