A well-lit kitchen is not just aesthetically pleasing but also incredibly functional. Your ceiling fixtures and chandeliers may provide ambient lighting sufficient to illuminate the room, but they are simply not enough. The same goes for fancy pendant lights and wall sconces, which may provide accent lighting to the room, but don’t add much to the practicality of your cooking space. So, what should you do to brighten up your kitchen without paying for a full-scale remodel? Well, the answer is pretty simple: you should look into under-cabinet lighting ideas.
Now, under-cabinet lighting may be subtle and not draw as much attention as a chandelier hanging from the ceiling, but it can brighten up your countertops, making the precision tasks of slicing and chopping a lot easier and safer. They are also rather inexpensive.
Since we have already discussed the best type of lighting for each room in your house, it’s about time we talk about the best under-cabinet lighting ideas to give your kitchen an instant and budget-friendly makeover.
Popular Under-Cabinet Lighting Ideas
These are the most popular types of under-cabinet lights to give any kitchen a much-needed glow up.
LED Strip Lights
If you are looking for affordable under-cabinet lighting ideas, opting for mounted LED strip lights is probably your best option. These budget-friendly strips provide the best type of lighting for the kitchen and are rather easy to install.
LED strip lights comprise small bulbs mounted on a rope-like strip with peel-and-stick tape at the back. All you need to do is measure the area under your cabinet and cut these strips accordingly. You can then stick them to the underside of the shelves right above the countertops. Once done, just plug the cord into the nearest electric outlet to light up your workspace.
Puck lights are yet another great option for brightening up your kitchen – especially if you are looking for wireless under-cabinet lighting ideas.
These lights are round in shape and use halogen or LED bulbs to emit task lighting, which is focused at one spot. Most puck lights are battery operated and don’t require any wire extensions. You only need to install them under your cabinets using a screwdriver or stick them to the surface using a suitable adhesive.
Moreover, you can turn these lights on and off with a single tap. However, you may be able to find some newer models in the market that are operated with remote control.
Fluorescent Tube Lights
Unlike the large fluorescent tube lights that used to adorn the walls of every household in Pakistan back in the 90s, these modern tube lights are relatively compact and emit a cooler and brighter glow. You can easily install them under your cabinets and plug their cord into the nearest electrical outlet.
However, unlike puck lights and LED strips, fluorescent tube lights require more space and aren’t dimmable.
Installation of Under-Cabinet Lighting in Your Kitchen
There are two main installation methods of under-cabinet lighting in the kitchen.
DIY Under-Cabinet Lighting
If you want to go the quick DIY route, installing plug-in lights may be your easiest option.
To install these lights, you’ll have to attach your selected light fixtures to the underside of the kitchen cabinets using screws or adhesive. Then, you will attach the cords attached to each fixture to a wire extension before plugging it into an electrical outlet. You can turn the lights on and off directly through the switch.
The only downside to this type of installation is that you’ll have to manually turn each light on and off as needed. Moreover, the wires attached to each fixture will be completely exposed.
Hardwired Under-Cabinet Lighting
For a cleaner and more seamless look, consider hiring a professional to install hardwired light fixtures in your kitchen. This will also help hide all the wires and lower the risk of any short circuits and prevent other electrical hazards.
On a side note, if you want to install recessed lighting in your kitchen, you may have to hire both an electrician and a carpenter to modify your cabinets.
To find out which type of lights you should install in your home, check out our comprehensive guide on the top lighting trends for 2021.
Types of Bulbs for Under-Cabinet Lighting
Since there are so many different types of light bulbs available in the market these days, choosing the right one for your home may seem a little confusing. So, to make a smart decision, you must understand the basic differences between each option.
Usually, hardware stores in Pakistan offer four main types of light bulbs:
Incandescent light bulbs
They are rather budget-friendly and cast a warm and bright light. However, they have the shortest lifespan compared to other types of bulbs.
Halogen light bulbs
These are smaller in size and emit a bright, crisp and white light. Halogen bulbs are the most popular option for under-cabinet lighting in the kitchen.
These bulbs consume a lot less energy and generate the least amount of heat. Although they are relatively expensive, under-cabinet LED lights have the longest lifespan.
Fluorescent light bulbs
Also known as energy savers, fluorescent light bulbs come in all shapes, sizes, shades and temperatures. They also last for a long time and are very energy efficient.
This brings us to the end of our guide on under-cabinet lighting ideas for your kitchen. If you are looking to give your cooking space a makeover without carrying out any major renovations, here are a few in-depth tutorials that you might find interesting:
- Small Kitchen Décor Ideas and Tips
- Backsplash Ideas to Spruce Up Your Kitchen
- 7 Kitchen Design Ideas That Won’t Get Old Anytime Soon
- Unique Ideas to Decorate Your Kitchen on a Budget
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