There are many LED lighting terms that can be confusing if not explained properly. Task and ambient lighting can often be included in that list. The difference between task and ambient lighting is absolutely key when it comes to planning a lighting scheme and getting it right can make all the difference. Let’s have a look at what each term means and how these should be considered when thinking about adding lighting to a room.

What is task lighting?

Task lighting is defined as operational lighting that provides enough brightness to help you complete required daily tasks. The main considerations when it comes to task lighting is that it is bright enough and fit for purpose.

Download our guide to task lighting.

What should you consider when adding task lighting?

How much natural light you have in your room and the placement of that natural light

The colour of your work surfaces

The aesthetics you’d like to achieve

What colour temperature you’d like your lighting to be

What the various tasks are that will take place in that room

If there’s a lack of natural lighting in your room, this should be compensated for in the placement, brightness and type of lighting you select.

If the work surfaces you will be performing your tasks on are dark in colour, the type and colour temperature of lighting you select should reflect this. However, if your surfaces are lighter in colour they will be naturally brighter, so the task lighting you choose will have less of an impact other than aesthetically.

It is important to consider the various tasks that will take place in your room. Subsequently, you should ensure that the lighting you select is bright enough to assist you in these tasks. For example, for the preparation of food in a kitchen the lighting would need to be very bright in the interest of safety.

Which areas in a kitchen would be considered task lighting?

Areas that TLW would consider to be task lighting in your kitchen are:

Which areas in a bathroom would be considered task lighting?

Areas that TLW would consider to be task lighting in your bathroom are:

Which areas in a bedroom would be considered task lighting?

Areas that TLW would consider to be task lighting in your bedroom are:

What is ambient lighting?

Ambient lighting is secondary to task lighting and is often indirect. It can be used to add softness and texture to your lighting scheme or to accentuate certain features in a room.

Download our PDF guide to ambient lighting.

What should you consider when adding ambient lighting?

Where you’d like to place this lighting and for what reason

What colour temperature you’d like it to be and whether it matches the other lighting in your room

How bright you’d like your ambient lighting to be.

In a kitchen, task lighting should be brighter than the ambient lighting in order to create depth to your room. In a bathroom you may want to have low dim lighting around the bottom of the bath or around a dropped ceiling to create a relaxing atmosphere.

Which areas in a kitchen would be considered ambient lighting?

Areas that TLW would consider to be ambient lighting in your kitchen are:

Which areas in a bathroom would be considered ambient lighting?

Areas that TLW would consider to be task lighting in your bathroom are:

Which areas in a bedroom would be considered ambient lighting?

Areas that TLW would consider to be task lighting in your bedroom are:

For more information please contact the TLW team on 01302 238129, visit our VEWtube channel for informative videos, or email us here

Watch our video on the different uses of task and ambient lighting below.

Inspiring lighting from TLW | The Lightworks

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