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Converting solar LED string lights to a wall wart adaptor. Answered

Hi all

I recently picked up some bargain priced solar string lights for room decoration and to provide a low level of light at night, I suffer fromMeniere's disease and one of my triggers is moving around in complete darkness, unfortunately I also have problems going from darkness to light so simply turning on a light can also trigger an attack. I've tried all manner of different lighting but most were not suitable for a variety of reasons.
A friend who is also a sufferer suggested LED string lights, the kind used at Christmas or to give some decorative lighting in gardens, he has similar problems with light and darkness to me and had been using them for several years he now has LED lights set into coving in every room of his house, I borrowed a loose string set of his he uses on some plants in a small conservatory while he was away on holiday and to use the same words I did to him on his return they were "Bang on perfect" bright enough to be able to move around comfortably (imagine a couple of candles in a bedroom) but not so bright that they keep me awake.

I've had solar lights in the past and knew that the bargain price was probably because they had been in storage for some time so was not in the least surprised to find the batteries no longer take a full charge, I swapped out the old batteries for new ones but to be honest I bought them more for their look than the solar capability, I was originally seeking some mains ones but not wishing to have a hundred or more all I could find were solar or battery, I really don't want the hassle or expense of constantly replacing batteries and the solar ones come on automatically at night so it seemed a good compromise, unfortunately I'm still having problems, whether it's an issue of their not getting sufficient charge from the autumn sun to fully charge (the panels are stuck to my windows so are in full sun all day) or simply that the batteries are running down too soon they are just not lasting long enough for me to rely on them.

What I would like to do is change the power to a mains wall wart, each string is powered by a singe AA 1.2v 600mAh battery and I'm hoping I can swap this out for a hard wired adaptor of suitable output.

I'm not really an electronics/electrics guy, I can build wiring looms for motorcycles OK, I've made some simple additions to the circuits on my electric bike to power an alarm and installed 12v LED car bulbs into its lighting but that is all very simple low voltage stuff, I don't have much experience with converting from battery to mains.

My questions are pretty straightforward and I'd like layman's answers, a whole lot of technical chatter about amps living in Ohms and suchlike will get me nowhere, all I want to know is is it a viable option and if possible where I could obtain the necessary adaptors suitable for UK 240v mains electrics online.

These are the only tech specs I have on them that seem appropriate to my question are they are Solar Power: 2V 100mA

If it's any help these are the lights in question. https://www.amazon.com/Finether-Festival-Celebration-Decoration-Commercial/dp/B01M6CLVQX

Thanks in advance for any help ideas and suggestions.



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3 years ago

If you have one, a 1.5v wart would be the easiest way to go.

Caution: Ensure that the total amperage/wattage is well below the rating for the wart. As you approach the wart's limit, it will become very warm. Exceeding the limit will create a fire hazard. If you need to convert amps & watts, use the formula V x A = W.

If you wish to use a higher voltage wart, you will need to wire enough lights in Series to us up the amount of voltage. (eg. 12v power will require 10 lights rated at 1.2v each) Note: When wiring in Series, if one light goes our, they all go out.



3 years ago

You should be able to them on 1.5V and for that it should be possible to get a wall wart, usually the universal type with a switch to select all sorts of voltages from 1.5 to 12V.
But if you want LED light and be able to match the brightness and maybe even color to your specific needs I highly recommend going a more professional route.
You can buy RGB LED strips now quite cheap on Fleabuy for example.
For those you can also get controllers that allow you to set a specific brightness, color or light effect.
In case of a power failure or you turned them off they usually turn back on with the last setting.
There are dirt cheap controllers and strip combos available but also the more professional ones.
The cheap ones usually require a 12V power supply, which is cheap and easy to find.
More expensive solution can cost between $50 and a few thausand depending on far you want to go.
Another alternative you could consider is glow in the dark paint, tape, stickers...
The new types last up to 8 hours after exposure to light and go dim very slowly.
Of course this only works if you have suffient light on them but might still be good to "highlight" corners or light switches.