How to choose a LED power supply suitable for LED strip lights

Choosing the correct power supply for LED sources is extremely important because an adequately selected power supply guarantees proper and long-lasting operation. Appointing a power supply for LED strips is often complicated and requires special knowledge. When selecting a power supply for lighting, it should consider several technical parameters. 

How to calculate the power supply for LED strips?

To calculate the power supply needed, multiply the length of the strip in meters by the power consumption of 1 meter of strip. For example, if we want to power 8m LED strips, where 1 meter of the strip consumes 14.4W, the minimum power supply should be calculated as follows:

8m* 14.4W/1m= 115.2W.

So our power supply should have a minimum power of 115.2W. However, one should always add the already mentioned power reserve to the above result. With a power reserve of 15%, the final result is 132.5W. This means we require a power supply with at least 132.5 W (130 W). Any power supply with less power is not the right choice and can cause various problems during operation.

When choosing a power supply for the LED strip, you should also remember not to connect the power supplies. Power supplies should be connected to individual sections of the strip for longer lengths, never connecting them along the entire length.

Correctly calculating the power and picking the power supply for the LED tape will give us confidence in its safe operation and pleasure and satisfaction in using modern LED lighting in our interiors.

Choose products specifically for LED strips.

Avoid using product models that are not designed to power the LED lighting system. Attempting to connect the system to other power supplies may damage the strip.

Where to buy LED strips and power supplies to avoid issues?

Pay attention to the input voltage of the LED power supply.

Another parameter to consider when choosing a power supply is its input voltage. It must be the same as in the network to connect the power supply.

Pay attention to the output voltage of the LED power supply.

It must be the same as the voltage of the connected lamp. If we bought a LED strip with an operating voltage of 12V DC, then the LED power supply must also have an output voltage of 12V DC. LED power supplies are offered in two variants. They can operate with DC 12 V or 24 V.

Do not skimp on the products.

If you try to find the cheapest solution, you might be dissatisfied. If you plan to connect a power supply to the mains permanently, choose a model that consumes no more than 1 kW when an operating system does not load it.

Adjust the power of the LED power supply.

The wattage of the power supply is an essential factor. Adjusting the device’s wattage that supplies power to the strip is not that difficult. Just check the wattage rating of your strip and multiply it by the desired length. It is worth assuming a reserve of 10-20% so that the power supply does not have to work under maximum load all the time.

Example: We want to connect a 5m long tape with a power of 4.8W/1m length, so we multiply 5 x 4.8 = 24 W.

Our power supply cannot be weaker than 24W. Assuming there is a reserve, we choose a power supply more significant than 24 W, for example, 30 W.

The users, use a suitable power supply.

So the first step is to determine the power requirements of the LED strip we have. For example, in the case of 300 SMD 3528, it is 4.8 W. This means that to operate 1 meter of such a strip properly, we need at least 4.8 W of power supply. It is worth considering the purchase of a “stronger” model – then we can use it in cooperation with other tapes and develop a lighting system.

The second step is the selection of the power supply itself. “Socket” models are ideal for short strip lights, such as TV backlighting.

It pays to consider multiple options for more extended systems, such as overhead lighting. Modular power supplies, which are the most affordable, are usually larger and therefore require planning a place where they will be “hidden.” If we do not have such a place, a good solution is a SLIM version or waterproof power supplies. With an IP67 rating, the latter is easy to install and work even underwater.

As a rule, they are characterized by small dimensions and, like the SLIM version, can be easily hidden, for example, in a suspended ceiling.

An essential point in installing the set is the correct power supply to the individual tape fragments, and it can assume that each of the 5-meter tape fragments should be fed directly from the power supply unit. 

Selection of the suitable power supplies model 

Selection of the suitable power supplies model for the LED Lighting project

We use a switching power supply with a minimum efficiency of 85% to supply LEDs without dimming. As a result, our power supply does not consume unnecessary electricity, positively affecting electricity bills. LED driver, LED Control Systems.


Ena Leung

Ena Leung

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