How to Install Under Cabinet Lighting in the Kitchen Using LED Light Strips

How to Install Under Cabinet Lighting in the Kitchen Using LED Light Strips

Learn to set up underneath cupboard lighting within the kitchen utilizing LED gentle strips and get the beautiful, high-end look you’ve been dreaming of!

How to Install Under Cabinet Lighting in the Kitchen
Abby Lawson

We’ve been laborious at work within the kitchen putting in some lovely underneath cupboard lighting! Discovering the correct gentle setup was extra difficult than we anticipated, so we wrote a complete put up in regards to the vital issues to contemplate when selecting provides. (I like to recommend studying that one first.)

As soon as we lastly had all the items we wanted, it was time for set up! Since Donnie was the first underneath cupboard lighting installer, I’m going to let him stroll you thru the method.

Donnie Lawson

By far the toughest a part of putting in underneath cupboard lighting within the kitchen utilizing LED gentle strips is shopping for the provides. The precise set up is pretty simple, however the laborious factor is that almost all kitchen setups and layouts are totally different. My set up won’t match your set up completely, however hopefully this information will assist provide the confidence to sort out this challenge in your individual kitchen.

7 Steps to Putting in Beneath Cupboard Kitchen Lighting with LED Gentle Strips

This put up incorporates affiliate hyperlinks. For extra data, see my disclosures right here.

You should utilize the next hyperlinks to skip to every step of the tutorial:


We bought our provides from Flex Fireplace LEDs. I had a couple of questions on compatibility between gentle strips, connectors, and mounting channels and so they helped me discover the correct product with their dwell chat characteristic. Listed below are the provides we ended up utilizing:

  • Accent Collection LED Strip Gentle (3000K colour temperature, 24 volt enter, 16 foot size)
  • 2x LED Plug-in Energy Provide Adapter (Added on the coaxial connector with screw terminal, 24 volt system; Be aware: We selected 24 watt measurement based mostly on the size of our setup. This text may help you establish what number of watts are wanted on your particular challenge.)
  • Single Shade Solderless Grip Connectors
    Be aware: We bought C1 connectors with naked wire to attach the sunshine strips to the ability provide. In our state of affairs, we had two retailers with two separate energy provides, so we wanted two connectors with naked wire. It’s higher to get those with 36” of wire as a result of the size provides you extra flexibility, and so they can at all times be lower down.
    The opposite connectors you want rely in your state of affairs. Now we have wood sections that divide the underside of our cupboards from each other, so I wanted to bridge this hole with wire. The the pre-made jumper connectors with wire in between are 6” lengthy which is a bit longer than I wanted. As a substitute, I made jumper connectors out of C1 connectors with no wire and the additional wire from unused connectors and additional wire.
    Generally it’s laborious to examine precisely what connectors you have to. I assumed I had a good suggestion in my thoughts, however as soon as the challenge began I made some changes. Luckily, connectors are very low cost, so it is smart to by a range and greater than you want.
  • Gemini Mounting Channel Equipment (mounting channel and frosted cowl with accent equipment; Be aware: These mounting channels work properly with the precise LED strips and connectors we selected. The frosted cowl doesn’t change the colour temperature of the lights, however it provides them a subtle look.)
  • Drill
  • Scissors
  • Wire cutter and stripper
  • Legrand wire hiders
  • Scotch double sided mounting strips

Step 1: Put together Your Space and Perceive Your Format

I knew going into this challenge that I’d have two “sections” of LED lighting. The higher cupboard on the correct facet has a swap managed outlet that was put in at our request by the builders.

The nook cupboard on the left facet of the kitchen additionally has an outlet managed by the identical swap by the sink.

Kitchen cabinets with outlet placement

Abby created this mockup to point out the place the retailers are positioned inside our kitchen cupboards.

In the event you don’t have retailers in your cupboards already, it’s possible you’ll want to rent an electrician to put in them earlier than continuing with the remainder of this challenge.

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In our home, the oven and microwave separates the 2 sections of cupboards. I made a decision to not try to bridge this hole however as an alternative have two separate traces of LED lights. The necessity for a second transformer does add to the fee, however it’s minimal.

To start the challenge, I unloaded all the things from the 2 cupboards with the retailers.

Empty Kitchen Cabinet with Outlet Installed

As soon as all the things was out, I may higher envision the place the transformer would plug in, the place the wires would run, and what holes I would wish to drill.

Step 2: Perceive How All the LED Parts Join Collectively

I’ve to confess that when ordering all of the provides for this challenge, I used to be nonetheless a bit confused about how all the things matches collectively.

As soon as all of the gadgets arrived I laid them out on the counter to visually perceive how all of them work collectively.

