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Old 09-17-2012, 05:03 PM   #1
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dc lights dim

Hello, I just purchased a 1962 Kit Companion 15' trailer as a project. I have removed the ceiling as the previous owner had done a poor job in replacing the ceiling panels. One thing I have noticed is that all of the ceiling DC lights are coming from one pair of wires. Would this explain why as I turn on each DC light all the lights get dimmer with each one I turn on. Do I need to run separate wires to each light from the DC source?

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Old 09-17-2012, 06:14 PM   #2
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First start with the DC what kind of charger is it, was it the same one that came with it, what else is running on the DC side, and does the DC panel need upgraded

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Old 09-17-2012, 06:41 PM   #3
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In 1962 I was 20 years old and the world was more conservative. Three lights with smaller bulbs would have been sufficient for that size camping trailer and the small 12v wires probably came from the front off the car battery and all lights weren't used at the same time. (If my memory serves me right, back-up lights on cars were optional at extra cost in those years.)

As the decades passed our night vision eyesight become poorer & poorer so we put larger bulbs in the existing fixtures and used two lights most of the time.

Now it's time to run a pair of additional wires & tap each light into them also. No, each light doesn't need a separate wire. Remember to fuse accordingly and wire crimp safely.
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Old 09-18-2012, 03:11 AM   #4
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I've found that a lot of the problems with dim or non-working lights is poor ground . Try running a separate ground wire to see if the lights brighten.
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Old 09-18-2012, 06:06 AM   #5
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I would confirm you have a big enough power supply first? Add up the number of bulbs you expect to be running at any given moment and see how the total amperage draw compares to the amperage available? For instance, if you are trying to run 4-6 lights off a 4 amp battery charger, you can plan on having some pretty dim lights when all are on?

If that's OK, then I would assure myself there were no more than 2-3 lights running on a set of wires.

I remember some of these oldies not even having 12v ceiling lights. They used 1 or 2 propane lamps...
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Old 10-16-2012, 08:25 PM   #6
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yes your lights will dim as you draw more power from same circuit. probable to small of a wire, if you don't want to go to all of the work upgrading your wires. you might think about changing over to led lights. they don't have as much heat and the power draw is a lot less. there is a great site that shows were to get your leds and how to fabricate them. the site here at irv2 is (inexpensive flourescent to led upgrade) don't let the word flourescent fool you lots of great info on leds conversions.

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