Line voltage (120 volts) halogen lighting is often too hot to use in or under cabinets. Try using low voltage (12 volts) or line voltage (120 volts) xenon lighting instead.
12-inch LED Complete 2 Thin Under Cabinet Task Light(ALC2-12)
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When selecting fluorescent light fixtures for the kitchen try to select those that have instant start T8 electronic ballasts. This will ensure that the fluorescent lamp will turn on without flickering, that the fixture will not give off with much heat, that the ballast will not emit an annoying humming sound, and that the fixture will accommodate energy-efficient T8 fluorescent lamps. Fluorescent lighting is, without question, one of the coolest light sources and modern, high quality fluorescent lamps provide excellent lighting with very good color rendition.
Create warmth and ambience by combining a variety of lighting that can be controlled independently. In this kitchen, there are none of the usual recessed ceiling lights. Instead, pendant lights over the island provide ambient light, supplemented by accent lighting inside glass-front cabinets, under the cabinets, and under the range hood. Each work zone is well lit, and the combined effect is glowing rather than harsh and glaring.
When selecting fluorescent lamps for the kitchen try to select T8 light bulbs with a color rendering index (CRI) of at least 85 and a color temperature of 3000K. This type of lamp is usually identified using the number, “830” or “930”, somewhere in its product code.
This essential light should be included over the cooking surface, at the sink, over the counters, and over any table or other work surface. These fixtures should be about 30 inches above an island, peninsula, or table, but might be higher if you are taller or are placing the light over a raised surface or an area such as a cooktop.
Task lighting helps you perform specific tasks such a preparing food, reading, sewing, cooking, homework, hobbies, games, or balancing your checkbook. A good example of task lighting is under cabinet lighting. Kitchen LED lighting is a good option for your task lighting. Using kitchen lighting LED fixtures for your task lights will complement the LED kitchen ceiling lights you may have used in other areas of your kitchen.
A well-lit work area is a safety essential in a kitchen. Lighting can also be used to create ambience. The key to good kitchen lighting is to rely on a cast of lighting sources and to layer your lights, mixing ambient (overall), task, and accent or decorative lighting with natural light.
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Wall washers are special downlights that direct light up to the top of the wall. They eliminate the shadows, sometimes called “scallops”, which are characteristic of simple downlights. Space wall washers no more than 36 inches apart. For the smoothest effect, space wall washers 24 inches from the wall and 24 inches apart. Avoid locating wall washers near doors where they can glare into the eyes of people entering the room.
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The darker the colors in your kitchen, the more sources of light you’ll need to make sure you can see what you’re doing. Dark surfaces absorb more light than white and light-color surfaces do. According to the National Kitchen and Bath Association, a kitchen with dark surfaces needs about one-third more light than a kitchen with lighter surfaces.
To see deep into the corner of cabinets, install a micro switch or motion sensor that activates the puck or LED light when the door is opened and turns it off when the door is closed. Costing $20-25 per switch, this allows you to maximize the space in your cabinets and find what you’ve stored.
Cool White Daylight Neutral White Rosy Warm White Soft Daylight Warm White
Black Bronze Brushed Aluminum Brushed Nickel Brushed Steel Chrome Clear Copper Copper Bronze Dark Bronze Gold Natural Metal Nickel Satin Aluminum Satin Nickel Silver Stainless Steel White
Pendant lamps usually hang at a standard height, but for variety and interesting effects, consider adjustable cable pendants with a center weight. The pendants can be suspended from a low-voltage ceiling fixture or a track-mounted transformer. Raise the pendant by pulling the counterweight down; to lower it, simply pull on the lamp.
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Halogen Low Voltage Button Puck Light(HR-88) $18.00 – $22.00
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Low voltage (12 volts) halogen lighting offers a very white, crisp kind of light source that has excellent color rendering capabilities and often makes crystal and good china “sparkle.”
Get inspired by these kitchen lighting ideas and learn how to develop an appropriate lighting plan for your kitchen.
