Light Therapy for Less Than $60.00




Near Infrared (IR) Light Emitting Array for Body Detox and Light Therapy

This NIFTY device is good for all kinds of stuff as well as looking COOL! (would go great on the wall above the couch in a hipster loft!)

I decided to post this for winter because we all need a little sun when the sky is gray.

It is well proven that humans and animals respond to certain frequencies of light. S.A.D. is a seasonal type of depression common near the holidays. But Light Therapy is a proven way to counteract this effect by simulating a warm, sunny day. (Makes you smile just thinking about it). And there is much positive research in NEAR INFRA RED.

Its what baby animals are put under when they are born. Its safe, and feels natural. It can't give you a "sun burn" either!

So with that in mind I posed these instructions so anyone can benefit from
Light Therapy which you can use to drive away the "winter blues". And you won't have to spend much money or time figuring out this very simple project.

As soon as you turn it on and bath in the red-orange light you will feel better.

But that's not all!

This project is equally as valid for another reason altogether and can be used all year long as a powerful way of Detoxifying the Body.

This array when placed in a small room like a bathroom or small closet functions as a real SAUNA!

Certain wavelengths of light have "special effects" Near infra red wont heat the air in the room like a traditional sauna, but it will PENETRATE your flesh and provide a calming warming effect.

The light waves go below the suffice of the skin, heating from the inside out.

There are many more benefits of this type of SAUNA over traditional steam saunas, as it is safer and is more effective for detoxing the body!

You may want to add a FIR space heater in the room too raise the air temperature and decrease pre-heating times. The recommended effective temperature range is in the mid 90s to just over 100 degrees F to induce sweating. If you are heating the room that much take care, and remember that SAUNA should not be taken for more then a half hour. And some one else should be at home, who will know to come get you if you are in for too long. You will want to keep a timer and rotate every 5 min. This both keeps the mind and body alert as well as keeps the heat evenly distributed on the body.

Now that you have an idea about how this NILE (Near Infrared Light Emitting) Array works...

Let's Build One!''

Luckily this project is very easy to do. I believe that if you follow the instructions closely and visit all the links in this Instructable, that even some one completely unfamiliar with electrical projects can accomplish this.

And best of all, not expensive either!

Teacher Notes

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Step 1: Supplies:

This is what I payed. Some stuff you can defiantly get cheaper!

Lamp Cable:15 feet = 5.00

Lamp Sockets @ $1.50: X4 = $6.00

Heat Lamps @ $11.00: X4 = $44.00

Plug-End: 1 = 2.20

Wire-Nuts (marretts): One Bag = 2.00

"Recycled" palette from work (could use plywood) = FREE

I layed out the fixtures in a diamond shape, eye balling it, and drew pencil outlines of the placement.

I figured out the center-points by drawing a cross through them.

I used a 1-inch "Flat wood bit". When I drilled the holes in the wood, with my trusty RYOBI drill (cheap!) from Home Despot. .

Step 2: Simple Construction:

After drilling the holes, attach about a foot of lamp wire to the screws on the back the the fixtures. Remember to attach the ribbed or silver wire to the silver screws.

You have to notice something, one side of your wire will be the ribbed or "silver side". The screws on the fixture will show this pattern as well, and the instructions on the plug-end will mention this too. It is very important to be consistent when you are wiring this. Always wire the silver/ribbed/right wires consistent because it will all come together at the end.

Feed the wire through the hole you drilled and use the supplied screws to attach the fixture from the front. You will probably want to drill some pilot holes (see image notes).

Now is the time where you will connect all the "smooth" wires to one point and all the "ribbed/silver" to another point. Then you will connect these points to the wires going to the plug. If one light goes out the rest will still work because the circuit is in "parallel".

Step 3: Yep, Yer Finnished!

That's about it!

To keep the cables from getting pulled I drilled a medium sized hole in the wood, and tied a knot in the piece of wire that would end up being "the power cord". Before attaching the plug end, I tied a knot on the other end too. This keeps the length of the power cord consistent.

Now, just attach the plug end as per the instructions on the box. "Ribbed/silver" side on the right, and then you pinch it closed.

I tested the outlets with a potentially dangerous CFL light bulb by screwing it into each one-by-one and they all checked out, functional.

So that's it. The rest of the pictures are the Infra red array in action! I hope this benefits the people that need it most!


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    47 Discussions


    Question 5 months ago

    Could the author perhaps prepare an updated revision of Figure Six, the graphic schematic, taking advantage of the great strides in quality that have been made in drawing software in recent years? As a novice in electrical matters, I need something as close to a fool-proof wiring schematic as possible. The photo that precedes F 6 is very good, but the three-way connections taped over with black electrician's tape are black boxes (in the scientific sense, not plane-crash sense) that leaves the reader to wonder what is connected to what inside.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    @camscam 5/14/2011 actually, most "heat" lamps do not function in the Near IR spectrum. The N.I.R. wavelength is just below the visible light spectrum. NIR lamps provide more light than heat. Far IR lamps, F.I.R., operate just above the U.V. wavelength, Farther away from the visible light spectrum, but above the UV wavelength.
    Near infrared lamps warm the surface area and the heat is transferred by conduction. Far infrared lamps are able to penetrate deeper into an object (our bodies) and transfer heat by a process known as conversion.

