Can you reuse LED strip lights? Would you be able to disassemble and reassemble them to be reused again?
As a thrifty homeowner, I always intended to look for answers when it comes to these types of utilities. So, I’ll give you the information I found and help you with it!
Yes! If you have old LED lights and you’re planning to repurpose them, you can do so! They aren’t permanent fixtures – they’re like a lightbulb, so you can easily remove them from where they are and use them for a new purpose!
Why Reuse Strip LED Lights?
Right before we jump into knowing whether it’s possible or not, why do people want to know about it in the first place?
What are their reasons to reuse and repurpose LED lights?
- You’ll be able to save money (you don’t need to buy LED lights again)
- They’re energy-efficient
- Their lifespan is long, they can last for years
- They generate less heat
The majority of the reasons point toward the direction of being able to save money from having to purchase them again and again.
NOTE: LED lights, in case you didn’t know, use about 75% less energy compared to incandescent bulbs. They’re better for the environment, and they’re better for your pockets!
How to Properly Remove LED Strip Lights On Your Wall?
The main dilemma homeowners have when they’re attempting to unmount or remove a set of LED lights from the wall is the paint.
Usually, the sticking point of these strip lights is a long piece of adhesive. These adhesives are strong and are meant to ensure that the fixture will be installed without any problems.
The primary mission of the people who attached these adhesives is to make sure that they will be attached properly and durably.
From the many different ways of removing it, I was able to come up with the easiest, fastest, and safest way to remove LED lights from your walls, so you are able to reuse them.
Step #1: Turn the Power Off
The first, and probably the most important step is to make sure that the power to the LED light strips is turned off.
Apart from the fact that it’s dangerous, you run the risk of damaging it when you tamper with it while it’s either plugged in or connected to power.
If your light strips aren’t plugged into an outlet, turn it off from the breaker directly.
NOTE: You have to ensure that it is getting 0% power at the time of removal.
Step #2: Prepare the Walls
When that’s done, the next thing you want to do is prepare the walls. By prepare, I mean to soften the walls where the LED light strips are installed and mounted onto.
Now, the method of preparing it will vary from one type of wall to another. However, the most common thing I saw people do was by steaming the walls for about 5 minutes.
This softens the wallpaper and applies moisture to the surface of the walls.
What this does is give you a lot of room to strip it off easier and better.
You can think of it as weakening the glue or the adhesive and lubricating it entirely.
Step #3: Remove the Border Strips and Trimmings
When the walls are prepared and the adhesives are softened, the next thing you want to do is remove the trimmings and border strips that keep the LED light strips mounted.
You can do this in many different ways, but the best would be by using a flat-surfaces wedge and carefully stripping the borders off.
Should the borders be attached via screws, use a screwdriver or a certain type of pliers to take them off.
NOTE: Be careful in removing these because when they break, you will need to purchase a replacement for them. It’s not hard, but it will cost you again.
Step #4: Start on One End
This is important, as many people overlook it. Most LED lights have unfinished ends.
So, what you want to do is make sure that you start it off on one end, instead of in the middle.
Starting the process in the middle will confuse you. Moreover, it can damage the wall because the loose area would be in the middle, not at the ends.
Step #5: Carefully Detach it All the Way Through
When you’ve successfully lifted one end, work your way through the middle part up to the other end of the strip light.
NOTE: Do the process carefully, but make sure that you are doing it swiftly and urgently, too. The softening of the adhesive or the glue is only temporary.
If it’s blown by cool air, it will eventually become hard again, and reheating the surface would be a risk of damaging your walls.
For this process, you want to work fast, but you have to make sure that you do it with extreme precautions, too.
Can You Reuse LED Strip Lights?
In case you were asking whether you can reuse strip lights or not, the answer is a big resounding yes!
LED strip lights, being fixtures that aren’t permanent, can be taken down from where they were installed.
So, if you are asking, can you remove LED strip lights and reuse them because moving to a new location and you just recently installed an LED fixture, don’t fret!
You can do that!
Now that you were able to remove them, the goal is to reuse them, right?
So how can you remove LED strip lights on the wall and reuse them if the adhesive is already worn out?
I’m prepared! In solving that dilemma, there are a few methods and processes you can do and perform.
Products to Use to Reattach Your Strip Lights to a Wall
Obviously, what you will be using are products that do not only stick but can also hold weight.
LED lights, though they’re just lights, have a little weight on them. That being said, using a simple type of tape would not be enough.
They will either lunge and become unbalanced, or they can just come off straight.
What do I recommend for these? I usually go for the following:
Strong Adhesive or Double-Sided Tape
This process is the most common and probably the easiest of all. However, it can be the most tedious as well.
To reuse these LED lights using a strong adhesive or double-sided tape, you will need to remove the initial adhesive that’s present at the back of the lights.
Once done, apply the tape, and then install it at the location of your choice.
The heat from a hairdryer is enough to deteriorate the initial adhesive, whether it’s glue or double-sided adhesive.
NOTE: Just make sure that you don’t overheat the adhesive.
The thin piece of adhesive won’t be able to absorb all the heat. Therefore, it can penetrate through the panel and damage the lights.
The next option would be to use a glue gun. It’s easy, straightforward, and won’t require much effort.
The only problem is that to attach it to the wall again, you need to press it down and apply pressure so that it sticks.
NOTE: For this, you don’t have to remove the initial adhesive installed.
Last, and most definitely not least is super glue. Akin to glue guns, you also have to press the strip lights down to make them stick.
One precaution, though, is to make sure that you don’t apply the super glue to other areas of your strip LED lights because it can mess it up completely.
So, that’s how you remove and reuse these!
It may sound easy, but it will require a bucket of patience – I did it for nearly two hours and it was frustrating! Nevertheless, I was able to do it successfully.
You can take off your LED lights from the wall, reapply the adhesive, and then reuse them. Ensure a clean process and they’ll be good as new!
The Bottom Line
If you’re wondering, can you reuse LED strip lights without damaging them? Yes, you can!
You just need to make sure that you are careful in doing so for the lights not to be damaged!
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