When recessed downlights are used in the kitchen at least some of them should be centered over the exposed countertop. This is another way of providing lighting that will eliminate someone working in his/her shadows on the countertop. Also, if white trims with white baffles are selected, the downlight becomes less obtrusive, blends into the ceiling a little more, and helps to prevent the ceiling from looking like “swiss cheese.”.
Accent lighting adds drama to a kitchen by creating visual interest. As part of the decorating scheme, accent lighting is used to spotlight paintings, houseplants, sculpture, and other prized possessions, or to highlight drapery or the texture of a wall. Houseplants can be accented by aiming an uplight at the wall behind the plant, creating a dramatic silhouette of the plant against the wall. LED kitchen lights are a good option for accent lighting and will compliment any fluorescent light fixtures, kitchen overhead lighting, and track lighting you may have in place.
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40-inch LED Complete 2 Thin Under Cabinet Task Light(ALC2-40)
The number of fixtures and placement of fixtures greatly depends on your kitchen’s size, layout, and look. For example, taller ceilings and darker finishes call for more light.
Today’s dimming systems enable you to accomplish several things: lower light levels to conserve energy, increase bulb life, vary the mood of a kitchen, and alter the brightness of the light to suit the activity.
3in Low Voltage Recessed Lighting Trim with Black Step Baffle(NL-3310-B) $20.90 – $22.75
Browse a broad selection of kitchen lighting fixtures, including under cabinet lighting, over cabinet lights, recessed downlights, ceiling fixtures, indirect lighting, and lighting accessories such as dimmers. If you need visual inspiration, view this dramatic scene to see how “layers of light” can dramatically affect how your kitchen is seen and used. LED kitchen lighting and kitchen fluorescent light fixtures can be used together to create the perfect lighting experience.
2700K – 5-6 Inch – 12.5 Watt – Dimmable LED Onyx Downlight Retrofit Module – Baffle Trim – E26 Medium Base – Wet Location – Nora Lighting(NOX-563227WW) $25.11
12-Watt 17.5-Inch 4100K Cool White Microfluorescent T4 Grounded Light Fixture(SG4-SW-12-41)
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32-inch LED Complete 2 Thin Under Cabinet Task Light(ALC2-32)
Xenon lighting is long-life incandescent lighting that can be dimmed, if need be. This type of lighting can be used for cabinet, bookcase, under cabinet, or indirect cove lighting.
Recessed undercabinet lighting and a hidden spotlight lend drama to dishwashing duties when the over-the-sink view is beautiful tile. Create subtle mood lighting in architectural coves or areas with accent tilework with programmable LEDs. Like theatrical set lighting, the color and intensity can be adjusted to create a mood.
In general, pendants and mini pendant lights should be hung about 30 inches above the tabletop and be about 12 inches narrower that the table on all sides.
Blog Post: Planning Your Kitchen Lighting: 8 Easy Steps Blog Post: How To Remodel Your Kitchen on a Budget Blog Post: How To Make Your Kitchen Lighting More Energy Efficient Dramatic Animated Kitchen Lighting Scene
18-inch LED Complete 2 Thin Under Cabinet Task Light(ALC2-18)
Think about the importance of the key colors in your kitchen (ceiling, walls, cabinets, countertops, furniture); then use proper lighting to bring out the most dramatic colors. Remember that darker surfaces absorb more light. For example, an all-white kitchen requires 40%-50% less light than a kitchen with dark walls and dark wood cabinets.
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At night windows become black, reflective “holes” in your kitchen walls. Consider installing some attractive outside lighting that will not only reduce or eliminate the reflection of you looking out of your windows, but will also visually expand the interior space of your kitchen out into the exterior after dark.
Monorail lighting systems allow you to create functional sculptures for the ceiling. The metal track can be shaped into graceful curves to suit the design of your kitchen, and because it is suspended from the ceiling by hardware called standoffs, it can be mounted on ceilings that might not be perfectly smooth and level. Most monorail systems are low-voltage, operating on 12 or 24 volts. Shades are available in an enormous range of colors, shapes, and materials to suit the style of any kitchen.
