Flexible LED strip lights are becoming increasingly popular, and they’re being used in a variety of applications including industrial, commercial, and residential projects.
Because of the improvements in efficiency, color options, and brightness, LED strip lighting is also popular among many Architects and Lighting Designers.
With many years of experience in the field of LED strip lights, the question we often receive recently is how long LED strip lights maximum length I can run from a single LED driver?
In this article, we will answer this question for the reader and at the same time, we also point you how to overcome common installation hold-ups when using LED strips lights.
What Are LED Strip Lights and How Do They Work? What Makes Them Unique?
What are LED strip lights, and how do you use them?
They’re long, flexible LED strips with a commercial-grade 3M adhesive backing that may be utilized to create hidden and subtle lighting effects like under-cabinet illumination.
What Makes Them Unique?
Flexible LED strip with 3M adhesive backing:
The LED strips come with a 3M adhesive backing for easy installation. The flexible, low-profile strip includes a peel-off backing that reveals the 3M adhesive for a simple peel-and-stick installation.
Non-Waterproof vs. Waterproof:
Indoor projects aren’t the only place where LED strip lights can be used. With a silicone resin substance that protects the strip components from dust and moisture, the waterproof LED strip lights are rated IP65. The waterproof LED lights are a little more expensive, but they are essential for any activity that will be done outside or near the water.
LED lights that run on 12 volts:
The LED strip lights require 12VDC power to operate. This will need the use of an AC/DC transformer in the home, but it makes wiring the strips throughout the house much safer. Because batteries also produce DC power, these flex strips can be used to create a battery-powered LED light.
Allow you to cut to size:
The cut lines along the strips make cutting LED strips a breeze. There is a black line with copper solder pads on each side at each cut point. Even after being chopped, each strip piece is addressable thanks to the copper solder pads. This allows you to link LED strips together or to connect the strip to a different location in your home.
***Read more: Best LED Color Change: Top 8 Highly Recommended Choices 2022
The LED Strip Lights Maximum Length Specification
To begin, the led strip lights maximum length is defined as the longest LED strip that can be linked to a single power source. The manufacturer defines this restriction, which is usually noted on the specification page.
The maximum run length for LED strip lights from Waveform Lighting, for example, is regulated by voltage:
- DC 12 volts: 16.4 ft
- DC 24 volts: 32.8 ft
Because of the way LED strip lights are constructed and configured, there is a maximum run length specification. Because LED strips are designed as a long, linear circuit board, every point along the length of the strip must be capable of carrying the electrical current required to power all downstream LEDs. Longer LED strip runs must therefore carry a higher electrical current, especially in the initial few inches of the strip nearest to the power supply.
The voltage of an LED strip determines how long it can run in a continuous strip. 16ft (5 meters), 23ft (7 meters), 32ft (10 meters), 50ft (20 meters), 65ft (20 meters), or 164ft (20 meters) will be the longest continuous run (50 meters). If you go above these lengths, the LED strip will experience a voltage drop, and the brightness of the LEDs will not be consistent.
Does the maximum run length include solderless connections and additional wires?
The maximum run length does not include wires and connectors. Two 8-foot LED strip sections connected by a 10-foot cable, for example, would span 26 feet, but the LED strip sections would not exceed 16.4 feet, therefore this would not exceed the maximum run length requirements.
If the entire LED strip length exceeds the maximum run length, can I connect additional LED strip runs in parallel?
Yes, because none of the LED strip light portions would be subjected to current levels exceeding the maximum limit, this would be permitted.
What is the LED strip lights maximum length that can be powered by a single LED driver?
There is no technical limit to the number of strip lights you can use. You should be alright as long as the strip light is receiving enough electricity.
To reduce voltage drop, we recommend dividing longer strips of strip light into smaller portions.
Things to consider when you installing LED strip lights
What colors do you need?
It depends on your preferences. There are 3 popular LED color choices for you:
- Warm white, cold white, red, green, and blue single color LED strip lights are offered (3000-6500K CCT).
- Warm white and cold white are both present on the dual-color tape.
- The RGB color-changing tape can emit any color depending on the controller.
How bright do LED strip lights need to be?
It all depends on how they’re going to be employed. A lumen is a unit of brightness that is measured by the human eye. Most of us use watts to estimate the brightness of light because of incandescent lighting.
Lumens are the new standard for describing light output with LEDs. Lumen output is one of the most significant factors to consider when shopping for LED strip lights because it determines the type of light you’ll get.
The following is a guide of Lumen requirements:
- 100-300 Lumens/ft. Accent or Mood Lighting
- 175-360 Lumens/ft. under cabinet lighting
- 300-450 Lumens/ft task lighting with a greater distance from the source
- Cove Lighting in the Bedroom – 180-500 Lumens/ft.
***Read more: Top 7 Best Mood Lights For The Bedroom 2022 [Expert’s Choices]
How long do you need the length of the strip?
It depends on your requirements and planned application. It’s best to sketch out the entire project to figure out how many strips you’ll need. This will help you decide what to buy and how much it will cost.
The LED strip lights are available in 3-foot increments up to a full reel (16.4 ft.). It’s crucial to figure out if you want to buy reel lengths and cut them down yourself or if having smaller lengths already cut for you would be more convenient.
What kind of power do LED strips require?
The LED strips require a constant 12 volt DC supply.
If you’re using multiple power supplies, make a note of the length of the strip that will be powered by each one to determine the power supply size you’ll need.
Options for LED Power Supply:
- Plug-in Adapter — To power your LED strip lights, simply plug it into your wall.
- Power Supplies That Are Hardwired – Connect your LED Strips directly to your line voltage wiring.
- Power Supply That Can Be Dimmed – Do you want to dim your lights with a standard household dimmer like a Lutron or Leviton? This is the option for you if you want to have a lot of power!
- Batteries — Use an 8-cell battery holder or a 12V battery pack.
How about dimmable LED strip lights?
In-line pulse width modulation dimmers are commonly used to dim LED strip lights. These dimmers are wired in between the strips and are connected to the 12-volt side of the system.
The WiFi and Remote Control versions of these simple dimmers are both available. The WiFi dimmers may be controlled with Google Home or Amazon Echo (Alexa) devices and can be operated directly from a smartphone app.
LED strips installation
The adhesive on the LED strip lights is quite useful for mounting, although it leaves a lot to be desired at times. It may need to be reinforced over time if it does not adhere well with some surfaces, as it does with most adhesives. Use one of the following in these situations:
- Extra Adhesive Tape – 3M tape is used to double the binding between the strip and the surface.
- LED Strip Mounting Clips – Strip mounting brackets are another wonderful alternative for people looking for a professional look. The light strips are housed in these aluminum extrusions, which come with everything you need to mount them. The LED strips are attached to the bottom of the track and diffused by a UV-protected lens that slides over the top.
*** Read more: Top 8 Best Stick Up Lights For Everywhere Convenient Lighting
Choosing the right LED lights right from the start will often have certain difficulties. However, the above article has tried to provide all the necessary information for you to be able to choose the most suitable LED light for your needs.
Hope the article can help you better understand LED strip lights maximum length and help you to find the best LED strip and components for you!