How Many Lights Do I Need Per Room?
How Many Lights Do I Need Per Room?
June 17, 2022

How Many Lights Do I Need Per Room?

When it comes to lighting your home, finding the right balance between too much and too little can be tricky. But fear not! With a few simple tips, you'll be able to determine just how many lights you need per room. 

Consider the Room's Purpose: First and foremost, think about what the room will be used for. Will it be a place for relaxing and reading, or for hosting dinner parties and entertaining guests? The purpose of the room will determine the amount and type of lighting required.

Room Size Matters: The size of your room is another important factor. A larger room will typically need more lights to adequately light up the space. As a rough guide, you should have at least one light source for every 10 square meters.

Lighting Layers: Layering your lighting is crucial in creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. You can achieve this by using a combination of overhead lighting, table lamps, floor lamps and even task lighting.

Task Lighting: Task lighting is a type of lighting that is designed for specific tasks, such as reading, writing or cooking. These types of lights should be placed where they are needed the most. For example, under-cabinet lights in the kitchen or a reading lamp next to a chair.

Ambient Lighting: Ambient lighting, also known as general lighting, is used to provide overall illumination in a room. This can be achieved by using overhead lighting such as a ceiling fan with integrated lights or a chandelier.

Decorative Lighting: Decorative lighting is used to add visual interest to a room and can include table lamps, wall sconces, and pendant lights.

Natural Light: Finally, don't forget to consider the natural light that enters your room. Large windows and skylights can greatly impact the amount of lighting required, especially during the day.

Some key terms you’ll come across are lumens and watts. Lumens are a measure of brightness; the higher the lumen output, the brighter the light. Wattage relates to how much power is being used to run the light. For your reference, an old-school 100W incandescent globe produced around 1,500-1,700 lumens. The main thing to know is that as lighting evolves and becomes more and more efficient; high wattage does not always equate to brightness.

Let’s break it down by room, generally speaking, you’ll need more lighting in bathrooms, kitchens and office spaces.

Room Type

Lumens per square meter (Lux)

Bathroom General Lighting

Examples: Downlights, 3-in-1 Exhaust Fan Units and CTC & Oyster Lights



Bathroom Task Lighting

Examples: Vanity LightingStrip Lighting and Wall Lighting.


Bedroom or Living General Lighting

Examples: Downlights, CTC & Oyster Lights, Pendant LightsWall Lighting and Ceiling Fan Lighting.


Bedroom or Living Task Lighting

Examples: Table & Floor Lamps, Low Hanging Pendant Lights, Strip Lighting, Indoor Spot Lights and Wall Lighting.


Dining General Lighting

Examples: Downlights, CTC & Oyster Lights and Pendants.


Garage General Lighting

Examples: Downlights, Batten Lighting and Oyster Lights.


Garage Task Lighting

Examples: Strip Lighting, Spotlights and Batten Lighting.


Kitchen and Laundry General Lighting

Examples: Downlights, 3-in-1 Exhaust Fan UnitsCTC & Oyster Lights and Spot/Track Lighting.


Kitchen and Laundry Task Lighting

Examples: Wall LightsPendant Lighting and Strip Lighting.


Hallway and Stair General Lighting

Examples: Wall Lighting, Downlights, CTC & Oyster Lights, Stair Lighting and Pendant Lights.



Outdoor General Lighting

Examples: Sensor Lighting, Spotlights, Downlights, Batten Lighting, Ceiling Fans with Light Kit, Bunker & Oyster Lights, Wall Lighting and Deck Lighting.


Outdoor Decorative Lighting

Examples: Deck Lighting, Garden Lighting, Exterior Stair LightingBollard Lighting and Wall Lighting.



For example, if you're looking at putting downlights in your bedroom which is 4 x 5 m (20m2), you should have 180 (lux) x 20 (m2) = 3,600 Lumens in your space which is around 4 x downlights.

Because every home and style is different; get in touch with our expert staff for personalised and local advice in one of our lighting and ceiling fan showrooms across South East Queensland or online for delivery to your door.


How can one effectively balance natural light with artificial lighting when determining the number of lights needed in a room, especially considering variations in daylight throughout the day and across different seasons?

Achieving a balance between natural and artificial lighting involves considering factors such as the orientation of windows, the presence of shading elements like curtains or blinds, and the room's function. For instance, in rooms with ample natural light, such as living rooms with large windows, one may need fewer artificial lights during the day but should ensure that artificial lighting complements natural light in the evenings or on cloudy days. This may involve using dimmers or adjustable fixtures to adapt to changing natural light conditions.

Are there any specific guidelines or considerations for selecting the appropriate colour temperature (e.g., warm vs. cool) for different types of lighting fixtures in various rooms, and how does this affect the overall ambiance and functionality of the space?

Selecting the appropriate colour temperature for lighting fixtures is essential for creating the desired ambiance and functionality within a room. Warmer colour temperatures (around 2700-3000 Kelvin) are often preferred for spaces where relaxation or comfort is desired, such as bedrooms or living rooms, as they emit a soft, inviting glow. In contrast, cooler colour temperatures (around 4000-5000 Kelvin) are suitable for task-oriented areas like kitchens or offices, providing bright, energising light conducive to productivity. 

In addition to the suggested lumens per square meter for different room types, what other factors should be taken into account when determining the placement and spacing of lighting fixtures to ensure optimal illumination and visual appeal within a room?

Beyond the recommended lumens per square meter, several other factors should be considered when determining the placement and spacing of lighting fixtures. These factors include the room's layout, furniture arrangement, and specific tasks performed within the space. For example, in a kitchen, task lighting should be strategically placed above work areas like countertops and stovetops to minimise shadows and enhance visibility. Similarly, in a living room, accent lighting can be used to highlight architectural features or artwork, while ambient lighting should be evenly distributed to provide overall illumination. Experimenting with different lighting configurations and adjusting fixture heights and angles can help achieve optimal illumination and visual appeal within a room.