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tager 01-21-2009 11:32 PM

12v lights
Should I use my 12v cabin lights while I am at the dock? The onboard charger is plugged in. Will this ruin my battery?

sailingdog 01-21-2009 11:46 PM

If it is dark, then using the lights would be a good idea.... ;) No, it won't ruin your batteries unless you're trying to imitate the sun using 12 VDC lighting. :)

tager 01-21-2009 11:57 PM


Perithead 01-22-2009 12:14 AM

Yeah, you shouldn't have to worry about it.

If you are still concerned, check your battery levels after a few hours with the lights on and see if you are even taking out more than the charger can put back in.

If not, there is nothing to worry about.

TonyInNewportOregon 01-29-2009 06:35 PM

On the topic of chargers and lighting, I'm was an electrician in the Navy and should know this, but don't:

My first night on my boat (last December), I checked my charger because ... well, long story full of problems. The point is, my 120-12 volt converter is putting out amps, but the voltage output is only 10 volts. I don't understand: in order to charge the batteries -- which it does seem to be doing -- doesn't the voltage output have to be greater than that of the batteries, which varies at times between 12 and 14 volts?

Am I an idiot ... or a big idiot?

My other related question on lighting is this: I am a liveaboard and need more lighting. Should I install 120 volt since I am always on marina-paid shore power when in port; or should I install more 12 volt so that, when sailing, I can use it? Advise anyone.


k1vsk 01-29-2009 06:41 PM

Your charger is definitely not working. It should be running att a minimum of 13V and higher depending on the state of your battery bank.

You would generally get more light from a 120VAC source as the bulbs are bigger...

JPerkins 02-01-2009 11:49 PM

i would go with 12vdc bulbs and then use an adapter 120 VAC to 12VDC when you're in port. these adapters are very common and used on labtops for example.

Sinuous 02-02-2009 06:09 AM

I was a Navy ET and never learned that stuff either. But as a shadetree gearhead gearhead, yes, it should be putting out nearly 14VDC.

As for lighting, I've been looking at 12V LEDs. I'm impressed with the output of LEDs in flashlights, at least.

MacGyverRI 02-10-2009 02:00 PM

These are about the cheapest LED's around after mucho searching! :)

Product Listing - OTHER
direct bulb replacements about 1/2 way down the page.
The 1142's fit the 2 contact base w/o grounding sides like an 1156 or 1157 type bulb.

Every LED application you could want;

celenoglu 02-10-2009 02:27 PM

12V illumination is not much different than 110V. Halogen bulbs can give more light when compared to classic hot filament bulbs. It might be better to use 12V halogen bulbs for better illumination.

I do not like LEDS. They might produce good candle power per watts consumed, but I do not agree to the candle power measurements. Although the electronic machinery states the same candle power, I cannot feel the same light as compared to hot filament lights.

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