How to Connect LED Strip to Power Supply?

wiring diagram dimmable led driver midtown pr15

Most high-quality LED strips are low-voltage LED strips that need to be connected to a power supply to work. The power supply is also called an LED driver because it drives the LED strip to work. The power supply is also called an LED transformer because it converts the mains 220VAC or 110VAC to 12V or 24V.

This article will show you how to connect LED lights to a power source.

Voltage and wattage

First, you need to check the working voltage of your LED strip, and the most common working voltage is 12V or 24V. You must ensure that the operating voltage of the LED strip is the same as the power supply’s output voltage.

Second, you need to calculate the total power of the LED strip. The calculation method is to multiply the power of one meter LED strip by the total number of meters.

Finally, according to the 80% principle, you need to ensure that 80% of the power supply wattage is greater than or equal to the total wattage of the LED strip. This will help extend the life of the power supply.

Power supply with DC connector

The LED strip has a DC female connector, and the power supply has a DC male connector.

This power supply is also called a power adapter.

LED strip with DC connector

If the LED strip happens to have a DC female and the power supply has a DC male, you need to plug the DC female and DC male and connect them.

led power adapter 2

LED strip with open wires

If the LED strip only has open wires, you need to buy the accessories that convert the wires to DC connectors and then connect them.

led power adapter

LED strip without wires after cutting

When the LED strip is cut, how do I connect it to a plug-in power supply? 

You can connect the LED strip via a solderless wire connector or soldering a DC female connector.

The AC power plug of the power adapter can be inserted into the socket to supply power to led strip lights. Corresponding to small projects, this is very convenient and suitable.

Power supply with open wire

A power supply with an open wire usually is a waterproof power supply.

LED strip has open wires

You can hardwire the wires from the LED strip to the cables from the power supply. 

Twist the two red wires together, then cover and tighten the wire nut. The same goes for the black wire.

Note that you need to ensure that the red wire is connected to the red wire and the black wire is connected to the black wire. If misconnected, the LED strip will not work.

connect led strip to power supply with wire nuts
connect led strip to power supply with wire nuts

Another option is that you can connect the wires with a solderless wire connector.

wire jointer

LED strip without wires after cutting

For LED strips without any wires, you can solder wires to the LED strip or use solderless LED strip connectors. Then use the method above to connect the LED strip to the power supply.

led strip connector

Power supply without wire

A power supply without wires is generally a non-waterproof power supply with terminals for wiring.

You’ll need a screwdriver to operate this power supply because the terminals are fastened to the wires by screws.

Step 1: Unscrew the screw on the terminal block with a screwdriver.

Step 2: Put the wire of the LED strip into the corresponding position.

Step 3: After inserting the wires of the LED strip, tighten the screws with a screwdriver, and pull by hand to test if they are tight enough.

Step 4: Connect the AC plug in the same way.

led power supply wiring diagram

For more details on the wiring diagram of the LED light strip, please read How to Wire LED Strip Lights(Diagram Included).

Can I connect multiple LED strips to the same LED power supply?

Yes, you can connect multiple LED strips to the same power supply, but you need to ensure that 80% of the power supply’s wattage is greater than the total wattage of the LED strips.

Serial connection

When you connect multiple LED strips in series, there may be a voltage drop problem, and the further the LED strips are from the power supply, the dimmer it will be.

More information about voltage drop, you can read What is LED strip voltage drop?

Parallel connection

The inconsistent brightness of LED strips is unacceptable. To get around this, you can connect multiple LED strips to the power supply in parallel.

can you connect multiple led strips to led power

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