Common answers to questions
Here you will find common answers to questions that you may have.

What is Light Tape®?
Light Tape®   is the brightest, longest, biggest and most flexible electroluminescent lamp in the world!

Is Light Tape® made in the USA?
Yes! World class and high quality American manufacturing combined with of our cutting edge technology, make manufacturing Light Tape® in the USA a logical decision.

What is ElectroLuminescence?
ElectroLuminescence (EL) is the conversion of electrical energy into light by the activation of a phosphor layer by an alternating current. In other words, when the low electrical current passes though the phosphors, they become excited and vibrate producing light.

How does Light Tape® work?
A layer of light emitting phosphor is sandwiched between two very thin flexible electrodes. One is opaque and the other is transparent to allow light to escape. When AC current (200 to 2000 Hz) is applied, the phosphors become excited and begin to rapidly charge and discharge, resulting in the emission of light.

What are the advantages in using EL instead of incandescent lighting systems, light emitting diodes (LEDs) or fiber optics?
Light Tape® Lamps provide numerous advantages over incandescent lighting, LED's and fiber optics:

– Extremely easy to install.
– Generates very little or almost no heat.
– Consumes less power (
up to 93% less power).
– Thin and flexible, typical thickness of 0.020 in (0.5 mm).
– No glass to break or gas to escape.
– Provides uniform lighting over a large area as long as 300 feet (91 m).
– Available in multiple colors.
– Can be mounted conformably on curved surfaces.
– Can be designed to flash selectively or sequentially.
– Interior and exterior capable.
– No maintenance.

How much light do LightTape® lamps generate?
Light Tape® light output is measured in a unit of measure called foot lamberts. Light Tape® has a light output of 10 to 120 foot lamberts. Generally backlighting signage needs 25 to 50 Foot Lamberts depending upon ambient lighting conditions. Highlights and lighting accents on buildings can be between 10 to 30 foot lamberts. Egress lighting only needs to be about 8-10 Foot Lamberts.

How far away can you see Light Tape®?
NASA did a study for the Air Force to determine Light Tape® could be utilized to identify runways and planes. Their planes were able to mark Light Tape® from distances over 5 miles. The Air Force uses EL today on their planes.

Is it true that you can see Light Tape® through fog, smoke, snow, haze, etc…?
Yes, Light Tape® emits light at a specific wavelength. The light is able to penetrate through fog, smoke, snow, haze and other normally poor visibility conditions.

Is Light Tape® similar to fiber optic lamps?
No, fiber optics illuminate from one light source at the end of the lamp. Light passes down the fibers to produce a glow. Light Tape® is illuminated by thousands of phosphor crystals over the entire surface area versus just one end.

Why should a customer use Light Tape® compared to older EL technologies?
Light Tape® offers brighter, longer lasting, unique flexibility and mechanical ruggedness unmatched by any other EL technology. Light Tape® is available in long lengths and has a bend radius is 2mm, much less than competitive EL. It can be utilized indoor or outdoor.
Light Tape®
is unique because it is the only EL available with all the above attributes combined into one product.

What makes up a Light Tape®system?
Our systems consist of: 1) a Light Tape® EL Lamp, 2) a Smart Driver Power Supply, and 3) the Interconnecting Electric Wires between the Lamp and the Power Supply. We also offer other multiple colors and accessories.

How fast can you turn Light Tape® on and off?
EL powers up and down instantaneously.

Does flashing hurt LightTape®?
No, it actually extends the useful life of the lamp.

How much power does Light Tape® consume?
Virtually none!! Light
Tape® only draws milliamps and typically consumes less than 1/10 of a watt per square inch or only 15 watts per square foot. For example, a 600 watt fluorescent lighting system annual operating costs would exceed $400 more than a Light Tape® system.

Can I use the Light Tape® lamp outside?
Yes. Our patented formulas have a built-in moisture barrier. In addition, we laminate Light
Tape® with an exterior barrier film to further protect against the elements and electrical shock.

Does UV affect Light Tape®?
Xtreme Series EL lamps are made from our exclusive moisture blocking formula that also has built-in Ultra Violet protection. We also offer UV protection with out barrier films.

What colors are available and can you match a special color?
Light Tape® is available in natural Blue. We offer many additional colors by adding dyes or filters over the light emitting surface. (Natural Blue, Electric Blue, Lime Green,Orange, White, Red, Yellow, Deep Turquoise, Violet,  Amber Gold and Hot Pink).

Why is Light Tape® so much brighter than other EL Lamps?
Xtreme Series EL is produced using patented formulas with exclusive manufacturing technologies for which new patents are currently pending. Our formulations combined with our process, produce a much more efficient and brighter lamp.

What colors are the brightest?
Our natural colored lamps are the brightest. Today we offer a natural blue and Extreme Blue-Green color.

