Friday, April 6, 2012

12 Volt LED Lamp Update 3-23-12

I finally figured out how to best use the 12 volt LED lamp I bought a few months ago. I went to the store and purchased a small night stand 110 volt lamp with a shade for $9.00 and converted it to accept the 12 volt LED lamp. It turned out very well. For long term emergency lighting this will work for me!

Here’s where I purchased the LED from:

Product Features:
Bulb Type: BA15S Base (Single Contact)
Lumen: 180
Lumen Color Temperature: White 6000K
Working Voltage:10 - 30 V DC
Power: 3.6 Watt
LED: 30 LED’s
200 days warranty!

At the auto parts store and purchased a 12 volt lamp socket for the LED and to make the power connection.

Next I disassembled the 110 volt lamp socket and entirely removed the incandescent 110 volt lamp socket/switch assembly.

I used the 110 volt power cord for the 12 volt power cord and wired it to the automotive socket. To mount the 12 volt socket into the area where the much larger 110 volt socket was I used LocTite’s Power Grab (the white stuff around the base of the LED lamp socket). It filled the gaps between the two nicely and holds the assembly together securely.

The completed lamp.

The brightness, as you can see is more than enough to read with and do normal kitchen cores. It does fill the area with plenty of comfortable light for those times when the electric is out.

I happen to have a 4 year old but still good car battery to use for the power source. I connected the lamp to the battery with two alligator clips. The lamp uses only 3.6 watts so using a battery of this size would power this light easily for weeks with every night use. A battery box will be added for safety.


  1. That is amazing! (I'll have to qualify my comments and say that I am easliy amazed with things I'm weak electical gadgets, but this in no way makes it less amazing!) I really have to take a part this post and see if I can come up with a similar light.

  2. Thanks China,
    I’m always looking for reliable light should the grid go down and it can for a number of reasons but also to me the grid is a prime target for people who hate us. Without electricity we as a country are dead in our tracks.
    This lamp connected to a typical Auto or RV/Trolling Motor Battery which has 100 amps of storage capacity will keep this lamp lit for 333 hours before recharging the battery is needed. That’s 67 days at 5 hours on time per day!


  3. Fery nice post - we will be making one here! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Love this post... thanks for the ideas. In order to make that lamp dual power you can use something like this to power it.

    Then you could use that lamp to reap the savings of the LED on energy costs and not have to worry about charging or having a battery near by.

  5. 2 Tramps,
    Thanks, it's easy to do and the light output is great.
    Looks like you have a very nice dog!

  6. Kevin,
    Yes it will power the lamp. The charger lighter produces 1/2 amp and the LED lamp uses 1/3 amp.
    However be careful with cheap items like this as normally you get what you pay for.

  7. Hiya Mike,

    Have you considered using AA rechargeables?

    3.6w @ 12v nominal (fully charged is higher) is just shy of 400mA, within the range of a NiMH battery pack. Alkaline battery holder has 8 slots, pack voltage is 9.6v, 2 more cells would be needed. When batteries are depleted, use a car charger or solar battery charger to bring them back up.

    Given the low usage current vs battery size of your deep cycle, the deep cycle battery will be subject to sulfation due to long periods between charges. Using a smaller battery pack (preferably not lead acid) yields better life at cost of raw capacity. Consider battery packs for RC cars. Decent trade off between capacity and size. Don't worry abt voltages given the wide input range.

  8. Hi Sheldon,
    Good to hear from you again. How’ve you been, life good?

    Thanks for the caution about lead acid battery use.

    I have considered ‘AA’ because I can buy battery cages from Radio Shack to give me the voltage needed so it was an option.

    I do want to figure out how to make a plug that will fit my 18volt battery packs from my 18v drill. I feel this would be the most portable and convenient power source. The 18v charger is fast and the batteries have a lot of reserve capacity. Re-charging can be done from my solar panels or an inverter that plugs into the 12v socket in my truck.

    Again, thanks,

  9. off subject and back to the tater buckets-i started adding my dirt and those tater plants are just happy happy so far. but i did something else too. i placed my buckets along one end of my raised garden and placed mulch right up to the bucket rim..i did this because it gets really hot here during the summer and those plastic and rubber containers hold the heat something fierce. i figured the mulch would also help with retaining moisture as well. what do you think?

  10. Anon 1:55
    Smart move!
    In a couple weeks I also plan to shade the sunny side of the buckets so I don't end up with baked potatoes!!

  11. OH! I The cordless drill battery pack is a great idea. Higher voltage gives a lower current draw, and off brand packs have seen their prices plummet. I moved from a widely known blue brand over to a yellow brand. Still 18v, and I even have a 1 hour charger with a 12v input. I wonder how difficult it would be to change travel trailer 12v lighting wiring to use with standalone battery and led lights.

    Regarding connectors, my packs use towers(for lack of better word), and so I think it would be easy to make a clamshell to fit around the terminals. Or, if use broken tool handles to hold the pack.

  12. The cordless battery pack was what I intend to use because it has a lot of reserve power, 18volts and a very fast charger that with an inverter I can recharge from the car, generator or solar panels.

    My yellow batteries have a blade connection so I think I can use a female blade connectors for the plug. I just have to figure out how to make a plug out of those and a lamp base at the same time so I simply take the lamp and shade, plug it in and I’m good to go.

    For the RV I think it would be a very simple conversion.