LED Retrofits in High Ceilings
You'll need a higher lumen output to go the distance, and be sure to pick a comfortable color temperature.
 
LED_bedroom_lighting
The cove lighting, bedside lamps and pendant fixture are all using dimmable LED sources in a warm color temperature for an incandescent feel.
We are building a new beachfront house. We have 6-inch recessed cans in the ceilings where the ceiling height ranges from 11 feet to 17 feet. We want to use LED retrofit kits and are considering an LED fixture that uses 9.5W and gives 625 lumens at 5000K. What would you recommend?

You do have some pretty high ceilings there. I think you should consider using a fixture with a higher lumen output, something in the 800 lumen range (12W). Also, 5000K is a very, very white light. Your house will feel like an operating room. I would recommend that you consider either 2700K, which is the color of incandescent at full brightness, or 3000K, which is the color of halogen at full brightness. These color temperatures are more complimentary to skin tones. Please don’t make these recessed fixtures your only source of illumination. Alone, they will make the rooms seem smaller and the people within look older than they are.

Randall Whitehead lighting designer
Randall Whitehead, IALD

Randall Whitehead, IALD, is a professional lighting designer and author. His books include "Residential Lighting, A Practical Guide." Whitehead has worked on projects worldwide, appeared on the Discovery Channel, HGTV and CNN, and he is regular guest on Martha Stewart Living Radio. Visit his website www.randallwhitehead.com for more information on books, upcoming seminars and the latest lighting trends.

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