LED light strips provide a lot of advantages. They are a cost-effective and environmentally beneficial lighting option. They provide a wide range of color and size options. Flexible LED light strips can be used to illuminate difficult-to-light areas that regular lighting can’t reach. They also provide you the freedom to be as creative as you want with your lighting designs.
Consider doing a DIY accent lighting project in your house using traditional light sources. Isn’t it harrowing? Purchasing and connecting LED strips, on the other hand, eliminates all of that bother and allows you to achieve your creative lighting fantasies.
It’s a no-brainer to light your area with flexible LED ribbon lights. However, you must now install them. This may appear to be a difficult undertaking, but it is rather simple if you follow a few simple steps. Continue reading for more information on how to connect and install LED light strips.
How to Connect LED Light Strips With Each Other
Unless you’re lighting a very tiny project, you’ll almost certainly have to cut and connect LED light strips. One of the most significant advantages of LED tape lights is this. To illuminate larger rooms and unique nooks and crannies, link many strips together. LED tapes can be connected in two different ways:
LED light strip connection clip is the simplest way to connect two LED strips. A male-to-male clip may be used to connect two LED strips. This clip might be in either of the following formats:
a) Hippo Buckle LED Strip Lights connector: The Hippo Buckle light strip connector makes it simple to connect two LED strips. On each of its two ends, this connection includes enough for an LED light strip. To link two strips together, just hook one end of your strip to the hippo buckle connection. Once the strips are inserted, the connector’s ‘buckle’ locks them in place.
These connectors may be used to join two strips or to connect your LED strip to the power source. In either case, these connections assist you in successfully extending the range of your LED light strips. This connection may be used to connect single color and RGB LED light strips.
b) Solder-Free LED Strip Lights Connector: Hippo clips are fantastic for connecting individual LED light strips, but they don’t have enough room to join parallel LED tapes. This is where the bigger solderless LED strip lights connection comes in handy. There is adequate room to connect numerous LED strips.
This connection may be used to connect single color and RGB LED ribbon lights. Dimmable LED strip lights are also compatible. The LED strips are held in place by plastic clips, which also keep the connection tight.
b) Solder-Free LED Wire Connector: Your LED light strips may need to go around a corner or into an odd form for your project. Solderless LED wire connectors come in helpful in this situation. You may use these wire connectors to connect two LED light strips since they feature clips on both ends. They’re fantastic for making your LED light strips last longer.
The wire connection is an excellent technique to conceal dark nooks and other elements of your room. This is because these cables are not equipped with LEDs. They’re just good for extending the strip’s length. Both single color and RGB LED tape lights may be connected.
While clipping is a quick and straightforward technique to connect LED light strips, there are some situations when clipping isn’t an option. You can’t use clips to link strips that will be put in aluminum frames, for example. You’ll have to solder LED tapes together in that instance.
Soldering LED light strips to one another is a simple procedure. It does, however, need some specialized equipment and has a steep learning curve. To solder two LED strips together, trim the strips to the desired length, remove the covering to reveal the strip, match the ends of both strips perfectly, and solder.
Factors to Consider When Clipping and Soldering LED Strips
While clipping and soldering are two distinct ways to join LED strips, they both require certain conditions to function.
When putting LED tapes together, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Always cut LED wires from the copper connectors in the LED tapes, which may be found every 2 inches or so. This is necessary to prevent the tapes’ vital LED components from being destroyed.
- LED tapes must be exposed for soldering and cutting. As a result, gently remove the tapes’ plastic casings from the copper connectors. Make sure the writing is visible as well. When utilizing hippo connections, this step is not required.
- When soldering or using wire connectors to join tapes, ensure sure the proper wires on each LED strip are connected. As a result, red is connected to red, green is connected to green, and so on.
- To protect the connections, always use a heat shrink cover. Heat shrink coverings for indoor and outdoor use are different, so make sure you obtain the proper one.
How to Connect LED Light Strips to Power Supply
Let’s look at how to connect strip lights to the power source now that your LED ribbon lights are linked. You may connect your light strips to power in a variety of ways. Each strip may be connected directly to the socket, which is particularly handy for illuminating smaller places or tasks. The connection may be made with LED light strip clips. Alternatively, you may hardwire your LEDs to your home’s or building’s main power supply. This last option is typically used for larger projects, such as lighting an entire building or workplace.
Whatever method you use to connect your LED lights to the power source, there are a few things you should do beforehand to make sure you’re making the appropriate choice.
Step 1: Calculate LED Strip Wattage
Ideally, you should already have an estimate of how much power your LED light strip will demand. However, after you’ve cut and linked the tapes together, there may be some additions or subtractions in the number. Calculate the total watts needed to power your flexible LED light strips once again.
This is readily accomplished by multiplying the strip’s length by the watts per meter. For example, to power a 3.8m long strip with a 5W/m power use, you’ll need a transformer with a minimum capacity of 19W. The power drain for each LED strip may be found on the package or on the manufacturer’s website.
The voltage required for the strip is also taken into account when determining strip wattage. LED strips typically require a power of 12V or 24V. You must use a power supply that is compatible with the LED light strip’s voltage; otherwise, it may not operate.
If you’re utilizing the same LED light tape for your whole project, double the watts per meter by the length of the complete strip you wish to power from a single source. This will tell you how much power your power supply has. If you’re utilizing many different varieties of LED ribbon lights, sum up the wattage requirements for all of them. This will give you an idea of how much electricity they require to function.
Step 2: Find a Compatible Power Supply
Now that you know how much power your LED light strips will use, the following step is to select the appropriate power source. You should pick a power source that only uses 80% of its total power to operate the LED tapes. This is critical for the longevity of your power supply as well as your LED strips.
If your LED strip requires 19 watts, for example, you’ll need a power supply with a minimum output of 23 watts (19/0.8). This prevents your power supply from overheating. Once you’ve determined the minimum wattage needed, you have three options for powering your ribbon lights:
a) Sockets or Plug-Ins: You may connect your LEDs to the power sockets in your space to power them. For this, you’ll need a decent Desktop LED Power Supply. To light up your LED tapes, just connect one end of the power supply to the LED tapes and the other end to the socket. This is a fantastic alternative for task or accent lighting in homes, smaller places, and LED ribbon lights.
b) Hardwiring: You may hardwire your LED light strips to your space’s electrical wiring. This is a good option to power your tape lights, especially if you’re lighting a commercial or industrial location. To hardwire your LED tapes, you’ll need an Aluminum Case LED Power Supply, which is best handled by specialists.
c) Batteries: Your LED ribbon lights may be powered by batteries. If you want to power a tiny accent piece or carry your LED lights with you on the move, this is a fantastic solution.
Step 3: Connect LED Strip to Power Supply
It’s time to connect your LED light tapes to your power supply when you’ve chosen the proper one. As previously stated, your LED ribbon lights can be hardwired or connected to your power source through a power socket.
If you want to link your LED tapes to a socket, you may do it in two ways:
The first is to connect each length of the strip to a single desktop power supply that can then be connected to the socket.
The second method is to use a wire clip to link parallel LED ribbon lights and then attach the wire clip to the socket. Both of these methods will allow you to illuminate your environment without having to be concerned about voltage drop. LED light strip plug connections may also be used to connect your strips to power sources directly.
LED light strips are a terrific way to add some extra illumination to your projects. They can be easily installed and are flexible enough to fit into tiny areas. They have a very low carbon footprint and produce very little heat. You won’t have to worry about maintenance costs, and they use less energy than typical lighting sources. LED light tapes may be readily connected to fit your environment.