Downlight Benefits? It’s an extremely good question, considering the issues downlights introduce.
- Remove unsightly imperfections in the ceiling, especially an issue in older renovated homes.
- A desirable look, because they are flush and minimalist.
- Provide an excellent lighting choice for low ceilings.
- Flexibility in partly lighting a room.
- Reduce the chances of tall people hitting their head with low hanging light fittings.
Myths of why people might think downlights are desirable:
- Energy efficient. Just because downlights are low voltage does not mean they use less energy, because their amperage is quite high. (e.g.,. High voltage GU10 downlights use less power than Low voltage MR16 downlights because they do not need control gear, energy is lost during the transformation process of 240V to 12V, and also the low voltage cable and lamp holder get hotter due to the higher amperage.)
- Downlights do not effectively use the walls and ceiling to deflect lighting around the room creating a more evenly spread brightness
The ultimate solution for building air tightness would be a Surface mounted downlight, and they are becoming available, but they currently do not have the ability to produce a flush look, with the necessary light output without breaking the building envelope.
Using a recessed luminaire with a barrier or an IC Rated fitting. When they are designed to work, they can provide significant benefits, but at the end of the day, it’s all about the thermal and air tight barrier of a building.