Looking for ideas to replace/renew over the cabinet lighting?


I have two pairs (four light ballasts with two bulbs in each) of over the cabinet end-to-end connected flourescent lighting. The previous owner had a frosted cover in front of the lights from the edge of the cabinet to the ceiling held together in plastic tracks.

Looking for ideas to make them presentable and look good, either by replacing them or enhancing/renewing them.

The wife likes a bright kitchen, and because these are connected end-to-end in pairs, options are limited.

There are options from 1800ceiling.com for frosted prismatic covers. But they run $70 per piece with shipping. So close to $300 overall.


  12 answers
  • My first thought is new covers, but it sounds like they are pricy. Could the existing covers be modified in some way to your liking? A picture would be helpful.

  • Mogie Mogie on Apr 04, 2021

    Some type of fairy light would work. They draw little juice and you can shape them to fit your layout.


  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Apr 04, 2021

    Take a look here at these decorative light panels:


    Hmmm, they are a bit pricey, maybe put up some decals on the plastic covers, a minimal design that is pleasant. Check out Dollar Tree and see what they have.

    Look here at Amazon at these Iron Orchid design transfers and see if something like this would work for you:


  • Deb K Deb K on Apr 04, 2021

    Hi Ravendra, what if you just put a nice cling on the existing frosted cover, then you could replace the florescent lights with LED lights they do make light frostied decaling



  • Flipturn Flipturn on Apr 05, 2021

    Decals on plastic light covers are just going to hinder the light from being emitted through the plastic, not enhance it. I would not recommend this suggestion.

  • Flipturn Flipturn on Apr 05, 2021

    I agree with William's suggestion to replace these old fluorescent fixtures entirely with new LED lights. As many stores and websites no longer even sell fluorescent lights anymore, it does not make sense to spend time and money on purchasing plastic covers for fixtures that may be very difficult to find replacement bulbs for. Besides, florescent light emits a greenish hue (incandescent a yellow) compared to LED light that is clear.

    Keeping in mind that our eyes require 60% more light as we age over the decades, if you are planning to stay in the home for the near future, IMO switching to brighter, less shadowy LED light is a sensible move.

    Integrated LED light fixtures do not require bulb replacements, do not require robust hardware to mount as they are lightweight, do not heat up, and run on very little electricity.

    Here are some examples of integrated light fixtures. The first photo shows what one looks like on the inside.

  • The wiring you see is specific to the existing fixtures so changing the fixtures out to something like Flipturn is suggesting shouldn't be difficult as the wiring will be different. Plus LED's are very electric-bill friendly.

  • Cheryl A Cheryl A on Apr 05, 2021

    could you take down the frosted covers and then just add new bulbs to the existing lights

    • Flipturn Flipturn on Apr 08, 2021

      Reply to Cheryl,

      Yes, although replacing existing bulbs in fluorescent fixtures is still 'possible', it is becoming increasing more difficult to find retail sources that even sell fluorescent bulbs anymore. I think though that the focus of the question was more so on what could be done to eliminate the fluorescent light and utilitarian/unattractive look to the light bulbs.

  • Ravendra Singh Ravendra Singh on Apr 07, 2021

    Thanks all. I am attaching a picture of what they look (realized I should have attached one). I removed the frosted covers in the renovation so these are clearly visible.

    As you can see each pair is connected end to end, and each pair is supplied power its own power cable.

    Can I use, perhaps, four round recessed low profile LED lights replacing flourescent tube - installed on a nicely stained rectangular wooden box simulating installation inside a drywall, and then attach the rectangular box to the back wall? I don't want to install the LEDs in the drywall itself as I will need to run wire inside the wall. So, sixteen four inch integrated recessed LEDs? Will I be able to connect the eight LEDs in a daisy chain for each side?

  • Flipturn Flipturn on Apr 07, 2021

    Thank you for the photo.

    Yes, recessed low profile LED lights (examples below) can be installed into boxes, then mounted on to the walls. These are available in different diameters, with different styles of mounting clips.

    However, as these shallow lights are generally designed to be installed into ceilings, I think that 16 lights over these two walls would be too many. It is commonly suggested that these lights be installed a distance of 3-4 feet apart, centre to centre, depending on the Kelvin number. Measure the length of the wall that you would like covered by light, then divide to determine the optimal amount of units.

    I see however, that you presently have a dim, opaque ceiling fixture. I would recommend replacing it with one of the LED fixtures similar to the examples in my answer above. Do this first before you proceed with purchasing any other lights, making the boxes, and so forth. Once it is up and running, re-evaluate the light in the room to determine what you may still need, or no longer need.

  • Ravendra Singh Ravendra Singh on Apr 08, 2021

    Based on Flipturn's suggestion I changed the hanging light to a flushed LED. Thanks much for this. Its looks good and brightens the kitchen. Now for the flourescent tubes, the wife and I cannot agree to what to do. She is ok with them as is and I think they are ugly. So, looks like we will leave them be for now.

    • Flipturn Flipturn on Apr 08, 2021

      'Glad to hear that you were able to find a solution for now that improves the lighting in your kitchen. Thanks for the feedback.

      'Keep those questions coming.

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