Have you seen those YouTube videos where the YouTuber would decorate their room with attractive lights to serve as a beautiful background for their videos? They look so attractive, and you probably cannot help but want some for yourself to give your room that vibe. You can also use it to step up the appearance of your television, personal computer, Halloween costumes, Christmas decorations, and a whole lot of other cool uses.
Before you jump into getting one of these LED light strips for yourself, you need to understand a few important points about them to enable you make the best decisions. From our research, we discovered that there are a lot of them out there, which could make it hard for one to choose. So, we have put together some of the information that would help you should you find yourself in that position.
What Are LED Strip Lights?
LED stands for light-emitting diode. This device is in the form of a flexible circuit board that has semiconductor characteristics and can emit light when an electric current is passed through it. They have been around for quite a while as far as the history of electricity is concerned, but they took a whole new turn recently and became more popular when people started using them in unique and creative ways.
First of all, let us clear the air and let you know that it costs next to nothing to get this device. They are flexible and can be used in a number of ways. We already mentioned that it is a semiconductor, so it does not consume a lot of power, and they are available in a wide range of designs, colors, and brightness.
It is also worth mentioning that installing the best LED strip lights takes just a little effort and is so easy that a child can install it perfectly fine. To mount it, you will need a measuring instrument (a tape or a ruler), a pair of scissors, and some adhesive strips.
- First, you have to measure the area where you want to put the light with your measuring instrument
- Measure out the right length of light strip that would cover the area and cut it out
- Next, attach your quick connector if the cable does not come with one already
- Then, peel off the sheet covering the adhesive at the back of the light and make sure nothing comes in contact with the adhesive surface to avoid weakening its adhesive effect
- Following your measurement, you can now mount the strip on the predetermined area
Note that the process of mounting this strip remains the same regardless of where you want to put it. Another thing you should also take into consideration is that not all brands come with the same mounting features. You may need to get your own adhesives in some cases. If you have to mount the light on surfaces that are not compatible with adhesive, you may need to get the brands that come with clips and screws.
Seeing as the best LED strip lights can work with just about any surface you can think of, it means there is no limit to what you can do with it. Here are some cool ideas on what you can do with them.
- Under your cabinet in your kitchen
- Fix it in your vehicles, motorcycles, and bicycles
- Home interior and holiday decorations and costumes
- Aquarium lightening and decoration
- Buildings lights at night
- Bridge lights at night
- Personal belongings like PC, musical instrument, bag, etc.
One thing to keep in mind before buying this device is what you need it for. This will affect the choice you make when shopping as well as the quantity you need to complete the task.
How to Pick Right LED Strip Lights
With a lot of different brands and promising offers, how do you know which are the best LED strips to go for? If you intend to make the best decision possible, you have to consider a number of things. In this section, we would share with you some of the necessary things you need to take into consideration that we discovered over the course of our research on this subject.
Expert marketers would always recommend that you start with the most popular brands you can think of, that is if you have come across some. This is because any brands that retain public attention must be doing something right. Pick a product made by a popular brand and check to see if it checks out most of the features on your list. It should meet at least eighty to ninety percent of the features. It would also help to take a look at other not-so-popular brands. You might be surprised at what you may find. Some of the brands that come highly recommended are Minger, Daybetter, Govee, and LE.
Manufacturers make different lengths of strips depending on their standards and popular demand. It is left for you to decide which one is most suitable for the task you wish to use it for. If you do not need to cover a large area, you can make do with the shorter ones, and if you do, then the longer ones would be ideal. If you are not sure of how it would fit into the area you intend to use it for, you can consider some factors to help you make the best length decision. For instance, if it is an outdoor event like a party, you may want to get the longer ones.
The good thing about these lights is that they come in a wide range of colors and hues to go with just about any decoration. A lot of them can show more than one color at a time to make things interesting. If you are not looking for that level of attention, then you can go for the ones that come with a single color. It is all a matter of where you would be using it and what color would best compliment it.
Interestingly, these devices do not need a lot of power to function, but there are some that may require more energy than others. You need to make provision for this additional power, and it would cost you some extra financial responsibility. Speaking of which, it is important to make sure that your purchase comes with the right power adapter recommended by the manufacturer. If you have to get a different one by yourself, make sure that you purchase a suitable power adapter based on how much voltage and power the LED light uses.
