Track lighting kits are a great option for lighting medium- to large-size rooms in which other forms of lights are either ineffective or too complicated to install. A track lighting fixture consists of a bar or track that can mount up to eight light fixtures. These unique ceiling light fixtures adjust to create an even wash of light or illuminate specific parts of a room.
With their ability to produce up to 800 lumens per lamp, track lights can illuminate a larger area compared to most standard light fixtures. And, since they require only a single standard junction box for installation, they’re easier to install than recessed lighting and other types of multilamp lighting.
These attributes make track lighting popular, which is why there are a lot of options on the market. This guide will seek to illuminate this lighting option by reviewing the features to consider when shopping for the best tracking lighting while reviewing some of the best kits on the market.
- BEST OVERALL: Globe Electric Grayson 6-Light Track Lighting
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Canarm James 4 Bulb Track Light
- BEST PENDANT: Scruggs 5 – Light Kitchen Island Linear Pendant
- BEST FOR KITCHEN ISLANDS: Hampton Bay 4-Light Wave Bar Track Lighting Fixture
- BEST FOR LARGE SPACES: Cresswell 8 ft. Flex Track Lighting Kit
- BEST FOR SMALL SPACES: Hampton Bay 3-Light Antique Bronze Track Lighting Kit
- BEST ADJUSTABLE: Unicozin LED 6 Light Track Lighting
What to Consider When Buying the Best Track Lighting
Being familiar with the different types of track lighting, as well as such important factors as brightness, adjustability, and wattage, is crucial when shopping for track lighting. Ahead, learn more about these and other important features of track lighting.
Types of Tracks
Track lighting comes in three different types: linear, flexible, and pendant.
- Linear: This type of track lighting consists of multiple light fixtures on a single straight track. It can hold a large number of lights and be positioned to move anywhere on the bar.
- Flexible: Flexible tacks can be curved to create a rounded shape that suits the style of the room.
- Pendant: Pendant lights extend from the track on a down rod to a set height. Each pendant can be set to a different height to create a more interesting effect and different lighting.
Types of Fixtures
Fixtures come in both pendant and track head types. Track head fixtures attach to the track and are available in a variety of styles, colors, and beam angles. They can create washes of ambient light or tightly focused spotlights for highlighting different parts of the room.
Pendant lights attach to the track and extend from a rod or wire below it, creating a more elegant look and softer lighting.
Number of Bulbs and Wattage
Track lighting fixtures have multiple lights, providing ample brightness as well as versatility. The multiple light setups allow the user to aim the lights in different directions to create ambient lighting or highlight specific features in a room. Most track lighting mounts hold either four, six, or eight lights.
Wattage varies depending on the type of bulbs a fixture uses. For example, track lighting that holds low-wattage LED lights may use about 20 to 30 watts, whereas a pendant track lighting fixture with six 60-watt bulbs may use more than 350 watts.
Brightness and Color Temperature
Track lighting lamps come in different levels of brightness, which is measured in lumens, and color temperature, which is measured on the Kelvin scale (K). Track lighting brightness generally ranges between 400 and 800 lumens. The more lumens, the brighter the lighting. Track lighting that uses 60-watt incandescent bulbs will generate about 800 lumens per lamp, while a fixture that uses 50-watt halogen bulbs will produce about 500 lumens per bulb. Consider brightness when determining how much light is needed for a room’s size.
Color temperature is a measure of the warmth or coolness of the light the fixture produces. Bulbs that measure lower on the scale, between 1,000 and 4,000K, are warmer, similar to the light of a campfire or candle. Bulbs that emit light higher on the scale—6,000 to 10,000K—are cooler, similar to daylight.
Track lighting consists of multiple light fixtures on a single track. The fixtures can typically adjust individually to target different parts of the room. While some fixtures are locked to their position on the track, others can be moved at any point along the track, allowing for more versatility. Adjust individual lighting fixtures to create ambient lighting, which is the general level of illumination in the room, or to target specific items, such as a piece of artwork or furniture.
In addition to being one of the best ways to add lighting to a home, track lighting is also a cost-effective way to enhance a home’s interior design. These fixtures can be very noticeable at sizes up to 8 feet long. Stylish track lighting comes in a variety of styles, ranging from rustic farmhouse to traditional, making it easy to find unique track lighting for one’s home.
