A Homeowner S Guide To Residential Under Cabinet Lighting

February 18, 2019 7:57 am by sandiego
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A Homeowner S Guide To Residential Under Cabinet Lighting

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.

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]

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. You should also look at the distance of the lighting requirement, where puck style better suits smaller width cabinets and linear styles suit longer width to maintain consistency and allow the lights to be linked together. [7][8]

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.

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.

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.[9] Also consider the amount of lumens, the measure of the total quantity of visible light emitted. A high lumen output creates brighter whites and darker darks.[10]

LEDs can last longer than 10 years or up to 50,000 hours,[3] and do not typically burn out. LEDs generate little heat but may be susceptible to high temperatures.[4][5]

1 Types of under-cabinet lighting 2 Common Styles 3 Factors in selecting under-cabinet lighting 4 References

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]

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.

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