Under-Cabinet Lighting

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Under-cabinet lighting is typically added under a cabinet, shelf, or similar surface in order to produce localized lighting on a work surface. Under-cabinet lighting can also double as a night light.

Types of under-cabinet lighting[edit]

There are three types of under-cabinet lighting available for residential use in the USA: incandescent, fluorescent, or LED. The type of lamp dictates the lamp’s style and performance, such as amount of lighting it emits, the light’s color, the life of the lamp, and energy use.[1]

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Incandescent lamps are easily found and are inexpensive to buy and are easy to replace. However, they have the shortest life and use the most energy.

Fluorescent lamps have good light color, color rendering, turn on instantly, and do not flicker. They have high efficacy, long life, and bright, uniform lighting, However, some fluorescent fixture designs are not small or narrow enough to be concealed without modifying cabinet trip molding.[2]

LEDs can last longer than 10 years and do not typically burn out. However, LEDs generate heat and are susceptible to high temperatures.[3][4]

Common Styles[edit]

The two most common styles are puck and linear styles.[5]

Puck lights are round or oval and are good for cabinet and display lighting. Puck lights can create scallops, spots, or pools of lighting instead of even illumination across the counter top.

Linear lights can come as a light strip or as a linear fixture or light bar. Linear fixtures resemble small puck lights on one mounting strip. Light strips are less than 1 inch wide are quite narrow. They are sold by the foot and can be cut to length during installation.

Factors in selecting under-cabinet lighting[edit]

For wood tones, wood-colored tiles, copper-tones, or warm-toned walls, look for a light with correlated color temperature (CCTs) in the 2700-3500 K range. For glass tiles and shelves, look for CCTs in the 3500-5000K range.[6]

The Illuminating Engineering Society of North America recommends a light level of 500 lux for kitchen counters or critical tasks, such as cooking and chopping.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ ASSIST Recommends: A Homeowner's Guide to Residential Under-cabinet Lighting: Getting Good Lighting for Your Kitchen Counters. 2007. Volume 2, Issue 1. Found online at: http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/solidstate/assist/pdf/undercabinet1.pdf
  2. ^ ASSIST Recommends: A Homeowner's Guide to Residential Under-cabinet Lighting: Getting Good Lighting for Your Kitchen Counters. 2007. Volume 2, Issue 1. Found online at: http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/solidstate/assist/pdf/undercabinet1.pdf
  3. ^ ASSIST Recommends: A Homeowner's Guide to Residential Under-cabinet Lighting: Getting Good Lighting for Your Kitchen Counters. 2007. Volume 2, Issue 1. Found online at: http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/solidstate/assist/pdf/undercabinet1.pdf
  4. ^ ASSIST Recommends: How to Select Residential LED Under-cabinet Lighting.2007. Volume 2, Issue 2. Found online at: http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/solidstate/assist/pdf/undercabinet2.pdf
  5. ^ ASSIST Recommends: A Homeowner's Guide to Residential Under-cabinet Lighting: Getting Good Lighting for Your Kitchen Counters. 2007. Volume 2, Issue 1. Found online at: http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/solidstate/assist/pdf/undercabinet1.pdf
  6. ^ ASSIST Recommends: How to Select Residential LED Under-cabinet Lighting.2007. Volume 2, Issue 2. Found online at: http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/solidstate/assist/pdf/undercabinet2.pdf
  7. ^ ASSIST Recommends: How to Select Residential LED Under-cabinet Lighting.2007. Volume 2, Issue 2. Found online at: http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/programs/solidstate/assist/pdf/undercabinet2.pdf