**Emergency Light Hack Without Electric!**




About: Hello, You can call me Rex. I'm intrigued by electronics and always on the lookout for a cool project to make my Family smile. I just posted my first Instructable and I got the happy response from my da...

Hey Everyone!

Read the Title First!! Legal or Not?? I have no idea! I am not responsible if you try it! I discovered an "Emergency Light Hack" that can light up your room in an "Emergency" especially if your electric is out! With the Ice Storm that just swept across the United States, it made me think! What if we lost electric!! We have Emergency Propane heat for a backup...but what about light? Of course we have flashlights, but what if the storm lasts longer than our batteries? I don't have a generator...crap! A Generator costs a good bit of cash, that I don't have... What can I do before that situation hits my house? OK, I know that a corded phone does not require my house to have electric in order to work so...I measured the voltage! Wow! 48 Volts DC! Now that could light up my room in an Emergency situation! I said, lets get to work and get prepared!

Step 1: Gathering Parts!

Parts List:

  1. Section of phone cord
  2. Electronic scrap - Led Spotlight reflector and lens
  3. PCB out of the Led Spot Light or from Radio Shack
  4. Replacement LED's
  5. 22 AWG wire

Step 2: Install the LED's

Next, I started soldering on the new LED's to the PCB and making the wire connections.

Step 3: Attaching the PCB

Next, I attached the PCB and End Cap onto the LED Housing. I ran a small bead of Hot Glue around the cap for added strength.

Step 4: I Made a Temporary Connection!

In the last step I made a Temporary connection. I will more than likely add a connector of some sort, maybe a spade connector so I can easily connect/disconnect in an Emergency.
One last minute modification.. I just added a clip from a coat hanger with hot glue to the back so I can clip it on something. (example: Curtain, chair, table or anything) I hope that you all enjoyed this one! An Emergency is "Priceless" when you don't have any!

There are so many applications that you can alter this project and make it just as useful.

Like, add a resister, batteries and a switch and you would have a Flashlight!

or... What can you make? Wow! the possibilities!!



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    7 Discussions


    2 years ago

    There have been several of these instructables over the years. It is good to note that if your phone service is the old 'two copper wires from the central office' you are powering your emergency light from the phone company's central office were the switch gear is located.

    However, if your phone service is supplied by a cable tv or via fiber optic provider your 48V is coming from a module and small battery in your house that is designed to keep your phone running during a power failure. Adding an emergency light load to that battery will cause your phone service to go out sooner than it normally would have, when your local battery goes dead. Its also good to note that most cable/fiber people probably have the original back up battery running their phone which is loosing capacity since it is getting old.

    Just some things to think about. Might want to add a hand crank flashlight to your emergency supplies - the type that also recharges cell phones! :)

    2 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    Thanks for the suggestions, I'm researching the flashlight now. Anything that can help you when your are in one of those emergency situations is a blessing. It's always good to be prepared for the inevitable.


    2 years ago

    This is forbidden in France, this energy is here to support voice transmissions. You're a kind of sorcerer's apprentice. This energy can be up to 48V x 0.08A = 3.84W (Z=600ohm). The line supplier can reverse the polarity at any time, there is no regulation in this matter, when the ring is active, voltage goes up to 96V which begins to be dangerous. Current must be limited to supply Leds, if you supply them with 48V and up to 96V without any limitation, they won't last long specially if the operator's electronics chose to revert polarities ! Long life to Leds !

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Wow, your in France? I was hoping to just show what someone can do in an Emergency situation. I initially added a resister in the beginning of the test, but the LED's didn't light. I figured that the diameter of the wire and the length of phone line must offer enough resistance for the test. It's probably not legal here either, but I don't know for sure.

    Sorcerer's Apprentice - Sounds pretty cool!

    Thanks for your comments,

    Left-field Designs

    2 years ago

    it would be cool to automate this and really easy too, supply your 48v to the led power board through an ac rated normally open relay and feed the coil from the mains supply, this will keep he light of when the mains are on, when mains power drops out, the relay coil de-energises and the contact is made turning on the light, when the power comes back the light turns off

    1 reply