Is it safe to cover LED Lights, and what should you use?

Is It Safe To Cover LED Lights: Top 3 Benefits & Best Guide

LED lights become increasingly popular today because of their benefits, like energy efficiency, above traditional lighting sources such as hot incandescent bulbs. 

They became almost a standard in many places. An LED bulb is called one of the affordable LED lights.

However, at the same time, it raises concerns about how to use them safely, and people may have many questions. 

Is it safe to cover LED lights? Is it safe to cover LED lights with paper? Is it safe to cover LED lights with fabric? Is it safe to cover LED lights with plastic? Is any plastic okay? Is it safe to cover LED lights with only special covers? Or is it safe to cover LED lights with glass?

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The simple answer to the first question, which you may find not so simple, is – yes! You can cover LED lights. However, its safety depends on the material you want to cover it with.

Firstly, what exactly is a light-emitting diode? And for the rest of the questions, read the article till the end.

Work principles of LED lights

LED (Light-Emitting Diode) consists of a microchip and works because of the combination of two semiconductors (usually made of silica with impurities). The flow of electrons from the negative one to the positive semiconductor frees energy. 

Middle school physics tells us that energy cannot disappear, so our freed energy is converted to light radiation.

Because of how effectively it turns energy into light, LED lights generate less heat. Hence, if you have experienced hot incandescent bulbs causing burns, there is no such problem with correctly working LED lights.

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Concerns that may arise

Even with LED bulbs becoming a new standard in many places, generating less heat buildup, and being called affordable and energy-efficient lighting, there are still things to remember before covering LED lights.

Circulation of airflow

I know it was written a couple of lines before that LED lights do not generate excessive heat. However, there is still some amount present. If the LED lights work for a long time, it may lead to overheating. An overheated LED light covered with flammable material can become a fire hazard.

Less important than a fire hazard, but still worth mentioning nonetheless, is that LED light bulbs are not heat-resistant, and their famous longevity can be reduced because of the heat buildup.

UV light production

As we all know, LED lights do produce a small amount of UV radiation. The amount can be rather valuable for houseplants.

Raised possibility of short circuit

LED lights consist of a microchip and an electrical current. It is subject to short circuits like all other electronic devices.

Putting an LED light cover and limiting the surrounding space may increase the chance of it happening.

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Short circuit creates a chance to get electrical shock LED lights

To be electrocuted by an electronic device, its voltage should be higher than 60V, and LED lights operate between 1.7 and 3.5V, which makes it impossible to be electrocuted by it. 

However, it is in normal conditions.

Because of short circuits, the electric current is unstable, and there is a low possibility of being electrocuted.

To be safer, choose the materials for cords that are not conductive.

Benefits of having LED lights cover

We talked about the possible dangers and nuisances of covering LED lights. Let’s discuss why covering LED lights with fitting covers is a great idea.

Creation of background lighting

Covers may be used to create softer light and evenly distribute it. No more looking for light switches; it is also possible to create ambient lighting with LED lights, mainly because of their longevity and low electricity consumption.

It is easy to change the room’s aesthetics by applying and changing the covers on LED lights.

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Reduction of lighting to your comfortable level

Let’s complain that something works too well!

LED lights are so efficient in converting electricity to light energy that they are sometimes too bright.

Constant brightness like this can exhaust your eyes and cause strain to the eyes.

Covering LED lights works the same way as blue light filters, for example, on smartphones, and makes your life more comfortable.

Evenly distribute light and more customization options

With LED lighting, there may be a need to disperse the concentrated light of the glaring lights of your main overhead light. You can achieve better light distribution and change light brightness.

Modern LED lights offer you the option to change the color and intensity of the lighting, and there are also apps. To use them, you need only elementary computer skills.

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Safe to cover LED lights materials

We already established that not any material can be used, so which ones are safe for you? Is it safe to cover LED lights? It is with these materials.

LED light covers

They cost you extra money, but they come in many colors and are made from suitable plastic types. 

The next advantage of buying the appropriate covers at the shops is you can find the safe covers fitted for your needs: do you want to dim the light, diffuse it, or scatter it? There is a solution to every one of your needs.

Drapes made from plastic or fabric

This method is also one of the versatile methods you can adopt.

They are easy to install and can be used in many combinations to cover LED lights.

You can find self-adhesive diffuser foil on the market and ease up your life even more. Do the trick by diffusing and making the glaring light bulb more comfortable for your eyes.

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If you decide to save money and make light covers for your light fixture yourself, you can do that. LED lights do not produce toxic light; you do not need special instruments or materials. Remember that the materials you will use should be heat-resistant and flame-retardant, like PVC plastics and polycarbonate sheets.

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Covering LED strip lights

LED strip lights are something that alters the modern interior design and sets the new trends. LED strip lights are absolutely the best tool for creating ambient lighting.

Ambient lighting is lighting without glaring LED lights and bulky multiple-bulb designs. It is subtle and general, brightening up the entire area and giving you pretty and even light distribution. Adding a few LED stripes over the mirror on the curtains may become elegantly placed accents and the finishing touch your interior lacks.

Nowadays, a vast amount of LED strip lights are present; some of them are even waterproof in case you want to decorate your bathroom mirrors.

Do not underestimate the ability of ambient lighting to create a cozy atmosphere!

To cover LED strip lights safely, we use the same principle as most LED lights: avoid creating enclosed spaces, so you won’t trap heat.

There are also many “safe to cover LED strips” options in the market.

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READ ALSO: Can LED lights be left on 24/7 safely?

What you can buy

With how popular the LED strip lights became, many options exist for different budgets. To find them, search for “LED lights diffuser panels.”

Crown molding is one of the popular options. One of the advantages is that light covers are made from high-quality plastic materials like high-density polyurethane and may have high-grade aluminum additions that allow better heat dissipation. Such LED light covers are humidity, corrosion, and insect-resistant; their channels avoid the creation of heat sinks.

Ultimately, you’ll get the diffused light, just less harsh on your eyes. Protected LED strips with the right LED light covers will preserve the lifespan of your LED lights.

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You can answer the question, “Is it safe to cover LED lights?” with a simple yes. Adding that if you follow only one pretty rational principle, that you should not trap the heat inside and stop the air flow of the LED lights, everything will be fine.

By covering LED lights, you can achieve the same light or even the better one.


Is it safe to cover LED?

It is safe to cover LED lights. However, suitable materials, like PVC plastic and fabric-like materials, should be chosen for such purposes.

Materials must be heat and flame-resistant, have good light output, and have UV light penetration quality to not make the light unnatural and uncomfortable for the eyes.

Is it safe to cover LED lights with tape?

When electrical tape can come in handy in bringing together the cover, it is not recommended to wrap the tape around the LED lights as it will trap the heat inside and limit airflow.

Can LED bulbs be covered?

Yes, LED bulbs can be covered; however, it is important not to close them fully to let the generated heat disperse and not cause overheating. Overheating sometimes can cause fires, especially with the wrong covers. Overheating also reduces the lifespan of a light bulb significantly, as LED bulbs can not withstand heat.

Is it safe to sleep near LED lights?

Yes, it is physically perfectly safe to sleep by LED lights; they are not a fire hazard and are not toxic. In the same way as any light source, they may disrupt your sleep by messing with melatonin production and causing overstimulation. However, this problem is not unique to LED lights, as blue light and standard incandescent lights cause that too.

One of the solutions is to dim the light by covering LED lights, using dimmers, or changing the color of LED lights towards more warm, reddish colors.

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