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Under-cabinet lighting serves two primary purposes—creating a unique ambiance and illuminating your countertop. Under-cabinet lighting can help upgrade areas such as your bathroom, office, kitchen cabinets, safe, basement, and more.
Overall, you can expect to spend anywhere from $15 to upwards of $60 on under-cabinet lighting, depending on the type and quantity of the lights. In addition to cost, however, you’ll also need to think about factors such as the power level, installation method, and on/off method when choosing under-cabinet lighting for your home.
To help you find the best lights for your home, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the top under-cabinet lighting available. Our top choice is the Litever Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit, which provides six bright bar lights with straightforward installation. Read our guide below for more of our top picks.
Best Under-Cabinet Lighting Kits: Our Top 8 Picks
- Best Overall: Litever Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit
- Best LED Strip Lights: WOBANE Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit
- Best Battery-Powered Lights: Brilliant Evolution Under-Cabinet Lights
- Most Flexible: Philips Hue Lightstrip Starter Kit
- Best Rechargeable Lights: RXWLKJ Portable Under-Cabinet Light
- Best Puck Lights: Cadrim Under-Cabinet Puck Lights
- Best Wireless: BLS LED Closet Light
- Best for Smart Homes: TORCHSTAR Smart LED Safe Lighting Kit
Compare Top Under-Cabinet Lighting
|Litever Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit
|Plug-in or hardwire
|Adhesive strips or hardware
|WOBANE Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit
|Brilliant Evolution Under-Cabinet Lights
|AA batteries (3 per puck)
|Adhesive strips or hardware
|RXWLKJ Portable Under-Cabinet Light
|Rechargeable battery (built-in)
|Adhesive strips or magnets
|Cadrim Under-Cabinet Puck Lights
|AAA batteries (3 per puck)
|BLS LED Closet Light
|AA batteries (3)
|TORCHSTAR Smart LED Safe Lighting Kit
|Philips Hue Lightstrip Starter Kit
Best Under-Cabinet Lighting Overall
What Are People Saying About the Litever Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit?
We learned that customers who enjoyed their purchase said the lights were easy to install and provided bright illumination. However, our research also revealed several negative reviews, which raised longevity concerns and indicated that the lights burned out after several years of use.
“First off, the kit was very easy to install. It came with all the necessary hardware and instructions, and I was able to get it set up in just a few minutes. The lights themselves are slim and low-profile, so they don’t take up much space, and they’re also very lightweight. Once the lights were installed, I was really pleased with the effect they had on my kitchen. The LEDs were bright and illuminated the countertop very evenly. I also appreciated the fact that the kit had a dimmer switch, which allowed me to adjust the brightness to my liking.” —WonTon Jeep Dude via Amazon
“Only lasted me around 2 years and 8 months, then they started to dim like when a fluorescent bulb gets old or is cold. I was thinking at least five years should last. Kind of a bummer, as I was expecting Litever to be a better brand-name product. And yes, I used them a lot, but I will be looking for a different, better brand than these on my next purchase. And as usual, their warranty is for two years. Bummer.” —Captn Jack via Amazon
Best LED Strip Lights
What Are People Saying About the WOBANE Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit?
Our research revealed that satisfied customers praised this kit’s energy efficiency, brightness, and ease of installation. Many customers agreed that the lights were a fun way to add a subtle glow to their space. On the other hand, we noted that some users were disappointed that they weren’t dimmable and others felt they didn’t last as long as they were expecting.
“I purchased this in 2020 and just recently (Dec 2023) placed them below my cabinets. These lights are WARM TONE and match the overhead light already in the kitchen. The adhesive is still sticky, and installation was super easy: connect each length to the next, peel, stick, and voila! Perfect for when I need to do anything at my counters or sink. Definitely recommend.” —shannieboop via Amazon
“Installed these in my kitchen on Jan 5, 2023, under cabinets and crossing above the stovetop, as suggested in the promo images. The adhesive provided is quite poor and could not be used, as are the cable hooks – brittle and fragile plastic. Strips provided a remarkable amount of light, were exceptionally helpful, and remained on every night. After eleven months and ten days of steaming pots and oil frying, they’ve given up and begun to short out December 15 2023.” —Amazon Customer via Amazon
Best Battery-Powered Under-Cabinet Lights
What Are People Saying About the Brilliant Evolution Under-Cabinet Lights?
