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Thread: Transfer switch for 12v emergency lighting?

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  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Bassist58's Avatar
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    Default Transfer switch for 12v emergency lighting?

    My project is merely in the thought processes right now. I want to make an emergency lighting system in case my power goes out. I'm thinking of using a 12v deep-cycle marine battery charged by a solar panel (or small wind generator) to light a string of LED's inside my house.

    Is there something that can turn them on automatically when the power goes out? All of the threads I've searched seem to deal with transfer switches used with generators that are somehow tied to the grid. (And nightmare stories of death by electrocution.) I just want something that I can plug into a 110 outlet that detects when the power goes out and turns on my lights. Sounds simple to me, but that is never usually the case. Short of changing the batteries in a flashlight, I have no experience with electrical stuff, but I want to learn.

    Thanks so much in advance!

  2. #2
    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    are you wanting something like this
    http://www.lightworld.com/products/L-1.html

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    DIY Junior Member Bassist58's Avatar
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    jwelectric

    Thank you so much for the quick response!
    Looks like a great product, except for the wiring into a box thing. Actually, the L-1-Plug http://www.lightworld.com/products/L-1-Plug.html (link on the page you gave me) is more my speed. Much less work and cheaper than my original idea. I had no idea that these existed.
    Thanks so much for the info!

    Brian

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    DIY Junior Member Bassist58's Avatar
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    A friend of mine just told me about this:

    http://www.walmart.com/ip/Sylvania-P...Light/11080456

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    That is okay if you want a "single" light, but to operate a string of lights you need a "normally closed" relay which is kept "open" by your house's electrical system and "closes" when the power fails, thus turning on your lighting. This is NOT a "plug in" item, other than for the power to control the relay.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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    DIY Junior Member Bassist58's Avatar
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    Thanks muchly, hj.
    This was what I wanted to know about, originally. While the above products will suffice until I actually start my project, the project itself is something that I've been wanting to do just because I thought it would be cool to do, but mostly to learn.
    Now, on to learn about relays.

    Thanks again,

    Brian

  7. #7
    DIY Senior Member BobL43's Avatar
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    Lightbulb

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassist58 View Post
    jwelectric

    Thank you so much for the quick response!
    Looks like a great product, except for the wiring into a box thing. Actually, the L-1-Plug http://www.lightworld.com/products/L-1-Plug.html (link on the page you gave me) is more my speed. Much less work and cheaper than my original idea. I had no idea that these existed.
    Thanks so much for the info!

    Brian
    Bassist,

    All this discussion of the controls issues, but the unit(s) you and JW linked to amount to only a little less than 11 watts of incandescant lamping. Is that enough light for your needs? Did I read those specs correctly? I just read you other post that links to the LED plug in, but even that has really low light output, no?
    Last edited by BobL43; 12-12-2012 at 07:52 AM.
    I am definitely not a pro plumber, but I am a pro crastinator

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