Fitting LED strip lighting on an RV awning is a perfect, eco-friendly solution to illuminating the exterior of your unit and to make the most of the camping experience. Using LED lights rather than traditional lighting reduces your carbon footprint, they’re easier to install and versatile. This also means that when darkness falls, you can still entertain guests and extend your RV’s living space.
Most RV owners will place their LED strip lights under the awning railing to help protect them from the elements and create a nice additional living space when the RV is parked up. By putting the lighting here, it can be used whilst the awning is not extended too. Prior to installing, please ensure that the awning area has been cleaned down extensively and has been given some time to dry.
It is important to plan which way to connect your lighting to a power source, that the power source is in a safe, dry place and the best way to fix the strip lights to the RV.
How do I connect LED strip lights to an RV?
After choosing which style, color, and type of LED light strip to install, the next step is cutting them to fit the RV’s awning rail. The lights can be cut to size very easily; many strip lights often have cut lines to help ease this process, if they do not then please cut between the copper pads, which are spaced out along the strip of lights.
Next one must decide how to connect these lights to a power source. This will be dependant on your personal setup; the lighting will either connect into the RV’s battery or into a transformer with a plug adaptor.
Connecting the LED strip lights to a transformer
The most straightforward way of connecting LED strip lights to a power source is through a transformer. By choosing this connection one can simply use a plug adaptor and plug them directly into the transformer. Many RV owners use this method, as it is a quick and easy fix.
Connecting the LED strip lights to an RV battery
To connect the LED light strip to the RV’s battery you have to consider protecting the circuit. This can be done quite easily by installing a fuse before the DC adaptor. Nevertheless, to do this you may need to extend the wiring between your power source and the controller you decided to use, please be aware of this before fitting the lights to the battery and ensure you have enough wiring. To make purchasing easier most retailers give the option of “No Transformer”, choose this to connect the lights straight to the battery.
Which controller should you choose?
The on-off switch option is the classic way to control lights, like in homes, however with some LED lights they will need to be operated via a remote. It is recommended to use radio frequency controllers, as opposed to infra-red controllers, so there is no need to point at them to make them turn on and off. This also means there are no limitations to where you situate the LED strip lighting. For the attachment onto an AV awning either control could be used with ease because of its placement.
Fitting the LED strip light to the AV awning
The best way to fit the LED strip light onto the AV awning is to use either super glue, double sided tape, or if the lights have been purchased with drilling holes, drilling these onto the metal in the awning. Also sometimes the LED lights come with an adhesive backing, so this just needs to be reinforced with either glue or double sided tape.
For most RV owners, using a combination of both glue and double-sided tape is a recommended way to attach LED strip lights to the awning. There have been good reviews of silicone super glue, this allows for a nice finish onto the awnings metal base and keeps the installation looking very neat and tidy.
Using double sided tape is just to ensure that the surface of the LED lights are fully secured to the awning making them more durable to unforeseen weather conditions and such. By using this method the awning doesn’t get damaged and the RV owner can remove the lights if they want to quite easily.
Most RV owners prefer a less intrusive way of connecting LED strip lights to their mobile home so that it does not impact on the road safety of the vehicle, damage the awning and so if they change their minds they can easily remove and re-install different lights.