Lighting Options by Space or Area

Back of House

In back of house areas such as kitchen, service hallways, laundries, housekeeping, maintenance, and refuse areas, well designed lighting helps to create a bright and hygienic atmosphere. Light levels should be bright enough to reveal dirt and debris and provide a safe environment anywhere dangerous equipment or implements are being used. Good lighting reduces accidents by revealing slippery floors, tripping hazards or other potentially dangerous situations. Many of these 24/7 areas are still lit with older T12 fluorescent luminaires that can be replaced with newer T8 and T5 systems for greater efficiency and longer life.

Design Tips:

  • Lighting must eliminate shadows and provide illumination of vertical and horizontal surfaces for demanding manual tasks.
  • Luminaires must be shielded or located so that there is no glaring light spill into adjacent dining areas when kitchen doors are opened.
  • High color rendering light sources are important for all food preparation tasks.
  • In food prep and high moisture areas such as laundries or dishwashing areas, gasketed moisture proof luminaires are required to allow for easy disinfection and protection of the luminaire from accumulated dirt and splashed liquids.
  • Where open fluorescent lamps are in use above food prep or display areas, plastic protector sleeves should be applied to the lamps to contain them in the event of breakage.
  • Direct and reflected glare can affect employee visual comfort and safety. Indirect or semi-indirect light, reflected off the ceiling is preferable. Balance with task lighting directly above work surfaces.
  • Bi-level controls paired with occupancy sensors allow for reduced illuminance levels or shutting down luminaires when low traffic areas such as service hallways, laundries, storerooms, refuse rooms, etc. are unoccupied.