Keep in mind that a high cost does not always mean high quality. As a matter of fact, price should not be a significant factor when shopping for a LED light. They do not cost a lot, but you may need to consider the price if you are working with a budget. You can opt to go for the less popular brands since they tend to be more affordable than the popular ones. This does not mean they are not good enough. The number of LEDs on a strip is usually a determining factor when it comes to price.
Ease of Use
One thing about this product is that it tends to flicker after a while of being used, especially if it is not a standard one. To avoid this, it is important to go for reputable brands. The design of the product goes a long way to show how much effort was put into the production, so keep an eye on that. If you need the light for outdoor use, consider getting the water-proof types. Also consider the surface you wish to install it on and make sure that you have all of the necessary tools for a proper installation.
Time and effort-saving features like a remote control can help to prolong the longevity of the lights, not to mention it increases the convenience of using the light. A good number of manufacturers understand that and have factored it into their design, but there are some other ones that may not have a remote control.
There is something about these lights that makes them safe–you can even use them to decorate your child’s room. What is safer than that? That notwithstanding, you must take some preventive measures to ensure the complete safety of anyone that comes around the lights. The first step towards this is to ensure the strip is not made of lead and make sure that the power supply is flawlessly compatible with the circuit system. Also, check to see that the product has UL and RoHS international certification.
Having this list is important and can help you make a great decision even if you have no experience with strip lights in the past.
Top 5 Best LED Strip Lights
So, over the course of our research, we appreciated and better understand how much effort it takes to carry out in-depth research before purchasing a single product. We also understand that there are many people out there who may not have the time and resources to carry out effective research before making a purchase. So, we decided to bring to you the five best LED light strips we came across. They were selected based on merits and they are all available for purchase online.
1. Our Pick: MINGER LED Strip Lights
- Available in two different lengths
- Auto color change feature
- Sixteen multicolored options
- About 9 premium 5050 SMD LEDs per feet
- Brightness control feature
- Double layer copper on PCB board
MINGER is one of the most reputable brands out there that makes strip lights of all kinds. As a self-developed brand, they are focused on providing the best quality product they can and creating better shopping experiences for their clients. This product model is one of the most versatile light strips there is when it comes to colors. It has no less than sixteen different color options including red, blue, and green, and it has six DIY colors for you to play around with when you want to be creative.
- Superior and safe materials
- Convenient to use
- Comes with a remote control
- Easy to install and use
- Complete guarantee for ninety days
- Adhesive does not work for all surfaces
- Not waterproof and cannot be used outdoors
Another interesting feature of this product is that it has six lighting mode options–three of seven colors jump, three of seven colors fading, auto, flash, and so on. With this feature, you can enjoy different light styles depending on your mood. The strip is flexible, so you can bend it if need be. If you need a shorter length, you can cut it, but be sure to cut at the cutting mark.
Public Review Summary: This LED strip is easy to set up and gives great ambient lighting. The lights always respond to the remote control and don’t get hot. There is plenty of adjustability to the brightness. On the other hand, the quality could be better because a lot of users are disappointed that lights stop working very fast.
2. Best for Ease of Use: DAYBETTER LED Strip Lights
- Two rolls of 16.4 feet with quality adhesive
- Remote control features
- Comes in many color modes
- Cuttable and linkable
- Ultra-bright light
- Waterproof rating of IP65
For the second best led light strips, we have this great product from DAYBETTER. It comes in two rolls of 16.4 feet with a strong adhesive. It has a number of interesting features including a remote control for improved convenience, a whole lot of color options, different modes, and even cuttable links to make it easier for you to snip it into two or more parts if necessary. You have the option of using the ultra-bright mode for better visibility, or you can choose to lower it. You can have it installed indoors or outdoors depending on your preference, and you can even use them in the rain seeing as it has a waterproof rating of IP65.
- Twelve-month guarantee
- Durable adhesive and other materials
- Attractive after setup
- Widely used for unique creations
- Easy to install
- You may need an extra connector
- May ruin the surface when you take them down
DAYBETTER light strips have about twenty colors and eight light patterns for you to choose from with an RGB increase and decrease feature that can match just about any background and mood. With this brand, you have everything you need for installation, which is easy.
