As light sources are changing, new methods of installing have also evolved. Nowadays, some LED lights products are meant to stick in various places as per manufacturer and purpose.
This being said, there can be challenges in making this work. So, you must know how to make LED lights stick.
Adhesives For Your LED Lights
LED lights are all over the market and have been progressively growing as time passes by. The market for these types of products is fast-paced and inventive.
It keeps on growing, and manufacturers develop constant improvements, especially when it comes to energy efficiency and lighting output.
They have been expanding and improving so that light extraction from the tiniest of sources is becoming more and more efficient. And so, a considerable demand for new and improved adhesives to be used for potting, bonding, and sealing lamp parts as well as LEDs.
On the other hand, when you prefer attaching LED lights in the form of strips onto edges of your rooms, as seen in many settings and becoming increasingly popular, you would also need a strong adhesive material to make sure the strips do not fall over just a short period.
All in all, it’s essential to read through your choices so you can make a more informed decision in purchasing adhesives for your LED lights.
Adhesive 1: Double-sided For Your LED Light Strips
3M Very High Bond (VHB) tape is the best double-sided tape for LED light strips. While LED light strips come with their adhesive backing, you might need to back this up with double-sided tape to make them stick firmer and more extended.
This type of tape is easy to find in your respective stores, and it’s available in a variety of lengths and widths. If you happen to fail at finding smaller sizes and opt for bigger sizes, it’s okay as it’s simple to cut to smaller sizes or your custom and desired size in the first place.
Here are the basic steps in adding double-sided tape to your LED Light strips
Find your tape size
Before purchasing, you first need to assess your LED light strips and determine their size. This way, you know what double-sided tape size you will be looking for.
And because LED light strips are usually small, you would need to use a double-sided tape that fits it perfectly to avoid the hassle of cutting and shaping it to the size of the strip.
It would be best to have a tape that will not be visible behind the light strip. However, if you do not find the size you need, you can still cut and shape it as you need. Light strips are usually around 20′ long and 10mm broad for reference.
For faster work, it’s helpful to cut the tape into sections. It doesn’t matter if you are using or working with a 20-foot double-sided tape; you can always cut and split it into manageable 12″ or 24″ parts. This way, it’s simpler to stick it to the strip light’s existing adhesive.
After cutting your double-sided tape into your desired parts, you can proceed to the fun but slightly complicated part of the process. You can now carefully peel the light strip’s original adhesive protective film away.
You need to be careful when doing this step to avoid diminishing the original adhesive’s sticking ability and being messy with the work. After this, a part or several parts of the double-sided tape can be applied to the portion of the LED light strips exposed.
However, keep the red 3M VHB. tape so it would be ready but not yet exposed to air and dust when you would stick the strip to a surface later.
Execute a dry run before sticking the LED light strip to a surface with double-sided tape. This will come in handy because you will know what to do when anything goes wrong.
Adhesive 2: Glue For Your LED Light Strips
Here are the three types of conventional casting glue used for led strips.
Epoxy resin glue
Because of its low price, toxicity, and good mobility, epoxy resin glue has made a name for itself and considerable market share. Epoxy is a two-part adhesive consisting of epoxy resin and hardener mixed.
These two components are kept separately in different containers. In fact, they are only combined when it’s time to glue! Mixing epoxy resin and hardener can be done using a double syringe and others. It would be best if you took note that measurements should be 1:1.
Depending on the glue you opt for, the mixture might range from a few minutes to several hours, and the adhesive as a whole takes several hours to acquire optimum strength after the pot life.
PU (polyurethane) glue
Unlike epoxy resin glue, PU glue has yellow degeneration and low-temperature resistance. This makes PU (polyurethane) glue preferable to epoxy resin glue. Polyurethane adhesives can also be utilized as both inelastic and permanently elastic adhesives.
These adhesives are usually maximized and used for higher strength constructions. This adhesive is made up of polymers and other ingredients such as additives.
However, some of the disadvantages of this adhesive are its price and its toxicity. When PU glue solidifies, it produces low molecular components harmful to workers’ health when inhaled.
Silicone glue is a type of adhesive that comes in liquid form. This type of glue usually has the feel, appearance, and behavior. It is chemically distinct compared to other organic polymer-based adhesives mentioned earlier while combining the benefits of PU glue and epoxy glue.
In other words, it has excellent low-temperature resistance, heat resistance, low toxicity, and resistance to yellow degeneration. Silicon glue will also not turn yellow when used for an extended period, and another advantage is that it has a pleasant odor.
Mounting clips are one of the simplest and most inexpensive ways to attach LED strips that do not need the assistance of double-sided tapes. These little clips are screwed and attached to surfaces with a single screw and latch over the LED strip, keeping the whole thing in place.
Mounting channels are aluminum tubes that are a cost-effective option to place LED light strips. This option provides a neat and creative place for your LED light strips while maintaining a professional appearance.
This option still needs and requires the original adhesive backing off the strips. But this method takes the adhesive backing to a whole new level as the strips stick to the aluminum track very well.
The aluminum and glue complement each other nicely and make a good team with a strong bond. The track is then held in place by clips attached to the specified surface.
Steps in Sticking LED Light Strips On Walls
- First and foremost, you need to determine the size of the area where the LED light strips will be installed. You can do this with a ruler or a tape measure. In sticking LED light strips, do not guess the estimate but determine the accurate measurements.
- Trim your LED light strip to the proper length. Only if necessary! You can use a sharp knife or a pair of scissors. Make sure you cut along the lines where the circuitry is not damaged. A wrong cut will result in damaged LED lights.
- Prepare the surface. One of the most critical aspects when installing your LED light strip is surface preparation. Preparing the surfaces helps ensure a solid bond between the strips and the wall from the start. Any material or dust still stuck and present on the surface before the procedure can obstruct adequate adherence and cause poor results. Clean any dust particles on the surfaces involved. You can do this with a moist cloth or an alcohol wipe. You might want to do this minutes before deciding to start with the process, as you would need time to wait for it to dry.
- When the temperature around you happens to be below 10°C, you can get a hairdryer to warm up the adhesive.
- Before using the double-sided tape, switching on your LED lights would be helpful. This way, it creates a heat-generated bond between the parties involved, namely the double-sided adhesive and the LED light strip.
- Place the LED strip in the proper location and press it, applying pressure into the surface with your hand and helping the strips to stick well.
- Continue peeling and going per the positioning you have planned. Press until the entire length is attached to the wall. You can take as much time as you want by sticking to the lights. That way, you don’t do a messy job because of cramming.
Installing LED lights can be a hassle when done wrong, so it’s helpful to know how to make LED lights stick. When you get the hang of it, it will be easier to do it again in the future. It also becomes more fun as you continue, and you can be as creative as you want.