What is Under Cabinet Lighting?
Under cabinet lighting is a form of illumination using fixture installed on the underside of the cabinet. Counter tops and food preparation need an evenly distributed field of light rather than hot spots of light that appear brighter than the rest of the work area. Ideally as well, the fixture(s) used in kitchen under cabinet lighting should minimize their physical presence and conceal physical wiring as much as possible.
What are the most cost effective forms of under cabinet lighting?
Until recently, the most energy conscious under cabinet lighting was fluorescent lights. People never really preferred them to incandescents because of the glare and flicker. Today, better circuit designs and superior fixtures have since made it possible to use incandescent and LED bulbs in under cabinet lighting fixtures. Low voltage lighting technology can also make any bulb type less of a power hog.
The ultimate goal in choosing the right fixture has now moved toward producing optimal lighting levels for work areas and creating balance and comfort with surrounding layers of light.
What are the different types of cabinet lights available?
Under cabinet lights are categorized as either puck lights or linear strip light products. Puck lights are circular in shape and mount in the center of the cabinet’s under side.
Linear strips mount underneath either on the front end or the back end of the cabinet. Until recent years, linear strip lights contained fluorescent lamps designed to create an even spread of light and reduce energy costs at the same time. Both types of fixtures present certain drawbacks when it comes to optimal under cabinet lighting.
If a puck light is installed in the center of the cabinet underside, it will create a bright circle of light called a “hot spot” immediately beneath itself. By design, surface mount puck lights require exposed wires that may be appear unsightly to visitors. If sitting at tables, banquets or bar stools, one’s viewing angle changes and provides a clear view of these light sources. The only way to compensate for this is to install several of smaller puck lights in a series or consider using 12 volt home lighting.
Why do this if you can use a strip light?
In fact, with only rare exceptions, LED linear strip lights for under cabinet generally provide the best levels and distribution of light all around. Fluorescent under cabinet lighting will fit the bill in many respects, but they will also create glare and seldom come with dimmable functionality. Another drawback presents at the point of installation. Fluorescent strips are typically mounted near the back wall with the light thrown forward; putting too much illumination into a person’s eyes.
Phantom strips for under cabinet lighting offer a number of advantages over both fluorescent strips and puck lights?
For one, Phantom strips mount near the front of the cabinet and throw the light backward. This keeps the light from directly blinding the eyes works very well on surfaces such as granite and marble counter tops that are highly reflective by nature. Phantom linear Lighting strips hug the underside of the cabinet so closely that they are virtually invisible from every angle. Also, unlike halogen bulbs in puck lights that become easily damaged by the oil from human fingers, Phantom lamps of all varieties (incandescent, xenon, and LED) are designed to be handled and can be interchanged, replaced, and upgraded by the end user without hassle to the person or damage to equipment. Looking for a LED replacement festoon lamp?
Click here to learn more about cove lighting, under cabinet and cabinet lighting. You may also contact the factory for assistance at 800-863-1184 X 125 or one of our helpful lighting sales reps for information.