A product review is a powerful thing. Why am I qualified to write them? In a word. I’m anal. I don’t rest until I find the absolute best product with the greatest features and at the optimal price. As I considered my search for better cabinet and closet lighting solutions, I started to run through exactly how many products I had tested, before I settled on a winner.
This was all part of my recently completed, kitchen project.
I had some older halogen, under-cabinet lights that I used in my old kitchen. Salvaging those, I thought I could recycle them. They offered a 3-setting dimmer touch switch that I really liked. That allowed the lights to be used as night lighting , but were also bright enough for task lighting on their highest setting. I drilled the necessary holes and installed those. They worked as expected, but are hot to the touch, so not good if a box or bag of food were to touch them.
My second item, was an updated version of these lights that used LED lights instead of halogen bulbs. This allowed for a lower profile, which provide more headroom within the cabinet. They were also much cooler to the touch, lowering my concern of any possible fire or overheating.
While these are sufficiently bright, the main downside was that they didn’t offer a dimmer switch, straight out of the box. They were either off, or on. They also required physical holes to be drilled and a direct outlet power plug, similar to the first set.
For localized, counter task lighting, I ended up trying a Hampton Bay spot light, that I picked up from home depot for about $30. This again, required a wall outlet, for power, but the quality of the light itself was very harsh, and white, and was more like the bat-signal when it was lit, and cast a lot of shadows. My wife hated it.
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For one of the larger, under the sink spaces, I used a D-battery operated version of Mr. Beams, lights. The lighting was VERY adequate and more similar to a bright fluorescent bulb, but was kind of perfect for the space, and went on and off when the door was opened. The downside was that the motion detector was also set off whenever someone used the sink sprayer hose in the sink. That caused the 6 D-Batteries to be spent much more quickly than they would under normal use. While the light it provided was great, that would prove to be too expensive if I needed to continually replace those batteries.
My final solution was a small, motion activated, LED strip, with a self-contained, and rechargeable battery.
I started with one unit to test it out, and it worked flawlessly. It didn’t need to be recharged for about 2 months, with normal use. It installed simply, with a sticky magnet strip that allows for easy relocation and charging. I added a second, and then a third, and fourth unit. I’m up to 8 units now, that I have installed in most kitchen and bathroom cabinets. I also expanded that to clothing and coat closets. I also tell everyone I know or visitors how effective the product has been.
Amazon and specifically 2 day Prime delivery has made a lot of this possible. I can compare other reviews, get fast delivery of a single unit, and expand upon my winners. In the recent past, I would have been stuck with my first selection. At the very least, I would have been less inclined to replace it. Now I can find the optimal solution that goes the furthest for my time, effort & most importantly my money.
You can find several of the products mentioned in this article, at the links below: