7 hacks for adding safety and style to your staircase
A staircase is something we all use almost daily, yet it’s one of the most dimly lit areas in our homes and gardens. But here's a secret you might not know, staircase lights can transform a stairway from a functional walkway to a breathtaking piece of architecture, bathed in glorious light. So, with that in mind, here are seven hacks to help you add safety and style to your staircase:
Wide beam angles are recommended for general lighting, while LED panels look sleek and modern while doing the job perfectly. However, to make sure your stairs are lit adequately, directed light, like spotlights, should never be used.
Wall lights on a staircase mustn’t dazzle. Lights that are too dazzling can be a shock to the system, causing people to lose their balance when climbing the stairs. For this reason, wall lights should shine indirectly or be covered with a diffuser, shade, or stained glass.
Recessed wall lights that run parallel to the course of the stairs make the structure of the stairs clearly recognisable and, at the same time, illuminates them in the most beautiful way. And they should be placed next to each step or at regular intervals of just a few steps.
Placing them at ankle height also means there’s no risk of dazzling the user, reducing the possibility of accidents, such as trips and falls.
Even the simplest staircase can be an elegant, architectural work of art with the addition of pendant lights. Pendant lights hang at eye level and can be used to light the whole staircase, making them a functional statement piece.
However, if you’re unable to light the whole staircase with a pendant light, make sure to use other lighting sources to prevent you or your guests from having a nasty fall.
Sensor-controlled staircase lighting significantly increases safety because the light switches on automatically when you approach the stairs. For this reason, it’s crucial to choose a bulb that achieves 100% brightness immediately, like energy-saving LEDs.
Adhesive strips with permanently attached LEDs, otherwise known as LED strips, are a cool and original way to light up your stairwell. Thanks to their flexibility, the narrow LED strips can be fitted almost anywhere and are available in various lengths that can be cut to size.
But LED strips aren’t just there to make your stairs look futuristic. They’re also handy for marking the edge of a step or as a guide along a handrail.
In a dark garden, stairs are even more difficult to assess. Wall lights or built-in lights with the appropriate IP protection class are often used for access stairs to the house entrance. But when it comes to lighting, make sure there‘s no glare. Most outdoor lights have a diffuser installed for this, e.g. an acrylic screen.
And to highlight stumbling hazards lurking in the garden, especially around pathways, pedestal and path lights can be used to make sure your garden is as safe as houses.
Installation of sensor-controlled stair lighting
Modelling the stairs with light is the most important aspect of stair lighting. A smooth transition between light and shadow ensures optimal visibility. Unlit areas must be avoided as they can hide stairs. Drop shadows caused by one-sided direct light can also have a disorientating effect, so this must be avoided at all costs.
When lighting stairs, it’s essential to use glare-free lights. Lights with a diffuser or and indirect light are definitely things to consider.
Often steps with a uniform texture, for example, with a single-coloured carpet, cannot be clearly separated from one another when viewed from above. If this is the case, we recommend ledges at the end of each step.