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How to Install Kitchen Track Lighting

Ask This Old House’s Scott Caron explains the difference between general and task kitchen lighting. He takes you through choosing, shopping and installing your new system.

If your kitchen’s light fixtures seem inadequate for your needs, consider redesigning your lighting layout to add brightness to the areas where you need it most. Ask This Old House’s Scott Caron teaches one homeowner the difference between general and task kitchen lighting and takes you through strategizing, choosing, and installing a new system.

Is track lighting good for the kitchen?

Yes! Track lighting is an ideal option for your kitchen since it offers versatility. Not only does it help you bring illumination to areas where you perform the most tasks, but it can also offer an aesthetic focal point for parts of the room that are more decorative.

What type of lighting is best for the kitchen?

If your kitchen’s general lighting isn’t sufficient enough for your activities, you’ll want to install some task lighting for your prep and cooking areas and accent lighting for ambience.

What is the best track lighting systems?

There are a variety of types to choose from—from low profile, energy efficient LED track fixtures to pendants that emit an ambient glow to track lighting kits for added power. What’s great about track lighting is that you can add as many sections as you need, which we demonstrate in our video.

Steps to Installing Kitchen Track Lighting

  1. Turn off power to working area at breaker box.
  2. Remove the old fixture and expose electrical box
  3. Install ‘floating feed’ to electrical box to supply power to the tracks
  4. Measure and cut tracks to length with a hacksaw.
  5. Put “L” connectors on before installing tracks.
  6. Measure the track’s mounting-hole spacing and drill 3/8-inch holes in ceiling for toggle bolts
  7. Thread toggle bolts through lighting tracks.
  8. Fasten tracks to ceiling by tightening toggle bolts with a screwdriver
  9. Add power to tracks by connecting the floating feed to the tracks.
  10. Install track lighting fixtures to the track
  11. Install pendant light to the track
  12. Install LED bulb into pendant light
  13. Turn power back on at breaker box.