Our team found that happy customers thought these lights were easy to install and use. They also liked the lights’ hue and long-lasting battery life. However, we also found that a few customers were unsatisfied with their purchase because the lights occasionally turned on randomly, and others found that they had a poor battery life.
“I love these lights. They’re just what I was looking for. Easy to install. I love how they add soft light to my kitchen and I can choose which I want on and off. The remote control works well too. I’ve had them up for a couple of months and no issues at all.” —Shelleyr via Amazon
“These were easy to install and look great but they go through batteries very fast. As the batteries start to go, the lights get dimmer. So they look the best for the first few times we turn them on, and then they slowly start to not give off much light. Changing the batteries is easy, though. In addition, the remote is hit or miss with working. Sometimes you have to hit the button several times before it catches the sensor and works. It is much easier to just hit the light itself to turn it on.” —kaabbott via Amazon
Good for: Homeowners looking for flexible lighting that can extend around an entire room.
What Are People Saying About the Philips Hue Lightstrip Starter Kit?
We found that customers who gave this product a positive review liked that it was easy to set up and had a high brightness level. Others were impressed with its app compatibility and the amount of settings it featured. However, several reviewers were let down by this light’s adhesive tape, and some had issues getting the light to turn on and off.
“Love these lights — I have several throughout my home as they are diverse and can create any mood you want anytime. Not to mention you can schedule automations to help you prepare for bed or to get up in the morning. Or random stuff like they can flash if your team scores!” —Brad via Amazon
“Purchased to attach to bed frame for mood, soft lighting for during the night trips to the bathroom (also purchased motion sensor to automatically come on), and just because I love colored lights in a room. Placed the LED on the bed frame close to the floor. Cleaned frame twice to make sure no oils or dust was on the wood. Attached as directed and loved the way the lights softly lit up the floor space without glaring in my eyes. By day two, much of the light strip had fallen down — so disappointed! I called the company (Philips Hue) to ask for suggestions on how to make it stick — the girl basically said there was nothing to do except buy more 3M adhesive and put it back up.” — devora via Amazon
Best Rechargeable Under-Cabinet Lights
What Customers Are Saying RXWLKJ Portable Under-Cabinet Light?
Most customer reviews we encountered expressed satisfaction with the rechargeable light bars and indicated that the lights were easy to install, bright, and long-lasting. On the other hand, a minority of buyers felt like the motion sensor wasn’t sensitive enough, as the light didn’t always turn on when they stepped within 10 feet of it.
“These lights are great. I’ve used them in every RV I’ve owned. Just bought them again for my closet. I love that the light comes on automatically when I open the doors, and you can turn that function off if you want. The magnetic strip that they cling to is powerful enough so they don’t come off. They are so bright, I definitely recommend this product.” — Joanie via Amazon
“I have two installed in a large closet area on each side of the door, facing inward. One detects motion right away, the other I struggle to get to turn on. It doesn’t seem to be a faulty unit. It seems to be that once one light is turned on, the other sensor struggles to detect motion. I like the design, and using magnets to adhere it to the wall is great since you have to take them down to charge them. Just wish the sensors worked better.” — ChrisWGerber via Amazon
Best Puck Lights
What Are People Saying About the Cadrim Under-Cabinet Puck Lights?
Our team noted that customers liked how this pack of lights came with two remote controls instead of one or none. Although customers found the adhesive installation process quick and straightforward, some said the included tape strips failed to secure the lights in place, and others were disappointed by the lights’ brightness level.
“These are helpful to me. Easy to use. I put them under my kitchen cabinets. Put remotes on my nightstand. When I wake up in the middle of the night, instead of turning on all the lights, I just use the remotes, and I don’t wake my husband up. I also put one in my closet so once again, I don’t wake up my husband when getting clothing. Easy to use stick ones included. I cleaned the area before I used the sticky on the wall. Our Grandchildren love turning them on and using all of the different settings” —Michelle Holt via Amazon
“They work very well and are easy to install. However, they did not stay up for long after I attached them to a dry and clean, lightly finished wood surface. An artist friend of mine gave me some very thick double-sided tape, which I used after removing the adhesive pads that came with the lights. The lights stay up now. The adhesive pads that come with the lights are inadequate. So you may need to figure out some other means of attaching them.” —Hal F via Amazon
What Are People Saying About the BLS LED Closet Light?
