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Remove & Reuse LED Strip Lights: 7 Things You Should Know!

Antonio Forde
Updated: June 7, 2022
6 min read

LED strip lights make excellent home decorations. Even when you move house, you can easily reuse them to enhance your new space.

Find out how to remove LED strip lights from your wall without ruining the paint using this guide.

Can You Reuse LED Strip Lights?

You can definitely reuse your old LED strip lights. Since they are not permanent light fixtures, you can take them when you move out and stay at your new house or apartment.

LED strip lights look great when set up, so leaving them behind is such a waste. You can easily reuse the lights as long as you take the proper steps, starting from the moment you remove them to when you restick them on their new station.

How Do You Remove a LED Strip Light From a Wall Without Ripping Paint?

LED strip lights typically have strong adhesive backings to keep them securely attached to the wall. Extra care is necessary if you want to remove them without pulling off the paint.

You should start peeling at one end of the strip. Once the end is loosened, you can carefully work your way down the other edge until the strip is entirely free.

If you start removing in the middle, you may damage both the strip and the wall.

With most LED strip lights, the adhesive backing gives when you apply heat. You may use a hairdryer to heat the bonding agent before carefully removing the strip from the wall.

Sometimes, the adhesive is too strong and will not come off cleanly that you either leave the LED strip light alone or repaint the wall once it is off.

Either way, you should remember to unplug the strip light before doing anything. Your LED is still an electrical device, and you may get an electric shock while working.

The light, even if low-voltage, will also make it difficult for you to see the end of the strip you are supposed to peel.

remove-reuse-led-strip_welding-led-strips

When using a hairdryer, you should slowly move it along the strip length while applying low to medium heat. Continue softening and loosening up the adhesive backing until you notice that it is getting easier to pull the strip off.

You may also use a thin, flat object to carefully peel off one end of the strip. Coins will work great for this. If not, you may opt for a butter knife or an old credit card.

Once the adhesive is soft from heating, you need to slide your coin or knife underneath one corner, wiggling until you reach the other end. This will not scrap the wall surface.

You should not stop once you start removing the LED strip light. The hairdryer will only soften the adhesive for a little bit. When it cools, the glue will get hard again, and you will risk damaging your wall. 

How Do You Restick LED Strip Lights?

One setback when reusing LED strip lights is that the adhesive backing is lost when you take them off the wall.

You can solve this by applying another double-side backing on the strip and then remounting them without worries of falling off.

There are plenty of adhesive varieties that you can use for your project. You can use command strips, W3 tape, glue dots, or adhesive clips.

If you do not want to restick your LED strip lights using adhesive, you still have other options to consider.

Mounting putties are an excellent alternative for adhesive backings. You only need to mold the putty in your desired shape, carefully stick it at the back of your strip light, and mount the light on the surface of your choice.

While usually utilized for cable management, cable ties may also be used to restick LED strip lights. Remember to only use the transparent ones to not interfere with the LED’s light output.

Finally, you can apply hot glue to your strip lights but regulate the temperature. The strip may melt and damage your light fixture if it is too hot.

How Do You Make LED Strip Lights Sticky Again?

You cannot make the adhesive backing on your old LED strip lights sticky again. The tape will not stick to the wall, and your lights will fall off.

You should get another adhesive tape or other alternatives and stick it at the back of the strip. This will strengthen the hold of the original tape and make it much harder for the strip lights to fall off.

Depending on how much coverage you want, you can also cut the tape accordingly. 

What Are the Best Reusable LED Strip Lights?

If you want to start decorating your home with LED strip lights, here are a few highly recommended models from Amazon.

Top pick
PHOPOLLO Smart WiFi 100ft Led Lights for Bedroom Sync with Music, Led Strip Lights Compatible with Alexa and Google Home
Phopollo Smart WiFi RGB LED Strip Lights

This features a flexible circuit board that is easy to install, even on curved or uneven surfaces. The strong double-sided adhesive on the strip is enough to securely mount it on your wall.

Check Price on Amazon

Extending up to 100 feet, Phopollo LED strip lights can be cut to your designed length. 

