Introduction: Quick and Cheap Led Light Strips

This is a quick guide setting up an LED light strip for a multitude of uses in home. Add cool lighting anywhere in your home or office!!!

Even people without electronic experience can set up their own LED light strip in a few minutes.

If you don't have the tools to do this instructable, come by Techshop.

Step 1: Supplies and Materials

Short of tools, this project should only cost you less than $20 for 5 meters of LEDs
  • LED Strip- you can easily find 5 meter LED strips on Ebay for around $10 after shipping. I am using a 300 LED, 5 meter strip with the LED type 3528.  These do usually come from china, so expect long shipping times.
  • DC Power Supply - I am using a 12 v 5amp power supply that I also got off of Ebay.  For this strip, only 2 amps is needed, but the 5 amp and 2 amp supply are very similar prices, so I got the bigger one just in case I wanted to add a longer strip at some point.
  • Wire Crimper
  • Crimp Connectors - Any kind of connectors will work, but I used some disconnect style connectors to make it easier to move the whole LED set up in the future if need be.

Step 2: DC Power Supply

We need to do a slight modification to the DC power supply to get it usable with our LED strip.  They usually come with some type of round connector (often for laptops) at the tip.  We are going to replace this with two crimp connectors. 

Use the wire cutting part of the crimpers to cut off the round tip and expose the two bare wires.  Also, strip about an inch of the sheath holding both wires together.

Now you just need to strip each wire enough to crimp it. This is about 1/4" for my crimp connectors. After the wires are stripped, crimp on the connectors. Make sure to put a male connector on the two wires.

Once this is plugged in, do not let the two leads touch.

Step 3: LED Strip

On one end of the LED strip, there will be two wires.  Use the wire stripper to strip these wires about a quarter inch.

After they are stripped, just crimp on the two female connectors. 

Step 4: Testing

Now, you just need to test if it works. 

Start with your power supply unplugged.  Connect the two male connectors on the power supply to the female ones on the LED strip. Now plug your power supply in and see if it lights up.  If it does not light up, simply unplug the power supply, switch the two male connectors, and plug it in again.  It will only light up one way.

Now that you have it set up correctly, mark the female and male connector on one side with a sharpy. This is so that you always know which connector goes where.

Step 5: Place the Strip and Enjoy

The LED strip that I got has a sticky back to it. This makes it easy to just stick it to a wall or underneath a shelf like I did.

Also, my strip allows you to cut it after every third LED. You can cut the strip to the length that you need for your use.

Just one last thing to do!!! Enjoy your awesome LED light strip.