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Buy Rope Lights !EXCLUSIVE!


We tasked our lighting team to find the best rope lights. We investigated the top 25+ models available today, then bought and tested the best 8 to find out what works, and what doesn't. It can be hard to pick through seemingly similar products online, but our testing revealed vast differences between brightness, durability, ease of use, and features. Over several weeks, we left them outside, bent them, mounted them, and even sprayed them with water to find out the best rope lights for your home and your needs.




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Though the GuoTonG Plug-in LED isn't as flashy or feature-laden as some of the other models we tested, we still found it to be a great choice that offers reliable, dependable performance. When adjusted for length, this set was the brightest of all of the lights in our review. We loved having the ability to cut and reseal the end, and this set also has a built-in fuse to avoid any potential electrical hazards. At 50 feet long, the placement options are abundant. We found the GuoTonG to be reliably waterproof; it survived our sprinkler and rain tests without any signs of water damage or shorting out. This model includes mounting brackets with screws and zip ties to two separate cords that allow you to have two independent light strands if you cut the original.


While we loved the ability to dim these lights, we still wished that their max output was a bit brighter. We also felt the presets on the remote aren't super intuitive. It's also one of the shorter rope lights we tested, but if you're only looking to add a little oomph with color and flashing lights to a small area, we think it's a good pick.


There is still room for improvement, however. The Luminoodle comes with three magnet sliders that can hold the lights to a car, for example, but the magnets aren't particularly strong, and if anything lightly catches on the rope it will pull the whole thing off. It also includes reusable zip ties, but we didn't find them super useful. Still, we loved the included battery, and the Luminoodle offers practical lighting for camping and travel.


The Surnie LED is a bright, quality rope light for lighting up an interior or exterior space. It's waterproof, cuttable, and mountable with included hardware, which makes it a versatile product. The square shape holds a spiral quite evenly and nicely, making it less twisty and lumpy than some of the tubular options.


The square makes it harder for the Surnie to lay flat without mounting it, however. We also wish that it had a dedicated on/off switch. One downside to the square shape is that lights are really only on one side of it, which means that you have to pay more attention to how you're laying it out or mounting it to get the correct lighting. Still, we think this is a quality, modern-looking product for a variety of situations if you are willing to mount it semi-permanently.


The LE 240 Warm LED is a simple, straightforward light that can handle outdoor or indoor use. It is available in both warm and cool whites, allowing you to control the mood you're trying to set in your space. We tested the warm yellow light, and it created a nice ambiance. The tubing is extra stiff, helping to resist kinks or damage. We also liked that if we bought more of these, we could connect up to three lights together, allowing us to extend the illumination to almost 100 feet.


Bigger is sometimes better, and the HuiZhen 720 LED light is certainly the longest of the products we tested. For how long it is, it has a pretty low energy usage at 36W, lower than most incandescent bulbs. It also comes on a spool, which is pretty handy to use to roll up; just stick a broom handle through the spool and spin it as you reel it in. It's also more affordable to just buy one big light than a bunch of connectable lights if you need to cover a lot of area.


Considering its length, though, it just wasn't very bright. We can appreciate that it's not overpowering, but for a big area it only adds ambiance, and it's just too long for smaller spaces. The wire attaching the lights to the plug seems low-quality, and it kinked easily. We recommend this set for ambiance lighting for a long railing or something similar, but if you're trying to light up an outdoor dance floor, something brighter might work better.


After extensive research into the market, we independently purchased the products in this review. We created a rubric to test them for what we considered the most important performance areas and used measurable tests to evaluate them. We comparatively tested them for brightness, waterproofness, kinking, mounting, and ease of use. To measure brightness, we used a light meter app and measured both the cumulative brightness of the entire light as well as comparative brightness by measuring just 24 inches of each light. For durability, we left them in the sun in triple-digit (Fahrenheit) heatwaves, as well as soaking them for half an hour under a sprinkler to test waterproof claims. For ease of use and features, we field-tested them both outside and around our house in different situations where rope lights might be appropriate.


Our lead review editor, Ethan Newman, heads up the testing process for our hands-on review of rope lights. With over a decade of home improvement and backyard projects, Ethan is well-versed in creating a nice space, in which lighting plays an important part. We turn to him for home goods reviews because not only is he a homeowner, but he also manages three vacation rental units with patios and different outdoor and indoor lighting needs. Rentals can see more use and abuse than a typical home, so Ethan is always on the lookout for something that can both stand up to heavy use and is easy to use.