You can control the lights using an app on your smartphone or use the 24-key remote controller that comes with the package.

Phopollo LED strip lights are also compatible with Google Home and Alexa, so you can control them by speaking to your smart devices.

It has a built-in high-sensitivity microphone that quickly turns your strip light into party lights that dance with whatever music you play.

Runner-up
Tenmiro Led Lights for Bedroom 100ft (2 Rolls of 50ft) Music Sync Color Changing LED Strip Lights with Remote and App Control 5050 RGB LED Strip, LED Lights for Room Home Party Decoration
Tenmiro RGB LED Strip Lights

Easy to install and use, this LED fixture from Tenmiro comes in two rolls of 50 feet strip lights – enough to cover and illuminate an entire room.

Check Price on Amazon

It features a music sync function and built-in sensitivity adjustable microphone that allows the strip light to change with the sound rhythm, from relaxed and romantic to party.

There are 25 modes that you can experiment on, where you can select colors, adjust brightness, and apply smart timing. You operate the Tenmiro RGB LED Strip Lights either from the app or via its 44-key IR remote control.

Also great
Led Lights for Bedroom 50ft, smareal Led Lights Music Syn Color Changing Led Strip Lights with APP, Led Lights for Room Party Home Decoration
Smareal Smart Led Strip Lights

This one features adjustable DIY lights with multiple lighting modes to fit your mood. The upgraded adhesive backing will secure the strip light on the dry surface of your wall.

Check Price on Amazon

The Smareal kit comes in 50 feet LED strip lights that you can cut and link with other color-changing strip lights. The package includes an instructional manual, accessory bag, an AC power adapter, and a controller.

This is an excellent choice if you are looking for an easy-to-use LED strip light for your bedroom, dining room, or living room.

How Do You Pack LED Strip Lights For Moving?

You do not want your LED strip lights to get damaged when in transit. Before moving, you need to properly pack them using the correct containers.

First, determine the dimensions of the LED strip lights that you have. This should help you pick the right size boxes for packing.

It is essential to divide the lights into manageable groups, particularly if you have plenty. This may be by type or by the room they were initially mounted in. You will find it easier to keep track of everything during your move.

If you have the original packaging of your strip lights, you should use them. If not, you can try to find a similar-sized container. Ensure that the lights are secured and do not move around during transport. 

Afterward, seal the box using packing tape and label to know what is inside. 

You may also use Ziploc bags for your LED strip lights. Just cut them into manageable lengths and place sections into separate bags.

After sealing and labeling the Ziplocs, you need to secure them to a piece of cardboard using a packing tape, then place them in a box ready for transport.

Using a bubble wrap or padding to protect your LED strip lights is also recommended. When you cut your padding material, ensure that they are slightly longer than the strips, then wrap them around.

To secure everything, you will need a packing tape. You only need to place the packed LED strip lights in a box, and you are good to go.

Do LED Strip Lights Burn Out Eventually?

LED strip lights do not burn out, but they gradually lose the light output. 

LEDs behave differently than incandescent and fluorescent bulbs. A traditional bulb will burn out or flicker over time, but not a LED. Barring any setbacks such as mechanical damage or power surges, they are still usable until they are too dim for use.

LED light strips are also a lot more energy-efficient.

Several factors can impact LED lifetime. Material quality and durability are some. However, the general rule with LED is that the higher the temperature and drive current are, the fast the light output will decline.

In actuality, LED longevity more or less depends on the power supply and adhesive backing used. Adhesives degrade over time, resulting in strip lights falling off the wall or other installed surface.

Meanwhile, if the power supply in the electronic component assembly is problematic, this will cause your LED strip lights to fail in the long run.

Written by
Antonio Forde
I'm the head-writer @ Ask The Home Geek (or, in plain English, I'm the guy writing & editing the majority of the content here). Current learning project: Korean.
Have any questions? Write us a message.
Antonio Forde
I'm the head-writer @ Ask The Home Geek (or, in plain English, I'm the guy writing & editing the majority of the content here). Current learning project: Korean.