Public Review Summary: It has quite a good design and works well with the remote control. The colors are bright and come in a wide variety. Another plus is that this LED strip is very easy to install. The main drawback is that strip comes in 2 pieces, which in some cases don’t connect well with each other, so they don’t work.
3. Best for Television Decor: PANGTON VILLA LED Strip Lights
- Available in two different lengths
- Suitable for decoration
- Twelve-volt power supply
- Remote control with twenty-four functions
- Multiple colors of LED light
- Four dynamic modes
PANGTON VILLA light strip is available in two different lengths – 6.5 feet and 14.3 feet, making it easier for you to choose either the long or short one depending on what you intend to do with them. For a lot of customers, this strip is particularly great for indoor decorations, especially a television. The remote is one of the great features about this product, and it really does improve the convenience with twenty-four keys and a control distance of twenty to twenty-six feet. Another interesting feature that makes it stand out from the rest is how easy it is to assemble and install.
- Easy to install
- Made with high-quality material
- Flexible and durable
- Comes with double sided-adhesive
- Colorful lighting effect
- Low-quality adhesive
- Incomprehensive instruction manual
For installation, you already have everything you need in the box. All you have to do is follow the instructions on the manual and the mark on the strip when connecting it. It has a working voltage of DC 5V TV USB interface. On the downside, there have been complaints about the adhesive not holding on for long. A few customers find the manual a little bit off as well.
Public Review Summary: These strip lights have sixteen different colors and brightness is enough. Great design and being easy to use are main pros of this product. The remote control allows you to pick any of the beautiful colors with a click of a button depending on your mood. But as almost all products in this category, it has problems with durability and can break fast.
4. Best RGB: Govee Smart WiFi LED Strip Lights Works with Alexa
- Voice control feature through Alexa
- Controlled via phone app
- Available in two different lengths
- Fully RGB
- Different modes
- Can be activated by music
In this present age, this is probably the best fit for anyone who loves to keep up with technology–you step into your apartment and say something to Alexa and the lights come on, just like that. If you start to play a certain song, the mode can change to create a matching set depending on your setting. To control this device, you would need to install the app on your phone. It is made of premium bright 5050 LED lights designed specifically for indoor use, and no, it is not waterproof.
- Great convenience
- Two easy installation procedures
- Beautiful ambiance for indoor use
- Promotes creativity
- Comes with a timer function
- Versatile usage
- Not meant for outdoor use
- Not very easy to use
You can use it to decorate virtually any indoor setting–TV, bedroom, ceiling, stairs, desks, kitchen cabinets, Christmas decor, Halloween costumes, and so on. It is totally RGB and you can DIY your favorite color selections and save them through the app on your phone. You can also time it to come on or go off at a particular time.
Public Review Summary: The Govee Smart Wi-Fi LED strip has cool feature remote control with Alexa. It makes changing the colors and brightness easy and you can do it just in a few seconds. Easy install and fast connection make this product very useful. On the other hand, it can have problems with connection, and in some cases, it can even stop working.
5. Best Budget: LE LED Strip Lights
- Available in two different lengths
- RGB, white, and sixteen other colors
- Six DIY option and eight modes
- 3M adhesive sticker
- Cuttable and linkable per three LEDs
- Remote controller
Finally on our list of five best LED strips, we have the LE 12V LED Strip Lights. This product has great features such as six DIY options for you to play around with, eight modes, more than sixteen different colors, and a remote controller so you do not have to make a trip each time you need to operate it. Setting up is quite easy. It comes already packed with every accessory you would need to install it, including an adhesive sticker of about 3 meters. You can shorten the length by cutting it, but it has to be at the appropriate marks.
- Easy installation
- Versatile option
- Comes with complete accessories for setup
- Compact and flexible
- Two years guarantee
- Defective adhesive
- Not suitable for outdoor purposes
It requires a 12-volt power supply, which is quite low priced and cheap enough for anyone that does not want extra charges on their electricity bill. It is compact, flexible, and you get to enjoy your product with a guarantee for two years. Other pros are brightness, versatility, and high-quality material. On the downside, the adhesive does not work well for every surface and it cannot be used outdoors since it is not water-resistant.
