When determining the right lighting for your business, the type of business will make a difference in your options. For example, commercial kitchen lighting needs to meet certain regulations to be compliant and safe for food handling areas. You also want lighting that will meet the needs of the space, as well as aid in visibility for your staff, so there are a few things to consider when choosing the right commercial kitchen lighting. While this can be a tricky area to navigate, here are a few tips on choosing commercial kitchen lighting that can make it a little easier.
- Know your codes. Every state has codes in place that regulate any lighting that is not suitable for a commercial kitchen setting. Knowing the codes before you choose your lighting will eliminate any problems later on during inspections.
- Brighter lighting is the better option for this location. While dining areas can be more dimly lit to provide ambiance, the kitchen is all about visibility. Choose a lighting solution that gives higher lumen outputs per watts for the best visibility.
- Choose LED or fluorescents over HID options. LEDs will keep your kitchen from having extra heat output from the light sources. While fluorescents create more heat than a LED, they are still one of the lower heat emitting lighting options.
- Choose sealed lighting solutions. Regardless of the kitchen type, there will be heat and steam. These two elements can have a negative impact on the internal components of lighting solutions. A sealed lighting solution, or at the very least an option with a silicone seal, will eliminate costly repairs or replacements of lighting solutions.
- Safety coated bulbs can add peace of mind. Sometimes, bulbs are known to burst and send glass flying. While this situation is bad news anywhere, it’s especially problematic in an area with open food containers. Safety coated bulbs are less likely to spontaneously burst to remove this possible scenario happening in your restaurant.
- Install timers, not dimmers. While most commercial locations would benefit from dimming capabilities, whether as part of the fixture or an installed dimmer, restaurant kitchens have a different set of needs. While the level of lighting output will never vary in a commercial kitchen, the hours that light is needed will change. Installing timers set to go off at the end of the night will ensure you won’t end up lighting an area when it is unoccupied.