Convert a Tablelamp to LED for CHEAP!!




About: I like building things. I like to experiment with alternative methods of heating and cooling houses.

How would you like to convert a table lamp to LED operation very EASILY and cheaply? Well, right now is AFTER CHRISTMAS and you can purchase strands of LED white lights for almost nothing.  It's a simple operation to convert over to LED operation.  Advantages are VERY low electric usage.  This is very usefull on lamps that supply general lighting... but not very good if you want a reading-lamp.  I have family members who often leave lights ON all the time. This modification makes the lamp use only about 4 watts of electricity.  Thats a fraction of even what compact fluorescents use.  So if the lamp is left on ... it does not matter nearly so much. 

Step 1: Everything You Will Need

You will not need ANY tools to accomplish this.  Just a string of  WHITE LED christmas tree lights.  I got mine at Walgreens for 50% off. Only costed $2.50.  An adaptor outlet that screws into the lamp socket and gives you the electric outlet in the lamp.... and some electric tape.  DO NOT unwind the LED lights !! leave them bundled up as they came out of the box. Just remove your OLD energy wasting compact fluorescent bulb.  Then screw in the ADAPTOR plug into the lamp socket.  If your old bulb is HOT... leave lamp OFF a few minutes to cool down before removing it so you dont burn yourself or drop the bulb.  The ADAPTOR plug you need is pictured at the bottom left of this picture.

Step 2: Build It Now... No Tools Needed!

Now just plug in your LED string just as it is bundled together.  Orient the bundle so the LED's point UP and DOWN... That way all the light goes out of the lampshade instead of being reduced in intensity by aiming at the shade.  After the bundle is oriented to point light UP and DOWN, just wrap some electrical tape around the whole thing to hold it all in place.  Replace the shade and you are DONE!  This idea works also in hallway lights that have a glass globe over them... or in CEILING FAN LIGHTGLOBES... because the bundle is not visable through the opaque glass. Any light that is not used as a reading light a good one to do this to.  Now is the time to get your LED christmas lights at all the after Christmas sales you can buy them for a song!



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    17 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Nice simple way to make your lighting more efficient. But all the LED strings and ropelights I've seen so far have an annoying flicker because it would have cost the factory another 20 cents to put a capacitor in the string.
    Some people don't notice it, but most do and find it annoying.

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    The string is LEDs in series; a cap would be needed at every LED. What you can do in this table light situation is get two strings. Plug in one string in one direction, the other in the opposite. That way one string is on during the positive half cycle, the other during the negative half cycle. My Low Voltage "Malibu" lights have two LED modules in them wired in opposite directions. This greatly reduces the annoying flicker you refer to.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    this is one way to do it I guess...TY for sharing.

    What I would like to find is an ible where someone takes a table lamp & actually converts it to LED.
    This is is a good idea for saving $$ but not really what I consider a "conversion" to LED...

    I'd make an Ible on it if I knew how or at least had an idea of how to do it... :(


    9 years ago on Introduction

    good score.

    I just walked in the door with a string of 70 blue ones. on sale for $7.49 in the after xmas sales.

    I thought 11 cents per LED, (some disassembly required), was a pretty good price, but you got yours for about half that.

    Now I'm SAD. Can anyone guess what I'm going to do with 70 blue LEDs?

    5 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Why not to use them as the instructable says in a corridor or hall as ambience light?


    I was trying to come up with a design to do this very thing. But never even thought of just getting a bundle of led Christmas lights. Great Idea!

    The bonus to this of course is if one burns out you have 49 more to go before you are completely lightless!


    9 years ago on Introduction

    I got a string of 100 clear lights at Rite Aid for under $2.00.  Got 'em home
    and found that they use 40 watts. .read the label better and realize that
    they aren't LED's.   .. .duhh. . . gotta pay attention at the post Christmas
    sale for this project.

    This is a pretty darn good idea!  Plus you can also use different colors for Holidays or just plain mood lighting.  I like it!


    9 years ago on Introduction

    This is a great idea !  Ive used white xmas lights around the porch and other outside areas just as cheap and weatherproof lighting but this idea really rocks