How to Choose and Install LED Strip Lights?

When we choose the led light strips, we will encounter some common problems like we do not know how to find the right LED strip lights for our own LED lighting projects. There are many kinds of LED light strips on the market, up to a thousand, with poor quality and uneven grades.

As one of the suppliers with the most LED supply categories, superlightingled has always insisted on using quality and trust to communicate with customers and has been cultivating LED strips for 12 years. Currently, customers are all over the world. Our goal is to help customers find the most suitable products.

In response to the diversified needs of customers, we will provide two optional ways: self-optional lighting (purchase by yourself without the assistance of others) and recommendation lighting (we recommend suitable products based on the scenario and customer purchasing experience). 

Firstly you need to know: What are led strip lights?

►Non-adjustable static demand

1. Your location

When choosing LED strip lights, your location will affect the option of the AC plug and the input voltage of the LED power supply. When choosing high-voltage LED strips and led transformers, please be cautious about the options.

2. LED strip light working environment

The working environment of the LED light strip is closely related to the LED waterproof rating. The led strip lights have four waterproof grades, and different waterproof grades correspond to different installation environments.

Working Environment LED IP Rating
Dry climate indoor environment Non-waterproof IP20 led strip lights
Humid indoor environmentIP65 waterproof led light strips
Rainy climate outdoor environment IP67 waterproof led strip lights
Heavy rain weather and the led light strip needs to be immersed in water IP68 waterproof led light strips

3. Installation environment of LED strip lights

Install the LED light strip in a well-sealed location such as a solid wood table, chair, wood board, etc. The heat dissipation of the led strip is extremely poor. 

If you install this type of location, try to choose low-power and low-heat LED strips. LED aluminum profiles and silicone LED neon tubes are used as attachment carriers, which can dissipate more led heat.

They can be installed in combination with LED light strips, which can solve the heat dissipation problem well.

The installation space also needs to be carefully considered. In a narrow area, ultra-narrow led light strips below 6mm can be satisfied; for ordinary installation environments, 10/12mm is sufficient.

Knowledge about led aluminum channel and flex led neon lights: 

Ultimate Guide on Aluminum Profile for LED Strip Lighting

How To Find The Right Aluminum LED Light Strip Diffuser Channel?

What Are LED Neon Lights?

How To Make LED Neon Lights?

4. LED tape optional

When you buy the LED light strip, the back of the led strip is attached with adhesive, suitable for most ordinary working environments.

If the installation environment is complicated, you need to buy a suitable LED tape by yourself.

  • The blue adhesive (glass fiber cloth thermal conductive double-sided adhesive) is resistant to high temperature and can be used for high wattage led strip light.
  • The yellow glue (double-sided adhesive tape) has good durability, high-temperature resistance, and strong adhesion, and is waterproof, which is used for normal indoor use. It is suitable for wood, Paints, and many plastics and fabrics.
  • Red adhesive (dark grey acrylic adhesive) is more viscous, with solid foam, entirely squeezed to achieve a seamless connection with the wall, used for waterproof led strips.
  • Transparent silicone sealant Organic solvent is neutral, non-corrosive, non-polluting, anti-aging, and electrical insulation properties, rubber has good adhesion to metal and most plastics after curing and has excellent resistance to alternating cold and heat.

5. LED strip length

The length of the LED strip determines the power of the LED, which in turn determines the choice of the LED power supply (the energy used by the LED power supply should be greater than 80% of the power of the LED strip to avoid excessive load).

The length of the led light strips we provide is mostly 5m/16.4Ft, which can meet the needs of most customers.

If you are interested in ultra-long led strip lights, low-voltage ultra-long constant current or high-voltage led strips are a good choice.

Adjustable dynamic demand

  1. CRI

If you will use led lighting to absolutely restore the color of the natural environment, it is necessary to choose a product with a high CRI. Usually, the LED strip with a value of 90CRI or higher can restore the original appearance of the environment.

Single color led strip light CRI value can reach 98; CCT led strip light CRI value can get 95; CRI value of white light in RGBCCT led strip light can come 85.

2. Lumens

The luminous flux can well reflect the actual lumens of the LED strip. Lumen requirements for different application scenarios are also additional.

