What Is The Best Lighting For A Sloped Ceiling?

Jessica Stone
by Jessica Stone
Sloped ceilings help create a unique depth that makes the room feel bigger, but it can be tough to find the perfect lighting setup. You can compliment a sloped ceiling with several lighting schemes such as chandeliers and recessed lighting. Whether it be the cost, style, or installation, let’s take a look at the best lighting setup for sloped ceilings.

If you have vaulted or sloped ceilings in your home, it can be challenging to find an appropriate lighting solution. As opposed to flat ceilings, the angled nature requires that special considerations be factored in when planning out light fixtures.

For example, in order to light the extra space in your room with a sloped ceiling, it requires the installation of multiple layers while also ensuring that the beam of light shines in the proper direction. You’re probably wondering how exactly to achieve this.

Track lighting and chandeliers are the best options for a sloped ceiling. recessed lighting, pendants, and cable lighting are also great options for a sloped ceiling. You can also compliment a sloped ceiling with skylights to make the space feel open.

We’ll explore exactly how to achieve proper illumination in a room with a sloped ceiling and also outline the perfect ceiling light fixtures to handle the job.

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Ceiling Light Fixture Considerations

Vaulted ceilings are wonderful design features to add character and curb appeal to your home. However, when it comes to choosing and placing lighting fixtures, they can create some issues. Here are the exact points you should consider when planning out the lighting design and installing the fixtures for your sloped ceiling:

  • How much light does the room need?
  • What is the overall height of the ceiling? Factor in the lowest point and the highest point.
  • The room’s layout and floor plan
  • Your established style of home décor in that particular room
  • What areas of the room need maximum illumination?
  • The height difference between the tallest and shortest wall in the room
  • The joinery and beams that already exist in the room
  • Are there any architectural features in the room that you want to highlight with lighting?

How To Calculate The Amount Of Light Needed

After considering all of the above necessary points, you should begin to calculate the amount of light that the room requires. Follow these steps to calculate the lumens levels or number of watts needed for a room with a sloped ceiling:

  • Take measurements. Using a measuring tape, begin by calculating the width and length of the room in meters.
  • Follow some basic math. Multiply the figures you found for length and width together. Then, take the resulting number and multiply it by 25.
  • The above calculation will result in a number that is the estimated watts you’ll need to illuminate the room.
  • However, to purchase lights, you’ll likely need the lumen levels. To find this, multiply the above number by 10.
  • The total number you receive can be dispersed by using multiple lights and layers to illuminate all parts of the room.

Best Light Fixture For Sloped Ceiling

Choosing the right light fixture for sloped ceilings depends on several factors, but practicality is among the most important. Sloped ceilings make the room feel more expansive, and that creates unique lighting opportunities. There are several factors to keep in mind when you choose lighting for your sloped ceiling, such as:

  • Space
  • Efficiency
  • Aesthetic
  • Practicality
  • Budget

Special care is required when selecting ceiling light fixtures, but it is a fun process. Follow along as we explore the best light fixtures for sloped ceilings and see how they differ in terms of cost, function, and style.

Note: It is recommended to integrate at least two lighting fixtures in a room with a sloped ceiling to help stabilize the light beams and provide uniform illumination throughout the whole space.


Since chandeliers hang freely, the angle of your sloped ceiling will not interfere with the installation. Installing a chandelier can be an excellent way to achieve illumination with a sloped ceiling. They come in a wide variety of styles and sizes and match virtually any type of décor you have.

If you’d like a more subtle light fixture, a chandelier may not be the way to go as they tend to draw attention. They are known to be very showy fixtures and will help establish a particular theme in any room. Chandeliers will also attract the eye and draw it to an area or feature in the room.


Prices for chandeliers vary greatly depending on the type and size you are looking for. You can get a beautiful crystal chandelier on a budget of around $198. But the price only goes up from there. Some chandeliers even run as high as $56,000! The most expensive chandelier in the world was sold for over $9 million.


Pendants are very similar to chandeliers in that they also hang freely from the ceiling. Their design will also make it so that your ceiling’s sloped nature does not interfere with installation. However, if you hang pendants in a row, you may have to adjust the lengths.

These lights are very versatile and can be used for basic ambient lighting or highlighting a particular space or piece in the room. If your pendant has a solid rod instead of the more common flexible chain, this may present some difficulty. In order for it to hang straight down from a vaulted ceiling, you need to install a sloped ceiling canopy.


