Under Cabinet Lighting

olivertwistkitchenDecember 19, 2012

I've read a lot but I'm still so confused.

I thought I read the LED lights are the most eco-friendly.
KD and electrician today said that not only are they the most expensive, but that people aren't really happen with LED lights, they make too many "spots" of light.

They are recommending Xenon lights.

Any thoughts?

Can anyone summarize the different types?


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LED bars will not leave spots, I believe the spots of light are when you use strip lighting. The bars are enclosed and diffuse the light. Have you looked at the threads on the lighting forum? Davidtay has posted an excellent informative thread about different types of UCL(low voltage & direct wire)
I cannot say enough good things about the LED light bars(direct wire) that I bought. They give off a nice bright light and I leave them on all the time. The only time I put on the pendants is at night or on a very dark day and when I need to really see how something is cooking(like to watch when cooking something medium rare.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 9:40PM
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Here's the thread I mentioned. Have you read this ? Davidtay on Lighting can answer any question you may have.

Here is a link that might be useful: UCL continuation

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 9:49PM
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I had LED light bars and loved them. Putting them in again in remodel (hard wired this time) Absolutely no "spots" of lights. Now, if you have a shiny polished granite counter, you will see the reflection of the lights on the counters. But after a while I didn't notice that. If you looked at the overall lighting, there were no breaks in the lights making them look spotty.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 9:52PM
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Thanks, I will check out that thread.
Is it true that LED lights are so much more money?

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 10:17PM
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Hey no comment on my rabbit cookie jar ?
Have you gotten estimates from any companies yet ? Call up a few and have them email you an estimate. Measure the inside under the cabinet tell them the length of the connectors and they will give you a quote. The electrician I hired showed me LED strips b/c that's what he was using. I did not like them(way too dim) and found my own lights. I debated using them b/c I just wanted them up but decided to do it right. I am so glad I took the time to pick out a different light

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 10:32PM
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Yeah the LED strips are great for accent lighting like above the cabinet, but not great for task lighting.

And yes they usually do cost more, but the cost is coming down. Keep in mind they don't need to be replaced for like 20 years

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 10:37PM
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Man, this is just so confusing. I read that other thread but it was so technical and hard to follow.

I really want something environmentally friendly, but don't want it to look weird or have an off-color or cost an arm and a leg.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 10:50PM
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I have the Hafele LED tape lighting and love it. They are on all evening. Yes they are expensive but well worth the money to me. My countertops are fairly light and I do not see "spots".

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 11:17PM
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Expensive means what?
The KD came over with the electrician that he sub-contracts with today, but I didn't ask prices at all. For a whole kitchen's worth of UCL, are we talking $250 vs $5000? What?

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 11:22PM
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I went with Philips dimmable, direct-wire LEDs, which are a little more expensive than most. For about 10 linear feet of lighting, I paid about $750.

Eatrealfood: Nice jar! With a name like eatrealfood (which, as I have pointed out in the past, I love), I thought maybe there were actual rabbits in there?! ;-)

This post was edited by Angie_DIY on Thu, Dec 20, 12 at 0:06

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 11:58PM
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Hi, I checked with a division of my electric company (found it through google) and got the Phillips led lights for about half of what they cost elsewhere! Google EFI and see where it takes you.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 7:07AM
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You need to ask for a breakdown of labor & materials. When I received the first estimate from the electrician there was no breakdown. I received estimates for slim florescent bars, LED strips which come on a roll and were inexpensive(Hit lights)and Philips eW Powercore LED bars and labor. I thought the total was too high so I looked into the cost of the lights. I was getting other work done(adding GFI outlets, moving a switch box plus the UCL so I had a meltdown at the original estimate). The labor for only wiring the UCL(I needed additional wiring for 2 switches on each side of kitchen--cove & UCL) and installing the lights was $700. The LED bars for about 13linear ft. was around $700.
Do a search for vendors on the Lighting Forum call them up and get your total for the lighting so you know how much each type of light costs and then get the estimate for the labor. The lighting vendors can explain what you need based on your kitchen layout. My layout is two separate runs which is very different than a large U-layout or a large L-layout. You can save some money by buying the lights yourself because I'm assuming that electricians add a markup(which is their right since they are buying the lights) if they provide the lights.
Since the transformer is built in the LED light bars you are paying for that. I just didn't want to bother with buying transformers for other low voltage lights. Also I didn't want the added expense of dimmers since I really like the light as is and my pendants are on a dimmer.
I'm hoping these LED's will last a long long time but if I need to replace any I can just connect a new bar. The Philips Powrecore are very easy for the electrician to install.
Pegasus has slim florescent bars if you want to price those compared to LED bars.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 7:17AM
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We found hardwired LED to be out of our budget. The plug in kind much much cheaper. So DH hid the outlet above the cabinets and ran the wire down through a corner of a cabinet. You don't even notice it unless you are looking for it. Got it at Lowes. Less than $100 for 4 puck lights which is all we needed.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2012 at 7:22AM
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led is eco-friendly indeed.but other problem existed with them too.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 2:38AM
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