LEDs for less power consumption

Discussion in 'Electrical Systems' started by DennisRB, Oct 7, 2010.

  1. DennisRB
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    DennisRB Senior Member

    Has anyone looked on ebay lately for LEDs? There are literally thousands of cheap listings for LEDs.

    Has anyone replaced their incandescents with LED globes? They can be used anywhere I guess from nav lights, anchor lights, interior lights. There are too many to choose from. I dont know where to start. Most don't list their wattage either so its hard to compare. You can by straight swap in globe replacements so you don't even need to buy new fittings.
     
  2. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    Dennis,, try SAW (Sam Allen Wholesale ) or RWB (Bob Bashams) or BLA (Bob Littler Agencies), they all sell LED for marine use in Aus.
     
  3. missinginaction
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    missinginaction Senior Member

    Dennis, I'm in the end stages of a restoration and am doing all my lighting with L.E.D.'s. I purchased some products to test out from a vendor here in the states called Superbright L.E.D's. The web site was helpful so I'll post a link for you below. I was pleased with the products these people had available and the price. If you cannot find what you need locally these people do ship internationally. You're right, when you say that if you know the size of the bulb you have you can often swap out an incandecent bulb for an L.E.D. and keep the fixture.

    Regards,

    MIA

    www.superbrightleds.com
     
  4. Fanie
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    Fanie Fanie

    Not all LED's are so great just because they are LED's. When the light making race took off a lot of not-so-good LED's were produced, and they last only a few months. They are still available el cheapo.

    The new generation LED's are more sorted out and are rated around 100 000 hours at rated current. I won't just put any LED lamp on my rig, the right ones should offer superior performance and durability at low power consumption.

    Also be aware of these switchmode LED drivers, someone posted some time ago about when the lights are switched on none of the equipment would work due to emmissions from the LED drivers.
     
  5. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Leds , Theres a load of sites you can go on to learn all about them and how to make you own bulbs etc etc ,
    A friend is in to electronics and the like and completely converted all his lighting in his boat with leds that he had manufactured with the old bases . Was a mission but he felt it was worth the effort .
    Its constantly changing and more and more little lights are becoming availible . strip lights for steps and stairs just under the front edge , Under the edge of your cockpit to illuminate the area when you are fishing . or along the edge of the cockpit roof not bright , easy on the eyes .
    My son even attached them to Lures for fishing at night and uses all differant colours . I keep hearing about the nice fish he catchs but havent seen any yet !!:D:p
     
  6. Fanie
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    Fanie Fanie

    You have a very good son there, you know that ?
     
  7. DennisRB
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    DennisRB Senior Member

    Thanks for the replies guys. I'm an electrician by trade. Here are some results of mine after doing a bit of research and testing various LEDs. I thought that many (not all) of the commercial expensive LEDs might be nothing more than cheap LEDs with 700% markup, and that many (not all) cheap LEDs are just as good as expensive ones if you shop well. "You get what you pay for" In question again?

    A friend got some LEDs from a shop in Brisbane for his caravan. They pride themselves in their range and knowledge of LED lighting. The LEDs he got were similar to the one I got off eBay for $4. They were multiple SMD joined onto small panels soldered to a automotive style base but cost $38. When I showed him mine he thought they were the same. Anyhow a few of his blew within a couple hours of use. He tried mine and said they were very slightly dimmer but used less power. Light colour was the same. He has stocked up on the cheap ones now.

    The ones I am talking about here look like this.

    [​IMG]

    I also changed the festoon lights on my partners yacht with SMD leds like these. They are brighter and use a fraction of the power for $2. She was going to by ones from the boat shop which look almost exactly the same but cost $30.

    [​IMG]

    These ones just use resistors, so they won't create radio interference.

    Another friend is into making 12V bicycle headlamps. He also purchased a CREE 6W LED downlight style LED from said LED experts for $36. I then went out and purchased a few of this style to test from eBay. Being 12V they will be suitable for a yacht. I purchased a 3x3W for $12 shipped and a 3x2W for $8 shipped. I gave them to him to compare and he reports my 3x3W puts out much more light than his 3x2W and uses less power. He then tested my 3x2W and it is dimmer than my 3x3 but its still brighter and uses less power than his $36 3x2W. Needless to say he is using the cheap ones now.

    This is the style I am talking about. They fit into this style of fitting. 12V and GU10 fittings are the same.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    AC lighting for at home or yachts on mains power or AC. They look the same as above but with a GU10 socket and run off 110-240V AC. After hearing about some excellent LED downlights for $150. I went and purchased 4 different brand and type GU10 LED downlights to test for around $12 delivered.