The cost of pendant lighting will depend on how many you want to get. If you want adequate lighting for your room that has a sloped or vaulted ceiling, then you’ll want at least three to five pendant lights. You can get a set of three for around $80, or you can get a set of five for about $120—however, the price changes with the style you choose.

Recessed Lighting

Sometimes referred to as “pot” or “can” lighting, recessed lighting is mounted into the ceiling with the outer edge of the housing level with the edge of your ceiling. This type of lighting is great for a more modern look but is also very subtle.

In order to properly install recessed lighting on a sloped ceiling, you’ll need to use a special housing called shovel-cut cans. This dedicated housing is angled to fit a slope of up to 45 degrees, allowing the light to shine straight down. You’ll need to calculate your ceiling’s pitch or slope to ensure that you purchase the correct housing can.


Recessed lighting tends to be a bit more expensive than pendants but not nearly expensive as the $56,000 chandelier we told you about. To have recessed lighting installed, you will be paying about $240 to $480 per fixture. On average, most people pay around $360 per light. So for a set of five, you’re looking between $1,500 and $2,000.

Track Lighting

Track lighting is arguably the most commonly used solution for lighting sloped ceilings. This type of lighting is exactly as the name implies. It involves a track with fixtures attached to it that are mounted to the ceiling. Track lighting is very adaptable and allows for plenty of versatility.

This lighting is ideal for highlighting features of the room, ambient lighting, or general task lighting. The anchor hardware is easily attached to the ceiling, and you can move and manipulate the lamp heads in the direction of the exact area you want to illuminate.


Track lights are great, and they’re budget-friendly. You can aim these lights anywhere you want and light your room up the way you please. Track lighting fixtures cost between $60 and $150, depending on the type or style you choose.

Cable Lighting

If your vaulted ceiling has gorgeous exposed beams, you don’t want to install lighting fixtures that will distract from the beauty of the wood. In this case, you should opt for cable lighting.

Cable lighting can be used to bring illumination to the room without taking up much visual space. It will help complement the stunning bare beams in your ceiling. This type of lighting works by stringing two electrified cables along the length of your ceiling. Lights are hung from these cables and used to light the spaces below.


Cable lighting will run you anywhere between $70 for the most simple set up to over $5,000. Most people pay just around $300 for a nice little setup. With so many various options, you have plenty of variety to choose from.


For a great way to incorporate free, natural lighting in your home, install skylights on the slope of your vaulted ceiling. With this option, you’ll have no bulbs to replace, cut utility costs, and enjoy the sunshine all day long.

However, your sloped ceiling will still require the use of artificial lighting sources during inclement weather or at night. This is why it’s always recommended to layer your lighting sources in any room.


A skylight costs anywhere between $100 to $500. Although, this doesn’t include the $400 to $800 installation cost. But, you can do this project yourself and save that extra several hundred.

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Related Questions

Do sloped ceilings add value?

Sloped ceilings can add value to a home because of the trend in maximizing natural light. You can make room for larger windows with sloped ceilings which allows more natural light in, and that is appealing to buyers. The open nature of sloped ceilings makes the room look more expansive, and that alone can increase your home’s value.

Are sloped ceilings more efficient?

Sloped ceilings are less efficient than standard ceilings because it wastes warm air. Hot air rises to the top of a sloped ceiling where it does not affect the occupants or the rest of the room. You can make the most of the space with sloped ceilings, but they are not thermally efficient.

Layering Your Lighting

As we’ve mentioned throughout this piece, the best way to approach lighting in a room with a sloped ceiling is by layering. You could install recessed lights on the slope and hang pendants from the center beam for a trendy lighting combination.

Implementing cable, sky, or track lighting will also ensure that your room is a consistently illuminated space. There’s no doubt that when it comes to lighting, sloped ceilings can be rather tricky. However, with the right tools, design, and layering, you’ll be able to achieve a beautiful and bright vaulted ceiling room.

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Jessica Stone
Jessica Stone

Jessica considers herself a home improvement and design enthusiast. She grew up surrounded by constant home improvement projects and owes most of what she knows to helping her dad renovate her childhood home. Being a Los Angeles resident, Jessica spends a lot of her time looking for her next DIY project and sharing her love for home design.

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