Top 10 Tips for Hanging a Chandelier
Written by: Catalogs.com Editorial Staff
January 19, 2012
Filed Under Home Improvement
Contributed by Lisa Pratto, Catalogs.com Top 10 Guru
For some homeowners, hanging a chandelier can be stressful.
There are many aspects to consider and it can be overwhelming for many. Here are the top ten tips for hanging a chandelier in the most stress-free way at your house.
When hanging a chandelier in a two-story foyer, make sure that the chandelier is at least 6 ½ feet above the floor but, more importantly, it needs to be centered in the upper window. In this case, the view looking into your home is just as important as the view from inside.
9. Dining Table
Formal chandeliers are commonly hung above dining room tables. To guarantee that the view of dinner guests is not blocked unnecessarily, hang your chandelier approximately 30”-34” above the table.
Do make sure you have a way to access the chandelier for cleaning and bulb changes, however. A large dramatic fixture will quickly lose its appeal if you have to rent a cherry-picker to remove cobwebs and replace bulbs.
Most homeowners just buy a chandelier based on looks. While this is important, the chandelier must also be in proportion to table it hangs over. Keeping the width to around 12 inches narrower than table should do the trick.
Of course, certain modern chandeliers are meant to break those rules, and often extend beyond some or all sides of the table. In that case, make sure the proportions of the room are grand enough to balance the size of the fixture.
It should go without saying, but, when hanging a chandelier, do not skimp on the time it takes to do the job right. Safety is important. It should be held securely in place with the proper fasteners.
Having a licensed contractor evaluate the strength and security of your ceiling structure is an important step if your chandelier is large or exceptionally made of heavy material like solid brass.
6. Kitchen Island
Chandeliers hung above a kitchen island should be at least 34” -36” above the work surface or you will continually bump your head while prepping dinner. Not fun.
But again, as in the dining room, don’t hang it so high that regular cleaning and maintenence becomes a problem. Fixtures in kitchens tend to get dirtier, faster, so this is even more critical here!
5. Over the Tub
Bathrooms can go from drab to glam with the addition of hanging a chandelier. Code dictates a GFI circuit and how low it can hang to avoid hitting one’s head when getting in and out of the tub. Check with your local building department first.
4. Size for the Room
A little known fact when hanging a chandelier is that it must be 48” from all the walls to avoid overwhelming a small room. Who knew?
Of course, whether you follow that rule or not is up to you. You might want to try using PhotoShop to virtually “see” the light fixture in the room before you actually buy it! (A good idea for any room where you’re not sure about a size, shape or placement.)
3. Use Low Watt Bulbs
Chandeliers have lots of bulbs. Make sure to use low watt bulbs to avoid both excessive heat and glare. Adding decorative shades can help reduce the glare.
Another great tip for hanging a chandelier is to add a dimmer switch. Chandeliers add a romantic glow to any room and you can enhance this feature by having the ability to dim the lights even lower.
1. The Power
Another no-brainer. The number one tip to hanging a chandelier is to turn off the power before getting started. This simple step can save lives. In fact, over 400 people die each year from failing to flick a switch in their fuse box. Be smart.