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anyone install remote control led light strips for use under the dash( interior light) and under the hood . i thought under the hood would be nice for emergency use
 

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anyone install remote control led light strips for use under the dash( interior light) and under the hood . i thought under the hood would be nice for emergency use
I've not installed any LED setups in cars (only on my deck) but you need to figure out how you want to turn them and and off. You could switch things off of the ignition switch, using a door dome light switch, a basic toggle switch, or from a wireless remote control.

Most LED type lights are designed for 12V to where they need power and ground to light up.

If you want to send a positive signal to them such as from an ignition switch on the car, you would connect the positive side of the LED strip to the fuse block using one of the fused 1/4" taps in the center portion of the block and then connect the ground wire of the LED strip to a good chassis ground.

If you wanted to wire them up to a dome light circuit,the GM's normally used a ground created by the switch in the door jambs and in this case you would wire up the positive side of the LED lights to a constant fused 12V which you can find in the fuse block, and then tie the negative wire of the LED light strip to one of the door jambs dome light wire being careful to use the proper one as in some doors the driver's pin switch has two wires and only one is for the dome light and the other for a key buzzer circuit.

For an underhood setup you might be able to get one that works off of a mercury switch to where when the hood is opened, the lighting comes on and when closed, the lights go off all by themselves.

Jim
 

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I haven't used them in vehicles, other than a small trailer and a temporary solution in a car that I didn't really care about. But I have used about a dozen varieties of LED strip lights for other applications, including tool box lighting, home-built light fixtures, and some complicated things that I really can't describe as anything other than a lighting 'apparatus'.

Overall, I'm not really a fan of just peel-and-stick installations. It never lasts. No matter the surface prep. No matter the cleanliness. No matter the quality of the LED strips. No matter how stable the temperature will be. It always fails - often sooner than later.

Most of my more recent uses have been with the strips inserted into clear tubes, or embedded in epoxy. The only surviving peel-and-stick installation are the strips on my 3D printer - because I wired it in such a manner that even when the strips peel, the wires keep the ends from curling and interfering with the machine's operation.


My advice, if you're going to do it:
1. Don't go with the 'super-bright' stuff. The eyes don't like it, and it looks wholly artificial. I have also found the slightly yellower 'colors' (and 'soft white') to be easier on the eyes. In most applications, I've also found that more small, dim LEDs is better than a few big, bright ones. Overall, I probably use more 3528s than anything else.

2. Secure the strips inside a tube, or bond them to some other backing material. They need to be protected from damage and short-circuit risk; and vibration mitigation is always good. (I've had a few strips break, and/or LEDs separate, due to vibration.) The 'waterproof' strips seem to be much more resistant to vibration and physical damage.

3. If you want color change or dimming options, be sure your controller is compatible with the strips you choose. Some are wired differently, and not all strips are dimmable.

4. If you find an option for 5V strips and a 12V-5V controller, that would be preferable. The straight 12V strips just waste the extra power as heat (via larger resistors). With some straight 12V installations, I've had that heat become an issue - not the least of which is accelerating the rate at which peel-and-stick installations come back off.

5. It's an installation in a vehicle. Be mindful of the temperatures that will be encountered. Not all of the options on the market can handle, say, 160 F in a hot car, for example.


What I would do:
5V waterproof strips. **
12V-5V controller. **
**(RGB/dimmable, if desired.)
Run the strips through flexible plastic tubing, with a snug fit, for easier routing. (The waterproofing makes this a pain, but it's worth it.)
Zip-tie, rivet, or screw the tube in place. (I prefer not drilling holes in my cars ... so, zip-ties for me.)
Make sure the circuit used for power is fused. The cheap Chinese adapters/transformers/controllers have been known to fail internally and short-circuit.

If remote control was not an important factor, I'd hard-wire to whatever switch I was using, with a straight DC converter and voltage controller. Most of the ones intended for 'automotive' applications will take up to at least 18 volts, while maintaining a constant 5V output. (Amperage selected based on LED strip requirements.)
 
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