    10 replies


    to the electromagnetic pollution from the far infrared saunas, I would totally
    avoid them." -
    Lawrence Wilson, MD


    I would avoid any expert making such a general claim. Light itself is Electromagnetic pollution or a tool depending on if you are reading or trying to sleep. ever notice how bright a flash light has to be to shine through your hand? it can be done but its a very high output light held right to the flesh. and you might see a dim glow. your cheek is a better place to try it. This demos the concept of Electromagnetic radiation at high frequency not passing very deep into the body. To begin with every time you double the distance from the emiter the power level drops to 1/4th its intensity. combind with the fact that even strong high frequency EM held up to the skin (the flash light) struggles to shine through thin parts... I wouldnt worry much about the 2watts of EM radiation 10 feet from you. its just a bit of background or surface heat from the power supply. also it travels back into the wires better than it does in air and radiates out along the electrical wires.. with all but the best filtering. so if its the specific frequency hes worried about at any power level... This doctor clearrly wouldnt even enter a building with one or work at a hospital wired to the other building with a ir heat lamp. ..or he possibly doesnt know wtf hes talking about in the slightest

    very interesting article but Dr. Wilson mixes and matches some of his facts.

    Here is a link to more current information regarding EMFs:

    This discusses the use of all electrical saunas vs. the older, fire and rocks type. There is a mention in the article about the relative safety of using ceramics vs. other methods to protect us. I know that IR "heat-emitters" use ceramic rather than glass bulbs.

    Within the field of health there is still a lot of conflicting information about the types and wavelengths of IR energy. Which ranges are most beneficial or produce the desired results is still confusing.


    Reply 3 years ago

    3 years old, but still incorrect. UV and IR are at opposite ends of the visible spectrum.


    Reply 3 years ago

    Noooo. They're next to each other on the visible light spectrum.


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    The big box stores do carry them, not all watts though. Amazon has them, but you have to pay freight. Price range should be under $10 for the 175W and up to about $12 for shatter resistant 250W. You can find them pretty cheap if you google search. Major brands are Sylvania, Phillips, GE and Satco (they use the sylvania lamps and coat them)


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    I got mine at Lowes back in the day. They are a pretty common item. Some walmarts may even have them. If not, for sure the feed store will because they are used in heat lamps for hatching chicks.


    Reply 4 years ago

    Light spectrum goes uv->visible light->near-infrared->far infrared


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the correction. I am not sure why I put that there.

    Electromagnetic waves between visible light and the microwave are called
    infrared waves. The wavelength of infrared waves range from 0.76 micron
    to 1,000 microns; this range is further subdivided into the ranges of
    Near, Medium, and Far Infrared Rays with following wavelength: 0.76 to
    1.5microns; 1.5 to 4 microns; and 4 to 1,000 micr


    2 years ago

    Awesome, haven't made it yet. I will be using a stand with wheels. Love the results. My Question is: What about Floodlights that have colored lenses like the GE (General Electric) LED long life / low energy 5 bulbs in 1? What about the PAR30 and PAR38 Floodlights? Then there's Wal-Mart's Pain Management Technology Infrared Light Wand for $30. Do Red LED lights emit the same wavelength?. I've found old articles saying to stay away from them. New research says they can be used.There are plenty of DIY's and Hack site about making your own flashlights and swapping to red led lights. Can red cellophane be used on the white led lights? By the way I've read all Comments. Love Camscam's sarcastic remark "God Forbid ..." "Moral Outrage" comment LMAO.

    Great Argument as in Discussion, not argument in fighting. A lot of smart people here asking great questions. Thumbs Up!


    2 years ago


    1) I heard a woman on Rense Radio (owner of who makes these devices) advocate using near infared LEDs....Could someone please comment on LED usage?

    2) Has anyone noticed any therapeutic benefits from using this device?

    Please reply

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Don't use LED's.


    2 years ago

    How do you tell that these generic heat lamps are NIR?


    2 years ago

    Any chance anyone has a finished product? I'd like to see what people have done. Did you built a "room" or do you use in your shower?


    3 years ago

    I've just found out that far ibfrared doesn't help rheumatoid arthritis at all. We need the near bukbs to penetrate past the muscle into the joint. The light isn't visible. ☺


    3 years ago

    Are these lights damaging to the naked eye?


    3 years ago

    Thanks camscam! Really nice post. I saw some info on near infrared on Wendh Meyers site _ liveto110. She talks about multiple benefits of using near or for pain relief, detox, etc. It's great to be able to make one this inexpensive.