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Stair Tread LEDs

825 Views 20 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  North Coast Lights
Hey all.

I’ve got a customer that wants dimmable LEDs, like strips or ropes, to go on the underside of a couple stair treads in his hallway. Obviously it’s gotta be low profile enough to where it won’t be seen. He sent a link to some Amazon store product, but I’m skeptical of all the Shenzen Ghaozen Shozu whatever manufacturers that are for sell on Amazon. I’m afraid it’ll be cheapo crap that won’t last a year and will be terribly hard to replace after finish. Not to mention whether or not they’ve actually gone through a certification/listing process. Some say they have but I don’t believe them. Anyway, to the point - any recommendations for a reliable product? There is a crawl space underneath the hall where they’ll be going
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I’ve had great luck with either GM lighting or American Lighting. 12 or 24v, with many options for diode density and brightness. For stair treads, it’s easy to get carried away and have the tape be too bright, I prefer a less bright led tape and a dimmer. Also consider “cob” style tape, it’s a single beam of light and not individual Diode’s. Being that stair risers are not that tall you don’t want to see dots in the reflection on the surface the treads.

I like sticking to reputable brands, just like you said, no one wants to get called back because the product failed. I also want to be able to testify that I install listed products.


 

· Hackenschmidt
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As a general rule if something isn’t listed then I don’t install it. What about you guys? Is that too hard a stance?
No, that's not too hard a stance at all, that's medium. There's stuff I don't like that's listed but I won't work with because I don't have the time, patience, and money to waste.
 

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I used Tivoli lighting in the past. Solid product, put it in a dance floor which I expected to go to crap in a few weeks. Held up just fine.

Glad to know there are others out there that have the same concerns about quality rather than price.
 

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Hey all.

I’ve got a customer that wants dimmable LEDs, like strips or ropes, to go on the underside of a couple stair treads in his hallway. Obviously it’s gotta be low profile enough to where it won’t be seen. He sent a link to some Amazon store product, but I’m skeptical of all the Shenzen Ghaozen Shozu whatever manufacturers that are for sell on Amazon. I’m afraid it’ll be cheapo crap that won’t last a year and will be terribly hard to replace after finish. Not to mention whether or not they’ve actually gone through a certification/listing process. Some say they have but I don’t believe them. Anyway, to the point - any recommendations for a reliable product? There is a crawl space underneath the hall where they’ll be going
Is there a closet under the stairwell?

That spot would be my first choice to put a transformer and running all the low voltage wires to a central location.

Also, if you needed to cut a bunch of Sheetrock to access the framing members and get 18/2 to each stairwell tread, what better place to do it that a closet.

That said, I’ve never done stairwell lighting yet. So I’m just as curious as you are about it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
It’s not a stairwell. It’s a small hallway with two steps. It’s all open ceiling with beams and tongue/groove and windows on both sides, so options for adding lights here are pretty limited. There’s crawl space underneath to mount the driver
 

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It’s not a stairwell. It’s a small hallway with two steps. It’s all open ceiling with beams and tongue/groove and windows on both sides, so options for adding lights here are pretty limited. There’s crawl space underneath to mount the driver
Like a tri-level?

If so, that almost sounds even easier. Especially if it has crawlspace access on both levels.
Can you access the bottom side of the tread if you drilled a small hole and pushed some 18/2 into the crawl?
 

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Nice.

I haven’t done one of these yet, but I could see dropping power from a nearby outlet into the crawl. Running your 18/2 from the bottom of each tread to a transformer plugged into that new crawlspace outlet and then mounting some tape lights in a track under each tread.

My only question is are these things controlled by wifi or a switch? Worst case scenario, you’d just have to add a switch ( or 2) next to to stairs.
 

· Hackenschmidt
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I haven’t done one of these yet, but I could see dropping power from a nearby outlet into the crawl. Running your 18/2 from the bottom of each tread to a transformer plugged into that new crawlspace outlet and then mounting some tape lights in a track under each tread.
My only question is are these things controlled by wifi or a switch? Worst case scenario, you’d just have to add a switch ( or 2) next to to stairs.
Yeah I’m not sure how they’ll want them controlled. Probably either some sort of sensor or timer.
Adding a switch upstairs and downstairs would be OK worst case but to me it would rob you of some of the wow factor. I guess you could convert the switches to Caseta and have the switches control a scene that turns the overhead light and the tread light on or off at the same time. But I think controlling the tread lights with an occupancy sensor might be cheaper, easier, and best wow factor.
 

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Adding a switch upstairs and downstairs would be OK worst case but to me it would rob you of some of the wow factor. I guess you could convert the switches to Caseta and have the switches control a scene that turns the overhead light and the tread light on or off at the same time. But I think controlling the tread lights with an occupancy sensor might be cheaper, easier, and best wow factor.
That opens up some new questions ……

Are we talking about installing the same occupancy sensors that they have in all the circle K gas station bathrooms or something else? What about some type of occupancy sensor mounted about ankle height to just turn them on when a person walks past the eye?

Even then….i dont know if I like that idea very much. I wonder if they have any type of sensors that mount to the tape lights themselves?
 

· Hackenschmidt
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That opens up some new questions ……

Are we talking about installing the same occupancy sensors that they have in all the circle K gas station bathrooms or something else? What about some type of occupancy sensor mounted about ankle height to just turn them on when a person walks past the eye?

Even then….i dont know if I like that idea very much. I wonder if they have any type of sensors that mount to the tape lights themselves?
I was thinking of a regular occupancy sensor, you'd have to look at the layout of the stairway, you could put something on the ceiling in most residential stairwells, or on the wall at the landing (probably at receptacle height) if there's a landing halfway. I am sure you could go full mission impossible with laser beam breaks and all but :rolleyes:
 

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I am sure you could go full mission impossible with laser beam breaks and all but :rolleyes:
Lol. I know right

But Let’s get serious now, we’re talking about stairwell lighting in someone’s home. This is what I would consider “custom lighting”. Definitely much more of a luxury item than boob lights and harbor breeze fans.

I know everything has a budget, but If there’s ever a time to get a little crazy and go over the top, it would probably be with this type of work.
 

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The brand names you favour are in all likelihood produced in your disliked "Shenzen Ghaozen Shozu" (sic!).
They all come from there and there are hundreds of companies making them.
Did you try to look up Shenzhen - the most technologically advanced city in the world with 20 million people, existing since before Columbus was born? I am certain there are crap manufacturers there too. The listing you seek is neither obligatory nor reliable. Did you try to verify a specific product showing the listing mark with the listing agency? It is practically impossible unless you have hours to waste & at the end you will get non-specific info.
I am all for a requirement of listing - but the system became corrupted and practically unverifiable by individuals for all things made in China.
 
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