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Sometimes an overlooked part of the kitchen, a pantry is responsible for storing staple foods and cookware. Having a well-designed area will make retrieving and organizing your pantry easy. If you're currently planning your pantry, you may be wondering if you should put a window in there. Is a window even allowed in a storeroom? We're here to bring you the answer.
Pantries large and small are capable of having a window. These additions are excellent ways to provide ventilation as well as light. Other great methods for lighting a pantry include motion sensor lights, LED tape lights, and re-stickable night lights.
Now that we know whether a pantry can have a window, let's learn more. Keep reading to discover what makes a pantry window a good idea, good ways to light a pantry, and if this room should be ventilated.
Pantry Window and You
A window is a great source of natural light. It can also provide ventilation which is necessary for certain instances. Walk-in pantries can have a larger window without sacrificing much, if any, storage space. This spacious window can be an excellent place to grow herbs or keep other houseplants.
Smaller pantries will have to find a window size that won't take away too much storage space. Long and short or tall and thin windows will work best in smaller spaces. The longer lengths will still allow a good amount of light to come in without taking away necessary wall space.
If your pantry isn't on an exterior-facing wall, you may think that windows are out for you. A transom window, the space over a door, is another ideal way to add a window to your pantry. This method brings in additional light and ventilation despite not being open to the exterior of the house.
Regardless of whether you have a window or not, you'll want to make sure your pantry has proper lighting. There are a few different methods that are great for lighting up your pantry.
LED Tape Lights
An LED strip light, also called LED tape, is flexible and has an adhesive backing. The overall design of this light makes it very versatile. These thin lights can be placed around the doorway or used to illuminate the backs of deep shelves.
LED tape lights can either be battery-operated or need to be plugged in. Keep this in mind when looking for this style of light. If you don't have an outlet near your pantry, a battery-operated light will be necessary.
Puck lights are small lights that are typically circular shaped. These lights can have magnetic backings or need to be mounted with adhesive tape. Puck lights are great for under cabinet use as well as in the pantry. Many puck lights are motion-activated that way. You don't have to turn them on and off yourself.
Ceiling lights are fantastic for lighting up a wider area. If you have deeper shelves, you may want to combine ceiling lights with tape lights. This will allow you to get the most amount of light coverage.
Getting a light with adjustable brightness means you can always get the right amount of brightness. Adjustable lights are a fun feature that can be on different types of lights. Tape lights almost always come with the ability to adjust brightness as well as light color. Only certain puck lights and other light sources will have this feature.
Motion Sensor Lights
A motion-activated light is a widespread feature amongst pantry lighting options. The majority of battery-operated or rechargeable pantry lighting will come with the motion-activated feature. This gives you the peace of mind to know that you turned your lights off. It will also make it easier to take ingredients out because you won't have to turn the lights off or on with full hands.
If your pantry has the room for it, then you can opt for a lighting fixture. Larger pantries can consider track lighting. These lights can be moved and adjusted to suit your needs. Smaller pantries will work well with a ceiling fixture. There are a lot of different designs that can make your storage space feel more unique. Fixture lights can also have additional features. You can find both motion-activated and dimmable lights.
Does a pantry need a window?
While it is a nice addition, windows aren't necessary for a pantry. In certain instances, a pantry may negatively affect your storage room. In hotter climates, an exterior facing window can cause the pantry to become too hot. This will shorten the shelf life of food stored inside. A window can also be an easy place for bugs to get into.
Despite that, having a window in a pantry can be a nice design choice, and there are benefits to having one. The biggest upside to having one is the ventilation it can provide.
Does a pantry need ventilation?
It's necessary to have a properly ventilated pantry. This maximizes the lifespan of your non-perishable items and regulates the room's temperature. In most cases, you won't need any additional ventilation. However, if you've ever noticed excessive moisture or a mildewy smell, you'll need better ventilation for the pantry. This may be more common in hotter and more humid climates.
To learn more about pantry ventilation, check out: Does A Pantry Need Ventilation? [3 Times When The Answer Is Yes]
Should a butler's pantry have a window?
A butler's pantry was originally used as a storage area for serving items. More importantly, it's where silver was cleaned and stored. Because these high-value items were being kept here, the butler often slept in this room. Nowadays, a butler's pantry is typically a storage area or additional food preparation station.
These rooms are often located between the kitchen and dining area. Whether or not your butler's pantry has a window is a personal preference. A window will still provide natural light and ventilation, but there are no other benefits or risks to this addition on a butler's pantry.
How do you light a pantry?
There are a lot of creative ways that you can light a pantry. LED tape lights can light up each shelf, be placed around the door, or be placed under any cabinets. Ceiling lights and puck lights are also excellent options.
Ensure your lights are good enough so that they actually light your pantry. You should also make sure they are easy to use. Lights that are complicated or don't illuminate your food will cause more headaches in the long run.
Look for products that have a motion sensor option. These kinds of lights are convenient. Not having to turn a light off while transporting your ingredients out of the room is a plus. It can also be great in small pantries where there wouldn't be an option for a switch.
A window can be an excellent addition to pantries, both large and small. They bring in natural light and can allow for extra ventilation. However, a window isn't necessary for a pantry. If you think you'll have trouble controlling the temperature because you live in a hotter climate, then you can skip the window.
To learn more about common pantry sizes, check out: What Is The Standard Size Of A Pantry? [By Pantry Type]