The facility provide plugs into the outlet. On the finish of the ability provide wire is a coaxial plug-in connector. This plugs into the separate connector with a coaxial connector on one finish, and a screw terminal on the opposite finish.

The screw terminals settle for the 2 naked wires after which are tightened all the way down to type connection.

The connector has naked wires on one finish after which a clamp fashion connector on the opposite finish that’s clamped down onto the LED gentle strip.

Check out the image beneath to higher perceive the way it matches collectively.

Transformer and cord for installing under cabinet lighting

That’s actually all there’s to it when it comes to connecting the assorted parts collectively. In fact, there are different connectors to attach a number of items of LED gentle strips collectively or to bridge a spot, however these are very simple to grasp.

Step 3: Drill Essential Holes

This step might be totally different for every particular person. I did my finest to reduce the variety of holes I drilled into my cupboards.

I used to be capable of thread the ability provide wire all the way down to the underside shelf by means of the small gaps on the facet of our adjustable peak cabinets. No drilling obligatory.

Empty cabinet with transformer plugged in for under cabinet lighting

I did, nevertheless, should drill a gap within the again nook of the underside shelf of the cupboard.

Drilling a hole in the bottom of a kitchen cabinet

I made the opening simply giant sufficient to cross the bare-wire-end of one among my connectors by means of the opening.

Cord with connector for under cabinet lighting

We simply have one cupboard part to the correct of our range and microwave, however on the left facet we now have a number of cupboard sections. I made a decision to drill a gap by means of the cupboard helps to bridge these gaps. This allowed me to higher hid the connector wires.

Drilling a hole in the under side of a kitchen cabinet

Step 4: Lower Mounting Channels to Size

The aluminum mounting channels are available longer lengths however may be lower all the way down to measurement.

I made a decision to depart about an inch of free area on both facet of the channels in every cupboard part. This made it simpler to put in the connectors and wires.

I used an previous blade on my miter noticed to chop the channels and frosted covers all the way down to measurement. An alternative choice can be to make use of a metallic hacksaw. Both would work simply high quality and gained’t take a lot time or effort.

Under cabinet lighting tracks and frosted covers

When figuring out the size of every piece of your mounting channel, it’s vital to grasp the precise location on the underside of your cupboard.

For job lighting, I feel it’s good to have the lights nearer to the entrance of the cupboards versus pushed in the direction of the again and nearer to your backsplash.

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I initially made the error of simply butting up the mounting channels and lights to the very entrance of the cupboard. I bumped into a difficulty of the entrance lip of the cupboard casting an unsightly shadow on the entrance fringe of our countertop. By transferring the channels again by simply an inch, the lip not precipitated the shadow.

Under cabinet lighting from below

That is the place our last lights ended up being positioned as soon as we put all the obligatory items collectively.

Step 5: Lower and Join LED Gentle Strips to Set up Beneath Cupboard Lighting

Now that all the preliminary work is finished, it’s time to start out chopping and connecting the LED gentle strips. Every state of affairs might be a bit of totally different, however the primary constructing blocks are all the identical.

Listed below are some issues to contemplate…

The LED gentle strips may be lower (on the designated markings) with a pair of sharp scissors. It’s vital to chop proper on the marking to make sure connection.

Cutting an LED light strip with scissors

Don’t lower the LED gentle strips to fill the complete mounting channel. Some room is required on every finish to accommodate the connector clips on the within of the channels.

Lighting strip with connectors in track

Discover how within the image above the sunshine strip and each connectors match inside the mounting channel, with the wires operating by means of the top caps. Be sure to take this into consideration when chopping your LED gentle strips.

The connectors are hooked up to the sunshine strip by sliding the strip into the connector after which clamping down with pliers till it clicks into place.

Clamping connector to light strip

The LED gentle strips have optimistic (+) and unfavourable (-) markings on both sides of the strip. Be sure to are constant all through your challenge. For instance you probably have the purple wire related to the optimistic facet of the strip, ensure you follow that for all gentle strips related to that energy provide.

Relying on which facet of the challenge your begin with (proper to left versus left to proper), it’s possible you’ll find yourself with a state of affairs the place you join a black wire to the optimistic facet of the sunshine strip. That is obligatory in some instances and completely high quality. Simply ensure you proceed with that for all different sections of sunshine strip related to that energy provide.

As soon as all the things on that exact part of sunshine is assembled and clamped, slide the sunshine strip and connectors into the mounting channel.

Putting LED light strip in track

One of many more difficult issues with this specific setup is that the connectors won’t match into the mounting channel till they’re totally clamped onto the sunshine strip.

As soon as the connectors and lightweight strip are contained in the mounting channel with finish caps in place, take away the backing from the lights and stick them to the mounting channel.

