Where to Place Recessed Lighting in Living Room to Maximize Your Comfort

There are a few things to consider before installation when it comes to recessed lighting. The first is where to place the lights in order to achieve the desired effect.

Living room placement of recessed lights can significantly affect your comfort in the space and how the space looks to guests. Placing recessed lights improperly will leave some areas of your living room too dark, while other areas are over-lit and not very appealing to look at or sit in.

Read on to learn how to place recessed lighting in living room areas properly so that you maximize your comfort and appeal.

Where to Place Recessed Lighting in Living Room?

Small Rooms

If you have a small room, and your main focus is to bring light into it, recessed lighting can be placed on the ceiling. This distance will make a room feel larger and more comfortable. Smaller rooms feel more spacious and open because they don’t feel claustrophobic.

The ceiling is visible, and there are fewer corners to worry about. The lighting should be placed 2 to 3 feet from the walls in a smaller room, depending on your space. If you have a large recessed light, you can put it in the middle of a small room around your door curtain beads.

Medium Rooms

You can’t go wrong with recessed lighting in a medium room. The ceiling is usually visible, and the corners are more open than in a small space. Recessed lighting should be 6 to 8 feet from the walls for a medium-sized room. This will create a more spacious feeling within the room. The lighting will also look good in this space because it is closer to the walls.

Large Rooms

Larger rooms dictate larger lighting fixtures. A large room needs ample light that can be seen from anywhere in the room. Recessed lighting is best for large rooms. Recessed lighting allows you to create a feeling of spaciousness in a room, especially if the ceiling is visible. For a large space, recessed lighting should be 8 to 10 feet from the walls.

The Right Way to Mount the Fixture

Most recessed lighting fixtures are designed to be installed on the ceiling. If you have a wall-mounted fixture, it will most likely come with instructions for mounting it. Follow these steps if your fixture is wall-mounted:

1. Mounting the fixture on the ceiling is a simple process. Most fixtures have an adjustable mounting bar that allows you to slide them up and down the wall. Be sure to mount your fixture securely to avoid falling or moving during regular use.

2. Mount the fixture so that it’s about 8 to 10 feet from the nearest wall. You may need to make adjustments for special lighting needs in your space with porcelain tiles. 

3. Mount the fixture by adjusting it to the desired height, then tightening the mounting screws.

4. Install the four-way or five-way switch in a convenient location for you.

5. Connect the electrical wires from your light fixture to the switch, then plug the power cord into an outlet located near your light fixture.

6. Turn on the power and test your light fixture to ensure it’s working properly.

Putting Lights Above Trim Levels

You can put lights above the trim level of your furniture. To do this, you will need to purchase four-way or five-way switches. Four-way switches are often used for overhead lighting in open areas, while five-way switches are more suitable for canless recessed lighting. You may want to consider using a combination of four-way and five-way switches so that you can easily switch between lights above the trim and lights below.

Finishing Touches

Once you have your recessed lighting installed and all of your ceiling trim back on, ensure you know how long it will take before your light turns on. The last thing you want is a circuit overload that stops all of your lights from working! It’s simple math; there are only so many fixtures on each wire, and if that wire becomes overloaded, it can cause problems.


In conclusion, recessed lighting can be a great addition to any living room. By considering the size of the room, the shape of the ceiling, and the type of furniture in the room, you can determine the best placement for your recessed lighting. You can create a cozy and inviting living room with recessed lighting with a little planning.

Jackson Moore

Jackson Moore, holds a degree in Architecture from the Cornell University, has specialized in outdoor living spaces for over 15 years. Before joining our editorial team in 2019, he worked with several well-recognized design firms, creating stunning and functional patio designs. Jackson also advocates for sustainable building practices and incorporates these principles into his writing. His hobbies include woodworking and exploring historical architecture. Apart from that he is also a avid traveler, drawing inspiration from different cultures to enrich his designs.

Leave a Comment