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Old 01-09-2015, 12:30 AM   #1
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Replace fixture or just bulbs when converting to LED?

I am converting my interior RV lights to LED. Any difference/advantage/disadvantage in replacing current bulbs with LED bulbs or buying new LED fixtures and replacing the entire fixture?

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Old 01-09-2015, 03:20 AM   #2
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Do price comparison first. then, look at the advantages and disadvantages. I have noticed that most of the recessed halogen fixtures had frosted lenses and the new LED fixture lenses are clearer. Good luck and keep us posted as to what fixtures you presently have and what you do in replacement for each. Thank you.

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Old 01-09-2015, 04:21 AM   #3
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It depends on your fixtures of course, but I replaced all my bulbs with LEDs I got from Amazon. They were very cheap, and easy to replace (fit existing fixture). The two issues I had (which I am perfectly fine with) were:

Color: These "daylight" color as opposed to "soft white". A harsher blueish color, but doesn't bother my wife or me

Cheap = Failures : I think I bought around 50 of these, and probably 3 or four were duds. I bought extra. Have not had any of the ones that work die, but occasionally I need to reseat them in the socket to get them to work.

But compared to the cost of buying them from a dealer, this worked out great. And certainly was much better and cheaper than replacing the entire fixture.

You need to buy replacements for your particular fixture. These are the ones I bought:
Amazon.com: 2pcs 42-SMD T15 12V LED Replacement Light Bulbs + STICKER 921 912 906 - White: Automotive
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Old 01-09-2015, 08:05 AM   #4
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You link didn't work for me but I was able to copy/paste the text to look at the bulbs. Definitely a good price, lower then what they were.

Are these bulbs dimmable??? All of my halogen lights are wired with a dimmer switch.
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Old 01-09-2015, 12:00 PM   #5
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No idea if they can be dimmed. Buy two and try it I guess. They're cheap enough.

By the way, you keep referring to halogen bulbs. I think they are probably just standard linear filament lights. Halogen bulbs ren very hot and would probably melt most RV housings I've seen. They also would not be dimmable since you have to get the gas hot enough for the halogen cycle to work, which is where the brightness comes from

Hope this helps
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Old 01-09-2015, 06:02 PM   #6
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We just replaced the bulbs themselves. We looked at several vendors and settled on the M4 Products Samsung Elite series replacements.
M4 Products has replacements for just about any type and style bulbs.

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Old 01-10-2015, 06:56 AM   #7
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LED lights

So far I am not hearing that there is any advantage or reason to replace the whole fixture. I too have seen good reviews for the M4 bulbs.

I am doing this to save battery usage for boondocking and to reduce heat.
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Old 01-10-2015, 08:17 AM   #8
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Replace fixture or just bulbs when converting to LED?

Check out AliExpress.com for inexpensive LED bulbs. You need to know what kind of bulb you are hunting for, but if you get the base style and bulb number from existing bulbs, that's what you search for.

I replaced ALL of my interior bulbs with LED and am slowly chipping away at external bulbs as needed.

All of the bulbs that I have received from AliExpress worked perfectly. Some were a tight fit in the fixtures but they fit nevertheless.

The only down side that I have with buying from AliExpress is that my shipment took a while to get here. It came from China. But for me this was not a "rush" job do I don't care about that. In fact, I placed an order yesterday for some LED bulbs to replace a burned out market light on my front roof.

I do like M4 products, and if money were no object, I'd buy theirs. In fact I did buy a few that they had that others don't (docking lights). But when I compared pricing for my large order of inside bulbs, they were just too high to justify.
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Old 01-10-2015, 08:29 AM   #9
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Ditto on the time. Mine came from china and I think some took a month or two. But like you said, it was not a rush job
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Old 01-10-2015, 07:42 PM   #10
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I got a pack of ten 1156 warm white off e-bay for $26.99. Seller is dt-autotech in Los Angeles. Good price, good website and very fast shipping. The bright whites are too harsh so I get warm white. These bulbs have 68 actual leds on each bulb but they are the same size bulbs as the other led bulbs.
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Old 01-11-2015, 06:29 AM   #11
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I purchased led bulbs from Superbrightled.com I just purchased one of each type I have in the motorhome to see how well I like them. They are not cheap. However I have a eye towards being a snowbird in a couple years and most places meter your electric. With lights being one of the major draw I feel led's will eventually pay for themselves.

The motor home is in storage right now so I haven't had a chance to plug the led's in to see how I like them. I have since been turned on to the M4 website and I think future purchases will be made there. Their web site is easier to navigate imo.
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Old 01-11-2015, 07:18 AM   #12
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Not my forum but thought I would offer what I have found. I'm in the middle of converting to all LED's in my fifth wheel. I bought a few of the cheap ones as samples to see how they worked. First, we find the warm white to be much more to our liking, not harsh but better than the yellowish light we get from the halogens and incadecents we have now. Second, I have found the lumen rating to be pretty important. The old style bulbs are rated around 180 to 220. The few I got with less than that just were not bright enough. The wife wanted more light and we found those with a rating of 320 to 350 to be just about right. More light but not blinding. For the 19 wedge based T10 bulbs we need for sconces and fixtures in the slides I got the 5050 sized LED with 30 of them with a lumen rating of 350. There will be a number that will tell you what size LED and how many, like 30-5050 smd. The 5050 means the led is .5mm x .5mm. Each of the 5050 LED's is rated for .2 watts.

We have 23 of the halogen recessed ceiling lights with G4 pin bases. I am waiting for some pancake style bulbs to arrive so I can start that process. I am going to try some of the 5050 sized ones but the max count for those bulbs that I could find is 15 and a lumen rating of 225. I don't think those will work. I am also going to try some with a 5730 sized LED which are rated at .5 watts and supposedly much brighter. One bulb with 9 of them is supposed to be over 400 lumens.

Probably more info than anybody wants or needs but after several false starts I decided I needed to educate myself a bit more. I'm probably still out in left field as I am certainly not well versed in things electric but I think I'm getting there.
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Old 01-11-2015, 07:21 AM   #13
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Has anyone noticed any over heating, getting hot with these? Several reports of LEDs from China over heating and causing fires. I'm interested in these but concerned about safety issues. I guess I could order a couple and carefully test them. I just replaced my Norcold with a residential refrigerator to eliminate a fire hazard and don't want start adding another fire hazard.
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Old 01-11-2015, 07:28 AM   #14
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I think you will find that nearly all LEDs are made in China. Even if you are buying from a U.S. Company.

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