Keep in mind that designer track lighting typically comes with a higher price tag. As with any other furnishing, it’s vital to consider how a track lighting fixture’s style will mesh with a home’s decor when choosing a model.
Our Top Picks
The list below takes into account the above factors to select some of the best track lighting fixtures on the market. It includes all three types of track lighting with models that suit various sizes of rooms.
With a sleek look that suits a variety of styles coupled with six lights that produce ample brightness, this Globe Electric Store Grayson kit is one of the best all-around options on the market for lighting a living area. Its conical-shaped lights, subtle S-shaped curve, and four finish options (rubbed bronze, black, white, and brushed steel) make this model suitable for a variety of decors.
The track’s six lamps each produce 465 lumens of soft white light, so this fixture provides ample light for illuminating even large living spaces. Each track head rotates 360 degrees, allowing the user to fine-tune how the light is distributed in the room, while its two separate bars allow the user to set the track in a straight line or V shape.
- Number of lights: 6
- Wattage: 300 watts
- Length: 4 feet
- Ample light output
- Easy installation
- Very adjustable
- Multiple finish options
- Halogen bulbs aren’t as energy efficient as LED bulbs
The affordably priced Canarm James 4-bulb track light is a great option for those looking to upgrade their lighting on the cheap. Despite coming in at about half the price of similar track lighting fixtures, this model still produces plenty of light to illuminate a living room or kitchen, thanks to four 50-watt halogen bulbs, each of which produces about 500 lumens.
Each light attaches to the track via a ball joint, giving it the flexibility to aim in any direction. Its S-shaped bar, glass lampshades, and two finish options—brushed nickel or oil-rubbed bronze—suit a variety of styles, including both modern and traditional decor. The bar attaches to a round base that installs to a standard light box.
- Number of lights: 4
- Wattage: 200 watts
- Length: 4 feet
- Affordably priced
- Adjustable lamps
- Two finish options
- Easy installation
- Four lights limit its coverage
This stylish five-light pendant design from Scruggs mixes the rustic charm of exposed bulbs with an elegant glass shade for an attractive kitchen track lighting option. The fixture consists of five lights, each of which features a wine-glass-shaped cover over an Edison bulb.
Each pendant drops down from the base via a cord, the length of which users can adjust during installation. With a maximum hanging height of 4 feet, this fixture is ideal for taller ceilings. Each incandescent bulb puts out a maximum of 60 watts, so each light produces 800 lumens. The fixture is also compatible with more energy-efficient halogen bulbs. The rubbed bronze base attaches to a standard ceiling light box.
- Number of lights: 5
- Wattage: 300 watts
- Length: 40 inches
- Rustic look
- Ample light output
- Installs to standard light box
- Not energy efficient
- Bulbs not included
With an attractive design and four adjustable lights, this shorter Hampton Bay 4-Light Wave Bar is one of the best track lighting options for a kitchen island. Its 2-foot-long track holds four 50-watt halogen bulbs, each of which produces 500 lumens, which is ample brightness for lighting a kitchen or as living room track lighting.
An undulating track with a brushed steel finish and glass cylinder shades creates an attractive option for a variety of room styles. The light heads can turn 360 degrees, allowing the user to adjust them to suit a variety of lighting needs. This model is also a great pick for those looking for an easier installation. The bar connects to a round base that installs to any standard light box without the need to drill additional holes into the ceiling.
- Number of lights: 4
- Wattage: 50 watts per light
- Size: 2 feet long
- Style suits a variety of decor
- Ample lumen output
- Easy to install
- Shorter length provides less coverage than some
With its eight lights and 8-foot length, this curving track from Cresswell is ideal for lighting large spaces such as a great room. The flexible curving bar allows the user to shape the track to suit the living space. The six lights rotate 360 degrees to highlight different parts of the room or evenly distribute ambient lighting. The oil-rubbed bronze finish gives the light fixture a sophisticated look that’s accentuated by six 400-lumen LED lamps that produce a warm white color temperature.
This fixture’s large size—the track measures 8 feet long—and flexibility can make it more challenging to install than other track lighting models. The kit features a round base that connects to a standard light box and four additional supports that mount to the ceiling.
