LED strip lights are a convenient light source for residential and commercial places. You can try a lot of DIY projects with strip lights. Since they have a handy peel and stick backs, you can attach them to almost any surface.
Nevertheless, they might need permanent concealment at times so that they can appear more professional and stylish. An LED aluminum profile is a popular choice for the same.
This post discusses how we can stick LED strip lights to an aluminum profile and then an aluminum profile to different surfaces. Before we move further, let us learn a few benefits of using aluminum profiles.
- Light strip aluminum profiles are easy-to-clean.
- You get a firm placement as your strip light will remain in place inside aluminum profiles.
- The aluminum profile lets you direct the strip light easily.
- You can mount your aluminum profile anywhere without worrying that the LED strip will come off.
- Aluminum profile soaks excessive heat coming from LED strip lights. Find out for what reasons LED strip lights overheat.
- You also get better reflection consistency from your strip lights.
Types of LED Aluminum Profiles
Light strip aluminum profile, also known as LED extrusion, comes in various sizes, shapes, and depths. As a result, their installations may differ.
Let us look at some of the most common LED aluminum profiles available in the market.
Recessed Aluminum Profiles
Recessed Aluminum Profiles are a suitable option if you want to install LED strip lights on the ceiling, under cabinets, or walls. You can find numberless LED Strip light ideas for your home with recessed aluminum profiles. Your strip light will look sophisticated. After all, these profiles fit together with all types of surfaces.
Rectangular LED Aluminum Profiles
People also call them shaped aluminum profiles. They are available in several varieties. For example, surface mountable with screw-in brackets and suspended profiles.
Corner-mounted Aluminum Profiles
If you have to install strip lights at 90-degree angle corners, corner-mounted profiles should be your choice. These profiles are available in different angle variations such as 90°, 45°, 30°, and 60°.
Architectural Aluminum Profiles
Architectural profiles are modern-looking profiles. They feature unique LED extrusion shapes. You can buy them in flat, round, and t-shaped varieties.
Generally, people use them for decoration purposes. They are suitable for stairwells, living rooms, closets, and walls.
Surface Mounted Aluminum Profiles
If you want to give your LED strip lights a sleek look, you cannot go wrong with surface-mounted profiles. They are easy to cut and fit.
Suspended Aluminum Profiles
These aluminum profiles use suspension cables to hang. You will require an extra cabling kit, screws, and steel suspension to install them. Suspended Aluminum Profiles are perfect for offices, factories, and other commercial spaces.
Procedure to Install Strip Light to the Aluminum Profile
You can buy any of the above LED aluminum profiles depending on your requirements. Regardless of the LED extrusion you buy, the basic installation procedure will be similar for all.
Let us look at the steps one by one.
Wiring & Soldering
First, you need wires that you will solder to your LED strip light. Peel your wires’ lead approximately 1.5 inches and then attach them to your strip’s connection with the help of soldering. Choose wires that are capable of taking heavy loads. Always invest in LED strip lights made by reputable strip light manufacturers. Learn how to import LED Strips from China.
Check the Connection
Make sure you have soldered wires to the copper pad properly. There should be no loose connection. Otherwise, it might cause a short circuit. Before you start with the installation procedure, do not forget to test your connection.
In case you notice any exposed copper pads, you can use heat shrinks to cover those exposed areas. Heat shrink tubes are made of shrinkable plastics used to insulate wires and protect against abrasion. Alternatively, you can use 3M mounting tape.
Installation of Closed End Cap
This will give your LED aluminum profile a finished look. At the same time, it blocks any possible leakage. It takes a small amount of space for installation.
Measurement and Cutting of Strip Light
Before sticking the strip light inside the profile, measure the length of the strip. It will give you an idea of how long a strip you need. Next, cut your wire carefully. Cut the copper pads, or else your strip light might get damaged. If you do not know how to do that you can read our post, Can I Cut My Led Strip Lights?
Check out if you also need to cut the aluminum profile depending on where you want to install it. You can use a cutter machine to ensure smooth cutting.
