Intro to Light Strip Connectors (I): Small tools do a big favor
On our monthly product return reports from Amazon, one can always find such a reason for sending back light strip connectors - I was recommended to buy this with the strip lights but end up it’s not needed. Apparently, even connectors have become so popular today, people still have no idea as to what these tiny clip-like accessories are for and how they help in bringing their lighting ideas into reality. Here, we will walk you through all your questions about these magical gadgets.
What are light strip connectors?
Light strip connectors are built with metal pins that serve as a conductor to splice two separate strips of lights into a circuit. Simply put, it is a metal bridge for power to go through between light strips.
Are connectors necessary for my lighting project?
Back to the return reason at the beginning, we must tell the truth that connectors are not a must-have for some lighting plans where there are no corners to turn, no extension to make, no complexity involved. Even your project has one of these in, soldering remains a reliable option to connect light strip, especially for those who are expert in this demanding technique. Yet, not all of us have the special tools and skills to perform it perfectly. That’s why we need solderless connectors.
Connectors vary in shape and purpose. Which one is the best for your lighting plan? You will find below.
Strip to Strip Connectors
How awkward it could be to have a reel of strip around the ceiling while a few feet are left blank because the strip is too short. These can be a lifesaver for that occasion. Mainly made for extension, they connect light strips end to end simply by cutting on the copper cutting lines on the strip.
L Shape Connectors
These come with an L sheet that is crafted of copper board covered by a layer of white waterproof insulation. They are widely used for below purposes that involves 90°angles:
- Light any LCD Screens on the back;
- Frame your Vanity Mirror with color;
- Decorate cupboards, cabinets, shelves, etc;
- Mount on ceilings, walls, etc.
T Shape Connectors
T shape set gets in a long way in grid configuration like grid windows, shelves, cupboards, and cabinets, etc.
Strip to Strip Jumper
The 5.43” RGB wires soldered in the clips on the two sides connect strips end to end with more flexibility than the above cardboard splices can offer. With these bendable connectors, light strips can be shaped to any pattern, turn angles in any degree.
Connectors for waterproof light strips
Although the above connectors all work with waterproof light strips, a special type of strip with a layer of silicone gel over, these are designed for the water-resistant lights. Unlike the above with metal pins that let the light strip slide under, the pins of these are pointed and designed to pierce up through the strips into the silicone coating to make a connection.
RGB Extension Wires & Strip to Wire Connectors
RGB wires and Strip-to-Wire Connectors will get you covered when you are:
- running light strips in several rooms while there is only one power supply;
- setting lights outdoor while the power supply is too far away or indoors;
- planning on any layouts that will have gaps with no lights.
Our 4-pin RGB extension wires come in 33ft which is cuttable to any length as you please. It can both be soldered directly with the light strip and be inserted in solderless Strip-to-Wire Connectors.
Will it work with my light strip?
As you cross out “light strip” on your shopping list, it’s time to order its accessories. But how do we know if the connectors work with the lights? This is one of the most frequently asked questions we get from buyers. To answer, let’s start from the product title. Below is the product name of JACKYLED L Shape Connectors:
L Shape 4 Pins Connector 10-Pack JACKYLED 10mm Right Angle Corner Solderless Connector 12V 72W Clip for 3528/3528SMD RGB Fireproof Material 4 Conductor LED Strip Lights Strip to Strip (22Pcs Clips)
- What does 4 Pins mean?
4 pin refers to RGB lights that have 4 connection points on the strip. Most RGB light strip featuring color-changing modes are 4-pin 10mm wide.
- What is 3528/5050?
The numbers refer to the size of the LED chips built in the light strip. 5050 means the LED chips are 5.0mm x 5.0mm, and 3528 goes to 3.5mm x 2.8mm. 5050/3528 chips are what most RGB lights are equipped with.
- What is SMD short for?
SMD, or Surface Mounted Devices, is a special type of LED lights that populate on strips.
So will this connector work with my lights? Just confirm how many pins the light strip has. Check the light strip image for the number of copper points around the cutting line, or find the word like “4-pin 10mm” from its description. Once the pin’s number matched, you have pinned down the target. Of course, you can further confirm you have chosen the right one by looking for more clues like “5050” on the page.
Let’s get started!
Now, with the right accessories for your plan and lights, you’re ready to embark on your project. You will surprisingly find everything can just take a minute following the right steps in installation. However, unexpected glitches could drive you away from success. Next time, we will list all the most common problems you would encounter in the setup process, to ensure you get no frustration but more happy moments from the wonderful lighting!