If your overhead lighting is not enough to illuminate all the areas of your kitchen or workspace, consider adding some under-cupboard lighting. There are a few reasons you may want to consider installing some extra lighting. For starters, under-cupboard lighting adds some extra illumination to your counters. If you like to cook and food prep on your counters then extra lighting can focus on these work areas as well as highlight your backsplash designs. You may also want to use under-cupboard lighting to eliminate shadows created by your overhead lighting. Shadows may be created by your cabinets when they block your overhead lighting from getting to your countertops. Putting in under-cupboard lighting will illuminate those shadows and give you more even lighting. Finally, under-cupboard lighting will create some creative style and ambiance to your kitchen as well as provide a warmer, more contemporary feel to your kitchen and add a splash of style. Keep reading to learn about different types of under-cupboard lighting you can get and your wiring options.
Puck lights are round, short lights placed under your cupboards about every 8-12 inches apart. Each light is only 2-3 inches in diameter but can put out a lot of light. You can use xenon or halogen bulbs, but LED lights can produce plenty of light while also being energy-saving. Some puck light fixtures need to be plugged into an outlet but some LED puck lights are so efficient that they can be battery operated.
Bar lights are long, thin, rod-like fixtures that are placed under the cupboards and are ideal for areas that need an even distribution of light. They provide more even lighting as opposed to puck lights that are more spotlights that illuminate parts of the countertop. You can place these bars inches apart to create one, uniform distribution of light across the entire countertop. Bar lights are popular today because of their safety and the quality of energy-saving LED lights that can be installed inside of them.
Rope lights are different from bar lights as they are one long strip of lighting as opposed to individual bar lights. These lights can run continuously along the entire lengths of under your cabinets to give you an even distribution of light. While you choose where bar lights go, rope lights can start at one end and go all the way to the other. This is more of a low level light option and they are the most flexible option as they can be placed over uneven surfaces and go around corners. Most rope lights also come in accent colors in case you wanted to spice up the look of your kitchen lighting.
Once you picked out your lighting style, you need to consider what kind of wiring option you want to install. The two most common are hard wiring and simple plug in wiring. Hard wiring involves connecting the lights directly into the existing wiring in the house where power is then drawn directly from the home’s power source. With this option, you won’t see any of the wiring that connects your new lighting to your home. The other option, simple plug in, looks more like a traditional lighting system where you would plug your lighting into an outlet nearby. The outlet can be installed under the cupboards along with the lighting. In this case, you would see the wiring and be able to plug it in and unplug it at ease. Both options would require an electrician to either redo internal wiring or installing the outlets under the cupboard.
One other option that we want to suggest is installing your under cupboard lights as dimming lights. This can allow you to adjust how intense the lighting is depending on the mood or on what kind of work you are going to be doing in the kitchen. Set the mood with lower light if you are hosting people or turn it up if you are prepping dinner and need to see what you are doing. Dimming can also save you energy because you can turn the brightness of your lights down whenever you want. Dimming can help those with light sensitivity issues and ensures that everyone can work in conditions that they are comfortable with.
If you need to add function to your kitchen, consider installing under cupboard lighting that fits your style and brightens up your workspace. Contact Electrical Plus today and trust us to install your dream lighting.