Architects and builders turn to custom linear strip lighting when they need a source of high quality lighting that can address all of the complex dynamics involved in under kitchen cabinet lighting. Multiple trim and lamping options make this type of light adaptable to the undersurface of any custom cabinet and its smaller size makes it very easy to conceal,
This type of versatility in under kitchen cabinet lighting products emphasizes the importance that countertops play in custom kitchens. Just as they provide much needed work areas, countertops are foundational decorative elements. Many builders will go to great lengths and added expense to install a marble or granite counter that sets the entire tone for kitchen interior decor. Since this is one of the most important rooms in a home, the kitchen countertops play a pivotal role in establishing sale price and facilitating home sale closings.
The two biggest enemies of countertop aesthetics are reflected glare and shadow. Glare creates white spots that blind the eyes of people trying to handle utensils such as knives. Shadows make it difficult to distinguish between shades of color, making it hard to see food products clearly and diminish the custom stone and marble work that characterizes a good deal of modern kitchen design. To combat these enemies, architects must use under cabinet kitchen lighting fixtures with superior trim engineering for better angles of light distribution. They must also rely upon any number of both traditional and non traditional festoon lamping designs in order to provide the best color temperature match to the particular material and design of the countertop they are lighting.
Custom task lighting strips are engineered to act as linear templates that can be adapted to all of these specific requirements on a case by case basis. Beam distribution angles may be selected, depending on the trim you choose. Because under kitchen cabinet lights mount to the forward undersurface of the cabinet, the light is directed backward across the countertop. While this does not prevent light from being reflected, most of the reflected light travels away from the eyes and illuminates the backsplash. This method is more effective than lighting with puck fixtures, which invariably create white spots underneath cabinets. It is also much more attractive than visible fluorescent fixtures which, in spite of their energy saving advantages, nevertheless create an eyesore both by their visibility and by the glare they direct toward the viewer.
A better way to create the high end aesthetic luminance and still save on power costs is to replace previous lamping technology with discrete LED festoon lamps. Capable of rendering aesthetics equal to incandescent and xenon sourcing, they typically operate at less than 2 watts, yet they generate a lumen output equivalent to that of a 5 watt xenon lamp. If properly designed, this technology eliminates forward throw heat, making it a genuinely cool burning source of illumination. With an energy savings of 60 percent of incandescent based technology, LED festoon strips also allow homeowners to leave their under kitchen cabinet lights on as decorative luminaires for extended periods of time. The warmest color temperature, the 2800K, is a xenon equivalent highly favored by builders installing marble and granite countertops. Cooler cabinet colors, such as white and off white, are often lit with 2950K or 5000K lamps.
For architects designing kitchens best illuminated by color temperature ranges between 2400K to 3000K, xenon lamping options provide the traditional luxury lighting effects this mainstay sourcing has always been known for. While the lamp life is much less than that of LED, approximately 15,000 hours as opposed to 40,000 to 50,000 hours, dimmer controls on linear strips allow users to offset the normal power consumption curve, driving operating costs down in the process and extending lamp life as a result. Dimmer controls also offer an added aesthetic benefit of letting people match decorative and task lighting levels to precisely compliment general overhead lighting in the kitchen.
Custom under kitchen cabinet lighting strips can be manufactured to the exact dimensions of each specific cabinet undersurface, and trims and lamping options are selected based upon cabinet surface area, material build, color, and decorative pattern. These selections are made with the help of lighting specialists who know your industry and can match available technology to the exact functional requirements and decorative goals you are looking to achieve.