ColorBit Lighting System - Design for a Roofline

ColorBit Lighting System - Design for a Roofline

November 19, 2021

ColorBit Lighting System is for all the Do-it-Yourself (DIY) people who want awesome color changing lights on their house but don’t want to pay the “pros” to install it for you. You will save thousands of dollars and don’t need a degree in computer coding when you buy ColorBit Lights. ColorBit provides all the products that plug together and can be inserted into j-channel that you buy at the local hardware store or siding supply companies.

The ColorBit Lighting System consists of a WiFi Controller, LED Light Strings, Power Supply, Light String to Light String Extension Cable, DC Power Extension Cable, and other accessories. This may seem confusing. This article walks through how to think through a roofline design, provides a sample design and outlines the steps to placing your ColorBit order.

How many lights do I need to outline my roofline?

The most accurate answer is to measure and calculate the required linear footage along your roofline.

The initial step is to determine where you want your new lights.

The first key to installing lights like a pro is to measure the roofline before purchasing.

Enlist the help of a friend, grab a ladder, if necessary, and a tape measure. Be smart about climbing ladders and take precautions from falling. Measure all the lengths where you want to put the lights.

Add all of the roofline measurements together. Consider adding 10% to your calculations if you have done any guesstimating or to account for any small changes of plans during the install. You want to make sure you have enough lights to complete the project. This step gives you the total linear footage of lights that are required for your project. You can enter this linear footage to build your custom kit at https://colorbitlights.com/pages/build-your-colorbit-led-lighting-system.

How do I extend the light string to connect distant or upper lights?

Many homes have vertical or horizontal separations where you want to continue the wiring path with no lights to provide a continuous string for light patterns to follow. The most typical use is for homes with roof elevations that are not continuous. This unlit wire should be the same gauge wire and have the same connectors as the light strings. If you have these type areas, measure each segment. The shortest possible extension cable should always be used to reduce any power or signal losses. ColorBit has multiple lengths available including 1 meter (3.2 feet) to 4 meters (13.1 feet). If you have a need for any of these, add these to your custom kit in your cart. A reminder that you can adjust the length of a light string to fit a segment that is less than the total length of the light string. You can cut the excess lights off and add a new end to plug into the next segment. See our youtube video demonstrating how to adjust the string length at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YgVaS9eYoc.

How do I get 5V power to the ColorBit Lighting System?

A key component to designing your ColorBit Lighting System is placement of the Controller and powering the system. First locate the Controller at the start of your project. If you want the animations to run from left to right, place the Controller on the beginning of the string on the left side. If you want it to run, right to left, place the Controller on the right side. Remember that you must have a good WiFi signal at the Controller location. Also, you must have a power supply connected to the Controller. In addition to power at the Controller, the system requires power injection from our Power Supplies at least every 60 feet (200 LEDs). You can inject power between any two light strings. For example, if you are installing a 60 foot kit, place the second Power Supply injection either at the end of the first string or at the end of the second string. Typically, the location of your 110V electrical outlet will determine the second Power Supply placement.

Customers without electrical outlets under the eaves have used several methods to connect the Power Supplies. One option is using our ColorBit DC Power Extension Cable from the Power Supply to the Power Injector in the light string. Another option is using a landscaping extension cord from your 110V electrical outlet to the Power Supply. The ColorBit DC Power Extension Cable is typically tucked in the j-channel on roofline installations. Landscaping extension cords are typically run along the base of the home and then up to the Power Supply. Some customers opt to place one or both in the j-channel. Still others have run electrical power in their attic or crawl spaces using a qualified Electrician.

Adequate power to the Controller and light strings is paramount for the proper operation of the ColorBit Lighting System. If you elect to use ColorBit DC Power Extension Cables, use the shortest possible DC Power Extension Cable to reduce any power losses prior to the injection point. ColorBit has multiple lengths available including 2 meter (6.5 feet), 4 meters (13.1 ft) and 6 meters (19.7 feet). If you have a need for any of these, add these to your custom kit in your cart.

Sample design for ColorBit Lights

A sample home is provided to illustrate the steps to design your light system. First you will need measurements of each segment of roofline where you want lights. You will also need to measure any vertical or horizontal separations where you do not want lights.

The lengths of the roofline to be covered with lights are shown in red. Each length is measured in feet and shown in the adjacent numbers. Adding these lengths together yields lights of approximately 152 feet. Providing for a 10% contingency means you will need at least 167 feet of light strings.

House Measurements for Light Ordering

The vertical separations requiring light strings to light string extension cable are shown in blue. Each length is measured in feet. The footage is shown with an arrow pointing to the blue line. The four measured lengths for vertical jumps are 7, 9, 4 and 4 feet. This suggests purchase of two 2 meter and two 3 meter ColorBit Light String to Light String Extensions Cables.

The sample design requires 4 ColorBit Power Supplies. The power supplies plug into the two electrical outlets under the eaves for a sample home. ColorBit DC Power Extension Cables are used to connect the power supply to the ColorBit DC Power Injector. All power supplies will be mounted on the underside of the eaves and the cords and power extension cables will be tucked away in the j-channel for a tidy installation.

Power Placement for Light String

A power supply must be connected to the connector at the Controller that is located on the right side of the home indicated by the yellow star. Power supply #1 will be plugged into electrical outlet #1 and be extended to the Controller using a 6 meter power extension cable. Power supply #2 will also be plugged into electrical outlet #1 and extended to the power injector just to the right of the front door. Power Supply #3 will be plugged into electrical outlet #2 and extended to the power injector left of the front door at the corner of the house wall and the garage wall. Power supply #4 will also be plugged into electrical outlet #2 and extended to the power injector about halfway up the final roofline peak.

The design process provides the necessary inputs to generate your ColorBit order. Here is a summary of the information gathered for the sample home that will be used in the order.

Light Strings 167 feet
Light String to Light String Extension Cable Two 2m and two 3m
DC Power Extension Cables One 2m; two 4m; and one 6m

Placing the order

Step 1 Go to the Custom Kit Builder at https://colorbitlights.com/pages/build-your-colorbit-led-lighting-system.
Step 2 Enter the linear feet of light string in the builder.
Step 3 Hit the “GET MY KIT” button.
Step 4 Review the Output.
Step 5 Click on the Cart in the upper left hand corner.
Step 6 Click on the Continue Shopping button on the right side center.
Step 7 Add the 4 Light String to Light String Extension Cables.
Step 8 Add the 4 DC Power Extension Cables.
Step 9 Review products and quantities.
Step 10 Proceed to Checkout.

Your order is ready to be purchased

Once you build your custom kit and add any accessories to the cart, your order is ready to submit for purchase.

ColorBit makes designing and purchasing your custom kit easy. Design review can be requested at support@colorbitlights.com.

Tip: Sketch out a quick drawing of all the places you are planning to install lights. You can also use a photo. Make a note of where outlets are located to help determine how you will get power to the Controller and Light Strings. A little planning will save time in waiting on 2nd and 3rd packages.



Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.