Advice on adding under cabinet kitchen lights
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Advice on adding under cabinet kitchen lights

by Ajones211 » Thu Nov 02, 2023 11:32 am

Hi All,
Looking for a solution to add under cabinet strip lights to kitchen. No electrics in, or plaster on walls and ceiling still needs to be put in so completely blank canvas. I want it hardwired into switch with the normal lights rather than in a socket, and have three different areas across the kitchen that I’d like to be connected as one. What’s the best solution for this? I was thinking central led driver hardwired straight into lighting switch but getting all three ‘zones’ to a central driver is what I think would be difficult as the connectors with most kits don’t seem to be very long.

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Re: Advice on adding under cabinet kitchen lights

by Mr White » Thu Nov 02, 2023 7:23 pm

You would need a driver which is big enough for the total capacity of all of the LED strips.
As you want 3 strips in 3 separate places you would have to extend the cable to the LED strips, this would introduce voltage drop, most LED strips do not like voltage drop. (You would probably end up with one strip being dimmer than the others) Also when the driver fails (It will at some time) you will lose all 3 strips. It would be much better to have a driver for each strip mounted close to each strip. Drivers do not cost much.
As for connecting it to your existing light switch, that is possible, but it will only work if there is a neutral at the switch already. Most switch positions in the UK do not have a neutral as there is no need.

Most good suppliers of LED strips also supply a compatible driver.
(You can take the supply from the lighting circuit)

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Re: Advice on adding under cabinet kitchen lights

by ericmark » Sat Nov 04, 2023 8:35 am

I have moved to smart lights due to the problem getting the wiring in, and having three switches in different locations the lights never get used.

So hey google turn on living room lights turns them all on, hey google turn on living room main turns just the main one on. I use Nest Mini speakers.

In the kitchen turning lights on with voice command works well when hands covered in flour.

In the main smart switches are single or two gang only so to have three switches likely need twin back boxes, I like the TP-Link (Tapo) switches as they use a pair of batteries meaning they stay on or off with power cuts, they do not default off, and have dusk to dawn option so can set them to auto switch off at dawn or on as dusk. Down side they need a hub.

I would use three and earth cable so you can have a neutral at light switch for future use. Likely you will be forced to use a socket as so many light come with a power supply built into the plug, I mounted plug where it can be seen, so no one tempered to use it for other things. They don't know it exists.

The cost of re-wiring a kitchen has resulted in my using existing wiring, the Part P rules in Wales means kitchen is special location same as bathroom, so it cost £100 plus vat to notify work, cheaper to use a scheme member electrician. England have changed the rules, but they remain as the English parliament set out in Wales.

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