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July 6, 2022

Everything You Need to Know About Track Lighting

This article comes from The Spruce.

Everything You Need to Know About Track Lighting

Instead of the clunky tracks and heads, today’s track lights have many options for both the track itself as well as the size, style, and color of the light fixtures.

Tracks are easy to install, even when remodeling or redecorating a room since power is usually already available in the wiring of an existing ceiling fixture. Track lights are perfect when you want to accent objects with light or work under a directional task light.

Here are some basic tips on what to look for when considering installing track lighting.

Why You Want Track Lighting

  • Track lighting is a contemporary fixture that’s as perfect for new construction as it is for renewed spaces in existing homes.
  • Tracks are versatile, allowing flexibility in sizing, placement, and fixture styles.
  • Lights can be aimed at any artwork, countertops, walls, or other room features as needed, making them infinitely useful if you like to change your furniture or artwork around from time to time. Go with white fixture heads to blend into a ceiling or make a statement with black or silver heads.

When to Use Track Lighting

Tracks are especially handy when a room has an existing electrical box in the ceiling yet needs additional light directed throughout the room. For example, install a track in an older kitchen or home office when you can replace an outdated ceiling light with a track that aims the light right where you need it—on work surfaces and into pantries or closets.

Where to Place Track Light Fixtures

  • Run a straight track along a hallway ceiling and aim fixtures at the artwork on either wall.
  • Customize a track to fit your kitchen space. A U-shaped configuration may allow you to place light right where you need it—over an island or onto the countertops.
  • Install a track 20- to 40-inches out from the walls in a room.
  • Consider installing a track to highlight a large collection of artwork hung over a mantel or on a wall since the heads can be adjusted to point to specific areas of the display.
  • A track installed in a dark closet will let you position several heads right where you need light—on clothes or shelves.
  • Higher ceilings can take track units that are dropped from a central electrical box location or via stems or cable systems.
  • Watch that track heads won’t interfere with the operation of doors, cabinets, or other movable room elements.

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