A Guide to Explain The Various Application of Kelvin Color Temperature Scale

A perfect lighting fixture has become an important part of everyone’s life. Your eyes have different responding capabilities for different intensity of light. This varying response also affects your mood.

Supposedly for some reason, you have interchanged the light bulbs of your garage and bedroom. The high intensity of garage bulb will not give you a calm and relaxing feeling in your bedroom. Also, the low intensity bedroom bulb will not provide clear view within the engine to complete your task.

What is Kelvin and color temperature scale?

Kelvin is the SI unit of thermodynamic temperature. The scale tries to describe the appearance of various light temperatures. It ranges from2700 – 5000 degrees kelvin. Ordinarily, lighting fixtures carry the SI unit (K) to portray the temperatures associated with them. Understanding the meaning of each temperance range helps in making an informed lighting decision.

Kelvin color temperature scale gives a true reflection of the temperature applied in home settings. A low number gives a “warm” color temperature while a higher number gives a “cold” color temperature. This does not necessarily mean that the room gets cold or hot, but the mood of the pace is what changes to warm or cold.

In short and simple way, a light bulb will appear brighter and whiter if its Kelvin temperature level is higher and vice-versa. Choosing light temperature comes first before choosing the light fixtures. It does not make any sense to have an elegant fixture with a temperature that does not match with the room.

For you to enjoy, you have to get it right on the light temperature. It will help you to select the perfect intensity of light bulb required for each room. It provides you an ideal idea to decorate each room with different lighting effects. Below is a guide on the application of each light temperature range:

Range Between 2000-3000

The most common light temperature in this range is 2700. It is commonly referred to as “warm white”. As the name suggests it offers a warm temperature in a room. It is yellow in color, a reflection that brightens up the whole space. This light temperature is mostly recommended for family rooms or spaces used for relaxation. It blends well with wooden tones as it complements the wooden grains.

The upper range of 3000 is best used in a bedroom or family room if the walls are white with less wooden fittings. The range gives a bit of warmth at the same time taking care of adequate lighting. This temperature range is also great for a dining room. However, where there is a dining chandelier, it may not be the best option.

Range Between 3500-4000

This color temperature range is commonly referred to as “cool white”. It looks perfect when applied in a bathroom, kitchen or in an office. The lower range of 3500 looks perfect with kitchens and the upper range of 4000 looks perfect in the bathrooms.

The pairing of bulbs with different temperatures in the same room may also look perfect. For instance, you can have a bulb of 3500 on the ceiling of the bathroom and one of 4000 to illuminate the bathroom mirror.

Range Between 4500-5000

This temperature range is also referred to as “daylight”. It illuminates a mixture of blue and white light to give a pleasant lighting glow. It is generally required for performing an intense task in any working environments.

The color range works best for basements and working areas. It is a good temperature for a reading light or any environment where the brightness is more important than the mood.

5500 and Above

Any light temperature above 5500 is commonly referred to as “prison light”. It gives a bright bluish lighting effect. It is mostly applicable in the areas like security tasking, where maximum lighting is necessary and anything to do with the mood of the space is unnecessary. The perfect place to use this color temperature is the garage and warehouses.

Color temperature is very important when designing your house. This is because if you do not match the temperature with the room, you may end up having horrible lighting and you may not enjoy living in your house. An improper lighting will also increase your electric bill.


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