You can easily add natural whites and fun colors to your digital nomad adventure with our favorite RV LED Strip solutions from Govee
We wanted to brighten up our RV for work hours, create shades of natural light, and add colors for nighttime.
The built-in lights in our Forest River Forester RV are of higher quality than many we have seen in other RVs. There are small LED strips under the cabinets controlled by switches and integrated LED pucks on the ceiling controlled by OneControl.
Because we were happy with the lights from our manufacturer, we decided not to replace anything and to add additional LED strips as diffuse uplight instead.
We wanted something that would integrate with all of our smart-home systems, not draw much power, and enhance our quality of light. We chose Govee lights because they did not need any additional smart-home hardware, are reliably available online via Amazon to ship wherever we are, are known for quality customer service, and have a good FakeSpot rating.
Here’s what LED Strips we chose for our RV:
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The Govee Smart WiFi RGBWW LED Strip Light is our top recommendation. It features a full-color spectrum plus individually adjustable warm white and cool white.
All the Govee lights we use are AC-powered. They do sell DC-powered versions for vehicles, so if you end up using those successfully with your battery systems, let us know in the comments.
Overall, we also are impressed with the CRI of all our Govee lights.
CRI, or Color Rendering Index, is a measurement of how well the light brings out the natural colors in whatever is being lit.
On a scale from 0-100, anything over 80 is considered acceptable, 90 is considered high quality, and 95+ is ideal.What is CRI?
While Govee does not specify the exact CRI, based on our anecdotal experience and very unscientific experiments, we believe the lights perform in the 85-95 range.
Govee has a very active Reddit community for ideas and troubleshooting.
Our Govee LED Strip Light Favorite
Govee Smart WiFi RGBWW LED Strip Lights
We installed our favorites, these RGBWW in two locations — above the driving cab in the loft bunk, and on the slideout above our bed in the bedroom. They are both on almost all day, and we use the app to automatically adjust shade of white to match the sun. We use colors like turquoise and magenta and a rich orange after sunset.
Most LEDs are RGB, which is short for the colors red, green, and blue.
When you mix red, green, and blue in varying amounts, you can produce millions of other colors.
With the addition of WW, or (Warm) White and (Cool) White, you can tone down the color intensity AND emulate natural daylight.What is RGBWW?
Features of the RGBWW
- 9.8ft length with adhesive and small clips
- Both Bluetooth and WiFi connections
- Uses 24 watts of AC power
- Extended warranty with the Govee Rapid Replacement program
Pros of the RGBWW
- Includes an infrared remote control in addition to the great Govee app
- Easily integrates with Alexa, Google Home, and Siri
- Richest colors and most accurate whites
Cons of the RGBWW
- The remote control is not so intuitive
- Increased power usage almost 2x compared to most RGBs
- The power brick and controller are a bit large to hide in the RV
- It is quite bright even at minimum settings for a small space like an RV, preventing us from using it as a night light
Pro Tips for the RGBWW
- When installing, read the instructions. You may think you know everything because it’s just some regular tape, but if you take the time to prepare the surface and follow the diagram to hang the controller properly you will minimize the risk of it peeling off while driving or in temperature changes. (This advice also applies to Command Strips.)
- In the app, some of the presets are our favorite colors. We like the included scene “dating” more than the standard “warm white”. You just have to be willing to say things out loud like, “Alexa, set the bed slide light to dating.”
- If both you and your traveling companion are both regularly connecting via the Govee app, there can be conflicts. Both technologically as well as emotionally. If you agree to use one app for all automation and programming, and the other just to control the color at any time, you should be OK for the most part. You can also avoid this by creating the mutual routines in your Alexa, Google Home, or shared IFTTT triggers.
Our Other Govee LED Favorites
The entire length of our living room slide is topped with this RGBIC LED tape. If we had to do it again, we would probably have put the RGBWW here and used the RGBIC for fun exterior lighting.
The IC in RGBIC stands for Individual Control.
The RGB stands for Red, Green, and Blue lights
Each pixel, each dot of light made by mixing Red, Green, and Blue light, can be controlled to have a different color and intensity. This is in comparison to many LED lights, including the RGBWW above, which have the same custom color the entire length.What is RGBIC?
As a lighting artist, I love the slow-moving programs, like clouds in the sky or shades of sunset. We also make our own custom gradients and scenes for different theme weekends and holidays.
Pros of RGBIC:
- Access thousands of community-designed colors, scenes, and programs in the Govee app
- Trigger scenes via Alexa, Google Home, IFTT, and Siri Shortcuts
- Scenes triggered by music look like an EQ
Cons of RGBIC:
- The warm and cool whites were not what we want for a primary living area light
- Fast-paced scenes and music-triggered scenes were a bit too intense for us in the RV
- If you trim the length at the end by cutting at the cut points, the software doesn’t know and some sense are then no longer symmetrical
This was our first light from Govee, and the quality of this light inspired us to add the higher-end models above.
This basic RGB strip comes in 4 sections to frame the back of the TV. We installed it behind the living room TV, to balance out the light sources in the RV and create an eye-pleasing contrast bias light for watching TV.
Like all of the other Govee LEDs we use in the RV, the RGB TV Backlight includes an infrared remote control in addition to the Govee app, Alexa, Google Home, IFTT, and Siri Shortcuts
Pros of RGB TV Backlight
- Available in standard RV manufacturer TV sizes, as well as large screen sizes
- Was able to adapt our specific model down to split and plug into the TV’s DC power, saving an AC cable run
- The light can be dimmed enough to make an always-on night light
Cons of RGB TV Backlight
- Challenging to install with the usual rat’s nest of cables behind the TV from the manufacturer
- Because our TV was in front of cleaning supply storage, the constant opening and closing made the adhesive fail quickly
- We began to lose pixels about six months after installation, but the Govee warranty support was quick shipping us a replacement
You will be as happy as we are with your Govee LEDs installed in your RV, van, camper, motorhome, trailer, or fifth-wheel. As long as you keep in mind their specific pros and cons, and plan for your power consumption and unique way you plan to use your RV, each will be a great option for you.
The RGBWW provide the best whites and colors, but are too bright at their minimum. The RGBIC are fun for decorating, but a bit too flashy to be practical for daily use. The RGB TV Backlight adds the perfect touch to the RV lighting, but can be a bit frustrating to install behind all the wires.
How do you use LEDs and other lighting in your RV?
What do you think about these options?
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