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Soldering LED strips is the best way to connect two together. In this guide, we’ll show you the simplest techniques on how to solder led strips for beginners.
If you think that your existing LED strip is too short, then you can actually connect another one to make it twice as long. You also have the option to cut a small piece and connect it to your current LED strip to make it just a little bit longer.
The trick here is to master the art of soldering. Once you know how to solder LED strips together, you can make any size of LED strips that you want. This guide will teach you how to solder RGB led strip lights with ease.
What Is Soldering?
For those who have never tried soldering before, let’s learn a little more about this process before we proceed to the guide on how to solder LED strips. Basically, soldering is the process of melting metal using solder in order to connect two objects together. This metal that connects the objects is known as the filler metal.
The trick to properly soldering two items together is to make sure that the filler metal has a lower melting point than the metal portion of the two objects that will be combined. The same goes for when you learn how to solder led strips together. Common filler metals that are used for this process include lead and tin.
How To Solder LED Strip Lights (Step-by-Step Guide)
Now that you know the basic idea of soldering, we can move on to the short step-by-step guide on how to solder led strip lights.
The only two materials that you need to have are your soldering iron and your filler metal, also known as the solder.
Once you have those two, you just need to follow these steps that we’ve provided below:
- Clean your soldering iron.
- Clean the tips of the two LED strips that you want to connect thoroughly.
- Heat up the soldering iron until it smokes a little bit.
- Put only a little bit of solder on the tip of the RGB wires and melt it thoroughly.
- Place your LED strips on the table and use a tape to hold them down so that they don’t move.
- Melt some solder on the copper dots located on the tips of the LED strip lights.
- Connect the tinned RGB wires to the copper dots of your strip lights.
- Solder the wires to the copper dots one more time and wait for them to dry.
- Once dry, get a roll of electrical tape and cover up the soldered portion.
- Take out a heat gun and heat shrink the soldered portion.
- Wait for the LED strip to cool down then connect it to a power source.
- Test to see if the newly connected LED strip will light up along with the old light strip.
In just 11 very simple steps, you now know how to solder flexible led strips.
Now, what if you want to solder only a small strip? Is there a way to shrink the newly connected strip so that your strip lights won’t be so long?
Of course, there is! Next, we’ll teach you how to cut and solder led strips.
Fortunately, LED strips were actually built to be cut. If you take a look at the back of the LED strip, there is a line in between each small light. The line is an indicator that tells you the safe place to cut the strip. Once you spot the line, just get any ordinary pair of pliers, and cut along the line. This will give you a shorter strip. You may then repeat the steps above to connect any of the two strips that you have. The copper dots are still present, so you should have no problem with soldering.
In fact, you may even get a little creative if you want. A lot of homeowners connect various LED strips together to form shapes and pictures. Some form simple shapes like circles or triangles while others make more complex designs like smiley faces or other things.
The basic concept is just the same – cut out the strips that you’ll need, piece them together in the shape that you want, and follow the steps above. It’s really as easy as that!
As you can see, it’s really not that hard to learn how to solder LED strips. As long as you have all the necessary tools available, you’re ready to go. Just make sure you’re very careful when dealing with soldering irons because they can get really hot.
If you accidentally touch the heated part or if you get some of the melted solders on you, it could mean a great deal of harm. That’s why we always recommend beginners to wear gloves when handling a soldering iron. If anything does happen, at least your hands can be protected from being burnt.
Of course, even pros may get into accidents from time to time. That’s why we advise you to take precautionary measures even if you’re an old hand at the soldering iron. So long as you know exactly what you’re doing, you won’t have any trouble soldering your two LED strips together into the shape that you want.
Want to know more about lED strip lights? Read the Ultimate Strip Light Guide!