How to power LED strip lights

1. What kind of power is required for LED strip lights?

Our strip lights utilize energy efficient, and low-heat 12 volt Direct Current (DC) power, which is unfortunately not what most homes are wired with. That means you'll need to use one of our LED power adapters if you want to use LED strip lights. So make sure never to plug your strip lights into aregular wall outlet, which uses Alternating Current (AC) power or you can damage the strips, or much more importantly, yourself! However, if you've wired your house with available DC power, then there's no need to use an adapter!

2. How much power do my LED Light Strips use?

It depends on the wattage output of the strips which is explained here.  If you check the product label, it should indicate the total watts per foot.  For example, our Luma5 3528 regular density strips LED light strips use around 1.3 Watts per foot so if you were to use 15 feet, you would multiply 15 * 1.3 which would equal 19.5 watts so you would want to use a 24 watt power supply.

3. How many amplifiers do I need for my LED strips?

Our regular density LED strips need an amplifier after every two strips, while the HD strips need an amplifier following every strip. Our amplifiers will also connect two strips together, so there's no need for additional parts! Unfortunately, it is not currently possible to run single color and RGB strips together, so you'll need to keep them separate. If you're wanting to run single color strips together, you'll need a single color amplifier. For multicolored (RGB) strips you'll have to use an RGB amplifier. Each amplifier will also need to connect to power to make it work, not sure how to do that? Check below!

 

4. How can I get power to an LED amplifier?

There's two ways to go about this problem and they are situation specific, so make sure you're following the right guidelines. Let's say you're trying to extend a project you've already started, in this case you're probably already maxing out your adapter's capacity. In this case, what you'll want to do is install your amplifier into your project, connect it to an additional power adapter, then connect that adapter to an outlet. If you're starting a new project though, it's smarter to plan ahead and get one power adapter that's strong enough to power all your strips and to use our extension wiresto connect the adapter to your amplifiers!

5. Can I use my 12V Car/Boat/Motorcycle battery to power my LED Strips?

We know that our LED enthusiasts may want to wire their lights directly into their vehicle's battery, but be wary. Even if your battery is rated for 12 volts, it may fluctuate while you're driving and using other electronics. To keep your LEDs and yourself safe, make sure that the voltage is indeed a solid 12 volts before installing the strips. If you find that the power does fluctuate, you can use a “DC step-down converter” or “voltage limiter” to ensure safety by making sure that your strips aren't exposed to to much power.

Thanks for reading this installment of our troubleshooting series, we truly hope it has been helpful. Have a question we haven’t answered yet? contact us at customerservice@hitlights.com and we’ll do our best to answer it in the next installment. Please remember that our customer service staff is happy to assist you with any and all of your concerns, questions, and suggestions. If you want to call and talk with us, well that’s just fine too – 855-768-4135!

The Troubleshooting Series is published on Fridays, please have questions submitted by the Wednesday beforehand if you want it answered in the next installment.

 



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