- Number of lights: 6 LED
- Wattage: 36 watts
- Length: 8 feet long
- Ample light output
- Adjustable shape
- Energy efficient
- Attractive finish
This Hampton Bay fixture’s small size (just 2 feet long) is ideal for bathroom track lighting or use in other small spaces that don’t need a lot of light. It comes equipped with three directable lamps, each of which takes a 50-watt halogen light bulb that produces 500 lumens of brightness. The lamps can rotate 360 degrees and tilt upward or downward, so the user can fine-tune the lighting to suit the space.
A rubbed bronze finish with accents gives the fixture an antique look suitable for rustic farmhouses and other vintage styles. A bar that attaches to a single round base makes installation into a standard light box easy.
- Number of lights: 3 LED
- Wattage: 150 watts
- Length: 2 feet long
- Compact size suits smaller spaces
- Ample light output for size
- Attractive finish and design
- Doesn’t provide as much coverage as larger fixtures
Few track lighting fixtures offer the same level of adjustability as this six-light model from Unicozin. The fixture consists of a 4-foot-long bar broken into three sections connected by joints that can rotate up to 270 degrees. Each of the three sections includes two lights mounted via a socket that can rotate up to 90 degrees. This design gives this fixture exceptional adjustability.
Since the entire light bar attaches to a single circular ceiling mount, the arms aren’t locked in after reinstallation, so the user can make adjustments to suit changes in the room. Each light uses a 4-watt LED bulb that produces 400 lumens at a 5,000K color temperature. With its two color options of matte nickel and black, this fixture is ideal for homes with modern decor.
- Number of lights: 6 LED
- Wattage: 24 watts
- Length: 4 feet long
- Excellent adjustability
- Efficient LED lighting
- Ample coverage
- Exposed bulb design may not work with some styles
With a style that suits a variety of different decor and six lights, each of which produces 465 lumens, the Globe Electric Grayson 6-Light Track Lighting is a worthy choice for lighting living areas of various sizes and styles. Those looking to add track lighting on a budget should consider the CANARM LTD. James 4 Bulb Track Light with its affordable price and four-light system.
How We Chose the Best Track Lighting
In constructing our list of the top track lighting kits, we considered a variety of criteria. As with any light future, how much light the fixture can produce was key in the selection process. With that in mind, we chose track lighting that produces enough lumens to capably brighten a smaller room or kitchen island (for smaller fixtures) or a large living area for larger fixtures.
Since one of the advantages of track lighting is its ability to direct light to specific locations, we favored lighting with adjustable lamps and, in some cases, adjustable tracks. Efficiency is also important, so most of the fixtures we chose use either halogen or LED lights, which are more energy efficient than incandescent lights.
Since most homeowners like to save money by installing the fixtures themselves, we favored models that did not require complex installations or multiple mounting points on the ceiling.
If you’re wondering what type of wiring you need to install track lighting or what kind of bulbs to use, read on for answers to these and other commonly asked questions about track lighting.
Q. Do you need a junction box for track lighting?
Most track lighting does require a junction box for installation. Although track lights have multiple fixtures, only one junction box is needed to wire the entire fixture.
Q. What is the difference between J-style and L-style track lighting?
To identify the difference between J-style and L-style track lighting, look at the contacts on the light heads. If the contacts are 1 inch apart, it is likely a J-type lighting fixture. If the contacts are about .78 inches apart, they are L-style track lighting.
Q. What kind of bulbs go in track lighting?
It depends on the light fixture. Many track lighting fixtures use MR16 halogen bulbs, while others use GU10 size LED bulbs; others use standard incandescent light bulbs. Make sure to check the fixture’s packaging to determine which bulbs it can use and whether bulbs come with the unit.
Q. How many lights can I put on track lighting?
That depends on the fixture. Track lighting includes models with as few as three bulbs or as many as eight.
Q. Can I replace fluorescent lights with track lighting?
Yes. Track lighting can connect to the same wiring as a fluorescent light with no need for any rewiring.
Q. How do I change track lighting heads?
To release a track light fixture from the track, press down on the fixture’s locking tab and then twist it counterclockwise to release it. Add the new lighting head by pressing it into the locking tab and turning it clockwise.
Q. How do I remove or replace the track lighting?
To replace the track, remove the fixture as you would any other light fixture. Unscrew it from the electrical box, then disconnect all three wires and remove the fixture.