Overhead lighting keeps your kitchen light and bright, but when you need task lighting, you may notice cabinets, the fan, and even your body can create shadows on the work surface that make it hard to see when prepping meals. Or maybe you have a unique feature or item in your kitchen that you want to highlight. The answer? Under-cabinet puck lighting for the kitchen that puts the right amount of light exactly where you need it.
What Is Layered Lighting?
One of the best ways to make any room shine is with layered lighting and puck lights are one of the reasons why. If you haven’t heard of this type of lighting before, you may be wondering what is puck lighting? These generally small (2-3 inches in diameter), round lights seem unassuming at first, so what makes them an important part of kitchen lighting?
In general, the most effective and attractive lighting in kitchens involves four layers blended together: ambient, task, decorative, and accent. This gives you a warm and inviting space that works with the rest of your design elements to create a lively entertainment area and practical workspace.
Halogen Puck Lights for Your Kitchen Accent Lighting
The most common mistake in kitchen lighting is expecting one fixture to light the entire space. In this scenario, you end up with some areas full of glare and others in the shadows. This not only makes it hard to see when preparing meals but also makes it difficult to highlight the things you love in your kitchen. And, it can make your kitchen seem cold and forbidding.
In this instance, consider puck lights for your kitchen cabinets. Adding accent lighting lets you highlight a special feature or piece that you want people to notice. For example, when you install halogen puck lights inside a kitchen cabinet, you can show off collections of glassware and china.
In this bright and airy kitchen, the Linara 26 Inch 6 Light Chandelier by Kichler Lighting sheds ambient light throughout the space. The matte black slatted metal shade is a refreshing twist on mid-century modern and contemporary décor. Three Devin 7 Inch Mini Pendants also by Kichler Lighting illuminates the workspace on the island. Puck lights inside the upper cabinets round out the lighting as they highlight display items.
LED Under Cabinet Puck Lights for Your Kitchen
Another way to use puck lights as accents lights it to install LED puck lights under your cabinets. You can then spotlight any special piece you display on your countertops. Two Magari 18 Inch LED Large Pendants by Access Lighting spread sparkling light throughout the space. Mirrored stainless steel and crystal create a bright modern look. Puck lights under the cabinet give a curated collection of objects the spotlight they deserve.
In addition to accent lighting, installing puck lights under your cabinets puts task lighting exactly where you need it. A pair of Deven 4 Inch Mini Pendants by Maxim Lighting put task lighting over the island while the under the cabinet puck lighting puts task lighting over the stove, where larger lighting might get in the way. The Deven 32 Inch 9 Light Chandelier by Maxim Lighting over the table and chairs gives the space ambient lighting, while puck lights in the ceiling add an extra layer of light.
Lighting the Perimeter with Puck Lights
Gone are the days of fluorescent panel lighting in kitchens. Beautiful chandeliers and pendant lights like these Hollis 24 Inch Cage Pendant by Hudson Valley Lighting rule these days. Shining panes of clear glass reflect the warm glow of Hollis clustered candlesticks. But, that doesn’t mean you get all the lighting you need in a large kitchen. Adding puck lighting around the perimeter helps keep the space well-lighted and inviting. Using dimmers and switches with your layered lighting to control the mood and environment.
The Difference between Damp & Dry Puck Lights
When you are using puck lights in your kitchen, it’s important to use the right ones for the right purpose. The UL listing will help you determine which ones to use where. UL marking guides are used in many industries to denote product safety and performance. UL stands for Underwriters Laboratories, an independent organization that does electrical testing and certification for over 100 countries. UL is one of the most common markings in the lighting industry.
When shopping for lighting, the “Dry Locations Only” is the most common rating you’ll see. It is often just referred to as UL listed. A dry rating means the puck light should be used in a location that rarely, if ever, gets wet or damp. This includes the dining room, kitchens, hallways, and more. A “Suitable for Damp Locations” listing means the puck light can be used in spaces that are regularly exposed to moisture and condensation. They can safely handle moisture in limited amounts. Lights with this rating are often used area where they are likely to get wet, such as near sinks, in laundry rooms, and over showers and bathtubs.
At Capitol Lighting we have puck lights that can take your kitchen illumination to the next level. Visit a Capitol Lighting showroom near you, or schedule a design consultation with one of our lighting experts who can answer all your questions.