Remodelling the kitchen can be a tedious task, especially finding the best pieces to put together. One of the most common fixtures you can add to your kitchen renovation is under cabinet lighting. These lights have numerous applications and are commonly used to brighten areas that are usually more complex for the primary lights to reach. Under-cabinet lighting is also used to give your kitchen a more dramatic look. These lights have three major types – incandescent, fluorescent, and LEDs. Each of them has its advantages and disadvantages, and we’ll leave you to decide which you prefer.
Different Types of Light Used for Under Cabinet Kitchen Lighting
Incandescent under cabinet lights is also known as a halogen fixture. It provides an excellent quality light that can illuminate dark areas inside the kitchen. These lights can be dimmed, giving the kitchen a more dramatic look. But, incandescent under cabinet lights are becoming less popular because of their excessive energy usage. The bulbs used in a halogen fixture don’t last long—also, this type of under cabinet light produces heat. With the increasing heat inside the kitchen, the air conditioning system would have to work harder to cool down the air. The result would be an increase in your electricity bill.
Another type of under cabinet lighting is the fluorescent fixture. Many choose this option because of the bulb’s long lifespan. It is also lauded because of its better energy efficiency. But, the problem with this type of lighting is the poor quality of light that it produces. Many pointed out that after installing these lights, their kitchen started to look like an office cubicle. Another downside of fluorescent light is its mercury content. Mercury is a liquid metal that is dangerous to the body and the environment. You wouldn’t prefer to put this in any part of your house, right?
LED light is a recently introduced technology that combines incandescent and fluorescent light efficiency. Many believe that LEDs will take over the market for years to come. More homes are switching to this type of light because of its benefits. Using an LED for under cabinet lighting will give you an outstanding energy efficiency partnered with a warm glow. It does not feel hot when touched, and the bulbs last for a long time. If you use an LED for your under cabinet lighting, expect a brighter kitchen with lower electric bills.
With the significant decrease in LED light prices, many contractors and suppliers consider it the best option for under cabinet lighting and many other types of lighting solutions. It’s cheaper, and it is a safer choice for your home.
Different Types of Wiring System for Under Cabinet Kitchen Lighting
After you purchase your LED under cabinet lights, the next thing that you need to do is to choose the wiring option for the system. There are three options that you can choose from – plug-in, direct wires, and junction box.
Plug-in fixtures have a power cord that you can connect to an electric socket inside the kitchen. It is perfect for those who opt to DIY, and it requires no electrical skill. It is effortless to uninstall, making it an ideal option for those who rent.
The only downside of this type of wiring system is that you cannot control the lights using a switch. Because it is directly connected to the power socket, plug-ins would not give you an option to dim the lights. Also, other types of lights, like downlights, require different plug-ins than regular LED lights.
If you don’t want plug-ins, another option that you can consider is direct wires. Cables go directly into the wall for this wiring system, and it has a switch to operate the lights. With this, you’ll be able to dim your lights to set the mood of your home. Just make sure that the primary controls are inside the controller.
The main drawback of this type of electrical system is the complexity of its installation. Experts agree that people should contact a licensed electrician to help them set up this type of lighting. Renters are advised not to consider this option because they won’t be able to take their lights when they move out.
Choosing the wiring system for your under cabinet lights can be challenging. Fortunately, there is another option for those who cannot determine the wiring system they want for their kitchen. According to experts, you can consider choosing a junction box wherein plug-in wiring can be converted to direct wire. Also, you can store most of the wirings inside the box, giving you a tidier space.
Tips on Choosing the Best Under Cabinet Kitchen Lighting
- Look for the best deals from a reliable supplier. Quality is essential when it comes to lights. But you don’t have to break the bank even if you’re looking for high-quality lights. It’s surprisingly affordable as long as you find the right store with the best deals.
- Test what works with your space. Once you find the right supplier, browse through their catalogue. Before you purchase, visualise what will work with your kitchen and the theme that you’re planning. If you’re unsure about your choices, consult your supplier or ask an interior designer’s advice.
- Measure your kitchen and cabinets. Visualising is not enough. It is also essential to identify the kitchen and cabinets’ measurements. You’ll have difficulty determining how to illuminate your kitchen without the size because you won’t find the best fit. Also, this would help you decide the number of lights you’ll need to buy. If you plan to install multiple lights, consider purchasing a linkable model powered by one source. Linkable models are also easy to control and are a convenient option for you.
- Consider the Colour Temperature and Dimming. Colour temperature is also essential when picking your kitchen under cabinet lighting. There are multiple options available, including 2700K, 3000K, or 5000K. If you are not familiar with these terms, you can consult a licensed electrician and ask for their guidance regarding this matter. Another critical factor that you should check on is the dimming ability of the under cabinet lights. Many people want their kitchen lights to be dimmable because it helps create a relaxing atmosphere. Before you decide to renovate your kitchen, think if you need dimmable lights.
- Think of the Colour saturation. Another factor to contemplate before buying your lights is colour saturation. It refers to the strength of the light’s colour. Determining how strong or weak the light produced would enable you to transform your kitchen’s character. If you want to build a normal-looking kitchen, consider using white or yellowish lights. If you’re going to be experimental, you can consider using other colour shades. But make sure that they would match the kitchen’s overall theme. You can browse through the internet for advice or work with an interior designer to guide you.
Now that we’ve laid out the basic guidelines that will help you purchase the best under cabinet lights, it’s time to put it into action! Just follow our tips, and you’ll have a bright and lovely kitchen in no time! Also, check out our online store, www.simplelighting.co.uk for the lighting recommendations mentioned here!