Add under-cabinet lights to existing switch?

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Old 10-28-08, 08:25 AM
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Add under-cabinet lights to existing switch?

Hi there - I have an existing switch in a 5-year-old house that controls one teeny light over the sink. I'd like to add some under-cabinet lights to this switch. What's the best way to do this?

Thank you!
 
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Old 10-28-08, 10:31 AM
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First you must determine if you have all the required wirs at the switch in order to run the new lights.

Tell how many and what color wires are connected to the switch and in the switch box. Be sure to tell if there is anything else like a receptacle or another switch in the same box.

What style of undercabinet lights are you considering?
 
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Old 10-29-08, 05:52 AM
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existing wiring

Ok - I took this apart last night. It's a standard switch on the right with a 2-plug outlet on the left. There are three cables that come in the box from the wall. Each cable has a black (B) white (W) and bare copper (C) wire.

One cable has the B, W, and C attached to the plug outlet

One cable has the B going to the switch, the W going to a wire nut which then connects to the other cable's W, and the C wraps around the other cable's C.

One cable has the B going to the switch, the W connecting to the wire nut to the other W, and the C twisted around the other C and then going to the green nut on the switch.

SO - the switch has 2 black and 1 copper, and the plug has 2 black, 2 white and one copper.

As for type of under-cabinet lighting -- I haven't gotten that far yet. I'm open to suggestions!
 
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Old 10-29-08, 08:43 AM
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You have enough wires in the switch box to do anything you want. You can either wire in new lights to the switch box, or you can wire in the new lights to the existing light. I generally prefer the latter, since it avoids overcrowding in the switch box and the connections are simpler.
 
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Old 10-29-08, 09:15 AM
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Ok - good! So sorry if I'm being dense, but how would I wire it? Take the B,W,C wires from the new light, slplice them onto the cable going from the switch to the ceiling light with wire nuts? It's going to get pretty cramped in the box. Any other way?

Any suggestions on type of under-cabinet lights?
 
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Old 10-29-08, 11:12 AM
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Do you want to wire this from the existing light, or from the existing switch box?
 
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Old 10-29-08, 11:23 AM
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The light is in the ceiling, and I'm adding under-cabinet lights. So at the box would be best. But I can splice in to the line going up to the light at the box if that is best. The switch is just under the cabinets. Oh - and forgot to mention it is a GFI.

Thanks again!
 
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Old 10-30-08, 06:43 PM
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Karen,

The lighting cannot be added to either of the small appliance circuits that serve the countertop receptacles.


I like using the Seagull Ambiance low voltage undercabinet lighting. I have also just seen some from NSL lighting that looks promising.

www.seagulllighting.com
www.nslusa.com
 
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Old 10-31-08, 05:39 AM
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I was planning to add it to the switch, which appears to have a seperate power supply cable coming in (not to the receptacle cable). So splice th B,W,C to the cable leading up to the ceiling light then - right?

Thanks for the lighting links -- I'll check it out.
 
 

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