Rope Lights Frequently Asked Questions

Rope Lights Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few of our most asked questions about rope light and their simple answers.

How do I assemble the rope light spool?

Each rope light spool is pre-configured with a pre-installed power connector so you can plug your rope light in right away if you need to use the full length of the spool.

Incandescent spools heat up fast so cannot be plugged in as an entire spool.They heat up, their resistance is lowered so the current running through them increases until the fuse in the end plug is blown.

To create shorter pieces of rope light, cut only between "cut-marks" evenly spaced along the rope and install a power connector and cord. Cap the end of the length with an end cap. 

See more here: Complete instructions for assembling our rope light. 

How do rope lights plug in?

Rope light spools can be plugged into any standard outlet via a properly installed/assembled rope light power adapter and power cord. 

The lights we sell on this website are not compatible with 12 volt systems. 

Can you cut a rope light to length?

Yes and no. Rope light can be cut but only at specific intervals of minimum length ranging from 18 to 72 inches. These intervals are marked by little white lines called “cut mark”. Different styles and colors of rope light have different distances between these areas that can be cut so you’ll have to specifically see the minimum distance for the spool you are considering or have purchased.

What is rope light, exactly?

Rope light is a series of either incandescent or LED bulbs encased in PVC constructed with floating electrical connections that allow them to be curved and twisted in a manner similar to neon lights. Because the connections are floating, they can’t be formed into sharp angles but are great for curving around trees, columns and some yard sculpture. Tailored for use indoors and out, this light string works as well for boat docks as it does for lighting children’s bedrooms.

How do you hang LED Rope Lights?

Rope lights are most easily hung with rope light clips. They come with small screws that allow you to install them on wooden surfaces. A few mounting clips are shipped with all of our rope light spools but you might need to consider purchasing extra. If you have a longer distance to mount your rope or if you need to form your rope light into figures or words, you’ll need more clips on hand.

Do LED rope lights get hot?

No. While incandescent rope light generate light by heating a filament, LED rope light use a completely different silicon-based technology that does not produce heat under operation. Their lower current draw also means that they can be run further in a single run than their incandescent counterparts. 

Is the plastic tube on rope lights the color of the bulbs?

On some of our rope “YES” and on some “NO”. Check the specification of the spools you are purchasing to check on the “tube color”. This will let you know, for example, if you can expect to see for example: a clear tube with blue bulbs or a blue tube with blue bulbs.

Can rope lights be used outdoors?

Yes, in fact their construction makes them ideal for outdoor use. The outer plastic casing is resistant to water and dust penetration. 

How do I replace a broken section? 

Before replacing a section that has gone off, consider if the rope has been either pulled so straight with tension that the internal electrical connections have been disconnected. Alternatively, the rop light might have been twisted into a small enough curve that the floating connections may have become disconnedted. 

In each case, relax the tension or unwind/unwrap the rope light to see if that fixes the issue. 

If the floating connections are not restore, the dark section can be cut out at the pre-defined and marked "cut marks" and then cut a replacement portion to replace the broken section.  Use splices to install the replacement section. Extra invisible splices can be purchased separately.