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How to Install Motion Sensor LED Stair Lights

Motion sensor LED stair lights let you safely and effectively navigate your steps while eliminating the need for any action. And because they turn off automatically, they also save power! We’ve recently installed these handy little LED stair lights and wanted to share the process with you.

Many different LED lights are available for this installation; we chose to use our round LED step lights with a white hooded trim to direct illumination downward onto each step. We’ve listed two sets of installation instructions: one for hardwiring and one for plugging directly into a standard wall outlet. Installation procedures will vary depending on personal preference and the setup of your stairwell and home wiring. We strongly suggest that you contact an electrician if you are unsure about how to wire or install your LED stair lights.

Materials Needed:
LED step lights
12-volt power supply (compact power supply if plugging into a standard wall outlet) – wattage depends on combined step light wattage
PIR sensors (2)
Wire – gauge depends on length and combined current draw of lights
Dual-Channel “T” Tap Wire Splice Connectors – amount depends on number of step lights
-Drywall saw or hole saw
-Tape measure

Hardwiring-Specific Materials:
3-Conductor Lever-Lock Quick-Connect Terminal Blocks (2) OR wire nuts and electrical tape

Wall-Outlet-Specific Materials:
Female Barrel Connector to Screw Terminal Adapters (2)
CPS Splitter Cable

Hardwire Installation:

*Before hardwiring your LED stair lights to your home’s electrical system, shut off power to the installation area.

1. Cut holes (either in the drywall surrounding your stairs or in the fronts of the steps themselves) for all LED stair lights and PIR sensors. Make sure that the hole for each light is large enough for its housing and retaining clips; each light should fit snugly into its hole. The recommended hole size for the light used in this installation is 1.38 inches. Next, insert your LED stair lights into their pre-cut holes.

motion sensor LED stair lights - cutting drywall

motion sensor LED stair lights - installing light

 

 

 

 

 

The hole for each PIR sensor should only be large enough for the dome-shaped sensor to be visible. Mount the sensor to the back of your drywall, and push the dome through the pre-cut hole.

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Measure the distance between the top and bottom of your stairs, and choose the length and gauge of wire that will be needed. It is best to order more than you need so that there’s slack in the line and enough to extend to where your power supply will be mounted.

It’s important to choose the correct wire gauge for the length of wire you need and amount of current that will be flowing through it. The key is to avoid voltage drop, which happens when the supplied energy of a power source is reduced as electric current flows through wire (or any other pieces of equipment that do not supply voltage on a circuit). The longer the run of wire, the lower the gauge of wire needed.

*If you need help determining the correct wire gauge, don’t hesitate to call us toll free at 866-590-3533. Our customer service and technical support teams are available from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. CDT Monday-Thursday and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. CDT on Friday.

3. Using wiring from the power supply, connect to the PIR sensor at the bottom of your steps.

motion sensor LED stair lights - wiring diagram

4. Use a run of wire to join the PIR sensor at the top of your steps with the power supply. You can wire both PIR sensors to the power supply using wire nuts and electrical tape or with Quick-Connect Terminal Blocks. If you use the terminal blocks, two will be required. Make sure that one block is used for all black wires and one block is for all red wires.

motion sensor LED stair lights - quick connect terminal blocks

 

5. Connect your main line to the PIR sensor at the bottom of your steps, and begin connecting each step light with dual-channel T connectors.

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor wiring

motion sensor LED stair lights - step light wiringThe T connectors will allow you to easily splice wires without stripping their insulation. Split the red and black wires in the main line (only required at areas where a T connector will be used), and clamp into the appropriate channels of the T connector. Next, clamp around the red and black wires from your step light.

6. After you have wired all LED stair lights to the main line, connect the line to the PIR sensor at the top of your steps.

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor wiring

7. Finally, connect to power.

motion sensor LED stair lights - step lighting turned on

 

Installation With a Compact Power Supply (CPS):

1. Cut holes (either in the drywall surrounding your stairs or in the fronts of the steps themselves) for all LED stair lights and PIR sensors. Make sure that the hole for each light is large enough for its housing and retaining clips; each light should fit snugly into its hole. The recommended hole size for the light used in this installation is 1.38 inches. Next, insert your LED stair lights into their pre-cut holes.

motion sensor LED stair lights - cutting drywall

motion sensor LED stair lights - installing light

 

 

 

 

 

The hole for each PIR sensor should only be large enough for the dome-shaped sensor to be visible. Mount the sensor to the back of your drywall, and push the dome through the pre-cut hole.

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor back

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. You will need three runs of wire: two will be used to connect each PIR sensor to the power supply, and one will serve as a main wire connecting the PIR sensor at the top of your steps to the PIR sensor at the bottom of your steps along with all the lights in-between.

Measure the distance between the top and bottom of your stairs, and choose the length and gauge of wire that will be needed. It is best to order more than you need so that there’s slack in the line and enough to extend to where your power supply will be mounted.

It’s important to choose the correct wire gauge for the length of wire you need and amount of current that will be flowing through it. The key is to avoid voltage drop, which happens when the supplied energy of a power source is reduced as electric current flows through wire (or any other pieces of equipment that do not supply voltage on a circuit). The longer the run of wire, the lower the gauge of wire needed.

*If you need help determining the correct wire gauge, don’t hesitate to call us toll free at 866-590-3533. Our customer service and technical support teams are available from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. CDT Monday-Thursday and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. CDT on Friday.

*Make sure all wiring is completed before plugging your power supply into a wall outlet.

3. Connect both sensors to the power supply.

  • Plug a CPS splitter cable into the power supply’s barrel connector.
  • Connect one end of two separate wire runs into each PIR sensor, and insert the other ends into screw terminal adapters. Finally, plug the adapters into the splitter.

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor to power supply

4. Connect your main line to the PIR sensor at the bottom of your steps, and begin connecting each step light with dual-channel T connectors.

The T connectors will allow you to easily splice wires without stripping their insulation. Split the red and black wires in the main line (only required at areas where a T connector will be used), and clamp into the appropriate channels of the T connector. Next, clamp around the red and black wires from your step light.

5. After you have wired all LED stair lights to the main line, connect the line to the PIR sensor at the top of your steps.

motion sensor LED stair lights - PIR sensor wiring

6. Finally, plug the power supply into your wall outlet.

motion sensor LED stair lights - step lighting turned on

 

If you have questions, don’t hesitate to call us toll free at 866-590-3533. Our customer service and technical support teams are available from 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. CDT Monday-Thursday and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. CDT on Friday.