Choosing the Correct LED Driver

How do I choose the correct LED driver for my LED strip?

One of the topics I'm most often quizzed about is how to select the correct LED driver for LED strip projects. Actually it's not as complicated as people fear and there are just a few basic steps to getting the right driver installed.

A few simple questions will start you off in the right direction - Will the LED driver be inside or outside - if outside use a driver with an IP65 rating or higher. Most of our IP rated drivers are IP67 so perfect for outdoor or wet environments. Next find out the voltage of your LED strip. This is usually 12V or 24V - to make it simple we list the voltage of our LED strip in the product description. Example: ORION IP65 LED STRIP 5M 24V 9.6W/M COOL WHITE

Now comes the calculation part.

  1. We need to find out the power consumption of the LED strip. This is measured in Watts per metre of strip - again to make this simple we list this in the product description. Example: ORION IP65 LED STRIP 5M 24V 9.6W/M COOL WHITE
  2. Now calculate the total power consumption of the strip using this simple formula: LED strip Watts per metre x the total length of the LED strip. If we are using five metres of the 9.6W per metre strip this would be 9.6 x 5m = 48W total power consumption.
  3. To be safe we always add at least a 10% margin so that the LED driver is not running at 100% all the time. This ensures the longevity of the driver will guarantee a trouble free installation for a long period. For our example we would need a driver of at least 48W + 4.8W (10%) = 52.8W. So in this instance the logical choice would be a 60W LED driver as this is the next available driver over 52.8W.

 Ta-daaaaa..... you've simply worked out which driver you need.

Of course if you are looking to dim your LED strip you will need a dimmable driver. We carry a full range of dimmable units but beware of the various dimming methods for LED technology. As well as stocking dimmers to work with standard domestic dimmer switches we also supply 0-10V, DALI and other types of drivers. If you need help with this please do not hesitate to contact us.

I'll create a whole new blog on dimming as this warrants a discussion in it's own right.

Hopefully this will get you on the right track and this formula can also be applied to LED panels, spotlights, decking lighting etc.

We're always happy to give you advice to get you up and running!

1 comment

Mike Gilbert

Mike Gilbert

Comment! Great stuff, I can work out the wattage but have lots of different led strip left overs that dont tell me what voltage they are or watts per meter either. Can you help me there?
Keep up the good and informative work!

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