Erin Doman on July 14, 2016 1 Comment Perfect for ambient lighting in any room, ceiling lighting can be found in every home. Ceiling lighting is commonly used in spaces like bathrooms, bedrooms, dining rooms, hallways, closets and family rooms. Although they might all seem the same to most homeowners, there are actually differences between types of ceiling light fixtures. There are five main kinds: flush mount, semi-flush mount, track lighting, pendant fixtures and chandeliers. Today, let’s talk about two common types: flush mount lights and semi-flush mount lights. Click Here to View All Semi-Flush Mount Lights Characteristics Flush mount lighting is a type of lighting fixture that has little to no gap between the fixture itself and the ceiling. It can come in many shapes, the most common being circular, but you’ll also find oval, square and rectangular flush mount light fixtures. This style of light will easily and seamlessly blend with your decor. Most flush mount fixtures are pretty minimal in style, but it is still possible to find ornate, decorative styles with many designers. Semi-flush mount lighting is almost like flush mount, but there is a little gap between the ceiling and the light fixture. There is a stem or similar part that holds the fixture down, which makes it look like pendant lighting without being as low. The gap is usually only a few inches high. This style of light is generally more ornate and decorative than flush mount lighting, although you can find more minimal styles as well. Semi-flush mount and flush mount lights mostly look similar, the main difference being the small gap on semi-flush mount fixtures. Both types are, on average, 13 inches wide, but you can find fixtures that are between 12 and 24 inches wide. For both types, you have access to a variety of styles (minimal and classic to ornate and modern), finishes (nickel, gold, brass in reflective or brushed) and shades (fabric, all types of glass, even crystal). Be on the lookout for the most highly-regarded brands when searching for your ceiling lights. Brands that are known to make high quality semi-flush mount and flush mount lighting include: Elegant Designs, Westinghouse, Kichler and Progress Lighting, among others. Uses Both flush mount and semi-flush mount lighting can be used in most rooms of the house, especially those where you want ambient, general lighting. It’s especially useful for hallways, kitchens, family rooms, bathrooms, closets and bedrooms. The goal is to imitate, as much as possible, the look and feel of daylight within a limited space. Flush mount and semi-flush mount fixtures are a great choice if your ceilings are on the low side. Since they are very close to the ceiling, they will appear more “out of the way”. With low ceilings, track and pendant lighting can seem to take up space because of the length of their stems, ultimately making the room seem smaller. Flush and semi-flush mount fixtures will maximize the space in your room and make the ceilings look higher. It’s important to note that semi-flush mount and flush mount lights are not appropriate for rooms where you might want more directional light, like in the living room or in some bedrooms. In these cases, table, wall or floor lighting (also known as “task lighting”) is best. You will have more control on where the light goes and doesn’t go, so you can avoid glares on your television screen or read at night without bothering your partner. Also, if you want lighting to highlight art on your walls or architectural details in your space, you might want to steer clear of this type of lighting, as it simply is not focused enough to do that job well. Most designers also suggest staying away from flush and semi-flush mount fixtures in your dining room, as this is a prime decor location that requires something more stylish. Pros and Cons When it comes to choosing between flush mount and semi-flush mount light fixtures, you need to know the pros and cons of each. Although they are not very different from each other, they still have some characteristics that you may prefer to avoid. Click Here to View All Flush Mount Lights Pros and Cons of Flush Mount Lighting Flush mount lighting is great if you don’t want to spend a lot of time dusting the fixture. Since it’s very close to the ceiling, not a lot of dust will accumulate in it. It’s also perfect for ceilings up to 8 feet high. However, flush mount lights have a few cons: changing the bulb, for example, requires you to remove the entire fixture each time. It also doesn’t stand out very much, so if you want to add some style to your decor, flush mount lighting isn’t a good choice. Pros and Cons of Semi-Flush Mount Lighting Semi-flush mount lighting fixtures are also great for lower ceilings (9 to 10 feet high). If you want something with a little more flair and style, semi-flush is the best choice because it typically features more interesting ornaments than flush lighting. It’s a good choice for a smaller dining room with a low ceiling. It’s also much easier to replace a burnt out light bulb in a semi-flush than a flush light, since you don’t have to take the whole thing down. Semi-flush mount fixtures, however, need to be cleaned more regularly than flush mount fixtures. Dust accumulates faster, and it’s easier to notice when it’s dirty. It’s also not a very good choice for ceilings lower than 9 feet high. Making the Right Choice Making the right choice between flush mount and semi-flush mount light fixtures all depends on the room you’re installing it in, and on the kind of style you like. If you prefer minimal, non-intrusive lighting, flush mount is your best choice. Flush mount can still have lots of design style, but it’s less noticeable in general because it hangs flush to the ceiling. It’s great where space is at a premium, like in hallways, closets and bathrooms. Semi-flush mount is a good choice for those who prefer a little more detail to their lighting, or when the lighting is in a prime decor spot, like over a dining table. If you don’t want to go all the way to a pendant light or chandelier, or if your ceiling is 9 to 10 feet tall, semi-flush mount has the perfect balance between practicality and style.