B&Q Online: From Kitchens & Bathrooms to Sheds & Paving; plus planning tools

In the spotlight

The new wave of energy saving lighting

Meet Sarah Jane

Sarah Jane shares her beautiful Dorset home with her dachshund Baxter, and loves nothing better than getting a great looking home on a small budget.

She’s a smart designer

Sarah Jane hasn’t just improved the way her home looks but also the way it works, “I’ve made lots of improvements to my house including cavity wall insulation, a water meter, a new efficient boiler and, of course, energy saving lighting – cutting my electricity bill is now my priority!”

Great lighting is key to successful design

You can get CFL bulbs with both screw and
bayonet fittings, which look just like the
classic bulb and produce the same warm
white light.

It's simple really

Stick and Spiral bulbs are great value for money so they’re ideal when the light bulb is hidden from view.

Making the most of light

The most energy efficient way to improve your home’s lighting is to make the most of natural light. Maximising natural light is especially important for rooms that are used during the day.

Positioning mirrors opposite windows bounces natural daylight into a room. Keeping your windows clean can also make a big difference. White windowsills and frames can help to reflect daylight into a room.

Choose lighter colours in smaller rooms and those used mainly during the day as dark colours can absorb nearly 90% of light. In contrast light colours can reflect over 80%.

Shiny surfaces reflect light and can bounce more daylight into a room. Silk paint, gloss kitchen doors, glass splashbacks, shiny tiles…

The Velux Sun Tunnel is an ingenious way to bring sunlight into rooms with few or no windows. It acts as a pipe, bringing the light that hits your roof into the areas of your home that need brightening the most. This way of delivering natural light is ideal for ensuite bathrooms or dark landings and the best thing is that once it’s installed it’s free!