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Question Of The Week

Recommended LED Lights for Truck Campers

This week’s Question of the Week was, “What LED light products have you tried with your truck camper, and what do you think of them?”

“I’ve mostly used replacement LED bulb and circuit boards from SuperbrightLEDs.com.  They make straight swap and plug models for most types or RV bulbs, wedge base, or bayonet base, both inside and out.

I’ve also replaced a few florescent and incandescent fixtures with dedicated RV LED fixtures.  They have less heat, and more light with less power consumption across the board.  They are costly by comparison to incandescent, but the long life and low power use makes the trade-off worth the dollars.” – John Wells, 2011 Chevy 3500, 2012 Chalet Ascent S100F

“I have installed exclusively STARLIGHTSINC.com RV LED bulbs in 100% of interior and exterior lighting.  They are awesome and we have had no problems.  We like the color temperature of the bulbs we have.  The reduction in load on our batteries is well worth the cost and effort.” – Gary and Laurii Gadwa, 2012 Ford F350, 2011 Eagle Cap 950

“I purchased Putco PURE Premium 1157 lamps in 2009 and installed them in our 2004 SnowRiver 9’6”.  When we traded campers in 2010, I re-installed them in our new camper.

The lumen output is good and the color is fine.  It was much cheaper than replacing all the fixtures and we have been very happy with this swap.  I’m sure the battery load has decreased, but I have never tested it.” – Pete Clark, 2006 Dodge 3500SLT, 2008 SnowRiver 102-K

“I replaced all the interior incandescent bulbs plus the outside porch light with LEDs.  I purchased the LEDs off eBay after reading a recommendation for a supplier from a fellow Northern Lite owner on the Northern Lite online board.

The LEDs are brighter than the original bulbs, which is fine.  If I recall the specifications correctly, an individual LED light requires an eighth of the power of an incandescent light.  I may be in the dark but my camper isn’t.” – Dennis Sychra, 2012 Ford F150, 2004 Northern Lite 8.5 Q Lite

“I went fully LED with products from SuperbrightLEDs.com.  On my previous camper I had LEDs from assorted companies and had some good and some bad.  This time I decided to pay a little more and get all of them from the one company that I had the best results with.

Other than the outside back door light I used all warm color LEDs.  I used replacement bulbs in existing fixtures and staged them so the brightest ones were in the kitchen, about half the lumens in the dining area and very dim ones in the overhead area.

After installing them, I decided that I wanted more control and switched the fixtures to ones with individual switches so we could have even more control.

I then added an ALM 3-LED Rectangular Accent Light Module in cool white by the door.  It’s wired into the rear outside light switch.  It is a very low power directional light that nicely illuminates the floor as we enter, and low enough in power that it can be left on when we are away in the evening.

I added a small battery operated light over by the porta-potty for a middle of the night bathroom light.  After a couple of outings we decided that our normal evening inside activity didn’t need as much light since we use iPads and iPhones to read, or we are on a laptop.  I then installed two warm LPC-x-W2 lights.  They are normally used as license plate lights and are very low current.  You can use them with or without a metal reflector.

I mounted one with a reflector by the sink so we can use it for sink use and mood lighting.  The second one I mounted with out the reflector so the light would bounce around under the front cabinets.  These two illuminate the lower part of the camper nicely for just sitting in the evening for reading or listening to music.  At 35 and 25 lumens, they are a great addition.

I made some current measurements after replacing just the original lights and I was at about one-tenth the current with all the lights on and plenty of light where we needed it.  In normal operation, with the extra switches and fixtures for fine tuning our lighting needs for our normal usage, the rate is much less than one-tenth (for lighting).” – Jim Bollman, 2000 Ford F250, 2005 Shadow Cruiser

“My camper did not come with LED lights like the newer models do.  I wanted to get them all changed out to the LEDs so I had less amp draw on the batteries.  It also would make saying “turn off the light” over and over not an issue anymore.

Last year I finished changing all of the light bulbs out to the LEDs.  Now, not all LEDs are created equal.  I bought a couple bulbs and hated the blueish color they gave off.  They worked, but to my eyes they were not pleasing.

I then came across a different brand of bulbs and I love them.  They have a nice clean white light.  There was a cost to change them all out, and in the long run it will be far better.  Think of it this way, if you have to start up the generator to charge the batteries, you burn more fuel.  There is less amp draw with LEDs, which means less battery drainage.  Less battery drainage means less time and fuel on the generator.  Its a win-win for me.

I bought my bulbs from: http://www.ledtrailerlights.com/rv/RV-T10-wedge-252.htm.  

They have fast shipping and I have never had a problem.  In fact the bonus is that the seller is even a truck camper owner.  So I get to support a fellow truck camper too.  Talk about a win-win.” – Rich Bain, 1999 Chevy 3500, 2010 Adventurer 810S

“I have replaced all my incandescent lamps with LED bulbs from Super Brite LEDs. I started by ordering just three bulbs.  I was pleased with the fit, brightness and color of the light.  For us the warm white bulbs are the most pleasing.

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