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Under Cabinet Lighting - Looking for Suggestions

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  • Under Cabinet Lighting - Looking for Suggestions

    Hi there - I was hoping to turn to some of the experts here for some advice. I am in the process of redoing my kitchen and the wife has decided that she would like to get some under cabinet lighting as well as a set above the cabinets. I have been trying to think through the best way of doing this. I was hoping to see what you all suggest.

    Right now, I have a pretty big investment in insteon and use that with homeseer to control scenes/timers/etc. I have started to dabble a bit with Zwave and open to that as well.

    Here are the requirements. The uppers and bottoms are going to be seperate zones or controlls. Meaning I need to be able to turn one off or both one independently. I am looking at the LED strip lights since those will likely be able to be hidden a bit with the cabinets we have. We need to be able to dim them.

    What I have been considering is doing insteon outlets that have dimmers built in. However was looking at maybe using something like the fibraro rgbw2 or the shellyrgbw2. This way I can do some tuning of the white color. However not sure how that would work with the insteon dimmer. The big need is to be able to control it with a tactile switch not just an app.

    Thanks!

    Dave

  • #2
    Recently wrote a DIY under the MQTT plugin section of the forum.

    I built the strips for under the cabinets and over the cabinets. This was the easiest piece to do. The aluminum base is very narrow and you do not see the strips. Purchased everything on Amazon. The LED strips are very easy to cut and base is also easy.

    For manual control here upgraded (with mcsMichael's help) the firmware on a MagicHome RGB controller (only used one channel) for WiFi remote and the use of a small digital on off dimmer pot. Stock firmware uses an ap or a remote. I removed the remote piece and install a combo temperature / humidity sensor for kitchen temperature / humidity readings.

    That is one piece. The controller is tiny and also not to visible. I did multiple controllers.

    Next piece was installation of an LED Transformer inside of a double duplex outlet. I removed one of the outlets and put a switch in place for the LED transformer. Here utilize UPB but you can utilize anything you want.

    So the completed set up usesand provides you with a choice of automating the LED controller on or off at a set dim level or leaving the power on and automating / dimming the lamps via WiFi or using the digital on off pot.

    It is high on the WAF because of the manual switch and tiny dimmer. I went overboard a bit doing one run under the cabinet to under the microwave and over to the next cabinet. Wife likes the lighting for cooking and way better than the under the microwave / over the stove LED lamps.

    Did another set up using a UPB automated dimmer switch going to a dimmable 120VAC to 12VDC power supply for my home office book shelves (floor to almost ceiling) the ceiling is pitched from 8 foot to around 15 foot or so.

    The 120VAD to 12VDC power supply is not very large and would fit nicely if under the cabinets if you went that route. I would though put a box in under the cabinets (1/4 size) and run conduit over to the nearest switch or just put in a switch in one of the power outlets on the kitchen counters. Here my boxes are all 4X4 with single duplex outlets along the kitchen counters...well every 2-3 feet or so. It is easy to remove a single mudplate and replace it with a double mudplate.

    It is easier to go with 12VDC power. Here routed the 12VDC power out of the metal box to under the kitchen cabinet and ended it there with a 12VDC female barrel connector. Much smaller footprint than using 120VAC and easier to deal with LV wiring. The tricky part was installing the LED power supply inside of the 4X4 box.

    There are or were pictures of my endeavor posted on the forum. What is nice about using the modded firmware is the local control, web site scheduling or HS3 schedule via the MQTT plugin.

    Go baby steps first building your aluminum tracks with LED strips. These fasten under the counter with tiny clips.
    - Pete

    Auto mator
    Homeseer 3 Pro - 3.0.0.534 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e 64 bit Intel Haswell CPU - Mono 6.4X
    Homeseer Zee2 (Lite) - 3.0.0.534 (Linux) - Ubuntu 18.04/W7e - CherryTrail x5-Z8350 BeeLink 4Gb BT3 Pro - Mono 6.4X

    X10, UPB, Zigbee, ZWave and Wifi MQTT automation.

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    • #3
      This is an issue I too have been considering for my kitchen remodel.

      The led driver and power supply will take up a bit of space, but they can easily be located remotely if you, like myself, don't want to sacrifice a spot in a cabinet for them. I don't plan to use a switched outlet but I'll run the wire just in case I change my mind. My plan is to run wire for a (switched) outlet into a recessed wiring cabinet I'm going to place into my walk in pantry. In your case if you plan to use a switched outlet for 2 LED's make sure you wire both the upper and lower part of the outlet as 2 separate runs.

      I'll run low voltage wiring from that cabinet to my LED strip locations. In my case I'll use an HS-WS200 with no load which I'll associate with the Fibaro. If you want to plug the Fibaro into a switched outlet you'd probably want to have an event to set up a default condition for your LED's when you turn the switch on.

      I plan to use the double tap central scene to toggle through a set of primary colors then use the press and hold central scene to dim up or down.

      Remember a dimmer can't be behind another dimmer, so in this scenario a dimming outlet paired with a Fibaro would not work.

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      • #4
        https://lightwaverf.com/products/12v-led-driver-module were built for job but hard to come by these days
        You would need RFXCom to control them and also I don't know if the US frequency is 415 Mhz


        Eman.
        The Closer.

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        • #5
          I went with the Zwave RGBW module. I am using the Fibaro RGBW (it is older and only Z-Wave not Plus) and it has worked flawlessly for a couple years now.

          I fished a wire from a receptacle at counter level and put a receptacle above the cabinets (so it is very hard to see). I also used the aluminum channel with the RGBW strip lights bought off of Amazon. I just plugged the power supply into the receptacle and laid the Z-wave RGBW module on the top of the cabinets.

          Currently it is being controlled by motion detection at night and Alexia whenever we want to turn them on manually. I do have a Tablet in there that can control them but it gets used for other things also so getting to the controls is not always a super quick feat.

          I have a Blank light switch position on the same counter and I am about to drop in a WD-200+ The plan is to use double tap up and down to change the LED color on the Switch and then be able to control the off-on-and dim for the matching color of led light. And a simple triple tap to turn them all off. Should be simple to do.. Right? ;-)

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          • #6
            We remodeled our 1980 kitchen in 2017. At the time, the RGBW strips were not very "white" and there really wasn't a good RGBWW that could be controlled by Homeseer (that I knew of...). I had been using LIFX A19's for a while, so I bought one of their LED strips (https://www.lifx.com/pages/light-strips) to see if the "white" was good and whether it would match all the 3500K LED bulbs we had. It did. Wife liked it. With drilling a hole for the power wire, the whole installation took 10 minutes. It is EASILY controlled by HS using UltraLighting3. It does a PERFECT white for under the cabinets and I can go crazy with colors if I want. High WAF because she knows she can double tap a switch and it will go back to her white. I bought two more sets and a controller pack and had enough for three individually controlled sections in the kitchen and a cabinet in the living room. They were stuck up there in about July of 2017 and have never come undone or had an issue. They get used about 16 hours a day every day. Not one problem. Sorry for the messy kitchen, but we just finished dinner.....
            .

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