Soffit Lights

Exterior lighting is one of the simplest methods to add a level of security to your property. A well-lit house is a deterrent to burglars. Using soffit lights to illuminate the front door, steps and other areas of your home’s exterior will help protect your home. It is also an excellent way of increasing your nighttime curb appeal.

What is Soffit Lighting?

A soffit light is a type of outdoor lighting intended to fit into the soffit panels of the eaves, a porch ceiling, a veranda ceiling or the garage roof overhang.

Soffit lights go by a number of names including can lights, pot lights or downlights.

A soffit light is typically designed with an exterior trim to cover the hole cut into the soffit, while the electrical elements are encased in housing to protect the lighting fixture (and your home) from potential fire hazards.


Purpose: What is the purpose of installing soffit lights? Want to be able to clearly see the lock? Select an angled soffit downlight over the front door. Give the exterior of your home depth and definition with second storey soffit lights.

Safety ratings: Any outdoor light fixture you purchase should be industry standard and have the applicable product safety certifications for its use.

Space: Select the appropriate size and number of soffit light fixtures for the space you will have to work with – typical overhangs can vary from 12 inches or less to 36 inches.

Types of Soffit Lights

Voltage: 120-V systems generally cost less than 12-V low-voltage fixtures, but 12-Volt systems are more energy-efficient.

Bulb type: Common bulbs used in soffit light fixtures include LED, compact florescent and halogen. Factors for selecting one kind over another are: the cost to operate, the cost to buy, and how much heat is emitted.

Size: While 4-inch pot lights are the most common size for 12-V models and 6-inch soffit lights are typically paired with 120-V systems, outdoor recessed lighting 3” and 5” diameter options.

Features: Decide on what features are important to you. Although round is popular, square soffit lights are also available. Do you want a baffle to diffuse or change light flow? When a downlight won’t cut it, try an eyeball or gimbal fixture that can be angled to shed light where it’s needed.