Introduction: Illuminate a Garage That Does Not Have Electricity

Picture of Illuminate a Garage That Does Not Have Electricity


Here is a small DIY I realized in order to bring light in my garage that lacks electricity. It's the first time I write an instructable on the site so I hope it will be useful to some of you. I am French so if I don't explain something clearly, don't hesitate to warn me.

Step 1: Easy But Useful

I warn you, this DIY is very EASY to achieve, since it is essentially to assemble the right products !

Step 2: What You Need

Picture of What You Need

To achieve this you will need :

A portable battery 5V: battery type made to charge smartphones and \ or tablet.

A 5V to 12V adapter:

An LED strip:

Electrical cable: the length depends on your installation

Twine to hang the led strip where you want to install it, or an other product to hang the strip.

Optional USB interuptor (watch out because : all the portable batteries do not work well with this kind of switch.)

A screwdriver

Step 3: Where Goes the Wires ?

Picture of Where Goes the Wires ?

Just assemble all components. Take your screwdriver and the 5V to 12V adapter and insert the two wire of the LED strip in the blue sockets. The red wire must go where you can read "Vout", the black wire must go where you can read "GND".

Step 4: Different Kind of Portable Batteries, Different Possibilities...

Picture of Different Kind of Portable Batteries, Different Possibilities...

Then you just have to insert the adapter into the portable battery (that you have previously charged). Therefore, we distinguish type of portable batteries, that which will react as soon as you plug something, in this case, the light will turn on immediately, there is still probably a button On \ Off on this battery, allowing you to power-off the light. With this type of battery, you can also add a USB switch between the battery and adapter.

The other type of battery will light up the LEDs if you press the On \ Off button on it. With this type of battery, the USB switch will be unusable because you will also always have to press the On \ Off button on the portable battery to power the lights.

In all cases, this type of batteries coupled to a strip of LED ensures efficient lighting and will not discharge quickly, allowing much use.

Step 5: Hanging the LED Strip and See What It Can Do for You.

Finally, I set my LED strip with some twine, but any type of attachment may do the trick.

Now I show a video of my garage without lighting and with lighting (In the video I show you the Two kind of batteries and possible wirings). As you can see, it does work. And I don't often recharge. And I sometimes use sun's power to charge the batteries so it can also be a green project.

Hope it will help some of you, it's so useful ! and don't be afraid, really easy to do.


brightondale (author)2016-09-13

Super idea! Just to know for us folks who are less 'electrically
inclined', you can buy USB powered LED light strips, pre-made. But, my
question is how many mili-amps is your battery and how many hours would
you say you can get out of a charge? I'm trying to figure out how large a
battery I should buy. My apologies if you mentioned any of this and I
missed it.

OlivD (author)brightondale2016-09-13

Hi, no i didn't mention it, but I will answer you when i will start a new cycle of charge so you will know how much time it can serve. I have never look at the time of use because it works a very satisfying time to me.. And I will give you all the info about the battery I use at the same time.

brightondale (author)OlivD2016-09-13

Thanks I appreciate it.

OlivD (author)brightondale2016-12-03

hi, to reply to your question, i have use the 30000 mah battery since i propose you to look at the tome of use. The battery is finally empty after between 3h30min and 4h00min of use. To me, it's 3 months of use. Son i consider it as a really effective solution.

OlivD made it! (author)brightondale2016-09-25

to begin to answer you, here are the specs of the battery. I am charging the battery now, so i will give you the time of use.

ElvisM7 (author)2016-09-17

I Like it . Good concept !

ElvisM7 (author)ElvisM72016-09-17

Thank you for sharing your Idea .

DIY Hacks and How Tos (author)2016-09-11

Great design. I need to do this with my shed

thank you. I advise to try it because to me thé result is better than expected

neopolitan (author)OlivD2016-09-14

buying stuff IS boring.

you go olivd!...!

OlivD (author)neopolitan2016-09-14

I mean i prefer to build something (I know I know, i do it with stuff i have bought...) that is fully adapted to my need.

JPe22 (author)2016-09-14

The connection of the wires to the adaptor/converter is very dangerous the way you did this in step 3. If you touch the wires (in the dark to switch on) you can easely shortcut the wires and your converter is gone, the wires should be made shorter so the isolation comes up to the connector and no copperwire is visual

OlivD (author)JPe222016-09-14

You are right. Thank you to remind it

SUMMER THYME (author)2016-09-13

OlivD, you have come with a great DIY idea.

May I suggest an alternative to your concept?

This little illumination box not only solved my no-power outbuilding dilemma, the wife also installed these in the yard for ambience. Win-Win :-)

OlivD (author)SUMMER THYME2016-09-13

i also find my battery more portable.

OlivD (author)SUMMER THYME2016-09-13

the product looks Nice, but buying stuff is so boring....

perfo (author)2016-09-13

Do you only need this to get in and out of your car ?

If so it seems to me that you maybe able to rig up a charger using the weight of the car. So that every time the car drives over a board. Using a few pulleys etc it lifts a weight that then slowly falls charging the batteries. Maybe a big air bag under a flap and the air bag pushes a piston up a pipe that then falls.. Anyway the idea is use the huge weight of the car every time you drive in and out...

OlivD (author)perfo2016-09-13

no i don't use it to get in thé car, but to see all the things stocked in the garage. Without those lights, i just don't see where my feet are going...

Your principle to charge the battery using the movement of thé car is good, i will think about it.

Thank you

GaryO32 (author)2016-09-13

Where is the video??? I can't find it...

OlivD (author)GaryO322016-09-13

On the step 5

thenne1713 (author)2016-09-13

There is a (new?) Motion-detector LED Floodlight on the market w/ remote solar cell recharge (3-6ft wire) in the $30 range, uses rechargeable (ni-cads?)

OlivD (author)thenne17132016-09-13

A motion detector can be useful here, but a remote solar cell recharge is not usable in an underground garage. Here, I can take my battery and put it outside to recharge it. The best i can do is to have one solar battery working inside the garage while an other is sun charging outside. But to be honest those solar battery are not very effective if you hope to use it only with sun energy.

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