Bathroom Lighting

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Submitted by Happs on April 30, 2013 - 12:38am

I have a small bathroom from the 1990s that has a large frameless mirror with an integrated lighting bar in the glass with 6 globe style bulbs.

I have read that bathroom bars with globe lights are outdated and that people are upgrading to bathroom bars with glass shades/covers that are more contemporary looking. Do these provide as much light as the old globe lights?The downside to these lights are their cost--about $200 to $300, when a larger width globe bathroom light bar is around $40. Don't know why such a huge cost difference. Are there contemporary looking, simple, modern light bars that put out a lot of light for around $100?

My bathroom currently has no can lights. I was thinking that instead of spending a lot of money on a good looking bathroom bar, I could omit one and instead install two can lights. What do you all think about this?

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Submitted by spdrun on April 30, 2013 - 8:28am.

Are you planning to sell in the next year? If not, who gives a damn? Excess energy usage from incandescent globe lights is minimal since (a) the bathroom can generally use extra heat and (b) bathroom lights aren't on all that much.

If you're not selling, wait and see what the style of the week will be when you do sell.

Submitted by sdduuuude on April 30, 2013 - 4:32pm.

Happs wrote:
My bathroom currently has no can lights.

So, when you are on the can, it is dark ?

Submitted by Happs on April 30, 2013 - 5:01pm.

No, I don't plan to sell in the next year. I think I might just keep the existing light if it can come out in one piece or buy another bathroom bar with globe lights and then right before I sell spend $300 on a new, more contemporary bathroom bar if globe lights haven't come back into style 8 years from now.

Submitted by earlyretirement on April 30, 2013 - 10:13pm.

Yep. I replaced all the lights in all 5 of our bathrooms. Several of the bathrooms had those ugly round bulb lights in the bathroom.

I replaced all of them with some really nice looking lights from Restoration Hardware. The lighting that I picked out wasn't cheap. But they look beautiful. It made a big difference.

As far as the lighting, some of them aren't as bright as the old lighting but it's more than bright enough. Just pay attention to the wattage of the bulbs. Some are much better than others.

I had a professional electrician come out and change all of the lighting. The one thing that sucked is in 3 of the bathrooms, it wasn't painted under the frame of the lighting so I had to also repaint the bathrooms. I was crossing my fingers hoping that it was painted underneath but no such luck. The previous owner was the original owner and didn't change out much of anything so it's been a busy time of upgrading all the lighting in the house and installing ceiling lights.

I was surprised moving out to San Diego that many of the houses that we saw (even on million dollar houses) didn't have ceiling lights in the bedroom. Lots of lamps. I saw more of that in San Diego vs. most cities I've been to. So we had to get ceiling lights installed in all of the upstairs bedrooms.

But it was a worthwhile investment as it really changed the look of the bathroom. We have since gotten the countertops all upgraded to marble and it looks so great we decided to change out all the flooring to the same Carrera marble on all the flooring. Looks incredible.

Submitted by paramount on April 30, 2013 - 10:15pm.

spdrun wrote:
Are you planning to sell in the next year? If not, who gives a damn? Excess energy usage from incandescent globe lights is minimal since (a) the bathroom can generally use extra heat and (b) bathroom lights aren't on all that much.

If you're not selling, wait and see what the style of the week will be when you do sell.

I agree with spdrun, one thing I did though is mix incandescent bulds with a few high output (100w equiv) compact flourescents - really bright, but still a pleasing light when the old style and new style light bulbs are blended.

But then I'm not to concerned about the looks...the CF bulbs do look a little funky in a light bar.

Submitted by FlyerInHi on May 2, 2013 - 1:39pm.

Carrara marble sounds incredible. When installed with no grout lines it's very luxurious.

For lighting, I would go with focused LED lighting that create shadows at night.
But you do need some flood lighting for reading and over the vanity and mirrors for grooming and dressing.

LED is the way to go. Green tech.

ER, previously you suggested to me an electronic lock from schlage. I've since installed a zwave network that allows me to control all the lights, locks, alarm and AC from my iphone. Very cool. I used a mi casa verde controller instead of the Nexia monthly service.

Submitted by edna_mode on May 3, 2013 - 12:08am.

I stayed in this nice hotel where they had put two rows of lights behind an oversized mirror, so that the lights were oriented perpendicularly outward from the plane of the mirror, but without glaring in your eyes. The effect was a nice diffuse form of lighting, which with a variable switch would mean you could have low brightness when you need to take your nighttime constitutional.

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