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Old 07-04-2013, 12:29 AM   #1
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LED vs FLUORESCENT

Recently I was replacing some interior floodlights and was looking at some LED replacements. I noticed that the diffenence in cost was substantial but the wattage of energy used was only 2 watt difference. It it similar with RV 12 v lighting? I just don't see a reason to to to LED if there's only a 2 watt difference per bulb wig similar output in lumens and temperature... any comments would be appreciated!

Jack w
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Old 07-04-2013, 07:42 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KB6HSP View Post
Recently I was replacing some interior floodlights and was looking at some LED replacements. I noticed that the diffenence in cost was substantial but the wattage of energy used was only 2 watt difference. It it similar with RV 12 v lighting? I just don't see a reason to to to LED if there's only a 2 watt difference per bulb wig similar output in lumens and temperature... any comments would be appreciated!

Jack w
That's not my experience. Your average incondesent 12v bulb uses about 1 amp. A comparable LED is about 0.1 amp. I replaced 16 bulbs and testing indicated about a 850% energy savings. I had 6 flouresent ceiling lights I replaced the tubes with LED strip lights. I didn't test them as I knew they would be a savings too.

This coupled with replacing the TVs with 12v LEDs, my two 6v batteries went from lasting 1 day to 3 days. Another advantage is heat output of the LEDs, which is almost nill compared to incondesent, which will burn your fingers.
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Old 07-04-2013, 08:28 AM   #3
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That's not my experience. Your average incondesent 12v bulb uses about 1 amp. A comparable LED is about 0.1 amp. I replaced 16 bulbs and testing indicated about a 850% energy savings. I had 6 flouresent ceiling lights I replaced the tubes with LED strip lights. I didn't test them as I knew they would be a savings too.

This coupled with replacing the TVs with 12v LEDs, my two 6v batteries went from lasting 1 day to 3 days. Another advantage is heat output of the LEDs, which is almost nill compared to incondesent, which will burn your fingers.
Absolutely correct - heat is the obvious indicator of wasted energy in any device, unless the purpose is to provide heat.

Florscent bulbs generate, hence dissipate, much more heat than any LED with equivalent lumens.

So when a heat generating source is lowered, additional benefits are realized by lowering the demand for AC besides the more direct result of lower current draw.
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Old 07-14-2013, 06:56 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KB6HSP View Post
Recently I was replacing some interior floodlights and was looking at some LED replacements. I noticed that the diffenence in cost was substantial but the wattage of energy used was only 2 watt difference. It it similar with RV 12 v lighting? I just don't see a reason to to to LED if there's only a 2 watt difference per bulb wig similar output in lumens and temperature... any comments would be appreciated!

Jack w
Jack, are you sure you're not looking at the "equivalent to ...... " figure on those LED bulbs?

I too replaced some 75 watt floodlights with LED's, they seem brighter (just different colour temperature I'm sure) but are only 13W instead of 75W each. A savings of nearly 83%

If you reverse that difference, for equal wattage, you would have 7.7 LED bulbs running to draw that same 75W of electricity that a single incandescent draws.
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Old 07-14-2013, 07:56 AM   #5
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LED is a BIG power saver, but the jury is still out on cost vs. power savings . The dependability is just not there, How many LED tail lights do you see on trucks and half the diode's are out... On the AC side, the Drivers are failing. But the prices are coming down and hopefully dependability will go up...
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:37 AM   #6
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Just a note to anybody looking to replace standard automotive light bulbs in your rv lighting system with LED type bulbs. TMart has some very good pricing on LED bulbs, and free world wide shipping. I am in the process of replacing all of my interior bulbs with LED

Gerry
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Old 07-18-2013, 07:53 AM   #7
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Fluorescent light fixtures also have a ballast which consumes energy, and will probably be the instant start type. I can't quickly find info. on google on them for 12 volts DC. Fluor. lamps operate on AC current and a DC ballast needs an inverter to convert to AC which reduces overall efficiency for 12 VDC use. If you can find a label that has the input current to the fixture, you can calculate the wattage. You'll find that the LED alternative is more efficient than you think.
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Old 07-18-2013, 12:20 PM   #8
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I think you have had a decent set of responses to the LED vs Floures question and some even better 12V responses. I too have converted as many lights in my RV as practical away from the 12V to LED. I notice that the quality of light from the incandescent to the LED is reduced amazingly. That yellow mellow glow replaced with the hot bluish glow is less to my taste. But I have moved forward since the boondocking type camping is what I am all about.
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Old 07-18-2013, 01:14 PM   #9
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The first time you have to replace a florescent tube or the ballast the cost savings is out the window. LEDs should last the life of the coach. Granted some early LEDs seemed to have hit-or-miss life expectancy but that is improving dramatically as production quality improves.
As for color, they make "warm white" LEDs that are nearly identical to a filament bulb.
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Old 07-18-2013, 04:18 PM   #10
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Regarding the first response.. He said the incandescent lamps draw about an amp ... 1141 and 1156 are closer to 2 amps, (just under and over).

