If you are buying LED Strip Lights don’t forget your power supply. LED Strip Lights count on a peripheral unit called a power supply, also referred to as a transformer or driver, which is needed to cause them to become work.
Power supplies come in many shapes and sizes, which range from very basic ‘plug and play’ units to commercial style transformers which is often hardwired into your mains supply ecopac led driver. You will also hear these power supplies referred to as ‘transformers.’ This is because along with powering the LED Strip Lights these units are created to ‘transform’ the mains 230V AC to a low voltage 12V DC therefore making the supply applicable to the strip lights.
There are certainly a few considerations you will need to make as it pertains to selecting the kind of power supply you need.
Firstly, do you wish to be able to plug into a wall socket, or have you been planning to hardwire your LED Strip Lights into a light switch?
If the clear answer to the former question is ‘yes’ then you will need a regular ‘plug and play’ driver. Here is the most basic supply available and allows quick and easy setup for standard domestic applications via a wall plug power source. The entire unit consists of a black transformer, a kettle-lead with a regular UK mains 3-prong plug and a 12V male connector which attaches to the LED Strip via a corresponding female connector. The entire unit closely resembles a lap top charger and is about 2 metres in length.
For more technical applications or where there’s no wall plug available an alternative solution mains power supply is available. In place of a pot lead these supplies feature a period of mains wire which is often wired directly up to the mains supply.
In addition to choosing the kind of power supply, you will also need to ascertain how big is it. These supplies come in varying sizes, ranging anywhere from a low 20watts to many times this figure. These figures described the most ‘load’ that the supply can manage. The ‘load’ of your LED Strip Lights is calculated by taking the wattage per metre and multiplying it by how many metres you are using. For instance, if the wattage per metre is 7.2W and you are using 10 metres, then the whole load is 72watts. It is important to ensure that this load does not exceed the most load in your supply, otherwise you will experience performance issues with your strip lights, such as for example voltage drop, and reduce the life time of your lights.