Low Wattage & LED lighting

Wasted energy is never a good thing especially with the threat of climate change and higher fuel costs becoming more serious as time goes on.

The effects of wasted energy become more evident however when the lights and TV go off because you have used more than your quota! This situation will have happened to many people away from mains electricity in boats caravans and motorhomes etc.

The problems associated with coping with the very limited energy supply of a battery can be offset by sizing your battery Solar or wind power and use of appliances to compliment each other. We will go into further detail on sizing batteries and Solar panels on another page. The focus of this page is on reducing energy usage.

Energy efficient lighting is often not seen as all that relevant at home, although in recent years few homes are without at least some energy saving light bulbs.

In leisure vehicles and boats etc 230V appliances should be avoided where possible. Therefore an energy efficient alternative to the halogen bulb is required. Mini fluorescent lights have been in use in Campers and Caravans for many years however due to the need to convert voltages the actual consumption is quite high.

LED's Light emitting diodes have been around for many years, but have only recently evolved into a highly efficient alternative to filament bulbs.

Generally it is accepted that the most efficient LED bulbs consume approximately 1 tenth of the power of a halogen bulb for a similar light output.

Attemping to buy the best alternative to your current fillament bulb is however something of a minefield! You can buy a "10W equivalent " direct from China for as little as £1 or from a UK source for up to £10.

There are however a number of things to consider. Are the cheapest bulbs safe? There are several stories circulating regarding overheating LED bulbs. The main problem here is that they are generally designed to operate on 12V but the DC system in a boat or motorhome can often be at well over 14V.

The light frequency (colour) of a standard LED is known as cold white. The light produced from a standard fillament bulb is warm white and much more pleasant for a domestic situation. Fortunately LED's these days are available in warm white but this needs to be verified before buying!

Many LED bulbs have little or no voltage regulation. This means that at 14.4V it will be consuming considerably more power than that specified. It will also reduce the life of the lamp.

We sell both regulated and unregulated LED's, both of which have their advantages and disadvantages. It is our aim to give you the pros and cons and then let you decide! 


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