How Flexible is Light Tape®?
Light Tape® has a 2mm bend radius, which means it can be folded over on itself and continue to function. It can be rolled into a tight ball and continue to function. It can be crushed under weight and continue to function.

Why is Light Tape® available in longer lengths versus other EL technologies?
We have developed proprietary manufacturing processes utilizing the latest technological advancements in state-of-the-art machinery versus the traditional small silk screen machines with limited capacity.

How long does Light Tape® last?
EL lamps have no glass, gas or filaments to break. They do not "burn out" but only have some brightness loss over time. In most applications, our lamps typically last 2 to 3 years. But in areas where the lamp is lit at low brightness levels such as egress lighting, the life can reach 4 to 5 years before the lamps are not emitting bright enough.

How do I power the Light Tape®?
Light Tape® can be operated from either AC or DC power sources. Our AC Smart Drivers are very compatible with most energy sources and can be run from 110 or 220 volts. Please refer to our power supply section to select the correct model for your needs.

Can you use solar power?
Yes, solar power is able to interface with our 12 or 24 V DC power supplies. Solar energy can be utilized to keep the batteries fully charged.

How far can the Smart Drivers be from the Light Tape® installation?
You can install your Light Tape® up to 250 ft. from the Smart Driver. This enables you to run all wiring back to one central power source. The line loss will not typically impact the performance of the Lamp. Always follow local electrical codes.

How do I know which power supply to use?
The total lit surface area of the lamp and the input voltage will determine which power supply to use. Our power supply systems are designed to illuminate area ranges. For instance, our SD 1000 can power from 450 in² - 1000 in² of Light Tape®. Refer to power supply selection section.

Can a Light Tape® system have multiple segments and can they be different colors?
Light Tape® can have multiple colors, segments and they can be illuminated sequentially.

Do I have to have a separate power supply for each segment?
No, our power supplies work on total area of lamp. You can have as many strips or panels as you want. You just have to make sure that the cumulative area is not greater than the power supply rating.

Can Light Tape® be flashed continuously or sequentially?
Flashing Light Tape® actually extends its useful life. Also, Light Tape® is DMX compatible.

How difficult is it to cut the Light Tape® to a given length?
It is very simple. Measure the desired illuminated area and then just cut the Light Tape® to length with scissors. Seal one end and attach our connector kit to the other end. We will send you our connection instructions with our kits. You could custom fit an entire room within an hour!

Can you cut Light Tape® into different shapes and sizes?
Yes, Light Tape Innovations specializes in cutting the lamp into virtually any shape.

Do I need a light box when using Light Tape®?
Light Tape® is a light box! No light box is necessary. Light Tape® can be mounted anywhere using Velcro or double sided tape. It can also be sandwiched between Plexiglas panels or run inside a clear extrusion. You can overlay your digital image on top of Light Tape®. The close proximity and even light, really makes your image POP!!

Does the brightness differ from end to end or over the surface area?
No, Light Tape® has a capacitive load and not a resistive load. Therefore, the brightness remains unchanged over the full length of the lamp. The Light Tape® generates very little or almost no heat at all. That is why our lamp is so efficient, since heat is a form of energy loss.

How do I attach Light Tape® to surfaces?
For indoor use, you can use double sided tape on the back of the Light Tape®. Be sure to clean the surface first with some denatured alcohol. Outdoor applications require an extrusion or other system to allow the Light Tape® to float. It is important to account for changes in the weather and environment. Both systems are extremely easy to install and should be able to "do it yourself!"

Are there standard extrusions available for the lamps?
Yes. We offer extrusions for indoor and outdoor mounting. We strongly recommend a channel extrusion for outside to allow for expansion and contraction.

How far can I run Light Tape® before I must reconnect to the power supply?
You can run lengths up to 300 ft. depending on area/width of the Light Tape®. After that we recommend that you reconnect the lamp to maintain efficiency. Each segment can be connected into a home run then back to the same power supply.

How durable is the Light Tape®?
Very durable but care must be taken not to step on it and create a hard fold. This might break the seal of the protected outer lamination. The lamp can be bent, curved and flexed moderately. If it is accidentally punctured, it will still light. But the puncture must be sealed or cut and spliced at the puncture.

What can I do if the Light Tape® is damaged in the middle of a run?
Turn off the power, remove damage section and reconnect!! It is very straight forward and easy to do yourself.

What happens if I leave Light Tape® on all day?
Leaving Light Tape® on all day does not harm the lamp when indoors. Sunlight is very harmful to phosphors. That's why we protect the phosphors from the sun with our patented formulations and barrier films. However, the phosphors are most vulnerable to the environment when they are illuminated. Not a problem in the evening but operating the lamp during daylight hours greatly reduces the lifetime of the phosphors. We recommend a photo-cell to prevent the lamp from being on during peak sun hours when installed outside.

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