What to do with leftover LED strip lights (this is not a question ;-) )

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John Canfield

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After using all but about five feet of my 16' long LED strip light for the salon ceiling florescence light retrofit, I thought about what to do with the remaining strip.

I've been in the middle of replacing my 12V water pump (oh how I hate plumbing projects) which precipitated the focus on the plumbing bay lighting.  Our two small plumbing bay lights provide minimal light output and the bulbs are an oddball number that are not readily available either as an incandescent or an LED replacement; they have never worked well and the bulbs burnt out frequently.  We rarely travel after dark (it happened one time) but sometimes forget to open the gray valve to dump the gray tank when it's my turn to shower at 10pm  :p.

So I look up and behind the bay door hinge area and WHOA - there is a perfect spot for a 33" strip of the little buggers.  I prepared another strip of the lights and pulled power from one of the useless little bay lights and did a little soldering and sticking the lights down and you can see the results for yourself.

I have a few inches left of the lights and I have a place picked out for them - my bay under the driver's seat.  It came equipped with another one of the useless little oddball incandescent lights so the last of the strip lights will be put in place there.

There's another 16' of the strip lights on order to retrofit the galley florescence light so I'll have about five feet left over from that strip to use somewhere else.  Hmmm - maybe the hanging locker in the aft cabin? I might need to order more of these dudes.  I likee  :D
 

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Did you write up the fluorescent swap out? What LED strip lights did you buy? Saw some in another thread from Amazon for $13.88. Something like that? Just researching this for my Mom. Love the basement installation, might have to do something like that (and replace those troublesome jamb switches!).
 
Thanks Marty!  I should have installed the strip lights in all of the basement compartments instead of buying the LED replacement bulbs - cheaper and it would have thrown much more light.
 
(Since I can't post linked pix...)

Here's what you do with spare Amber LED strips:
http://i144.photobucket.com/albums/r192/SCVJeff/9f3f9b62.jpg
http://i144.photobucket.com/albums/r192/SCVJeff/7ee3c460.jpg
 
John,

I've been thinking about replacing the burned out rope lighting on my ceiling treatment with the LED rope lighting. I'm assuming that some type of controller is required to provide the drivers for the LEDs. The lights alone would cost about $250 for half of what was used in the ceiling originally.

Are my thoughts correct? :)
 
nvrver said:
Looks like a great idea, are these 12v DC LEDs?

Great idea Jeff - darn, guess I didn't have an original idea after all  :-[.  Yes, those would be 12V LEDs.

Jim Dick said:
I've been thinking about replacing the burned out rope lighting on my ceiling treatment with the LED rope lighting. I'm assuming that some type of controller is required to provide the drivers for the LEDs. The lights alone would cost about $250 for half of what was used in the ceiling originally.

Jim - the strip lights I used don't need any kind of driver or special power supply - just apply 12V and you're good to go!
 
Jim - bought it from Amazon.  If you have to cut the strip, you'll need a 25 watt soldering iron with a very small tip and some small diameter solder (and steady hands!) to attach power leads. 
 
I'm not sure how you came up with the $250 price tag. I bought 2 16-strips and a couple of controllers for about $50. I pulled the rope lights and replaced them with RGB LEDs from one end of the living room/kitchen, across the slider and down the other side. Total cost was about $75, including wire and connectors. These things are pretty cheap and versatile. Now we can have mood lighting from bright to dim with and color we want.

I plan to put them under the passenger side and in the compartments. I'd like to see the write up about the florescents. It sounds like a great project. 
 
Michael,

The ceiling treatment runs from the front of our 40' coach to the back with a couple of "breaks along the way. Doing only half of the lights (they were mounted above and below the treatment) it comes to 51'. According to my math, 51'X 5/ft is $255.  ;) The $5/ft was the price I was quoted from a vendor. That's why I'm still looking.
 
Amazon sells 16 feet for $22. I used 2 rolls to do mine. Adding a controller and amplifier (too much current for the controller I got) was another $25. Installation took a few hours. Search on Amazon for item 2034RRG.

Good luck!
 
For what it is worth I found a solderless connector to use with LED strip lights. If you do not want to bother with soldering you might try this:

http://www.flexfireleds.com/led-quick-connector-ultrabright-series-10mm-strip-to-power-solderless-connector/
 
The LED strips don't need a controller - they run directly on 12 volts.  You can get 12 volt dimmers if you want, though.
 
John,

I thought using them was a great new idea to light our steps. Like you - I love these things..... they use so little power, give so much light and cost is right.
Here's another source : http://www.meritline.com/led-light-strips---c-14345.aspx . I have used Meritline for years. Always free shipping - often from China direct.

Everywhere I look - I see another place for another stick on strip.
 
navy flier said:
For what it is worth I found a solderless connector to use with LED strip lights. If you do not want to bother with soldering you might try this.

Interesting find Chuck,  it appears that the connector is unique to their strip lights.

Director said:
I thought using them was a great new idea to light our steps. Like you - I love these things..... they use so little power, give so much light and cost is right.
Here's another source. I have used Meritline for years. Always free shipping - often from China direct.

Everywhere I look - I see another place for another stick on strip.

Another good strip light source - thanks!  You are so right about finding places everywhere to stick these guys down - I think I have the same disease  :D.

In looking over these other vendor's strip lights, it is obvious that some would be significantly easier to solder leads to the pads.  One of them had only two fairly large soldering pads - one for negative and one for positive.  My strips have four tiny pads, one for positive, and three for negative.  I suspect the three negative pads are for having three levels of brightness - I should have tested that suspicion.

I'm going to do a write-up this morning - I'll include these other LED sources.  Our rvforum site sponsor, RVLED Bulbs,  apparently does not carry LED strip lights.
 
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