What Exactly Does an LED Transformer Do?

The use of LED light strips is increasing, and by 2035, LED lights are expected to become the dominant type of lighting installation in both consumer-facing and industrial markets, reports the U.S. Department of Energy. However, the long lifespan of LED lighting systems requires proper installation and an appropriate power source. While LED drivers are a type of power supply, certain types of LED lighting systems may require an LED transformer, and you need to know why.

What Is an LED Transformer?

An LED transformer is a type of power supply for LED lighting systems. Unlike LED drivers, LED transformers operate with a higher output wattage. As a result, an LED transformer can power larger, longer lighting systems.

When Is an LED Transformer Necessary?

LED light strips may be powered with LED drivers, but longer strips should use an LED transformer. Although LED drivers provide a constant output voltage, longer strip lengths require a higher wattage to run at peak efficiency. Furthermore, an LED transformer ensures the color rendering index (CRI) is maintained throughout the strip’s length, and the circuitry within an LED transformer is essential to prevent premature failure of the lighting system. This helps prevent the risk of fire or electrical shorts within long strip lengths.

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Can an LED Transformer Be Used Interchangeably LED Driver?

An LED transformer can be used interchangeably with an LED driver, provided the length of LED strip employed does not require a wattage value more than the LED driver’s capacity.

For example, a constant voltage dimmable LED driver with a 200-watt (W) output can power the length of an LED light strip that adds up to 200 W. However, the use of LED light strips in spaces going beyond the maximum run length of a specific LED drivers, depending on the specifications of the strip used, will require a transformer.

Calculate the wattage needed to power your light strip by multiplying the per-foot wattage requirement of the strip by the number of feet connected.

Here is a sample calculation using a 30 W per meter strip for 8 meters.

Meter Length Needed x Watts Per Meter = Total Watts Needed.

8 Meters of LED Light Strips x 30 W = 240 W Total.

Since the end value is more than an LED driver’s capacity of 200W, an LED transformer must be used.

If the resulting amount is the more than the maximum output wattage for the LED driver, you need to use an LED transformer.

Make Sure Your LED Lighting Setup Is Suited for Your Needs and Installed Correctly

Having the right type of LED transformer or driver is essential to getting the maximum return on investment for your LED lighting system. Rather than risking premature failure of your LED lighting system, let the experts at MX LightForce help you select the correct transformer or driver for your unique needs. Visit MX LightForce.com to learn more now.