I recently been looking at replacing the bulbs in my RV with LED bulbs. My RV takes two different styles of bulbs, one of them being the 1141 type bulb and the other being the 1076 type bulb. I deliberate research and each one of these consumes between about 1 1/2 to 2 A of power when running. This translates into about 18 to 21 W of power being used by these bulbs.
Now my big question is is it worthwhile to purchase LED bulbs because are pretty pricey compared to normal bulbs when you’re looking at replacing them in your RV? The average LED bulb only uses about 1 to 2 W with the power to generate about the same amount of light. Therefore LED bulbs use about a 10th of the power that standard bulbs do.
But how does that translate to usage when your boon docking and not connected to electrical power? In my RV I’ve got about 200 amp hours of reserve power in my batteries before I have to turn on my generator or depend on solar power regeneration. To make things easy if we consider that the bulb was taking too amps and running one bulb we have about 100 hours of time before the battery is completely dead.
To further complicate things we really don’t want to drain our batteries below 50%. Therefore will only have about 50 hours usable time with one bulb. But who one runs just one bulb that any time during the night? It’s not unusual for us to have on 5 to 10 bulbs at night. With five bulbs that reduces our time down to 20 hours.
But we have may also be using other devices that are consume electricity at the same time. You could have a radio or television playing or other devices. All these will be a drain on the battery. And if you boon docking for multiple nights, you have to consider the fact that your batteries might not fully recharge during the daylight hours. Thus these nights add up and further drain your batteries.
I personally found that when running standard light bulbs that I get less time than even what I’m calculating. Yet consider losses in the wire, the bulb might burn little more energy and other factors that are just drain the batteries faster.
With LED bulbs we could potentially be using 1/10 the power of a standard bulb. It’s in my belief that our usage of electricity with the bulbs to light the RV at night now becomes insignificant. You no longer have to worry about the fact that you’ve got on six or seven bulbs in your RV.
The only unfortunate thing is at this time LED bulbs are still pretty pricey. I deliberate price hunting and found that the bulbs that I need could be anywhere from four dollars to over $40. That’s per bulb! So if I’m replacing 20 bulbs in my RV I could easily spend hundreds of dollars. It might be worthwhile just to purchase more batteries!
But as technology marches along the price of LED bulbs should go down in price. It wasn’t so long ago that the cheapest price for one of these bulbs as well as a $20. I intend to check out videos on YouTube as well as other sites to see how they look and color when they burn. I do believe that all bulbs are not made the same.
Here’s one video that I discovered that was actually pretty good from Independence RV.
Second here’s another video that the fellow actually demonstrates the difference between the bulbs. Definitely a great video to watch on rv led bulbs.