Track lighting, or track lights, is a series of light fixtures that attaches to a continuous track system, which contains electrical conductors. Basically, they connect to one electrical line instead of each light fixture having individual cords. Track lights typically connect directly to a power source, (plugged in directly) which, depending on the country you live in, could be as low as 100 volts or as high as 240.
Some track lighting systems have digital control interfaces, allowing each light fixture individually controlled. For those who want to save energy, modern track lighting systems have low voltage options that bring the voltage of each fixture from 120 to 12 volts, for example. These track lights are usually more expensive than their line voltage cousins, since these require a transformer to lower the voltage of each bulb. A low voltage track lighting system also lasts up to three times longer than most line voltage track lights. If you use the LED bulbs, track lights can last for 10,000 to 100,000 hours, 10 to 100 times longer than the norm.
Track lighting can be attached to walls or ceilings directly, or hung from rods. Depending on the style, track lights can be attached across rafters or following ceiling beams. Track lights accept many types of fixtures, from lighting pendants to spots, so that they can be positioned precisely where you want them.
Track lights usually come in a modern, utilitarian style. Sleek nickel finishes, no-nonsense white lights—these are the styles of track lighting systems. For those who are looking for track lights that are a little more flowery, there are systems that cater to the traditional style. These track lighting systems are proliferating on the market, and have bronze finishes, deep auburn hues, and textured or frosted glass lamps. If you want more unique track lighting systems, there are track lights that go in zigzags or swirls, instead of the usual straight lines. These track lighting systems can also have light fixtures that are of different sizes and shapes, all on the same track.
As it goes, modern track lighting systems use halogen bulbs that produce a clean white light. For those looking for warmer light, choose an incandescent bulb. There’s also always the option of colored bulbs for a dramatic display.
Track lighting is an option for those who want their rooms clearly illuminated just the way they want. Track lights are perfect in the basement, where they can provide needed light in different parts of the room. Home offices also clearly benefit from the bright light track lighting systems provide. For those who need crisp light in the kitchen, track lights are great for meal preparation.
Wherever you put your track lights, it’s the ideal way to customize a lighting plan.