Many homeowners enjoy using a portion of their garage as a workshop, but most garages don’t have ideal lighting for this purpose since they typically only have a single light fixture (often a small overhead incandescent or fluorescent light). If you want to use your garage as a work area, consider these options for improving its lighting.
If your workbench has shelves or cabinets directly above it, you’ll greatly benefit from under-cabinet lighting. Most under-cabinet fixtures such as puck lights and strip lights are simple to install and can be plugged into a wall receptacle (though some may require transformer installation). As a rule of thumb, it’s best to install these lights as close to the front edge of the shelf or cabinet as possible.
If you want to replace an original fixture, track lighting is a good choice — individual lamps snap into the track wherever you like, making it a very flexible option. To put track lights where another fixture is now, all you have to do is remove the current fixture, install the track, and snap the lamps into place. To install track lights in a location that doesn’t already have a light fixture, you’ll need to have a new electrical box installed by an electrician.
Another way to improve garage lighting is to install an overhead shop light exactly where you need it, like directly above a workbench. Shop lights are hung by chains from the ceiling using joists, anchors, or bolts. Shop lights typically use four-foot long fluorescent bulbs. Additional options include an on-fixture switch and/or a diffuser (which softens the fluorescent light).