These days, you can find LED light strips wherever. As a result, they are now the go-to resource for any lighting designer. Color-changing (RGB) and solid-color strips are both available. Although typically installed in alcoves, these lights can also be utilized to accentuate the exteriors of buildings. Many companies produce these strips, so it’s essential to choose well. Sadly, market competition has led to a proliferation of low-quality strips. Therefore, it is beneficial to gain familiarity with the various LED strip options and their varying degrees of brightness.
The lumen output of the LED chip is crucial for a high-quality LED strip. This is determined by the chip’s requirements and, by extension, the strip’s maker. An SMD3528 LED chip-made strip is a frequent source of confusion. The vast majority of people’s beliefs about 3528 LED chips being identically produced are incorrect. LED strips containing 3528 LED chips are available from various vendors, but this does not mean they are of equivalent quality or brightness. Multiple companies can produce the same LED chip. Each individual is unique in their requirements and the benefits they can provide. This explains why LED strips of the same model number and using the same 3528 LEDs may have such a wide range in output and quality.
An LED strip’s brightness level and lifespan cannot be guaranteed, even when using the highest-grade LED strip. The optimum outcome is achieved when the LED strip has been installed correctly. The first step in a proper installation is selecting the appropriate supply voltage for the intended use. For short runs, such as those found in vehicles or recreational vehicles with 12 Volt batteries, strips with a supply voltage of 12 Volts are an excellent option. Using 24 Volts is recommended for lighting up longer runs, such as those found in coves or building decorations, to prevent the voltage drop that would otherwise diminish the light’s intensity. Therefore, even if the LED strip is selected appropriately, the installation may still result in dim light because of voltage drop brought on by high currents and lengthy wire runs. The LED driver, which is the power supply unit, must be a switching mode PSU. Some installers will attach LED strips to any old power source. The LED strip may function, but its life expectancy will be lowered if the power supply is not a switching mode PSU.
In addition, high-quality LED strips can be used repeatedly without issue for an extended period. Everything needs to be constructed appropriately for this to happen. A poor choice of power supply unit (PSU) or voltage drop owing to small cables or extensive cable distances can drastically reduce the LEDs’ useful lifespan. Finding the driver’s optimal power (Wattage) to manage the load successfully is also crucial for extending the strip’s lifetime. Even when using the incorrect power source, most devices usually function. However, the LED driver suffers damage after a short time, and the cause may not be the driver’s poor quality but rather its excessive strength. Excessive heat is generated when the LED strip is run at full power, which might cause damage. The driver’s electronic components melt due to the high temperature. Because of this, it is recommended to allow 20% more capacity than the driven load.
Therefore, the lumen output of an LED strip is a measure of its quality and is directly related to the LED chip’s specifications. However, even a high-quality strip won’t guarantee a satisfactory outcome, the level of illumination you seek, or the durability of your setup over time. They all depend on a stable input voltage, a switching mode power supply, and the available current.