The Ultimate Guide To Flexible LED Strip Lights

Flexible LED strip lights have gained popularity due to their energy efficiency and high flexibility. Who wouldn’t like a lighting option that converts at least 90% of the input energy into useful lights? 

Generally, these lighting solution has a thin, adhesive-backed strip with several small LEDs in a continuous and uniform line. 

They provide the best option for decorative and creative lighting thanks to their ability to twist and fit almost any space.

 Manufacturers have moved further to provide customization options that allow users to adjust the light’s brightness and intensity to their preferences and requirement.

Today’s article helps you understand flexible LED strip lights highlighting their benefits, installation, and selection criteria. Let’s get rolling!

What Are Flexible LED Strip Lights?

Flexible LED strip lights involve thin, adhesive-backed strips with several small LEDs in a uniform line. 

We sometimes refer to them as ribbon lights or LED tape lights, and they offer flexibility for installation on almost any surface type.

 The adhesive layer on the strip allows you to make firm installations on walls or furniture. 

Moreover, these lights are available in varying shapes and lengths that you can extend or cut to fit your specific requirements.

 Furthermore, you can choose colors like multi-color RGB and single-color options (blue, red, green, or white). 

Some manufacturers even incorporate color-changing and dimming abilities to help you adjust the brightness and color to your preference. 

Flexible LED strip lights present energy efficiency features you’ll never find in conventional options like incandescent lights. 

Research shows that these lights convert about 90% of their input energy/power into light. 

Benefits of Flexible LED Strip Lights

Flexible LED strip lights waiting to be connected

(Flexible LED strip lights waiting to be connected)

No lighting solutions can compete with flexible LED strip lights thanks to the following benefits.


First, flexible LED strip lights involve mounting LEDs on a bendable substrate. 

Therefore, they have the versatility to curve and shape around irregular surfaces and corners, making them perfect for various applications. 

You can use these lights for any design environment, like illuminating displays and accentuating architectural features. 

Energy Efficiency

Everything involving LED technology, including flexible LED strip lights, presents a high energy efficiency you’ll never find in conventional lights.

 LED lights consume less energy than conventional light (fluorescent and incandescent) and still convert 90% of it into useful light. 

Therefore, these lights contribute to environmental sustainability thanks to lower carbon emissions and guarantee lower energy bills due to reduced energy consumption. 

Long Lifespan

Flexible LED strip lights have the longest lifespan, recording at least 50,000 operation hours. 

The lifespan could even go as high as 100,000 with high-quality LEDs and proper maintenance. 

This is very high compared to incandescent and fluorescent lights that don’t exceed 10,000 hours. 

And thanks to the LED’s high lifespan, you won’t require frequent replacement, thus presenting a cost-effective long-term investment. 

Customizable Length

You’ll buy flexible LED strip lights in rolls of fixed lengths. However, manufacturers design them with cutting points that allow you to customize the entire length as per requirements. 

Therefore, this customization and flexibility guarantee that you tailor the lights to fit the required spaces with ease of installation and minimal wastage. 

Color Options

An orange LED strip light

(An orange LED strip light)

Under LED lights, you’ll find single-color options like cool and warm white lights that offer excellent illumination for general lighting. 

Moreover, you can access RGB strip lights, which combine primary colors (red, green, and blue) to generate various color spectrums. 

Surprisingly, there are also color-changing options offering dynamic ambiance.

Easy Installation

Almost all flexible LED strip lights are designed with adhesive backing, allowing hassle-free installation and user-friendly installation. 

And to make installation even easier, they have connectors for connecting and extending multiple strips. 

Therefore, flexible LED lights should be your priority if you lack installation and technical skills. 


A stack of coiled flexible LED lights

(A stack of coiled flexible LED lights)

Manufacturers design flexible LED lights with dimmability features that lets you control the brightness level to meet your lighting expectations. 

As a result, you can create your preferred mood and ambiance and, at the same time, regulate power consumption. 


When dealing with any electronic device, no matter how small, you should be cautious for your safety. 

Generally, LED lights emit limited heat, thus eliminating cases of fire hazards and burns. 

Unlike incandescent and fluorescent options, LEDs use low voltage, eliminating the possibility of electric shocks. 

And most importantly, they emit no harmful elements like mercury, posing no health concerns or environmental harm. 

Flexible LED Strip Lights Installation

Someone installing flexible LED strip lights

(Someone installing flexible LED strip lights)

This section highlights the basic steps to install flexible LED strip lights. 

  1. Planning: First, measure the area you intend to install your LED strip lights so that you prepare the right strip length. This is also the time to consider whether the power source is at the right voltage to support the strips. 
  2. Preparation: Secondly, clean and dry the surface you wish to install your LED light and ensure it’s free from dust or grease. 
  3. Power source: Identify a reliable power source and ensure it is compatible with your LED strip lights. Remember, the power source might require a low-voltage supply like a transformer or plug-in adapter. 
  4. Wiring and connectors: Most LED strip lights are predesigned with connectors, but you might have to use extra connectors or soldering. And if you like, you can connect the LED strip with proper wiring. The best approach would be following the manufacturer’s instruction manual. 
  5. Mounting: Remove the backing from your LEDs and position them on a clean, dry surface. You might be forced to apply a little pressure to keep the strip firm on the surface. 
  6. Cutting and extension: Flexible LED strips allow you to extend or cut the strip length to fit the required area. However, ensure you only cut the designated marked cutting points. Fortunately, most manufacturers provide instructions for cutting and reconnecting the LED strips. 
  7. Power connection: Connect your LED strip to the power source by appropriately matching the negative and positive terminals. While some LEDs might require soldering skills, others come with connectors for easier connection to power. 
  8. Testing: After everything is done, switch on the power and check whether the LED lights meet your expectations. And since LEDs have control and customization options, you can test whether it works well. 


How do you choose the best flexible LED strip lights? 

The best flex LED strip light should have the following features:

  • Consider LEDs with high-lumen output for maximum brightness. 
  • The LED should have the right length and, even better, have cutting points. 
  • If you want to install your LEDs outside, they should have a higher ingress rating (IP).
  • LEDs with dimming abilities will help you adjust the ambiance and brightness levels. 
  • Buy from a reputable manufacturer and brand for quality and durability. 
  • Check the customer reviews from online platforms to determine the LED performance. 

Can you cut flexible LED strip lights? 

Yes! LED strip lights have designated cutpoints allowing you to trim the LED to your preferred length. But ensure you cut with effectiveness to avoid damaging the LED circuitry. 

This can only happen if you follow the manufacturer’s cutting instructions. 

Are flexible LED strip lights cheap?

LEDs are not cheap when we consider the initial buying costs. They’re more costly than fluorescent and incandescent lights.

 However, they present a lower running cost thanks to their energy efficiency and high durability, which leads to fewer replacements.  

What’s the lifespan of flexible LED strip lights?  

The lifespan of any lighting solution, including LED strip lights, will depend on the usage condition and product quality. But generally, LED strip lights have the highest lifespan and might serve you for at least 50,000 hours. 

And you can extend the lifespan if you manage proper maintenance and limit factors like voltage fluctuations and operating temperature. 

Final Remarks 

What is the point of buying rigid LED lights if you can invest in flexible options that you can install even on irregular surfaces? 

These lights are slowly replacing incandescent and fluorescent lights, and although costly to buy, they have high versatility and energy efficiency. 

Moreover, they come with a customizable length, are easy to install, and present high-level safety/lifespan. 

There is no better time to improve your home ambiance and enjoy environment-friendly LED strip lights than now.