During testing, we took careful notes and scored each product across the areas of performance you care about most. Our tests, daily use, and data gathered culminated in a full assessment of each product. Below, we dissect the test results and highlight the most important lights in each critical area.


Although rope lights are rarely the only light used to illuminate a space, we did expect them to add a decent amount of illumination. However, if you are looking more for light to add ambiance over-illumination, also pay attention to the aesthetics and color temperature of the light rather than the brightness alone. Still, we think it's an important aspect, and since brightness is measurable and aesthetics are subjective, we share our brightness results here.


We tested both overall brightness as well as how bright 24 inches of the lights are to accurately compare products. We did this by using a smartphone light meter app to measure the lux, which is the amount of light (lumens) cast within a square meter. For total brightness, we coiled the ropes up and measured how much light all the LEDs cast together. In general, the longer the rope, the brighter overall. We also wanted to measure them comparatively, so we blocked off everything but 24 inches of each rope, and then measured their lux. We found that the GuoTonG and the Amazon Basics were brightest in the 24-inch test, and the Torchstar brightest overall when coiled together.


While some lights are just that and not much more, many of the products came with fun and even elegant features. Many came with hanging and mounting hardware, others came with remote controls, flashing or dimming settings, and some even project different colors. One feature we didn't expect but were pleasantly surprised by was that some of the lights were cuttable. We like versatile products, and features go a long way to make each product more useful in various settings.


We thought the remote controls and different colors on the Areful were super nifty, which was the most heavily featured product we tested. It has eight different colors, as well as six presets, flashing speed adjustment, and dimming adjustments. We also like that some of them, like the GuoTonG, are cuttable, which is a useful way to adjust them for a specific space without having an extra coil at one end. The battery for the Luminoodle is perhaps our favorite feature of all the lights, as we could also use it to charge other electronics or use it as a light itself. The Luminoodle battery also shows how much charge it has left, which some portable power banks don't even do. We also like that the Govee has a remote with multiple flashing/pulsing settings and is dimmable.


Rope lights aren't that complicated of a product, so using them shouldn't be difficult. Products scored higher if they were easy to use, mount, or change settings. They score lower if they tangled easily, were hard to store, or otherwise persnickety to use. One thing we learned about these products is that if you'll be setting them up and taking them down regularly, several shorter connectable lights are easier than one long one.


We found the Power Plus Luminoodle to be easy to use despite its several components and features. We liked that we could take it wherever and that the charging cord was interchangeable with other micro-USB cords. Most of the lights were pretty straightforward plug-ins, but we liked the products with features and remote controllers that were also immediately easy to use.


The weakest point we found on most of the products was the wire between the lights and the plug. Thicker wire housing, like what we found on the GuoTonG, Torchstar, or Amazon Basics, was far more durable than those with thinner wires. Thinner wires were easily damaged from someone accidentally tripping over them or pulling them out incorrectly. Some of the products with lower durability scores had issues with flickering after our field tests.


Rope lights are fantastic for use in virtually every environment but they are not immune to natural forces, especially if they are not maintained properly. The advantages of LED rope lights are universal: an average of 80,000 lighting hours, a relatively low cost, high durability and extreme energy efficiency. Rope lights come in a PVC cover (durability and flexibility depends on the thickness of the cover) that is available and waterproof and non-waterproof variants. One of the most important factors, especially if you are planning to use the rope lights in an outdoor environment is the power source. If you are using LED rope lights in an outdoor environment with high levels of humidity then there is a higher chance of the rope light becoming a fire risk over a long period of time. For example, if you are using LED rope lights on your boat and you happen to notice that the plastic of your LED rope light seems to be burnt or if the wiring is coated with green rust, then you should immediately change your rope lights. The green rust would be the result of high humidity of the environment. In general, electrical systems can become highly susceptible to corrosion due to poor grounding. Fortunately, most modern LED rope lights are now fitted with more secure power outlets and wiring. If you are afraid of using your outdoor power outlet then you can opt for a solar panel to power up your LED lights and make it independent from the main power system. However, this usually works only in specific circumstances. When you buy your LED rope lights, try going for the waterproof variant since this would offer better protection against humidity. Most importantly, nothing beats a manual check up every few months. Always check the wiring of your LED rope lights and replace them if necessary. You can confidently use your rope lights for years depending on the circumstances but it is better to be safe than sorry. 041b061a72


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