LED tape is a thin, flexible circuit board populated with small, single LEDs. It is straightforward to use, and simple to instal thanks to the 3M branded self-adhesive on the back. It can add a powerful, modern task or ambient lighting to any part of your home or commercial premises. Check out our blog post on why you need to instal LED tape.
We cut our LED tape to your exact length requirements and solder wires onto the end of the strip, for free, to make sure that you never have to buy more than you need. So, feel free to take advantage of this service!
The LED tape installation can seem complicated, to begin with, so please feel free to call or email us if you need any guidance or help with selecting the right product for you.
LED strips are available in a wide variety of colours and brightnesses, including RGB colour changing! For this reason, lots of people are considering this form of lighting for their homes and businesses. IP65 rated LED Tape is ideal for bathrooms and outdoor areas as it is water-resistant, whereas standard LED tape is great for cabinets and shelves due to how thin and easy to conceal it is. The possibilities are endless with LED strips, from under-cupboard kitchen lighting to outdoor accents, bar and restaurant lighting, storefront displays, stage design, signages, and more…
How to Instal the LED Tape?
Making your LED tape work is very easy. A lot of people use it in DIY projects. You should, of course, consult an electrician if your LED tape is going to be mains powered.
First, choose your LED tape colour or colours and decide on where you are going to instal it; measure the area to determine the length of strip you will need. Now, think about how you’re going to power it - will it be wired into a light switch, or are you going to pop a plug onto the end and plug it into a spare plug socket? Do you want to be able to dim your tape or control your LED strip with a remote control or wall controller?
Lastly, you will need to work out what LED driver you will need to power your LED tape - there is more info on this on individual product pages. Once you have a plan, everything else comes easy.
Your LED tape will arrive ready for installation, so simply remove the adhesive and stick it to your desired area. Connect the LED driver, connect it to the power source, and that's it!
What Is the Difference Between a Rope Light and LED Tape?
Rope light is a versatile tool used in many lighting applications (often as Christmas lighting). It consists of a string of incandescent or LED bulbs encased in a flexible tube. Rope light is available in a single colour or multi-colours.
The LED tape has a very thin, flat appearance and is easy to conceal. The strip has an adhesive backing that you can peel off and stick anywhere you want. It also comes in solid colours or colour-changing RGB.
Rope light is less costly and doesn't have to be divided into multiple sections, even if you want to illuminate a particularly long wall. However, the adhesive makes it much easier to instal LED strip lights in most locations. Additionally, the LED tapes provide a significantly brighter light, which makes them a better choice on many occasions.
Is LED Strip Lighting Expensive?
The cost of strip lights varies depending on the length of the tape, LED colour, and other factors, such as whether the strip is waterproof. On our website, the advertised prices for LED tape are per metre, unless stated otherwise. You can sometimes save money by buying your LED tape as a kit that comes complete with everything you need. LED tape is very cheap to run with standard tape, often consuming 5w or less per metre.
Can You Leave LED Strip Lights on All Night?
Technically, you can leave them on all night without having to worry about a thing. The average-hours lifetime of LEDs is a lot longer than that of older style lights; they consume less power, and will also cost a lot less to run. They are a great option for ambient night lighting so that you can safely walk between rooms that would usually be dark. This is particularly beneficial for children.
Does LED Tape Get Hot?
It doesn’t get hot in the way that normal light bulbs do. You may notice that the LEDs feel a little warm if you touch the strip, which is normal. LEDs will get warm but should not be hot enough to burn you.
What Are the Factors That I Should Consider When Buying Led Strip Lights?
When you click on any of the LED tapes that you can find on our website, you'll be presented with a wide array of information. We want our customers to know exactly what they are buying, which is why we'll help you digest every piece of information step by step.
When choosing the type of LED tape for your bedroom, living room, or any space that you think is too dark, the average lifespan of a product will probably be one of the first things that you'll consider. Although LED lights are usually more costly than other types, e.g., incandescent bulbs, their lifespan makes it more than worthy of consideration.
Most of the LED lights that you can find on our website have an average lifespan of 50,000 hours. However, even after this time, the LED lights won't stop working completely, but rather will lose some of their brightness. Because of that, even though you'll have to pay more for the lights themselves, you'll save money in the long run.
Although most people use LED lighting indoors, it doesn't mean that it cannot be used outside, e.g. to light up your porch. However, before you choose a LED tape to illuminate an outdoor location, you should check its IP rating. On our website next to the product, you'll find a double-digit number, e.g. 20.
The first number indicates whether solid objects, such as dust are likely to damage the lights. If the first number is 0, it means that the LED tape isn't protected from solid objects in any way, whereas 6 means that even the smallest particles of dust won't damage it. If the LED strip lights of your choice have an IP rating of 2, then they are protected against large objects, e.g. fingers, though when it comes to smaller ones, such as dust, they won't offer enough protection.
The second number indicates whether LED lighting is safe to use if it comes into contact with water or liquids in general. It can be anywhere between 0, and 8. 0 indicates that there is absolutely no protection, 1 that the lights are protected from the raindrops. 8 means that the lights can be permanently submerged in the water, granted that they are installed no deeper than 4 metres below the water's surface, as otherwise, the pressure could damage them.