We found that customers who liked this product said that it provided ample light, was easy to mount and install, and several were impressed with its motion-sensor capability. However, some other reviewers said that their batteries ran out quickly, and others said the adhesives weren’t as strong as they were expected.
“This light does exactly what I wanted it to do. I used the included screws to mount it to the inner door frame of my otherwise cavernously dark closet. The closet has absolutely no connection to natural light, and I finally decided to organize it and unload much of its contents. This light was a necessary precursor, and it REALLY did the trick. I love that it turns on by itself when I open the closet door (as though it were always on) and automatically shuts itself off within a couple of minutes if I close the door. I’m using rechargeable batteries for the power source, and I foresee this light lasting forever.” —Jeff Dovberg via Amazon
“Even with the pantry french doors open, my pantry did not illuminate as bright as it should. The space is 7 feet tall and 8 feet long. I placed two lights on the ceiling and one on each end. You need to place them so the light shines into the space and your eye does not see the light strip – it’s too bright and jarring to look at head-on. I have had these in for a couple of days now, and I like them. The sensor is positioned such that the lights only turn on when there is motion inside the pantry. The reason for the less-than-stellar review is that the lights may be attached with screws or an adhesive square. The screws provided were so small they were worthless in drywall, and if you want to hang the light at a slant, the screws are not enough. The adhesive works great – however, when the batteries need to be changed or you want to fiddle with the settings, the light has to be ripped off the wall. I doubt the adhesive square will continue to work every time you put the light back on the wall.” —Rocket via Amazon
Best for Smart Homes
What Are People Saying About the TORCHSTAR Smart LED Safe Lighting Kit?
We noted that customers who left positive reviews for this product loved that they could shine light from various angles and that they could be turned on with Alexa. Others were impressed with the fact that they were dimmable. However, there were some reviewers we found that were disappointed that these lights were difficult to pair with voice control. and others felt the connection cords were shorter than they were anticipating.
“I have wanted under-cabinet lighting for a while, and an electrician quoted me $600 to install it. And those lights would need their own individual switches. I thought I would try these first, and I’m so glad I did! They took me 10 minutes to install (20, if you count the holes I drilled to run the lines through the cabinets for a cleaner look) and another 5 minutes to connect with Alexa. Now, I can turn on the lights and dim them just by asking Alexa to do it. They are beautiful and professional without the crazy cost!” —Dee Dee via Amazon
“…I received the product, and it was ridiculously bright, which is great. However, the main reason I bought it was that it was supposed to hook up to the automation via Alexa. I spent over an hour trying to get this thing to pair with the corresponding application, both using the manual and automatic methods. I never could get it working. While the light on/off state is controllable with the button on the control module, that’s not what I paid for.” —Xalthe via Amazon
What Do You Need To Know About Under-Cabinet Lighting?
Before you invest in under-cabinet lighting, it’s important to consider how each model’s specifications impact user experience. For example, if you’re looking for a small, cordless light to leave on in the bathroom, a puck light set may work best. However, if you’re seeking more customizable options and lighting that can fill out an entire basement or game room, strip lights may serve you better.
To make an informed purchase, you should also take note of factors such as the light’s control mechanism and the color and tone to ensure you’re finding the best fit for your home. Read our guide below for more information on the biggest factors to consider when buying under-cabinet lighting.
Types of Under-Cabinet Lights
There are various types of under-cabinet lighting, with the most popular types of lighting being pucks, light bars, and strips:
- A puck light features a compact circular form factor closely resembling a hockey puck.
- The light bar design features a long, rectangular form factor and is the most common style on the market.
- LED strip lights are highly flexible and customizable to suit a wide range of tastes and settings.
If you want to sync your under-cabinet lights with the rest of your kitchen lighting, look for a model that works with a wall switch.
You can also find lights with remote controls and integrated motion sensors.
Lighting Color and Tone
LED under-cabinet lighting can be found in various colors. While yellow and white lights are the most common, you can also purchase blue, green, red, and color combinations like white and blue.
