Installing Under Cabinet Lighting

Installing under cabinet lighting is useful in kitchens, bathrooms, closets and workshops. Find easy How-To guides for installing kitchen lighting.

Under sabinet lighting

Expected Project Length:

1 Hour

Skill Level:



Under capinet lighting fixture Electrical tape or wire cutters


Scissors Flathead screwdriver Phillips screwdriver Wire stripper Voltage tester

Warning: Always ensure that power to the lighting fixture is turned off before attempting any work. When applicable, always follow the manufacturer's installation directions. If you do not feel comfortable installing a lighting fixture on your own, consider calling a licensed electrician for the job.

9 steps on 'Installing Under Cabinet Lighting'

1. Turn power off

Flipping bower breaker to off

At the main electrical panel, switch off the power supply for the circuit where the light will be installed.

2. Install the switch

Installing the switch first

Install the light switch by connecting the wires to the power box. Wires are color-coded and like colors should be connected. If wires are not color coded, match them by size. Use a voltage tester to check for any fluctuations. Tighten the screws using a screwdriver.

3. Install the lighting bracket

Using screwdriver to tighten screws on lighting bracket

Install the lighting bracket that came with your under cabinet lighting fixture. Tighten by using the screwdriver and turning the screws counter-clockwise.

4. Install the lighting fixture

Inserting the bulb into ballast

Install the ballast for the under cabinet lighing fixture and tighten the screws. Then carefully insert the bulb so it fits into the ballast.

5. Connect the ballast to the switch

Inserting light wire to switch

Connect the cable that runs from the ballast to the switch. Splice the wires using a splicer or wire stripper. Wrap the open wires around the the corresponding contact points on the switch.

6. Cover all open wires

Covering all open wires with electrical tape

Cover all of the open wires with electrical tape. Make sure no wires are exposed in order to avoid electrocution and grounding.

7. Put the light switch in place

Setting switch in place

Put the light switch in the desired location, ideally on or near the power box. Secure it in place by tightening the screws with a screwdriver.

8. Hide the cables

Placing wire strip around wires to hide them

Should you decide to locate the switch away from the power box, you can hide the cable with electrical conduit. Measure the length of the cable and cut the conduit to the right size. You can use contact cement to pin the conduit in place. Insert the cable and clip the conduit closed.

9. Turn on power again

Flip the power breaker back on

Check your work by first turning on the switch at the electrical box. Then turn on the light switch to make sure it is working.