Everything You’ll Ever Need to Know About LED Strip Lights
Since the advent of LED lighting technology about ten years ago, an ever-increasing number of people have begun to switch to LEDs as their primary source of artificial home lighting. Hugely superior to conventional light sources in terms of their energy-efficiency and longevity, they’re also a lot more versatile and flexible, especially LED Strip Lights as you’ll see from this LED Monkey article…
When you’re thinking of using LED Strip Lights in your home, you’d be forgiven for believing that it’s just a case of clicking on the first ones you see.
However, they’re available in such a wide variety of types that it’ll definitely pay to give the matter some careful consideration before committing your hard-earned cash to the purchase in order to get just what you need!
Here are some Excellent reasons to choose LED Strip Lights.
LEDs generally are a lot more energy-efficient than other types of light source.
It’s a fact that they consume, on average, 80 – 90% less electricity than equivalently bright traditional light sources like incandescent and CFL bulbs (Compact Fluorescent Lamps).
This means that you’ll make enormous savings on your electricity bills when you do decide to make the switch and will achieve a very fast return on your initial investment as a result!
They Last a Long Time
Compared to incandescent and fluorescent light bulbs, LEDs have an incredibly long life-expectancy. Indeed, boasting an average life-expectancy of up to 100,000 hours, LED strip lights will still be capable of lighting up your life many, many years from now, and that’s if you have them switched on for a good proportion of every night!
LED Strip Lights generate only a very small amount of heat in comparison to other types of light source, but they do need to be looked after in order to help them achieve their full potential. While they can be installed using the strong adhesive tape on the back, it’s best to safeguard their diodes by using aluminium profiles as they’ll effectively dissipate any heat they do produce when lit.
As you'll see from the photo, aluminium profiles come in a wide variety of widths to suit the type of LED tape you're using, and they'll help you optimise your LED Strip’s beam angle.
This will ensure that you achieve exactly the right light placement and a professional looking installation that will last!
They’re Ultra Convenient
An absolute doddle to fit, LED Strip Lights can be unpacked and working beautifully within just half an hour.
And, if they don’t quite fit your installation, they can be cut-to-length at predetermined points along their length, using nothing more technical than a simple pair of kitchen scissors!
What You’ll Need to Think About When You’re Choosing Your LED Strip Lights
The first thing you’ll need to think about when you’re planning to buy some LED Strip Lights is what you need them to do for you. Obviously, you want them to provide light, but the whys and the wherefores will definitely help you choose the right type!
Are They For Indoor or Outdoor Use?
Yes, believe it or not, LED Strip Lights can be used outdoors as well as indoors just as long as you choose a type with a sufficiently high IP-Rating.
Ingress Protection Ratings are there to ensure that your LED Strip Lights are able to withstand everything from a bit of dust to a dunking in the bath. For example, an LED strip with a high IP-Rating can be used in moderately wet areas such as the bathroom, shower room and kitchen, because they’re much more water-resistant than those with lower ratings.
LED Monkey’s IP-Rated LED Strip Lights are covered with a silicon sheath that will deny entry to dust and water, so check out the table below to see exactly how much protection each rating will afford:
|IP Rating||Usage Guide|
|IP20||Protected against solid objects larger than 12mm, but not protected at all from water. This type of LED strip is most often used to illuminate display cabinets and to provide backlighting for televisions.|
|IP44||Full protection against solid objects larger than 1mm and from light splashes of water from any direction. As such, this level can be safely used for indoor applications, as well as those outdoor in relatively well sheltered areas.|
|IP65||Protected against splashing water, this level of protection is best suited to bathrooms and shower rooms, in which it will be exposed to water and steam. LED Strip Lights with this level of protection can also be used outdoors to light gardens and patios.|
|IP67||Completely protected against dust, this type of LED Strip Light can be fully immersed in 1-metre of water for up to half an hour. This makes it the ideal level of protection for all outdoor applications such as hot tubs and gazebos|
|IP68/IP68 Nano||Fully protected against water, this type of LED Strip Light can be immersed in water for an indefinite length of time, which makes it perfect for use in swimming pools and garden ponds.|
How Bright Do You Need Your LED Strip Lights to Be?
LED lighting technology really has come on in leaps and bounds over the last few years, and now the tiny light-emitting diodes are able to generate more light than ever before!
Nowadays, the brightness of a light is determined by its Lumens and not its wattage as before, which means you’ll need to think about the overall number of lumens your LED Strip Light can produce in terms of where you’d like to use it.
Here’s a table which gives you the approximate number of lumens that each type of installation will require:
|Type of Installation||Number of Lumens Required|
|Accent Lighting||150 – 250 Lumens per Metre|
|Under-Cabinet Lighting||175 - 450 Lumens per Metre|
|Task Lighting (close to source)||250 - 450 Lumens per Metre|
|Task Lighting (distant from source)||350 - 700 Lumens per Metre|
|Indirect Lighting||375 - 575 Lumens per Metre|
|Signage||500 - 750 Lumens per Metre|
Which Colour(s) Do You Need?
Being a particularly versatile type of illumination, LED Strip Lights come in a massive variety of different colours and colour combinations. Here’s a list of the various types and what they can do for you:
Single Colour – Available in 12v and 24v varieties, single colour LED Strip Lights come in red, green, blue and pink, as well as warm (3000K), cool (6000K) and daylight (4000K) white colour temperatures, so it’s perfect for all general lighting applications.
Dual Colour – Able to produce sequenced warm and cool white colours, this 14.4-watt LED Strip Light is ideal for any type of domestic or commercial setting. Generating an enormous 1020 lumens per metre, it’s easily able to replace a traditional 80-watt incandescent bulb while consuming a tiny fraction of its energy.
RGB Colour 12V – This Red, Green & Blue LED strip light comes in both 7.2-watt and 14.4-watt varieties. Its colour-changing/colour combination abilities that can illuminate a space with the entire colour spectrum, makes it perfect to use as either party or mood lighting.
RGBW – This style of LED tape creates similar effects to those of RGB, along with the added bonus of cool or warm white colour temperature options. This will enable you to achieve an even wider selection of colours using an RGBW LED Remote Controller.
Which Colour Temperature Do You Need?
The various colour temperatures you’ll be able to achieve with your LED Strip Lights will enable you to tailor the lighting ambience of your room according to its function and your preference.
Check out the table below to see the most common uses for each colour temperature:
|Colour Temperature||Recommended Application|
|Warm White (2700 - 3000K)||Most people like to use a warm white colour temperature in their relaxation or family-orientated rooms. Thus, you’ll most often find its mellow glow lighting living rooms, dining areas and bedrooms.|
|Daylight (4000K)||The most naturalistic of the colour temperatures, Daylight is the closest approximation of outdoor light and is used for offices, studies and classrooms.|
|Cool White (6000K)||Cool white is best suited to functional areas such as kitchens and bathrooms as it has a clinical quality that’s ideal for task-related activities and close work.|
Give Us A Call!
If you’d like to place an order for some LED Strip Lighting, or you’d just like a chat with a member of our customer service team, please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 0800 999 7797 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
We also have an extremely comprehensive FAQs page, so if you're stuck with an LED lighting-related issue, why not check it out?