Can You Cut LED Light Strips?

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Most LED light strips can be cut safely to fit wherever you need them to. LED strip manufacturers typically include a specific point where you can cut the LED strip to fit your specific needs. But keep in mind, if you are planning on cutting your LED strip, make sure you’re doing it safely.

Although LED strips can be cut there can be some confusion among how to cut them, where it is safe, and if they’ll still work. So, I’m going to deep-dive into cutting LED strips: how to do it, safety concerns, and why you might want to.

LED light strips are very sought after nowadays due to their incredible flexibility within a home or business. The most common LED strips are often designed to be sized or cut. Although, there can be some that you shouldn’t cut.

Can You Cut LED Lights?

Yes, it is possible to cut LED light strips. Most LED strips can be cut so you have the ability to trim them according to the area you want to put them in. In many cases, they are very safe to trim as long as you are following the proper included instructions and they are not connected to power.

A lot of strip kits will come in an extra long length. This is so that you can adjust them as needed.

For example, if you are putting LED’s under your counter, and they are 6-inches extra. Then, you can easily trim-off the remainder so you don’t have to worry about trying to hide the excess. But, you don’t have to worry about the strip not being long enough!

Example of waterproof strips that can be cut.

While most LED strips can be cut, there are some that cannot. Most commonly, certain waterproof strips might not be able to be cut. Cutting the waterproof silicone cover might compromise the waterproofing.

Additionally, there might be other types of LED strips that are not designed to be cut.

Where to Cut LED Light Strips?

“End of circuit” cutting location.

Cutting the LED strip in the correct location is an important task. You must cut the strip where one circuit ends and another begins. LED strips that are made to be cut will have these obvious areas where the circuits are safe to cut.

You cannot cut an LED strip anywhere. In order for the strip to still work, you must cut it at the appropriate location.

Additionally, it is important to remember that whatever side of the strip that is no longer connected to power will not work. However, it may be possible to reconnect the dead section in the future with soldering.

What to Cut LED Strip with?

You can cut LED strips with a pair of scissors or even a knife that is sharp enough. As long as you are safe with the utensil you are using, you shouldn’t have trouble cutting through the strip itself.

Some strips might even be designed to be “broken” or “snapped” if you bend them back and forth enough.

Is It Safe to Cut LED Light Strips?

Yes it is very safe to cut LED light strips as long as you are cutting on the marked cut spots. While the circuits are closed on the marked spots, it is important to disconnect any power source from the LED strip.

How to Reconnect Cut LED Strips?

There are a few ways to reconnect any dead cut LED strips. These dead strips are the sides that are no longer connected to power.

However, if you wish you reconnect them to extend an existing strip, then it is possible.

  • Soldering: If you have any circuit experience then you may wish to solder the two ends back together.
  • Tape: You can use non-conductive electrical tape to reattach the ends back together. While this isn’t the most permanent solution, it does work.
  • Strip Connectors: LED strip connectors are the safest and simplest way to reattach cut LED strips (source). You can use these connectors on either end of LED strips and reattach them without any soldering.

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