Ultra LEDs Buyers guide to LED Profiles
We have a wide variety of profiles to suit a multitude of uses. LED profile is an important aspect of any lighting project so we’ve written this useful guide to give an overview of the types of Aluminium profile we provide and a few useful tips on which components to choose for a sleek and professional finish.
All of our profiles have an optional choice of diffuser and endcaps with the aim to provide an all in one lighting solution.
Throughout this guide we shall be looking at the following areas:
LED Profile Types
How to achieve a non spotting finish
LED tape Installation within profiles
Achieving an IP65 Ingress Rating
LED Profile Types
We have many different profile types available to suit your project requirements, for the purpose of this guide we have broken these down to explore their purposes and suitability to you.
U Shaped Surface Mounted
These are a standard profile designed to house LED tape with widths of upto 12mm. These U shaped profiles also contain micro width sizes for slimmer LED tapes where a slimline solution is required. They are designed to be surface mounted with the use of mounting brackets, sold as optional extras for each individual profile.
U Shaped Recessed
A standard profile designed to be recessed into any surface and give a seamless lighting effect on the desired surface, designed for standard width LED tape with a width of upto 12mm.
Circular profiles are commonly suspended but can also be wall mounted to provide a sleek finish with the capability of 360 º Illumination on some of our circular channel. These profiles can be used to achieve a highly desired tube lighting effect.
Corner LED profiles are best used where lighting is required in a 45º corner setting, either on the floor or, under surfaces or in wall corners.
This is a robust profile, commonly used for recessing into floors where more weight is likely to be inflicted on it’s surface.
Plaster In profile comes in a selection of different widths and protrusions to suit your needs. We stock a slim width, standard width and extra wide as well as inner and outer corner options. Designed to create a sleek and trimless finish.
Commonly used in Architectural applications, this profile is designed to sit within the structure of a wall.
We also stock a variety of IP65 profiles for damp environments, ideal for use in bathrooms and kitchens where light water exposure may occur. Commonly housed in a PC case to ensure no leakage occurs, we have U shaped, corner, Walkover and Circular IP65 profiles available.
How to achieve a non spotting finish
We recognise that the finish on your project is paramount, and a sleek smooth finish is what is desired, we refer to this as non spotting where there are no visible dark spots along the linear source of light.
Below is a recommended approach on purchasing your profile components to help you achieve this non spotting look.
- Take into consideration the depth of the channel you are using
When selecting your profile, the depth of the channel will have an impact on the non spotting finish, as the deeper the channel the more room the light has to dissipate against the diffuser. Selecting a deeper diffuser will also have an effect on the brightness, the further the LEDs are from the Diffuser the less bright the overall finish will be.
- Choose the right Tape for the job
LED tape contains a number of LEDs per metre, when attempting to achive a non spotting finish selecting a tape with more LEDs per metre will help to ensure that your finished project won’t spot.
We have two main tapes available that we recommend to help achieve this. The Easy to Use Bright Plus range at 120 LEDs Per Metre, which is more suitable for projects on a budget.
Optiprofile HD95 range, which is more suited to larger scale more professional project where quality and sustainability is a must.
- Choosing the right diffuser
We stock 3 main types of diffusers
Transparent – Used for maximum brightness, this diffuser will not be able to provide a non spotting finish
Semi Clear – Brightness is important but not essential, will provide non spotting capabilities if the correct tape is used. In this case we would recommend the Optiprofile tape to achieve the non spotting finish.
Opal – used where finish is of maximum intent, least likely diffuser to spot when illuminated
As an example of a non spotting lightbar, we have the 6114 Standard Plaster in Aluminium Profile with a matching semi clear diffuser and endcaps. The tape used here is the Optiprofile HD95 with 240 LEDs per metre.
LED tape installation within profiles.
When choosing the right tape for your project it is important to take into consideration how the tape will sit within the profile. The first aspect to consider is the width of the tape. The tape must be slim enough to fit into the channel, if the selected tape is too wide it won’t fit inside the channel.
The Cut Points of the tape are a factor to consider and how this measures up to the lengths of profile you require. Cut points on tapes are variable so it is important to take this into consideration when selecting the right tape for the intended length of the profile.
It is recommended that 24V tape is required as there is less chance of a voltage drop and this reduces the risk of spotting on the finished product.
If the tape runs too short, or is too far from the end cap where the wire is installed, a dark spot will be visible at the either or both ends of the linear light, which is not desired.
Achieving an IP65 Ingress rating on LED Profile
When creating a lighting installation for environments where an IP65 rating is required, it is important to us an IP65 profile and ensure that it is correctly sealed to avoid any leakage.
It is highly recommended to use an IP20 or IP65 tape inside an IP65 profile and is strongly not recommended to use an IP65 tape inside an IP20 profile.
If an IP65 tape is used inside an IP20 Profile, this will most likely allow moisture to enter the profile and cause condensation within the profile which will cause corrosion to the LED strip and cause potential danger within the circuit itself.
Whilst installing we recommend sealing the ends with silicone to reduce the risk of any water leakage.