Under cabinet lighting strip hanging, light off

Take a look at Your Part of Lighting

After you assemble your first part of lighting, I like to recommend testing it out. To do that, join naked wires to the coaxial connector by loosening the screw, inserting the wires, after which tightening them down. A wire stripper could also be wanted to show the naked wire.

Connector piece detail

Once more, please bear in mind to be constant together with your (+) and (-) wires. In our state of affairs, we had two separate energy provides with two separate sections of LED lighting. In a single part the purple wire was optimistic. Within the different part the black wire was optimistic out of necessity. That is high quality so long as you might be constant.

As soon as the wires are securely in place, plug the connector into the adapter and switch in your swap. The primary part of lights needs to be illuminated.

LED Under Cabinet light hanging without cover

When you’ve verified that all the things is working correctly, snap on the frosted mounting channel cowl for extra of a subtle look.

Under Cabinet Lighting LED Strip with Frosted Cover, Hanging

I ought to point out right here that it’s useful to ensure you have sufficient further slack in your wires when connecting a number of sections collectively. You may at all times lower wires down, however it’s a ache to disassemble (though it’s very potential) a piece of lighting simply so as to add an extended wire or connector.

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Additionally observe that I like to recommend unplugging the adaptor when working with these lights, however this all very low voltage (24 volts in our case) lighting, which could be very good from a security standpoint.

Subsequent it’s time to string the wire from one part of lighting by means of the pre-drilled holes to the subsequent part. Once more, this all is dependent upon your particular state of affairs.

Cord for under cabinet lighting threaded through holes underneath the cabinet

It’s rinse and repeat for all the opposite sections. The varied connectors are all combine and match, and even the connectors with out naked wires on each ends may be disassembled to show naked wires. The design of those connectors make this challenge very adaptable and enjoyable.

Step 6: Connect LED Strip Gentle Mounting Channels to Cupboards to Set up Beneath Cupboard Lighting

The aluminum channels embrace some mounting clips. I didn’t just like the included {hardware}.

Hardware for under cabinet lighting

The offered screws had been too lengthy for our cupboards and poked by means of. I purchased shorter wooden screws of the identical measurement, however they had been low cost and I stored shearing off the heads.

Additionally, the underneath facet of the mounting clips have a bizarre dent that doesn’t enable the aluminum channels to take a seat flush in opposition to the underside of the cupboard.

I made a decision to do one thing utterly totally different. It’s approach simpler and I’m very proud of the outcomes.

I purchased some Scotch Mount Excessive double sided mounting strips.

Scotch Mounting Strips

I lower these strips into small sections and adhered them to the again facet of the mounting channels.

LED Light Tracks with Adhesive on the Back

When the time got here, I used to be capable of simply adhere every part of lighting (they’re very gentle) to the underside of my cupboards. Up to now I’m very proud of how agency and safe they really feel.

Step 7: Disguise Cords on the Inside the Cupboards

We ended up with loads of slack wire from the connectors and energy provide on the within of our cupboards. At Dwelling Depot, I discovered a big number of wire hiders made by Legrand.

I bought an extended straight part (that may be lower all the way down to measurement) and likewise some nook items.

Cord Hiders

The wires might be hidden as soon as we fill the cupboards, however these wire channels assist to safe all the things and ensure we don’t snag any wires.

Wire covers inside a kitchen cabinet

They had been additionally useful securing wire on the underside of our cupboards the place wanted.

Wire covers on the under side of a kitchen cabinet

As soon as the covers had been in place, we had been capable of refill the cupboards and luxuriate in our new underneath cupboard lighting!

White kitchen with under cabinet lighting installed
Abby Lawson

I really like how the brand new lighting actually highlights the backsplash and provides the kitchen an inviting heat glow! It feels a bit of bit fancier in right here now, and I’m not complaining one bit! 🙂

Cake stand and under cabinet lighting in the kitchen

Have you ever put in underneath cupboard lighting in your kitchen? I’d love to listen to your finest suggestions and tips within the feedback beneath!

And when you’re considering of finishing this challenge in your individual residence, be sure you pin this picture so yow will discover this put up later:

How to Install Under Cabinet Lighting

Listed below are the opposite initiatives we’ve accomplished within the kitchen since transferring into our home:

Plans for Orchard Home Kitchen

First Issues First: Putting in {Hardware}

Lovely and Reasonably priced Kitchen Island Pendant Lights

How you can Add Customized Trim to a Kitchen Island

How you can Set up a Marble Subway Tile Backsplash

DIY Craftsman Type Cased Opening

5 Suggestions for Making a Superbly Organized Pantry

Thanks a lot for following alongside! Have an exquisite day!

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