I am interested in the power savings for florescent as well. and that is the question in the subject.

if anyone has the facts for a "Thin Light" Florcesent v/s an LED equivlent, I'd be interested.
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Old 07-19-2013, 05:32 PM   #11
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I'll tag along with this thread too, as I'm into swapping out the fluorescents on some of our fixtures.

I can't recall where I read this, but on some board's thread one poster said he was getting but well with only on LED vs two fluorescents. These are T8 18" bulbs.

I've found two different bulbs: 1) 500 lumens 2) 700 lumens.

I suspect the single LED vs two fluorescents was with a single 700 lumens.

Any experiences that could be shared would be appreciated. How about it, anyone find they are getting by on a single 700 lumen bulb? About a $10 bump up from 500 to 700 versions of the T8 bulb, but still a good savings compared to two per fixture.

The Ming's seem to come in a Natural White color. I have not compared these to the Camco units, but I admit to having a sour taste in my wallet from a Camco Solar Panel fridge vent that went out after only 14 months of usage..

I have two area kitchen counter T5 fixtures, and have committed to the DW that I will get two LED bulbs per fixture, to maximize her lighting in this area.

Good thread, and TIA for any additional info sharing!

Be safe, have fun,
Smitty
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Old 07-21-2013, 09:59 AM   #12
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I changed all the interior lights in our TT to LED lights purchased on eBay just over a year ago. Our TT has the typical two bulb fixtures that use the 1156 bulbs. The LED's I bought are 12v flat disc type and although they had to be hard wired in we have yet to see one have problems and we are full time. There are 12 fixtures in the TT and with all the lights on the current draw was just over 26 amps. With the LED's it is just under 2. With all the lights on it's like daytime inside.

As a test I moved the lighting circuit to a small 7 amp SLA battery. With normal usage and no charging it lasted 8 days before it needed to be charged. I put a 50 watt solar panel on it and it's been that way for 9 months untouched.
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:01 AM   #13
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Hello all,

A lot of great comments have been made here regarding swapping out original 12 volt bulbs for LED's. The first ones I wanted to replace were what I call the "puck" lights, under cabinets, with the G4 halogen bulb that gets so hot. The only downside to that is that the original rheostats didn't work with the LED's to dial in smaller amounts of light. But I did find a proper dimmer sold by an Internet vendor. See this link for more info: http://www.irv2.com/forums/f104/quic...tml#post629647

Then I moved on to replacing the incandescent bulbs overhead and in the area over the medicine cabinet.

Finally, I replaced all of the dual-fluorescents (17" long bulbs) with LED strips. I used 3 strips, each 16" long, of what is called a "50-50" LED Strip in a Warm White.

Here are before and after photos of the amp meter readings:

Before


After


As you can see, this resulted in over 80% savings in power per fixture.

The one thing I cannot tell you is whether I've got the same lumens as before. It "feels" like there is the same amount of light as before but I don't have a meter to measure lumens.

My source for LED strips is LED Wholesalers and here is the page for my favorite strip, the 300xSMD5050 (meaning 300 LED's per 16 feet; Surface Mount Device; and sorry but I don't know about the "5050"): www.LEDwholesalers.com - Brightest LED Flexible Strip with 300xSMD5050 LED 16 Feet 5 Meter Nonwaterproof 12 Volt DC

The project that my wife liked the most was the installation of some 150SMD5050 LED Strip under the cabinet above the sink and stove area, roughly 8 feet in an "L" shape. I wired the LED strip into the original fixture that was mounted under the cabinets. This fixture had a sliding on-off switch which now controls both the bulb in the fixture and the 8 feet of LED strip. We love this as it does such a great job of lighting the working surface area under the cabinets.

One fellow mentioned a "bluish" tint. I bet he bought a "cool white" LED. My favorite is "warm white". At their current price of $42 for 16 feet, I could do 4 fixtures resulting in a LED cost of $10.25 per fixture.

I would not suggest this project unless you have a basic understanding of 12 volt electricity, some small tools for working on electronics, and a good, small soldering iron. This is not plug-n-play.

On the Monaco Forum, there is an extensive post devoted to replacing fluorescents with LEDs: http://www.irv2.com/forums/f115/inex...de-139025.html

Good luck if you decide to experiment with LED's. I believe that the result is worth the effort.

Cheers!
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Old 07-24-2013, 07:15 AM   #14
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I think you have had a decent set of responses to the LED vs Floures question and some even better 12V responses. I too have converted as many lights in my RV as practical away from the 12V to LED. I notice that the quality of light from the incandescent to the LED is reduced amazingly. That yellow mellow glow replaced with the hot bluish glow is less to my taste. But I have moved forward since the boondocking type camping is what I am all about.
I am also primarily into getting away from civilised camping sites, so that is why I am shifting over to LED lighting. I am also looking to hook up a 30 watt solar panel to keep batteries charged up.

Gerry
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