Help with Kitchen Interior Drawer Lighting

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Forum topic by Lovegasoline posted 09-12-2020 10:59 PM 235 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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171 posts in 921 days

09-12-2020 10:59 PM

Is anyone familiar with the options for interior drawer lighting with automated switch of some sort?

This concerns two kitchen flatware/utensil drawers side-by-side separated by a stile in a face frame cabinet. Each drawer is 11-1/4” interior width. There’s a 1” tall rail above the drawers and above that rail is a 1” slot for a cutting board.

What options are there options for either one full width light spanning both drawers or one light for each drawer?

One possible concern is a hole likely drilled in the stile between the drawers through which a rod can pass (through to the back of the cabinet … a device to remove the cutting board) as represented in the image and if implemented might interfere with a full width strip of some sort?

Any suggestions?

Thanks a bunch!

-- “It is the beginning of wisdom to recognize that most men are fools and knaves, but it is the end of wisdom to embrace that vision.” -Arthur Kleps

4 replies so far

View Kelly's profile


3154 posts in 3827 days

#1 posted 09-23-2020 05:19 PM

In real life (Navy and Army projects I worked, both as a civilian and military), we always used micro switches to activate a circuit. Generally, it was not a matter of some item slamming up against the switch, rather, there was a flexible piece of spring metal starting at one end of the switch and laying over it and extending past the other side about an inch. The item, like a drawer, would press against the flexible metal and cause the switch to be pushed in.

Since it was a normally closed switch, while the switch button was pushed in, the switch was off.

If I were doing this, I’d use a 12 volt or less (e.g., 3 volt LED) system, and very flexible tool cord routed so it could never be caught by the drawer.

Keep in mind all those times we’ve had something pop up in a drawer and obstruct it’s opening. It may be a thin (1/8”) piece of plexi between the light and the drawer would be a good plan.

View 987Ron's profile


104 posts in 199 days

#2 posted 09-23-2020 08:10 PM

This may give you a start as to how to do what you want. I have used these track lights for over counter lights, under above cabinet. Lowe’s, HD, Amazon, Lee Valley all have them. Check for the switch that solves your issue. Hope this helps

Amazon listing for switch:
2×12V 24V 110V Light Switch LED Strips Lighting Controller Automatic Door Switch ON OFF for Cabinet Closet Warehouse Wardrobe Electrical Door Switch Pantry Light(Black)
Brand: Tokatuker
4.5 out of 5 stars 109 ratings
for “12v door switch”
Price: $8.50 & FREE Returns
color: Black

Open the door, the switch is Closed(Light On), close the door, the switch will be Off(Light Off).
It can work for AC Powered or DC Powered Lamp LED Device
Electrical Door Switch for pantry light
What you get:2x Switch(black) 4x Screws 4x Plalstic Caps
› See more product details
Compare with similar items

-- It's not a mistake it's a design opportunity

View xedos's profile


106 posts in 183 days

#3 posted 09-25-2020 02:17 AM

You biggest challenge as I see it will be mounting the lights to the cabinet. I don’t really see drilling the stile as a good choice. Most lites will require too large a hole to be practical. I’d use two separate strips.

The easiest switching is motion/PIR. Two strips will keep the lighs from turning on in the drawer that isn’t open.

These guys are a good value between quality, offerings and price. The stuff is tested, UL approved and assembled in NC. Not BigRiver cheap, but not Park Ave. pricey either.

View Kelly's profile


3154 posts in 3827 days

#4 posted 09-25-2020 03:11 AM

Why you would go this route instead of just installing full open drawers is a curiosity to me.

Maintenance, years down the road, is a problem for me.

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