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Under cabinet lighting should be mounted closer to the cabinet front — not near the back of the cabinet. In the kitchen especially this helps to eliminate the possibility of your working in your own shadows. A highly polished countertop (for example, granite) will act much like a mirror and will reflect the image of the under cabinet light quite well. Thus, it might be a good idea to select >under cabinet light fixtures that have a frosted or textured glass cover that diffuses the light as much as possible.
For task lighting under open shelving, fluorescent undercabinet lighting sheds even light across the countertop, allowing you to see clearly. Look for a low-profile design less than 1 inch deep, so the fixture won’t be noticeable from standing height. The fixture should be almost as long as the shelf and mounted close to the front edge to provide the most even lighting on the work surface. The color of the light is particularly important over the counter — cool white bulbs will make food look unappealing and will also affect the way you see the colors of your cabinetry and countertops. Visit a lighting store to see how your skin, your dinnerware, and a piece of fruit look under the different colors of light and select the one that seems most natural and pleasing.
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Light up your counters with undercabinet lighting. Learn more here!
General lighting provides an area with overall illumination. Also known as ambient lighting, general lighting radiates a comfortable level of brightness, enabling one to see and walk about safely. Since modern floor plans are more open and your guests may want to move more freely from the living room to the kitchen to the dining room, you may want to make sure that there is enough general lighting in the kitchen to encourage this. This type of lighting is intended to soften the lines on people’s faces and create a warm, inviting glow. LED kitchen lighting and kitchen fluorescent light fixtures both serve as good general lighting options.
14-Inch Priori Xenon Line Voltage Thin Under Cabinet Task Lights(043X-2)
“Light is the first element of design; without it there is no color, form, or texture.” – Thomas E. Farin, founder of Pegasus Lighting
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If you’re tired of the recessed can lights in your kitchen and want to add stylish pendants, use recessed can converters. The switch is as simple as screwing in a light bulb. A socket adapter with a cord spindle plugs into the socket, and a cover plate masks the recessed-can opening.
If the kitchen isn’t lit properly, who will notice it? Who will care to notice it? Who will even want to be in it? Lighting can add depth and/or excitement to a kitchen. Let’s face it, the kitchen is where you and your family will spend a lot of time, so take the time to light it well so that it becomes an inviting and pleasant space to be in. Bad lighting can be expensive and good lighting does not have to be expensive. LED kitchen lights offer you an affordable long term option to make your kitchen more inviting. Fluorescent light fixtures, kitchen designed track lighting and LED options can help you create your dream space.
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Chandeliers aren’t just for dining rooms anymore. The juxtaposition of the hardworking kitchen sink and a crystal chandelier works in this simple white kitchen. When mixing styles, a simple background, such as white cabinets, white walls, and a bare window let the pretty chandelier take center stage.
The size of your kitchen helps determine how many fixtures you will need for adequate illumination, but color makes a difference, too. White reflects light, bouncing it back into the room and making the space feel brighter. With many white surfaces, you might be able to lower the wattage of bulbs used or even cut back on the number of fixtures and still have a well-illuminated room. In this kitchen, a reflective white ceiling, white walls, and white countertops maximize the light provided by the pendant lamps. The pendants use a photographer’s trick to maximize light: They bounce light off the white ceiling, and the light reflects back down to the white marble countertop, spreading a soft general illumination the length and width of the large island. The uncovered window brings in natural light during the day, cutting down on the need to use electric lights until early evening.
24-inch LED Complete 2 Thin Under Cabinet Task Light(ALC2-24)
Bipin E26 Medium Screw G4 Bipin G8 Bipin G9 Bipin GU5.3 Bipin
1.1875 2.0625 2.065 2.25 2.625 2.63 2.6875 2.75 3 3.125 3.5 3.625 5 5.25 6.5 7.25 7.3 7.32 7.5 24
If a kitchen remodel isn’t in the cards, but still want to improve your lighting? You can, with this easy DIY installation. Watch and see two easy ways to add undercabinet lighting without any major rewiring.