You can also adjust the color temperature to adjust the ambiance of your kitchen or workspace.
In general, under-cabinet lights draw power from electrical cords or batteries.
Battery-powered models offer simple, versatile installation. Although most of these lights use disposable alkaline batteries, some models have rechargeable batteries. Electric-powered lights have limited mobility because they rely on a nearby outlet. However, they don’t need battery recharges or replacements.
Voltage and Brightness
Most under-cabinet lighting has either line voltage (120 volts) or low voltage (12 volts or 24 volts). Low voltage allows you to operate smaller lights and gives off less heat.
The brightness level of under-cabinet lights is typically measured in lumens. Light fixtures that produce at least 250 lumens per foot should provide ample light.
Some of the most trusted brands for under-cabinet and accent lights include:
- Brilliant Evolution
- Ultra Pro
Safety Tips for Using Under-Cabinet Lighting
Under-cabinet lighting is a great option for saving space and adding ambiance to your home. However, our team found that there are some important safety tips you should consider when using and installing under-cabinet lights, such as:
- Check for Certification: When purchasing under cabinet lighting, look for products listed as ready for end-user use by recognized safety organizations, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL) or Intertek (ETL). These qualifications ensure that the lights have been tested and meet specific safety standards.
- Follow Installation Instructions Carefully: Read and follow the manufacturer’s installation instructions carefully, as improper installation can pose safety hazards. If you’re unsure about how to install the lighting properly, consider hiring a professional electrician to do it for you.
- Turn Off Power Before Installation: Before installing or performing any maintenance on under-cabinet lights, always turn off the power supply at the circuit breaker. This will help prevent electrical shock.
- Avoid Overloading Outlets: Under-cabinet lighting should be plugged into outlets or circuits that can properly handle the load. Avoid overloading outlets by plugging in multiple appliances or lights at once. If you’re unsure, consult an electrician to make sure the load can be handled.
- Use Outdoor-Rated Lighting for Wet Areas: If you’re installing under-cabinet lighting in areas prone to moisture, such as the kitchen sink or bathroom, make sure to use lighting fixtures that are specifically rated for wet locations to help prevent electrical hazards.
- Keep Flammable Materials Away: Avoid placing flammable materials, such as curtains, paper, or plastic, in close proximity to the under-cabinet lights. Maintaining a safe distance from these materials will help reduce the risk of something catching fire.
Frequently Asked Questions About Under-Cabinet Lighting
How do I hide the wires from my under-cabinet lights?
The best way to hide a power cord is to pin it to the underside of your cabinet using a cable protector.
Where should I install my under-cabinet lighting?
In most cases, very little time and effort are required to install under-cabinet lighting. It may be worth measuring and marking the mounting locations for your lights so that they are spaced out evenly. This ensures that a consistent amount of light reaches every area of your bathroom or kitchen counter.
Can I leave LED strip lights on at night?
Yes. LED light strips use little power and produce little heat, so you can use them as night lights in case you get up in the middle of the night to get a snack or use the bathroom.
How We Selected the Best Lights
To provide our readers with the best lighting recommendations possible, we rely on several key sources of information to help guide our selection process.
Initial Research: Our research process began by generating a list of under-cabinet lights with a significant number of verified-buyer reviews and an average customer review rating of 4–5 stars. We looked at positive and negative reviews alike, focusing on information from both satisfied and critical buyers.
Expert Insights: Through our years of experience, we’ve learned that listening to what others have to say is key to building accurate, well-rounded articles. To complement our in-house expertise, our team looked at reviews and videos from trusted publications and independent testers, spoke with subject matter experts, and drew insights from reader contributions.
Final Product Selection: We then began fine-tuning our list by replacing older models with the latest versions and eliminating any discontinued models. From there, we pared the list down further by comparing each model’s feature set and selecting the best-in-class options for a variety of buyers, budgets, and scenarios.
Why You Can Trust Us
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Our team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content. To date, we’ve published over 1,600 reviews on products in the home improvement space, from ceiling fans and floor coating to doorbell cameras and garage door openers.
Once we conclude our research, we craft a comprehensive, user-friendly article of recommended products and additional information to help our readers make the right purchase.
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