Sunday, August 18, 2013

DIY Pantry light upgrade, fit for a king.

My pantry is in the corner of the kitchen and doesn't get a lot of light. I got tired of rummaging around the back shelves trying to read spice labels and ingredients of various packets. Adding some additional lighting has been on my mind for a while but I've never come across a solution which I completely liked, that is until I found LED strips on eBay. Cheap and easy and amazing!


Add LED strip

Some basic mounting and soldering

A micro switch to turn it off when the door closes


The LED strip was only $6 including shipping! I bought 5 meters and I've only used 1.8m. There is a "big brother" LED strip called the 5050, but honestly, it's almost too bright as it is. There are also fancy RGB led strips which are cool but I really only needed white light in my pantry.  I also bought a $9 power supply, 12v 5A, because I "thought" I might run the light up both sides and maybe on the top too, but it turns out that running up one side is more then enough, so here's the kicker: the whole thing burns about 7 watts! This means I can replace my 5A power supply with a 1A one for $5! 

Fortunately, to the immediate right of the pantry is a space where the microwave sits and it already had a double power socket, with the microwave using only 1. This meant all I had to do was drill a hole between the 2 cavities and plug the power point in behind the microwave. 

The last thing of expense was the tri quad, (the little triangle piece of wood you can see the strip is stuck to) I could have stuck the strip straight onto the inside of the pantry, but I thought it would be better if the light angled a bit into the pantry. Also when you stick your head in there, if the lights were just flush against the wall they would glare right into your eyes. So I bought a length of 8mm tri quad for about $6. So all up the project cost me $20 (I had the switch and wires already, that would have been an extra dollar or two.)

Overall, this project was a 10! If I do say so myself. Whipped it up in one afternoon and an absolutely amazing result. And I still have over 3m of LED strip left!  Now I just have to be careful I don't cover my whole house in LED strips:)

1 comment:

  1. That is indeed pretty cool Andy!

    Haven't spoken to you for ages. I've been hibernating on the maker scene given that my uni work has sucked up all my time and we're totally broke. Hope to catch up with you some time.

    Oh, it's Mat from the Makerfaire thing in case this posts with some weird username.


visitor counter