The RV Forum Community

RVing message boards => Remodeling your RV => Topic started by: Almightycrash on July 22, 2017, 02:19:43 PM

Title: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: Almightycrash on July 22, 2017, 02:19:43 PM
After spending way too much on fluorescent tube LED replacements that ended up being for 110v only, I decided to get creative.
I bought a spool of 6000k daylight spectrum led strips.

First, I gutted the housings, removing transformers, wires, and fluorescent connections.
I installed angle molding on the outer edges to allow the lights to have a wider spread when flush mounted. 

Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: Almightycrash on July 22, 2017, 02:20:51 PM
Then I measured and cut strip sections, soldering jumper wires between them...
Then mounted them inside. 
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: Almightycrash on July 22, 2017, 02:22:08 PM
Here is before and after.
The difference in real life is phenomenal.
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: Rene T on July 22, 2017, 02:24:47 PM
So, you've got bare wires exposed all the time until you put on the plastic lenses or did you protect them somehow. Is that right? I'd be leery of that but that's me.
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: yolo on July 22, 2017, 03:07:00 PM
Where do you see bare wires Rene.  Looks like insulated wire going into the strips to me.
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: HueyPilotVN on July 22, 2017, 03:09:50 PM
Mr Rainy,

The ends of the 12 volt wires can be soldered or put together with crimp on connectors.

Several of us did this kind of project at Quartzsite a few years ago.

We set up some tables under an awning and converted the lights to LEDs.

I still have several rolls of LEDs, switches, double sided tape, and connectors.  I converted all 13 of my lights in the coach and a few in the Stacker.

Edit:  It was 2015 that we did it and here is the link.  Not trying to hijack the thread but if anyone wants to do this next winter they can have the supplies to do a workshop at Q.

http://www.rvforum.net/SMF_forum/index.php/topic,77992.msg731602.html#msg731602

Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: judway on July 22, 2017, 03:22:18 PM
I did one of my fluorescent lights as you did. The only thing that bothered me was, the lights are rated at 12 Volt and when the converter is working the voltage goes to 14 Volts. I am not sure how this affects the life. I installed regulators that kinda worked, but were a little iffy.

For the latest two lights I found 1/2 meter lights on eBay for $2 each, post paid from China . I ordered 10 and installed them in my other ceiling lights. These are cheaper and really look nice. The same 12 V vs 14 V applies , I just wired these with no regulators. Will see how these work out.
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: judway on July 22, 2017, 04:24:29 PM
This is the eBay ad for my lights

5pcs*0.5M Warm White Blue LED Rigid String Bar 36LEDs SMD 5630 DC12V&U Aluminium
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: Rene T on July 22, 2017, 05:37:57 PM
Where do you see bare wires Rene.  Looks like insulated wire going into the strips to me.

In picture #2, it looked like there were bare wires where they were made up to the strips. I was wrong I guess. It also looked liked the soldered wires were close to the metal housing.
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: pz on July 22, 2017, 06:35:16 PM
I did something similar to replace a ceiling fan that we never used - the light change is amazing - now feels like daylight even though it only consumes 23 watts and is rated 3000K.  It is even dim-able, and has changed our dead-weight fan into a valuable light source.
Title: Re: DIY led ceiling light replacement
Post by: Almightycrash on July 23, 2017, 12:48:14 PM
There are no bare wires, and the soldered ends are insulated with hot glue to keep them from touching the housing. 
I got a 5m spool for around $6 with free overnight shipping through Amazon.
12v lights can handle the 14v fluctuations, as these lights are usually used in cars which run 14.4v when running.   
I went with 6000k because I prefer white daylight over the warm yellowish white of lower spectrums.