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How to Choose Between LED Strip Lights and LED Puck Lights

How to Choose Between LED Strip Lights and LED Puck Lights

Posted by Chris Johnson on Jan 18th 2016

Looking to add some life to your kitchen without a full-on renovation? LED under cabinet lighting is one cost-effective, DIY way to dramatically improve both the use and "feel" of the space while keeping electrical costs in check for years to come. Popular options include LED strip lights and LED puck lighting. To help you make the right choice, here are a few things to know before making your decision.

LED Puck Lights

Many can be recessed into your cabinets giving them a nice look even when they are not turned on. They are great contributions to kitchens that strive for sophisticated style. Moreover, puck lights are superior when it comes to accenting things like flowers or decorative ware. If desired, they can create "hot spots," which adds DRAMA to the kitchen.

For example, you could use puck lights to create scallops of light on your back splash. This creates different effects on different textures. You could "graze" the walls, showing off the lovely texture of the tile, or have the light aimed directly downward along the back splash showing off a shiny finish, giving the kitchen extra freshness and airiness.

It's important to know that NOT all LED puck lights can be recessed. When they are not recessed, and you're installing the lights yourself, you may have to run some cords along the underside of the cabinets. But, since they are typically not visible unless you're taking a nap on the counter (which we don't really recommend since you could roll right off), generally these cords are not something we would worry about. Just make sure to keep them "tucked up" along the bottom of the cabinets. In fact, puck lights often have the advantage over strip lights, which sometimes necessitate "jumping" the stove with the power cord to continue the circuit around the kitchen.

One more thing. If you want motion sensor, battery-operated LED lights under your cabinets, puck is the way to go. These are great for getting up during a movie and pouring a glass of wine without having to blast on the overhead cloud fixture.

LED Strip Lights

Now, I hope I haven't given the impression that I have a strong preference when it comes to choosing between LED puck lights and LED strip lights for under cabinet lighting. It all depends on your particular space and your particular style. Sure, I love the way recessed LED puck lights create drama in the kitchen with hot spots, scallops of light, and wall grazing.

But equally compelling is the steady, even light of high quality LED light strips. LED strip lights give even illumination across counters. One can imagine how clean, warm, even lighting would make every nocturnal trip to the kitchen just...pleasant.

It's easy to crank the excitement level up to eleven with LED strip lights. They are easy to install over and under cabinets and even come in colored and color-changing varieties, so you can have a lot of fun with LED strips in the kitchen.

So, are stylish and dramatic puck lights best for your project? Or do you like more even light with the opportunity to create some visual theatrics? Either way, LED is a great option, and you should be excited about making a profound impact on your space without breaking out the sledgehammers.

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