The layout of your lighting is important. Learn helpful tips and tricks here.
A set of three pendant lights gives this large island plenty of direct task lighting for chopping and prep, but they’re not all business. The bold red drum shades steal the show — adding personality and drama to this kitchen. In the scheme of a kitchen remodel, pendant lights are less expensive than switching out cabinets or countertops, making them a great place to take a risk. When you need a change or grow tired of the color palette, it’s an easy change.
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Puck or recessed mini can lights bring sparkle underneath and to the interiors of cabinets. Although usually outfitted with xenon or halogen bulbs, new easy-to-install puck lights are also available with LEDs (light-emitting diodes), the newest green alternative for lighting. LEDs use much less electricity to produce light, they last much longer, and they produce less heat (which affects home cooling bills). For example, a 2-watt LED spotlight bulb emits as much light as a 25-watt incandescent bulb and lasts up to 18 times longer.
Recessed, or can, lights that provide ambient lighting for the room should be 24-42 inches apart and should work to light the entire room — not just areas without task lights.
22-inch Priori Xenon Line Voltage Thin Under Cabinet Task Lights(043X-3)
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In this large kitchen, recessed can lights are evenly spaced on the ceiling to provide general illumination. The decorative chandelier over the island provides concentrated task light on the surface, and undercabinet lights along the far wall supplement the general lighting and ensure good visibility for food preparation.
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Use accent lighting to bring a wall of cabinetry to life. Linkable low-voltage puck lights, strip lights, or recessed mini cans can be installed inside glass-front cabinets to emphasize collectibles. Accent lighting typically uses halogen, xenon, or LED bulbs because they are small enough to fit into diminutive fixtures yet produce bright light. Halogen is falling out of favor because of the high cost, relatively short life, and high heat output. Xenon bulbs are similar to halogen without the drawbacks. To save on energy, choose compact fluorescent lightbulbs for fixtures that won’t be turned on and off frequently. Warm white CFLs are affordable and resemble incandescent bulbs in the color of light they emit, yet use less energy and produce less heat. If you’re remodeling or building new, check local building codes for guidelines on kitchen lighting.
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Make over your kitchen lighting with easy under cabinet lighting. See how to add two different types of undercabinet lighting.
There are 3-4 basic types of lighting that should work together to create a well-lit kitchen: general lighting, task lighting, accent lighting, and sometimes decorative lighting (lighting that is used primarily for decorative purposes). A good lighting plan combines at least the first 3 types and possibly all 4 types to light an area, according to function and style. No single light source can provide all of the illumination that is needed to light a kitchen well. In fact, the most common mistake with regard to kitchen lighting is to try to light a kitchen with one fixture centered in the ceiling. You can use kitchen LED lighting for your accent lighting and LED kitchen ceiling lights for your general lighting. The kitchen lighting LED options make the lighting you choose more affordable to use.
This image rotates every 2 seconds to show the dramatic effect that layers of light have in the kitchen. Line Voltage Halogen Lighting
Coves, soffits, over-cabinet areas, and other concealed locations can be used to provide very pleasant, very effective indirect lighting using T4, T5 or T8 fluorescent fixtures.
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Pendant lights come in a variety of styles, shapes, sizes and colors. They work well to fill the visual void above islands and peninsulas, while providing necessary illumination for the work area. In this cottage kitchen, vintage-style lanterns are suspended above the island, adding another layer of chic to the room.
Wall grazing provides dramatic illumination that reveals the texture of special materials, such as brick, stone, or stucco. Wall grazing is uneven, brighter, and scalloped at the top of the wall. For the most exciting effects, use PAR lamps in small aperture recessed downlights. Locate the downlights no more than 12 inches from the wall and the same distance apart. Wall grazing also lights polished surfaces, such as marble without distracting reflections in the surface.