Stick the strip
Nowadays, LED strip lights come with strong adhesive on their back. Therefore, you can easily stick them to aluminum profiles. Gently, peel the tape of your strip light from the back and stick it to your aluminum channel. Place your strip between both ends of the aluminum profile. Always invest in high-quality LED strip lights so that they can last for a long. It is advisable to check the quality certifications of LED Strip lights.
Put the Cover into Aluminum Profile
As soon as you have installed the strip, you can press the plastic cover into the aluminum profile. Start pressing down the cover from one side. If you find the length of the cover is big, you can cut it off.
Connect Aluminum Profile to the Main Switch
Once your LED aluminum profile is complete, connect it to your power switch. Check if it is working correctly.
Installation of LED Aluminum Profile to Different Surfaces
In the previous section, we learned how we could stick LED strip lights to the aluminum profile. Now we will look at how to install aluminum profiles to any surface.
Choose the Right Aluminum Channel
First of all, you need to select the right LED extrusion as per your requirement. Consider the following points when choosing an aluminum profile for your LED strip light.
Aluminum profiles come in different width and depth sizes. Get a channel that is slightly wider than your strip. It will help you install strips inside the channel effortlessly.
Similarly, you need to ensure that the depth of the aluminum profile is as per the mounting groove. Otherwise, you might face difficulty when installing.
Make sure that the aluminum profile is made out of rust-proof aluminum. Also, ensure that the oxide layer is thicker.
The cover of the aluminum profile must be clear and transparent so that light can pass through effectively.
Get All the Required Accessories
Make sure to get the following accessories for easy installation. Mounting clips or brackets help you connect to aluminum profiles and ensure a safe installation.
3M Double-sided Tape
3M double-sided tape lets you stick the aluminum profile to different surfaces securely. It has pressure-sensitive adhesive on both sides.
End caps prevent strip light from dust and debris.
You will also require accessories like pendant cables, fasteners, suspensions, and profile connectors.
Installation of Aluminum Channel
Since distinct aluminum profiles feature different shapes and depths, the installation process can vary slightly. However, more or less, the basic procedure will be similar for every aluminum profile.
Let us learn the installation procedure of some popular aluminum profile types.
Surface Mount Aluminum Profile
The surface-mount aluminum profile is suitable for various types of surfaces. After all, they are available in several shapes and sizes. However, it is primarily used in retail lighting.
As the name suggests, you fix the surface mount aluminum profile on an object’s surface. You can use metal clips or strong double-sided tape for the same.
Surface Mount Aluminum Profile comes with mounting brackets having pre-drilled holes. You can fix them on the wall with screws. After that, snap the aluminum profile into the brackets.
Recessed Aluminum Profile
The Recessed aluminum profile creates a flush look. You can use it for ceilings, cabinets, furniture, etc. Some recessed aluminum profiles have two recesses on the side walls.
You can use a mounting clip to clamp onto the one recess. Thus you can adjust the height of the profile.
Corner Aluminum Profile
A corner aluminum profile can uplift the overall ambiance of your room. It is a good option if you want your strip light to output light at 30°, 45°, or 60° angles.
You can install it in the corners of your ceiling. They also look perfect under the shelving units. The corner mount aluminum profile uses mounting brackets and double-sided adhesive tape for the installation. So if you want to light the dark corners of your house, you must go for this profile.
Suspended Strip Light Aluminum Profile
If you want to create a contemporary lighting setup, you cannot go wrong with the suspended LED aluminum profile. It makes an excellent pendant light.
The shape of this aluminum profile is a bit different. It uses mounting clips and steel suspension. Therefore, it looks suspended during installation. You will require some fasteners, buckles, and pendant cables to hang the suspended strip light.
Floor Aluminum Profile
Generally, engineers use high-quality, thick aluminum profiles for floors or staircases. After all, they do not get deformed quickly. Like other aluminum profiles, you can install them using metal clips.
It would not be wrong to say that installing aluminum profiles is a straightforward process. You can mount most aluminum profiles using metal clips or double-sided tape. It is advisable to use high-quality 3M double-sided tape. Make sure the surface is clean before applying the tape. Clean the oily surface with alcohol cleaning solvent.