Introduction: Under Cabinet LED Lights
I started with a large LED strip, custom cut it to the size, ran the power, installed a switch, and neatly hid wires. This project can easily be adapter to anywhere you need some lighting under something. (eg. kitchen cabinets, work spaces, shelving, display cases, etc.) It is also a good guide on how to install lighting strips in general and can be used as a base for other low voltage lighting projects.
Step 1: Materials
- Led Light Strip Amazon or 2x Radio Shack
- AC Adapter Amazon or Radio Shack
- Switch Amazon or Radio Shack
- Heat Shrink Tubing Amazon or Radio Shack
- Junction Box Home Depot or Amazon
- Junction Cover Home Depot or Amazon
- Wire Home Depot or Amazon
- Wire Staples Home Depot or Amazon
- 2x 8-32 Screw and Bolt
- 2x Wire Twists
- Touch-up Paint
- Small Wood Screws
Step 2: Tools
- Wire Cutters
- Wire Strippers
- Soldering Iron + Solder
- Heat Gun or Hair Dryer
- Tape Measure
- (Opt) Hot Glue Gun
- (Opt) Paint Brush
Step 3: Plan
Each strip will be 5 feet long and centered. The total power consumption will be 2 amps at 12 volts DC.
Step 4: Initial Wiring
- Measure and then cut LED strip. (at indicated marks on strip)
- Measure and cut two wires for each shelf. (you want about 6" extra to be safe)
- Since both wires are the same color mark one positive wire with tape.
- Solder wire to the end of the strip and cover in heat shrink tubing.
- Strip the DC lead off of connector that was originally connected to the strip when manufactured.
- Solder 8" of wire to the terminals of the switch then cover in heat shrink tubing.
Step 5: Place LED Strip
Place led strip on by removing protective film and pressing firmly on the space between the LED's.
Be slow and be careful a ruler may help with aliment.
Hot glue may be needed in some spots (ie. the ends of the strip) but the adhesive backing is actually really strong.
Step 6: Drill
Drill holes in the shelves and box. (for wires)
Attach the box with wood screws. (countersink pre-existing holes in box with large bit so that the screw will lie flush)
Drill out a hole for the switch.
Step 7: Run Wires
Run the wires through the holes.
Finalize their placement with wire staples.
Step 8: Connect Wires
Connect the wires together as in diagram.
Twist wires in a spiral and then use wire twists.
Insure no contacts are exposed by covering with electrical tape.
Install the box cover.
Step 9: Touch Up
I had to touch up the area around the switch with a little wood putty and some paint.