Inside cabinet puck lights


We are building a house and the builder is asking almost $3k to install 9 halogen puck lights, low voltage, with 2 magnetic dimmers. The price seems like a lot, since 9 halogen lights = $100 (at most) plus 2 transformers + 2 Lutron dimmers = $400. And plus 5 hours of an electrican's labor at $100/hr =$1k total on the high end. Does this seems like a realistic estimate?
The cabinets (from Cardell.com ) plus crowns/trims go all the way to the ceiling. So some trim/crown would have to come off to install the puck light if we wait after the cabinets got installed. How can we carefully remove the trim/crown without damaging the trim/wood? If we carefuly replace the entire or portion of trims/crown, would it some how might cause damage the cabinets?
Any advice/opinion on what we should do will be greatly appreciated.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Yes, $3k seems very high for the work involved. But as you're finding out, what you're paying for is the logistics of coordinating the electrical work (including the rough-in wiring, which you didn't include in your breakdown), the cabinet install, and the trim work. The builder also knows that there's a risk of delay, callbacks, damaged cabinets, holes in the wrong place, etc., so a portion of that cost is padding for contingencies.
As for retrofitting, if the trim is just nailed up, it won't be too bad to remove and replace. If glue is involved, you'll probably break some trim, which will mean special ordering replacements for the cabinet manf. Nothing is simple. Oh yeah, and you still need the rough-in wiring.
Personally, I'd skip the in-cab lights and focus on good under-cab lighting, for which I prefer fluorescent.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@fast.net wrote in

I have had horrible luck with those puck lights. The fixtures don't last very long and the bulbs don't last either.
They are a PITA and they just aren't worth the trouble.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Take a look at a Xenon fixture. They run cooler and can use a standard dimmer. HD has the GE line with two or more bulbs in each fixture. (5 I think). They also have a hard wire box but can also be plugged in. I just bought a bunch for our new kitchen to be installed in Sept. Elec. supply houses also have other zenon brands. Too bad that LED under counter lamps are not readilly available.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The halogen bulbs I used on a project were rated for 2000 hours ( I found out after the fact) The next batch Xenon I used were rated at 10000 hours. Not to mention the halogen bulbs cant be touched with hands with out reducing life more due to oils from your hands. I would ask the cabinet manufacture but my guess is you will damage the trim and it might be quicker to damage the trim and replace with new from the manufacture. Our production shop uses glue and you could pull the wood apart Labor cost more than the trim. Are you putting these lights on the top inside of kitchen cabnets. If so the light wont filter down unless you have glass shelves. With the doors open your light will come from the room not the puck lights with the exception of the top shelf. If it were me I would forget the lights. But after my wife said no way I would ask the builder if I could hire any electrician on my own while everything was open. His thought to himself will be car dealers make there money on the extras not the car itself.Good luck
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks all for your advices and great suggestions but still need more answers/help. We have decided to install Xeon for under cabinets task lighting ourselves later. I haven't thought of asking the builder if they allow bring in my own electrician...
I forgot to mention that the puck lights are for display cabinets with clear glass panels, 18" height. The cabinet is cherry wood with a dark brown stain. The builder stated that the recessed puck lights are Seagull 9858-05. These lights have a diameter 3 1/8" and height of 7/8". And since the ceiling of the cabinet is only 1/2" thick, the light will be recessed 1/2". The builder stated on the contract that "the holes on the cabinet ceiling will be drilled centered and will be covered by a filler strip (approx. 6" wide and runs front to back of the cabinet)".
Why would a filler strip be needed here? I'm trying to get an answer from the builder but no luck yet. Of all the cabinet installation with recessed puck lights that I have seen, there are no filler strips. They should just made the whole the exact size as the light fixture/casing right?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.