When choosing Single Color LED strip light, you can refer to the following lumen ranges:

  • Accent lighting (Stairs, Swim Pool) recommended lumen selection range is 150-250LM/Ft, 2460-4100LM/16.4Ft;
  • Nearby working lighting (Cabinet) recommends that the lumen selection range is 175-550LM/Ft, 2870-9020LM/16.4Ft;
  • Long-distance task lighting (Ceiling) recommended lumen selection range is 350-1200LM/Ft, 5740-19680LM/16.4Ft;
  • Indirect lighting (Backlight) The recommended range of lumens is 375-1200LM/Ft, 6150-19680LM/16.4Ft;
  • Sign lighting (Hoarding) suggests that the range of lumen selection is 500-1200LM/Ft, 8200-19680LM/16.4Ft.

3. LED density

It is generally recognized in the industry that 30-72LEDs/m (<72) is a low-density led strip. Under the same LED conditions, the brightness is lower, and the power is more minor. You can select the plastic power adapter to power your led strip lighting.

72-120LEDs/m ( <120) is a medium-density LED strip with moderate brightness and moderate power. A high-power plastic power adapter or MEAN-WELL UL-Listed LED power supply can be considered.

More than 120LEDs /m is a high-density LED strip with high brightness and high power. MEAN-WELL UL-Listed LED power supply is recommended.

About how to choose the right led power supply: 

How to calculate power for led strip lights?

How to choose a led strip light power supply?

4. LED chip

COB chip on board; high density without light spot, can be used as ultra-narrow led strip, Multiple colors optional/CCT/RGB/RGBW/Addressable RGB. 

The light color and power of the LED strip light are determined by the LED chip used, how to choose the right SMD LED chip?

LED FeatureLED Chip
Ultra-narrow and high-densitySMD2110/SMD2216/SMD3014
Multi-row super bright SMD2835/SMD3528
Single LED super brightSMD5630/SMD5730
General Basic ModelSMD5050
Side emittingSMD020/SMD335

5. LED luminous color

How to choose the right color for your led strip lights? What’s the color difference? 

Single color led strip light is mainly used for indoor and outdoor lighting. High CRI and high lumen meet all the needs of environmental lighting.

Multiple colors led strip light (Color changing) static change effect, single color changeable, to meet interior decoration needs.

Addressable led strip light(Color chasing) dynamic chasing effect, running horses, and running water, the indoor atmosphere is contrasted with meeting mood lighting needs.

The perfect combination of LED neon light strip and LED neon tube produces a dynamic effect of 1+1>2, the first choice for sign lighting.

*Click the picture to know what is the white light color temperature. 

6. LED voltage

High Voltage VS Low Voltage – How To Choose The Right LED Strip Light? Why there are LED Voltage Drop in low voltage led strip lights?

When choosing addressable led strip lights, the LED voltage is a critical consideration. 

Most DC5V led strip lights are individually addressable. WS2812B/WS2813/APA102/APA107/SK9822/WS2801/LPD8806 are mostly DC5V led strip lights, single light can be cut, each 5m power supply;

WS2811/WS2815/WS2818 are mostly DC12V led strip lights, three lights can be cut, every 5m Separate power supply, power supply at both ends of 10m;

Most TM1914/GS8206 are DC24C, six LEDs can be cut, and each 10m is powered separately. We provide DC5/12/24/36/48V low voltage led light strip and AC110/220V high voltage led light strip for your choice.

A deeper look at addressable led light strips: 

Ultimate Guide To Choosing The Right Addressable LED Strip

Choosing The Best 12V Addressable LED Strip For Your LED Project

The Best DC5V Addressable LED Strip – How To Choose The Right IC Chip?

7. LED light-emitting angle

The light-emitting angle of ordinary LED lights is 120 degrees, and the light-emitting tip is suitable for night lighting.

The light-emitting angle of the COB LED strip can reach 180 degrees. The use of LED strips with LED neon tubes can compensate for the difference in beam angles.

  • SP (spot): 4-19 degrees
  • FL (flood): 20-35 degrees
  • WFL (wide flood): 36-49 degrees
  • VWFL (very wide flood): 50-120 degrees or more

8. LED width and PCB color

Ultra-narrow led strips below 6mm; medium-width led strips 6-12mm; high-width led strips above 12mm.

Depending on the installation environment, it is essential to choose the appropriate size of the LED strip.

If you want to hide your LED light strip in the installation environment, the appropriate color and size of the light strip can be achieved with the surrounding environment.