Public Review Summary: The lights look great and help reduce eye strain when looking at the computer. Remote control helps to work with strip from every corner of the room, which is quite convenient. They are easy to stick to the wall as the adhesive tape is very strong. But be careful because the quality isn’t as good as it should be and strips can stop working fast.
Advantages & Disadvantages of LED Light Strips
So, what is the big deal about these LED lights? To be honest, you can do quite well without these lights as long as you have regular sources of light in your house. But if you are looking for some extra effects, then you are definitely going to love this. Here are some of the advantages.
- Aesthetically appealing
Aside from providing illumination, these devices are a simple and great way of adding a little bit of interesting effect on your environment, be it indoors or outdoors. Their elegant glow can change the whole vibe of a space, making it more aesthetically appealing.
- Holiday decorations
Your holiday decorations are not complete without these lights, be it Christmas or Halloween. These lights do not just change the appearance of the place, they are also symbolic for holidays. For instance, using it to decorate a Christmas tree symbolizes the light that Christ brought into the world at birth.
- Affordable lighting
Before LED strips became a thing, you were required to pay quite some money if you wanted to have peculiar light decorations indoors that give out a different vibe. These days, you do not have to go for the high-end technology. A simple strip with great illumination can do the job very well at an affordable rate.
Setting this device up does not take a lot of effort and it is quite easy to set up. All you have to do is measure out how much length you need and cut it out based on the manufacturer’s recommendations and then stick it to the area where you need it to be.
Some of the disadvantages include:
The initial cost of getting an LED light is a little bit on the high side compared to other types of light sources. Be that as it may, the cost of maintenance is quite cheap.
Using the light for a long time may result in overheating, which is known to damage the product.
- Voltage sensitivity
The LED light must be supplied with a certain voltage for it to function effectively. This is usually not the case with other source of lights.
Best Led Strip Lights FAQ
Having the information that would help you make the best decision on which are the best led strips may not be satisfying enough for you, which is understandable. So, we put together some of the most frequently asked questions to help with that.
How much energy do LED lights use?
How much energy your light strip would consume is totally dependent on how many of them you have installed. However, from a general point of view, the strips are far more economical with energy than other forms of light of the same level of effectiveness. Even incandescent and fluorescent lamps, which are reportedly cheaper, do not compare to the affordability of LED lights.
Do LED lights affect the eyes negatively?
When it comes to the effect of this device on the eyes, experts are of the opinion that they are not different from other light sources. Light is defined as radiation regardless of its source. This means that if it is too bright, it would most likely be harmful to the eyes, but if it is not too bright, then it would less likely hurt the eyes. Fortunately, most LED lights come with mode settings that allow you to dim the light if you feel it is too bright, and you can do this with a remote controller.
What happens if I exceed the maximum length of LED strip lighting?
Exceeding the maximum length would not necessarily force the light to go off, but it would not give you the best experience. The voltage would drop, the brightness would reduce, the lights may not be steady, and they may develop some faults as a result. To avoid all of that, do well to follow the instruction of the manufacturer. 12V DC strips can be as long as 16 feet, and 24V DC strips can be as long as 32 feet. The higher the voltage DC, the longer it can be without developing any issues.
How durable is a LED strip light?
On average, you can get thirty to fifty thousand hours of light out of your LED strips before it goes dead. This means that if you use it for a period of ten hours per day on average, then it can last for as long as ten years or even more. The longevity of the light also depends on the quality of the product you have. The higher the quality, the longer you expect it to last.
In what ways is LED light better than regular bulbs?
LED lights are safer to use, especially if you have children around. They do not contain any harmful gasses and are made of materials that do not pose any health risks. They are also more affordable and consume less power without sacrificing effectiveness. Using it as your main source of light at home or in the office is a great way to cut down significantly on electric bills.
At this point, you have probably decided to get some LED light strips for yourself. You may even be thinking about getting rid of other types of lights and replacing them with the LED types, which is a good idea. Any of the recommended brands on our list would do just fine for you. They have been well-researched and found to be affordable, effective, durable, easy to install, and cheap to maintain.
Getting a high-quality product would save you a lot of stress if you expect to enjoy them for the longest time possible. It is important that you use them with precaution because they can easily get damaged if not properly cared for.