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TOPIC: High Power LED's to replace an Incandescent Driveway Bulb (60 to 100 Watt)

High Power LED's to replace an Incandescent Driveway Bulb (60 to 100 Watt) 2 years 5 months ago #17903

  • hop
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Hi everyone!!

I redesigned my driveway bulb effects and now I have lots of room for additional LED's! WOOHOO! Why is this cool? I may now included high power WHITE LED's to offer driveway lighting AND the LED effects that are holiday related. No more switching!!! And with wireless on my mosquitto network, I can change the holiday effects to suit the holiday. Green effects for St. Patrick's Day, Red White and Blue for 4th of July, Red! for Valentines! :)

But I need to include enough high-power white LED's to do the job the CFL's do so I need to do some research.

How would you go about testing this? I considered using my cheap light sensors to give a value of available light but is this the best way? Also there is an issue with heat. I have strips of white LED's in an array that run off of 12vdc, but directly connected to a power supply, they get HOT! I thought about fashioning heat sinking but not sure how to go about that, and is them getting hot a good thing? My RGB LED's do not get hot hardly at all.

I have many aluminum extrusions that are thin and easy to fashion as a heat sink. What do you think for this approach? On the prototype, I am thinking about placing some temperature sensors to see just how hot they get and if it is viable to apply voltage directly or consider some sort of current limiting.

Thoughts? Thank you for your time!!!

High Power LED's to replace an Incandescent Driveway Bulb (60 to 100 Watt) 2 years 5 months ago #17904

  • Jon Chandler
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Heat is the enemy of LEDs. It may not outright destroy them, but it will cause them to get dim very quickly.

For my bench lights, I have 18 1-watt LEDs on a strip of aluminum circuit board about 1" wide and 20" long. I have 3 of these strips on 1.25 x 1
25 x 1/8" thick aluminum L channel. The channel provides enough heatsinking to keep the LEDs happy and is slightly warm to the touch.

I have a similar ring of LEDs in my magnifying lamp without additional heatsinking. It was brilliant (literally and figuratively) for a while but after not-too-many hours of use dimmed by 75% or more.

As far as how much is enough, I figure about 9 watts of LED = 60 watts of incandescent. We have a commercial porch light with three 3-watt LEDs on a plate that's probably 9" in diameter. Bright light that's held up well for the last 3 years.

The ebay constant current drivers are a thing of beauty.
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High Power LED's to replace an Incandescent Driveway Bulb (60 to 100 Watt) 2 years 5 months ago #17905

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Talk to me about these ebay constant current drivers.... I am looking to light up my whole bench and I am getting there but need help. Thank you sir!

High Power LED's to replace an Incandescent Driveway Bulb (60 to 100 Watt) 2 years 5 months ago #17906

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Somewhere here I wrote an article about these but I can't find it.

I used LED "beads", which are available in 1-watt, 3-watt or even 5-watt sizes in warm white, daylight white or many colors. I used the 1-watt size - remember you have to dissipate the heat so more may not be better. I used daylight, but I might select warm white for some applications.



I soldered these to aluminum-backed pcb boards. These are available in all shapes and sizes on ebay. I used long strips with 18 LEDs for the bench and an 8" diameter ring for the magnifying lamp. 18 1w LEDs in a 2' length is A LOT of light. It will take an iron with plenty of wattage...you're trying to solder to a heat sink. Note that these boards require additional heat sinking, even with 1w LEDs.




The you select a power supply. These are constant current, so you select the wattage to match the number of LEDs with the range of LEDs to suit your board. The one pictured will handle 1 - 5 1w LEDs.



Hop - see my PM to you. Sorry for the hurried reply. Other things on my mind at the moment.
Last Edit: 2 years 5 months ago by Jon Chandler.
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High Power LED's to replace an Incandescent Driveway Bulb (60 to 100 Watt) 2 years 5 months ago #17907

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That is EXACTLY what I needed Jon thank you!!! As I said in my PM also, I will be looking to PWM these also. And since you have been down this road, what do you know about diffusers? I am having a heck of a time finding any that suits me. Like small single bulb types, or multiple bulb types, or even for strips. Clear or slightly frosted maybe. Plastic is ok, but also plexi or acrylic, or maybe even glass but I don't want them to be too pricey.

This one is cool. Turns standard blue LED's into what resembles a cold cathode tube.


High Power LED's to replace an Incandescent Driveway Bulb (60 to 100 Watt) 2 years 5 months ago #17908

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I don't have much good advice about diffusers.

For the Rowmark ColorCast material, I did recently discover something. This material has a thin color layer on the back, and the bulk of the material is clear. It's designed to be laser etched on the back and those areas filled with paint to make those areas stand out. I've described it in more detail in articles at Digital DAY.

Those engraved area can also be illuminated with LEDs I want to light up some large rectangular areas. I've found water-related non-refundable LEDs light the area well, but the individual LEDs make hot spots and can be glary.

The normal finish after layering is a frosted area. On a whim I tried adding a deeper cross hatch pattern after the normal etching. This added edged that reflect the LED light. Significant improvement.


If this doesn't make sense, I'm less than 24 hours out from knee replacement surgery and high on pain meds, so figure it out!
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