LED Strips: A guide to types and uses

What are LED Strips?

LED strips are flexible circuit boards, in which LEDs (known as light-emitting diodes) are embedded on one side. The strip is reinforced with double-sided adhesive tape, allowing it to be attached to almost any surface for powerful, colourful and creative illumination.

 LED strips are available in rolls of different lengths ranging from 1m to 10m: they are suitable for a wide range of installations.

They are almost always installed in an aluminium profile with a polycarbonate cover to hide the individual LED from view and protect them from dust and moisture.

They allow interesting cuts and lighting effects to be realized in false ceilings, curtain gaps or inside furniture.

The most elegant uses in interior

Personally, I prefer hidden LED strips. They can certainly be used to create cuts and irregular lines in various ceilings (e.g. in corridors), but I always prefer a more restrained use.

I often use them, for example, in perimeter ceilings in which they are concealed, or in shutters (plasterboard voids), in which the wall is illuminated without the light emitter ever being visible.

I use them exposed mainly above the line of wall units and sometimes in the bathrooms, or vertically on the walls.

Very interesting is the use in furniture. Embedding them in shelves or inside showcases and cupboards is interesting for a more luxury and neat look of the furniture like these ones of Nomaled in different colours’ frames. In this case, the carpenter takes care of the assembly/embedding and the electrician of the connection.

Often, in the case of flats that are already complete, if you want to add a LED strip inside the wardrobes, you can retrofit a 5W 3000k light strip (400lm per metre) connected to an infrared sensor that is activated when the door is opened.


Dimming and colour

Always remember that an LED Strip needs a transformer to bring the electricity from 220 to 12 volts; although it is very important that the polarities indicated on the strip are respected and it is equally important to provide an easy location for the transformer to prevent it from overheating and to ensure easy maintenance.

It is often good to provide for dimming of the LED. Especially if the strips are placed in areas near the TV or in rooms, it is interesting to have the possibility to keep them on with a very soft power to facilitate evening relaxation.

Be careful not to overdo the wattage! LED strips are just accent and create atmosphere, so try to calibrate them. Generally, the LED line should softly fall on the wall without dazzling it. Get advice on the ideal wattage from your architect or lighting designer depending on the use and location in your home.

Pay attention to wall imperfections too! Light lines and spotlights tend to accentuate imperfections in the wall they illuminate…So everything has to be perfectly executed.

 For those who like colour, to be used quietly in bedrooms or lounge areas, there are RGB LED strips on the market, with the possibility of varying the colour of the light remotely or by remote control.



Benefits of using LED strips

  • They are easily installed.
  • They can be installed coloured for lovers of RGB effects.
  • LED technology has a long service life and does not affect electricity consumption thanks to their low power consumption and high luminous efficiency.
  • They can be reduced in size (they can be cut and wired as desired by following the cutting points).
  • LED strips are adaptable to different applications, so they can be used both to decorate and to illuminate large rooms.
  • They are flexible and adapt to all surfaces, flat or curved.
  • They can be recessed into false ceilings and furniture.

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