Got a question? Ask Mike!

Basic information about our Low Voltage LED Strips

Lumens, Kelvins and Wattage

Lumens determine the brightness of the single-color LED strip, while the Kelvin degree indicates the shade of white. The lower the Kelvin degree (e.g., 2700K), the warmer (yellow) the light, and the higher (6500K) the cooler (blue) it is. Watts are used to measure power consumption.

They come with a 3M adhesive backing (except for our Sauna LED Strip).

Cut lines on the LED strips
They can be cut (cutting lines are usually every 5 or 10 cm; check the product page for details). Look for copper points or solder joints (often accompanied by scissors) on your strip to identify the cutting point. Generally, 12V strips are cut every 3 LEDs, and 24V strips every 6 LEDs. The more LEDs per meter, the more precise the cut will be.

They are cULus certified, a recognized and mandatory standard in both Canada and the United States. LED Montreal has its own cULus certification. The maximum transformer output is 96W at 24V or 60W at 12V per output (Class 2 standard). 24V is more popular as it allows for longer lighting lines and provides more consistent lighting when cut and soldered. 12V is preferred for projects with short LED lines as the cut is more precise. Solar panel and battery projects often opt for 12V. The consumption per meter determines the maximum length of the strip per transformer. Check the product page for the chosen product's consumption.

Longer circuit
If you need to create lengths that exceed the maximum allowed by the relevant authorities, consider Multi Zone control systems. They allow you to control multiple sets of LEDs simultaneously with a single controller, thanks to their 2.4 GHz wireless signal relay function. With LED Montreal's Multi Zone systems, the possibilities are nearly endless.

Modifications and recommendations
You can connect cut strips (for a shelf project, for example) using multi-strand low-voltage wiring by soldering it to the copper terminals on your strip. Quick connectors are not recommended as they cause considerable resistance in the circuit and are not suitable for installation in aluminum profiles. Keep in mind that you are working with low voltage; too many connections can result in voltage loss and increased resistance in your circuit. Avoid connecting more than 3 lengths of LED in series; prefer parallel circuits. Using a more powerful transformer does not reduce voltage loss.

Never use solid-core wire (such as LVT or doorbell wire) on your low-voltage circuits. Consult our installation guide for more details.

Although LEDs consume on average 7 to 10 times less energy than traditional lighting fixtures, it is false to think that LEDs consume almost nothing. Indeed, it is not feasible to permanently light under-cabinet spaces with batteries. Battery-powered systems can be an option for events or other sporadic or temporary use.

Heat dissipation
Strips with more than 9W/m must be installed on a surface that can dissipate the heat emitted by the LED chips. We recommend aluminum profiles with a lens that also diffuses the point source effect to provide continuous light for strips with 120 LEDs/m and above.

Recommended power supply
It is recommended to load your transformer to a maximum of 80% to prevent premature wear. So, if your LED strip consumes 48W, we recommend a 60W transformer (mathematical formula: 48 X 1.25 = 60). A transformer is never too powerful for the LED strip; the strip will draw the current it needs. Think of your car with a 220-horsepower engine that can go up to 250 km/h. You won't damage your car if you drive at 50 km/h, but your car may last less if you constantly drive at full speed. For dimmable transformers, we recommend a minimum load of 30% for optimal dimming.

Single-color LED strips can be dimmed either 1) using 120V (with a dimmable transformer and a dedicated standard dimmer) or 2) using a low voltage dimming module between the transformer and the strip. Low-voltage dimming is typically done with a controller connected to a handheld or wall-mounted remote.

Multicolor or variable white LED strips must be connected to a controller and are always dimmed via a remote or app. They should not be installed on a standard wall dimmer. They are connected to a non-dimmable transformer only.

iP protection
The iP rating determines the level of protection for your LED strip: iP20 is suitable for indoor use in dry or slightly humid locations. There is no silicone protection. iP65 and iP67 strips are suitable for damp locations and temporary exposure to water.

Some projects where we do not recommend using LED strips:

Pools, docks, fountains, or any other application near water where LEDs would be exposed to prolonged or frequent water contact. iP65 and iP67 standards also mention that waterproofing is certified for a short duration.

Trees, vehicles, docks, boats: remember that these are electronic components designed for permanent installation on solid and stable surfaces; they are not made to withstand shocks and repeated movements.