In this article we will try to understand a few things about what you need to consider when installing the kitchen under cupboard lighting. Although the LEDs are low voltage, the driver also known as power supply or transformer is connected to the mains voltage 230V and only a competent person should do it.
First you will need a switched mains, which is nothing more than a cable that is run from a switch to the location where the driver for under cupboard lighting will be. This will supply 230V and will be converted to 12V by the driver. Usually best practice is to be run on top of the cupboards so the driver can be kept out of sight.
Next we will need a driver. They can be in many sizes and shapes but mainly they do same thing. They convert the 230V alternative current (AC) coming from the mains into 12V low voltage direct current (DC). The drivers can be constant current and constant voltage. The difference is that the constant current drivers have a fixed current in amperes or milliamperes and the voltage is variable when the constant voltage drivers are exactly opposite, the voltage is fixed and have variable currents. That’s what we need for the under cupboard lighting. A constant voltage – 12V and variable currents – from 0.5A to 5A etc. depending of the size of the project. Another important term is Power which is measured in units of Watts, but we can identify it from the symbol W. Most power supply have 36W, 60W, 100W which is nothing than the Voltage x Current.
Drives can be non-dimmable and dimmable. Obviously we don’t have to state the difference between them but we can say that dimmable drivers are a little bit more expensive. Our lights are dimmable but in order for that you will need a dimmable led driver.
Next part will be the low voltage wires. They go from the driver to the light fixtures. On most cupboards they can be run on top and through the back but if this is not possible then you will have to take in consideration at the first fix to run the low voltage cables through the wall. This involves a little bit of planning but it is not actually complicated.
Last part will be to screw in the clips provided and just slide in the lights. And done. Your kitchen cupboard lighting is ready to be switched on.