    My house uses 50W 12V halogen and 240V GU10 compact fluorescent 11W downlights. I tried the 11W CFLs as an energy saving test in some areas. I was never happy with the dull light and grey colour these CFLs put out compared to the 50W halogens. Also the CFLs are take a long time to heat up when they are first turned on to the point where people ask what is wrong with the lights when they first use them.

    I have so far got one 3x3W warm white LED and replaced one CFL in an area that had 4 CFLs. The $12W LED is so much brighter than the 11W CFL, plus the colour is almost exactly the same as the 50W halogens. They operational effect is the same as a halogen in that is shines downward rather than scatters light like the CFL. The LED is almost as bright as a 50W halogen with a small fraction of the power consumption and heat. I wish I done my whole house in these now. I have not tired the $150 version and going by the specs it will be better than the $12 one, but no where near enough to justify the added expense.

    The warm white will be perfect light for on a boat and match perfectly with incandescent lamps. I have not yet tried a warm white 12V version, however the AC/DC circuitry will be irrelevant here so I expect the 12V warm white to be exactly like the AC GU10 I purchased which is so great in my home. The trouble is the lamps are very deep and they may be difficult to retrofit into some existing fixtures. But when doing a refit or initial installation IMO you would be mad to not consider these if budget is important.

    I have not opened these ones up yet to check if they use a switch mode power supply. I guess the AC ones would have some trick circuitry. I will have to test out the 12V ones to find out.

    I hope some of this is info is of any help to anyone thinking of LED lighting.
     
  8. Fanie
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    Fanie Fanie

    LED's are currently developing extremely fast, new and more efficient ones are brought out all the time !
     
  9. CDK
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    CDK retired engineer

    The GU10 LED lamps I bought from a Chinese shop in Holland cost 2.95 in Euros, so approx. $5. For that money you get a real glass bulb with 32 very efficient, warm white LEDS with a consumption of only 1.4 Watts.
    Of course for so little money there is no switch mode supply to get from 230V AC down to 80V DC, they just use a capacitor, a resistor and a few diodes.

    For all practical purposes the life expectancy is "forever". The only exception is if you replace halogen lamps and forget to remove the dimmer. In that case they do not last one minute!
     
  10. DennisRB
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    DennisRB Senior Member

    CDK you can get a 5W LED headlamp for $5 that uses a switchmode supply. I have found these high power LEDs to really put our MUCH more light than clusters of smaller ones.

    I have just purchased a whole heap of warm white 1W and 5W LED chips and heat sinks for experimentation on DIY LED inserts.
     
  11. Landlubber
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    Hey Dennis,

    The Cree 5W torches, why is it that some are simply "brilliant" andothres leave a lot to be desired, is it the reflectors?

    I have two I bought back from China, they are supurb, spot type lens, can see colour at 200 metres, yet have tried to buy others here and they are pathetic by comparison....they all say Cree 5W though.
     
  12. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    And how about LED dimmers? I am interested in using 100% LED lighting this time around after replacing many of my lights on prior boats with LED.

    LEDs for the salon and rooms are problematic due to lack of dimmer switches.

    Anyone seen good dimming LEDs?
     
  13. DennisRB
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    DennisRB Senior Member

    I will have to test out the LEDs I have with dimmers. I assume you are using a 12V dimmer? What kind is it?

    John, all the head torches I have purchased around the $10 delivered mark or less have been excellent. Some were labeled CREE and some OSRAM. After testing current and voltage they were not really drawing 5W though. Being cheap Chinese items many are blatant lies or bad quality.

    The ones I use have an adjustable lens so that when set to point they will light up a building hundreds of meters away. But the beam is very narrow. You can open the beam up and they work well to light up a bigger area. There are many of this type for sale. All copies of each other so they are all a little different.

    This is what I am talking about.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    All the ones of this type I have purchased have been amazing and they are as low as $6.79 delivered now. The thing which makes them so good is the single high power LED used with a good reflector and magnifying lens.

    http://shop.ebay.com.au/i.html?_trk...&_sticky=1&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_sop=15&_sc=1

    I tried one of these and it was pathetic. I think its more than just the lens letting it down. I don't think the LED was anywhere close to 5W.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. hoytedow
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    hoytedow Wood Butcher

    I don't know if they would dim properly but if you had multiple banks on multiple switches you could better control overall room brightness or direct light to a small area like over a chart table or reading area.
     

  15. DennisRB
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    DennisRB Senior Member

    Thats true. If you had all the same type of LED on one circuit I think they will dim OK with the right kind of dimmer. But various brands may dim quite differently. So some will get dull before the others. Ones with resistors should dim OK.
     
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