Learning, Wiring,

How to Wire LED Lights to 120V (6-Step Guide)

By the end of this guide, you’ll know how to wire LED lights to 120v quickly and easily.

LED lights are supposed to operate on a low voltage direct current. You need to know how to wire them correctly because If you don’t plug in LED lights into direct current with high voltage the surge of strong electricity could harm the lights.

In general, to wire LED Light fixtures to 120V:

  • Turn off the 120V circuit.
  • Connect both LED wires to the DC side of the transformer.
  • Secure the wire by using pliers.
  • Then connect the hot and the neutral wire to the AC side of the 120V into a wire nut. Tighten it using your hands.
  • Turn on the power and check the lights.

We’ll go into more detail on the process below.

Things to Prepare

  • Transformer
  • Wire connectors
  • Electrical pliers
  • Wire nuts

How to Wire LED Lights to 120V

LED strip lights are low-voltage appliances and should not be plugged directly into high-voltage outlets.

A “step down” transformer is necessary to convert the ac voltage into the lower voltage dc voltage when wiring LED lights to 120-volt household power. While pre-wired LED light sets can be plugged into a 120-volt power outlet, you must connect a transformer between the LED strip light fixtures and the 120-volt power supply for customized light installations.

Step 1. Turn off the 120-volt Circuit

Turn off the 120-volt circuit to which the LED lights will be attached.

power strip/plug

Step 2. Insert Wire

Insert one wire from the LED lights and one wire from the transformer’s DC side into opposite ends of a wire connector. Crimp the connector closed with the pliers to secure it in place.

Step 3. Excess Wire

Insert the excess wire from the LED lights and the other wire from the transformer’s DC side into opposite ends of a wire connector and crimp shut using pliers.

Step 4. Hot Black Wire

Insert the ends of both wires into a wire nut to connect the hot (black) wire on the Alternating Current side of the converter to the hot wire on the 120-volt AC circuit. With your fingers, tighten the wire nut around the wires.

Step 5. Nuetral White Wire

Insert the neutral (white) wire from the converter AC side and the neutral wire from the 120-volt AC circuit into a wire nut. Tighten the nut using your fingers.

Step 6. Switch on Power

Switch on the power and check the lights.

How to Change 12V LED Lights to 120V

Step 1. Get 12 v Led Lights and a Power Inverter or Converter

Make sure the LEDs you buy are 12v rather than 24v since they will operate differently.

Make sure that any inverter or converter you purchase is UL listed. It ensures that the product has passed multiple quality tests and is suitable for use with your appliances. If you doubt its condition, do not purchase it.

Step 2. Get Your Power Supply Ready

There are several power sources available.

It would help if you connected the positive wire from your lights to the power supply’s red lead and the negative or ground wire to the power supply’s black lead. If you’re using a power cable, connect one end to the inverter’s input and the other to an alternating current outlet. Then switch on your 12-volt power supply.

The converter will allow you to use your 12-volt device in an alternating current outlet.

Step 3. Secure the Connections

Always use heat shrink and solder when performing electrical work to provide a secure and long-lasting connection. (1)

Heat shrink, similar to electrical tape but composed of rubber, is used to shield soldered junctions from exposure to outside factors such as water, oil, dirt, and so on. Connect the positive wire from your lights to the power supply’s red lead and the ground or negative wiring from your lights to the power supply’s black lead. (2)

Take a look at some of our related articles below.

(1) heat – https://www.britannica.com/science/heat
(2) graphite – https://uwaterloo.ca/earth-sciences-museum/resources/detailed-rocks-and-minerals-articles/graphite

Video Reference

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About Sam Orlovsky

AvatarCertifications: B.E.E.
Education: University Of Denver - Electric Engineering
Lives In: Denver Colorado

Electrical engineering is my passion, and I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years. This gives me a unique ability to give you expert home improvement and DIY recommendations. I’m not only an electrician, but I also like machinery and anything to do with carpentry. One of my career paths started as a general handyman, so I also have a lot of experience with home improvement I love to share.

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