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Prevent Your LED Lights Falling Down Without Extra Tape or Clips

LED strip lights are versatile, convenient, and efficient. They are the easiest way to get the kind of lighting you need for your home or property. However, they are not always easy to use. LED strips are not necessarily the best as far as their adhesive back is concerned – it degrades with time, is not very strong, doesn’t stick firmly, and so on. So, how do you stop led light strips from falling down?

LED strips come with 3M adhesive backing. LED strips can be held firmly in place if the surface is cleaned with rubbing alcohol before you install your LEDs. For an already loose strip, use extra double-sided tape at the back of the strip, then reapply. Plastic clips are a cheap option to try too.

We want to show you how to improve the odds of your LED strips bonding well with the surface you use them on. Let’s check out this simple guide on how to apply LED strip lights on a wall, as well as solutions for peeling or drooping.

How to Properly Install LED Strip Lights so They Don’t Fall

Carpenter sticks led tape inside furniture, close-up of hands

Most light strips like this example from Wobane (on Amazon) have an attached 3M two-sided tape, but their stickiness can degrade over time, especially if you or someone else relocates them. However, you can take a few measures to prevent them from falling at all, and there are some solutions to help you put them back in place.

The first is easy enough – clean the surface with simple rubbing alcohol (on Amazon) before you install. Do not skip this and simply use your hand to brush off the surface. Using rubbing alcohol helps to get rid of oils and dust so that the double-sided tape can stay up longer.

The second way to prevent the LED light strips from falling off is by installing the light strips properly on a corner. The light strips first begin to fall off at the corners and edges. If you simply try to bend the light strip into a 90-degree corner, it will make the light strip fall off too soon.

The reason is that more air is touching the sticky part of the light strip, and the light strip tries to bend back, creating more tension. This can be fixed by cutting the light strip and using corner connectors. It can be a tedious fix because it is annoying to cut a light strip.

You have to decide on a suitable connector, and if you choose waterproof light strip connectors for light strips that are not waterproof, it won’t work.

Another fix is to bend the light strip into a loop. Rather than bending it in the way that you want it to go, bend the light strip in the other way and continue that until a loop is formed.

This will help to prevent any tension in the light strip and enable it to sit perfectly on the surface. That way, the light strip will stay in place longer, and you won’t require any additional connectors or need to cut it.

How to Keep LED Lights Strips from Falling Off

the master glues the LED strip into the niche of the shelf from the cabinet for lighting

To stop your LED lights strips from falling off, here are some fixes you can implement.

3M backing tape

This is ideal if you are sticking the strip on its back so that the LEDs face upwards (the ceiling). If you place the LED strips sideways or on the ceiling to face downwards, they will end up falling off, and you should try other fixing options.

Always ensure that the surface is clean and flat before using 3M self-adhesive backing to stick the LED tape in place.

Foam backing tape

Use a sticky foam backing tape. LED tape is excellent for this because it is a bit heavier than regular tape. It is also great for places that are slightly irregular or not clean since the foam tape will be stickier than the standard 3M backing.

You can also stick the foam tape in its place, then stick the LED strip and the attached 3M standard tape to the foam tape. This is because the foam tape is a suitable surface to stick to.

Also, if the strip is facing downwards or on its side, ensure that you follow one of the tips above…remember strips placed on the underside of something have a harder time staying connected because gravity is pushing them down!

Fixing Clips

Fixing clips or “Strip Light Mounting Clips” (on Amazon) are a good way to hold the strip in place. The disadvantage is the time required to screw them in place and the additional space required around the LED strips (the extra width of the clip).

The option linked above actually uses adhesive, not screws, so you’ll need to make a call on if you want to find an option that creates more holes in your walls/furniture/cabinets, or if you want to use an adhesive option that, while sturdier, may also fail over time for the same reasons.

You’re helping adhesive out with more adhesive here, but you have a higher surface area of it, so it should last longer than the existing backing on the strips, though.

A durable installation, the clips won’t give way unless you deliberately remove them. Fixing clips are great for any position of the strips, whether facing downwards, upwards, or the side. They are also a suitable option for external strips since backing tapes do not work.


Another good way to hold your LED strips in place is aluminum extrusions. Their inner surface is effective to make LED tape stick with the standard 3M tape, and a cover is also present to keep the tape safe.

You can screw the extrusions directly into place or fit them with fixing clips which the extrusion snaps into. Whether internally or externally, the extrusions are great and help to keep the LED strips safe. You can install them at any angle, eg., in the downward direction.

This is a super niche option though. Aluminum Extrusion like this example (on Amazon) is a common DIY tool, but it’s also expensive. That said, if you’re going for a permanent, professional installation, this is an option that can stand the test of time to use the Aluminum Extrusion as the base for the light strips.

Use Rubbing Alcohol

Using rubbing alcohol to clean the surface before you install your LEDs can help prevent the LED strips from falling away. For an already loose strip, use extra double-sided tape at the back of the strip, then reapply.

Many light strips have a 3M two-sided tape attachment, but their stickiness may fade off after downtime. This can be challenging, especially if you’re thinking of moving them. So before you change the location of your strip, clean the surface using rubbing alcohol before you install your LED strips.

Rubbing alcohol contains 70% isopropyl alcohol which removes bacteria, oil, and dust. Yet most people clean with their hands, which does nothing in cleaning the surface. This can be done for any adhesive you have at home.

How to Stick LED Strip Lights On The Wall Without Falling Off?

The adhesive on LED light strips is so strong that it can remove paint and ruin your wall. There are other options besides the adhesive behind your strip.

Command light clips (on Amazon) are a great way to safely install your lights without ruining the paint. Moreover, they can be removed easily if the position is not favorable.

You can apply solid double-sided clear tape to the back of your strip if you have one. However, ensure that you first test and cut the tape.