Remember that a higher IP rating might not necessarily be required in your situation. If you intend to instal your LED tape indoors, the second number won't matter in most cases unless you want to make sure that an accidental spillage won't damage the lighting. On the other hand, if you want to instal an LED tape next to, e.g., your swimming pool, you should check whether the second number is at least 4.
Although knowing where you'll instal your LED strip lights is necessary, as otherwise, you won't know what IP rating you need, that's not all. Based on whether you want to illuminate your bedroom, or if it's the kitchen that could use some extra LED striplights, you will need to choose products with a different number of lumens.
If you need to buy lights for a bedroom, you shouldn't choose those with a high number of lumens, as their brightness will make you feel more awake, which could potentially lead to problems with falling asleep. On the other hand, if you need to choose lights for your office, strip LED lights with not enough lumens could fail to keep your employees focused and would cause them to strain their eyesight.
Colour temperature (CT) is another factor that you should consider when choosing LED tape that would suit you best. Many people mistake the brightness and colour temperature of lights, though they are not the same thing. Lumens tell us how bright a light is, whereas colour temperature refers to the hue of the light. This information is usually provided in Kelvins, e.g., 4000K, which would indicate that the light is neutral, though you might simply find a description, e.g., "warm white."
Most LED strip lights come with a 5-year warranty so that you won't have to worry that they will stop working anytime soon. However, they are more than likely to exceed this time period - as we've previously mentioned, LED tapes typically work for at least 10 years before they lose some of their brightness.
How Can I Dim My Led Lights?
One of the advantages of LED lights over other types is the ability to dim them according to the owner's will. However, that's not all - depending on your preferences, you could do that in several ways.
The first option is to dim your LED strip lights using a remote control. This way, you won't have to move from your couch to dim the lights installed in the other part of the room. It is certainly a convenient way to control your lights, though apart from changing their brightness, you'll also be able to use the remote control to turn them on and off.
Alternatively, you could use a traditional dimmer instead. Certainly, it's not as convenient of an option, as you wouldn't be able to control your LED strip lights remotely. Still, if you don't mind having to get up each time you need to turn up or down the brightness, it's something that you should consider. Some wall dimmers require users to turn the knob, whereas newer models come with a touch screen instead.
Do LED Strip Lights Attract Insects?
Many customers who are interested in getting LED lights are afraid that they might inadvertently attract insects. It often happens that just after installing lights e.g., on their porch, they can no longer rest there in peace and quiet, as they are being swarmed by mosquitoes, flies, and other insects.
However, there is no need to worry that a similar situation will take place once you instal LED strip lights, indoors or outdoors. That's because LED lights produce UV light, but its amount is so minuscule that it fails to attract the insects.
Because of that, LED lighting is a good idea if you need to illuminate outdoor areas where you and your friends will meet up, as you won't notice the greater than usual presence of flies, bees, or mosquitoes.
Does the Temperature Have an Impact on the Estimated Lifespan of LED Lighting?
One of the biggest advantages of LED lights is their resistance to both cold and hot temperatures - you shouldn't notice any issues in temperatures ranging from -30*C to 60*C. However, it doesn't mean that the temperature doesn't have an impact on their functioning.
If you touch a LED light, you won't burn your hand, but it will be warm nonetheless. Cold air could eliminate the negative effects that the heat could have, essentially increasing the expected lifespan of LED strip lights. Just make sure that it isn't lower than -30*C, or it will have the opposite result.
How Much Power Supply Do I Need?
Depending on the length of LED strip lights that you'll want to power, you'll need an adequate power supply. If you have ordered a specific length of the LED tape, then your job will be easy, as most likely, you'll find such information on the packaging.
However, if you decide that you don't want to use the entire strip that you've bought, the power requirements will respectively decrease. Just calculate the length of the strip that you'll use and multiply it by the watt requirements per metre or foot. However, that's not all - in order not to overwork your LED lights, you should connect them to a power supply with a 20% higher voltage than what you've calculated.
This way, the lights will last you for longer, as they won't be working near their limits. If you provide the exact amount of voltage to the LED tapes, they will operate at full capacity, and as a result, their lifespan would decrease.
Do I Need to Solder if I Want to Join Multiple Strips?
Even though LED tapes, due to their long lifespan and energy efficiency, can prove to be an excellent choice for customers who want to illuminate all types of spaces, many people are scared off because they don't want to do any soldering. However, even if you need to connect two LED strips, there's no need to solder; you could use clip-on connectors instead. All that you have to do is to clasp them.
What Is the Voltage Dropping? How to Avoid It?
If you buy LED strip lights and instal them correctly, you might discover that not all of them are equally bright. In most cases, it won't mean that there is something wrong with the lights; instead, that's probably because of the voltage dropping. Your LED strip lights will need a power source to work, but if their length is particularly big, the lights at the end of the strip will receive less voltage, and because of that, their brightness will be diminished.
This issue is even more serious if you decide to buy 12V lights, instead of the 24V, as they lose voltage more quickly. The easiest way to deal with this problem is to run several parallel wires that would be connected to shorter LED strips instead of a single long one. To make it less of a hassle, we recommend placing the power supply in the middle, so that you won't have to use as much wire.