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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for some input from home 12volt users.

I want to use 9 of the following lights in the ceiling of the living room:

Voltage: 12V only
Power: 3.8W
Color temperature: 6000K
Luminous flux: 450 - 500LM
AMPS: Approx 0.41666 @12v


I would use an RV triple gang switch controlling 3 strings of 3 lights each, with the following specs:
16a-125-250v 10a-14v on-off-on switch

Does this sound like a reasonable solution that would provide enough lighting as compared to a 60-75 watt incandescent?

What size wiring would I need to use if the run from the battery bank is approximately 25-30 feet?

Suggestions on 12volt lighting parts are appreciated, I will only be using 120v via inverter in one room, all else will be 12v.

Thanks
 

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your ideas sound very good. For wiring I'd recommend you go with 10 gauge stranded so you get the maximum electron flow and not have to worry about the length of runs. Don't forget to have 12V breakers in a 12V breaker box, I'd recommend a 50 amp main and 15 amp individual breakers. 20 amp breakers could also be used but I'd do that only if you were planning on more than three lights per circuit.
 

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So many things we don't know, size of room, what is the room used for? We like 1 light in the middle of the room, maybe a 2 bulb fixture. Then floor or table lamps where needed. We do have small rooms....James
 

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Discussion Starter #4
So many things we don't know, size of room, what is the room used for? We like 1 light in the middle of the room, maybe a 2 bulb fixture. Then floor or table lamps where needed. We do have small rooms....James
It would be approx 16x13....but it isn't exactly a room...it's a zone. :)
It's an open floorplan 16x32 cabin, 7 1/2 ft ceiling extending 13ft out on each end, and open to the roof in the middle, with an 8x16 additional area on the rear long side. I have a thread here on the building process.

I could go with 12 of them, for 4 rows of 3 and use a quad gang switch instead if the area is too large to be illuminated with 9.

It's a general use area, lounging, entertainment, etc.
 

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Don't forget to have 12V breakers in a 12V breaker box, I'd recommend a 50 amp main and 15 amp individual breakers. 20 amp breakers could also be used but I'd do that only if you were planning on more than three lights per circuit.

Along that line, Square D breakers ( the QO series, not the "Homeline" series) are UL approved for up to (but not including) 48v DC. So you can use a standard Square D panel, and off-the-shelf breakers without having to buy something special (and more costly....Square D stuff will set you back enough....ahahahaaaa)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Along that line, Square D breakers ( the QO series, not the "Homeline" series) are UL approved for up to (but not including) 48v DC. So you can use a standard Square D panel, and off-the-shelf breakers without having to buy something special (and more costly....Square D stuff will set you back enough....ahahahaaaa)
I checked out the Square D stuff, and it doesn't seem that expensive

Square D by Schneider Electric QO 15 Amp Single-Pole Circuit Breaker $6.74
and
Square D by Schneider Electric QO 20 Amp Two-Pole Circuit Breaker $15.44
at Home Depot.

They also have Square D by Schneider Electric QO 100 Amp 12-Space 12-Circuit Indoor Main Breaker Load Center with Cover for $75.

Unless I'm missing something, wouldn't this be acceptable?
 

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Hi Bob, great that you're going to LED! There's a lot of good info on voltage drop and "ampacity" of wiring - here's one source I've used:

http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/amps-wire-gauge-d_730.html

You're really not drawing much in the way of amps, and depending on the LED's voltage drop is pretty minor over that distance, and may not be an issue.

The one thing that caught my eye was the 6000K - that's a very cool white! I like my lights more like incandescent, around 3000K, but some people do and some people dont...

z
 

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When ever you are calculating your loads, remember one very important formula:

Watts = Volts x Amps

Stranded wire is the only wire that should be used for direct current. Electricity travels on the surface of the wire and the more strands per diameter of wire, the higher the load rating. So, not all wire is created equal for the same gauge. Romex should never be used for DC applications.

In general, for a good quality stranded wire less than 100 feet,
8G - 50 amps
10G - 30 amps
12G - 20 amps
14G - 15 amps
16G - 10 amps

Please do some research. I am no electrician and this is only what I have learned from over 40 years experience (some good, some bad) with boats and RV's.
 
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