How to Choose the Best Recessed Lighting Options for Your Soffit

An image of recessed lighting options.

Installing the right lights isn't a simple task. Click here to learn how to choose the best recessed lighting options for your soffit.

3 min read

Is the outside of your house looking a little dark and drab? Whether you want to add lighting for aesthetic reasons or for security, installing lights in your soffit can improve the look and feel of your home.

Even a small recessed light can add value to your home by improving curb appeal. Homes with high curb appeal tend to sell for around 7% more on average.

In this short guide, we'll cover the different recessed lighting options on the market. Stick with us to learn how to choose the best lighting for your home exterior.

Types of Recessed Lights

When choosing the best recessed lighting for a home exterior, you should consider the style of your home as well as your preferences.

There are a few different styles of exterior lighting you can install in your soffit. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Square or round design
  • Fixed or movable bulb direction
  • Color and style
  • Trim type

Certain trim types have different effects. For instance, baffle trim lights reduce glare while reflector trims amplify light.

Make sure you choose lights designed for outdoor use so they can withstand the elements.

Choosing a Size

If you're looking for ways to improve your curb appeal, lighting your soffit is an easy way to make your home more inviting. Of course, you need to make sure to choose the right size and style light for the best effect.

When choosing the right recessed lighting options for your soffit, you'll need to consider ceiling height and the size of your space.

The most common sizes include 4", 5", and 6" options.

If you're installing lights in a space with limited height clearance, consider using a "slim" or shallow design.

Color and Glow Temperature

Some styles of recessed lighting allow you to change the color temperature. Lights with this feature let you choose between warm, soft, cool, and natural light temperatures.

Certain styles are also dimmable.

IC-Rated or Non-IC Housing

Are your fixtures going to touch your insulation? If so, you must use IC-rated housings.

IC recessed lights won't overheat, meaning they can come into contact with insulated spaces without the risk of a fire hazard.

IC-rated housings are also safer and more efficient.

Wet-Rated and Airtight

If you're going to install outdoor recessed lighting, it needs to hold up against the elements.

Make sure to choose a style that mentions it's wet-rated and airtight. This protects your lights against rain and moisture.

New Construction and Remodel Options

New construction housing means that you should install this type of light before you finish a ceiling. It's designed for new homes or when you add to your home.

Remodel housing is for homes that already have a finished ceiling. These have clips meant to attach to the ceiling.

Low vs Line Voltage

There are low voltage and line voltage lighting systems.

Low-voltage lights have a reduced voltage and use a transformer and a dimmer. Line voltage lights use a regular plug and you can use them almost anywhere.

Choosing Recessed Lighting Options for Your Home Exterior

Although there are plenty of recessed lighting options on the market, you can make the right choice once you understand the terminology. Hopefully, this guide helped to enlighten you.

If you're planning to place recessed lighting in your soffit, read our installation guide, and be sure to check back on our blog for more tips like these!

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