Forums » Ask a Question

Use this forum to post your questions to our experts – you need to be logged on to do it (you can register here ), then scroll down to the bottom of this page and click the blue Post Thread words

If you can help answer the question, feel free to post a reply – you need to be logged on to do it (you can register here ), then hit the reply button on the thread.

 

To go back to the experts page click here>>

AuthorMessage
Splitty
Splitty

Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:04pm

Post Subject: Light switch

Hi, is it possible to use 240v house type light switches on my 12v boat system? my lights are all l e d spots.

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Sat Oct 29, 2016 1:35pm

Post Subject: Light switch

Yes is is perfectly possible subject to the caveats below. My boat uses them and we have had it for about17 years without switch problems. Household switches are rated for AC electricity that turns itself of for a split second twice in every cycle. This means that almost but not quiet the instant you turn the switch off the electricity supplying the switch turns itself off. This prevents sparking as the contacts open but with DC electricity there is no such turn off so the design and materials need to be different to prevent sparking and contact damage. Some nominally mains switches may in fact be rated for DC but I suspect most of the readily available ones are not. There may be electronics inside those bulbs and if it uses a coil of wire it might cause a voltage surge as you turn them off. If so this could make any sparking worse. Personally I feel this is unlikely (without the design data) so is probably not an issue. The mains switches have ample insulation for 12V and with LEDs the current flowing is likely to be small so subject to understanding the above such switches are used. It would be good practice to use "bootlace ferrules" on the bare cable strands where screw in the switch secures them.

Splitty
Splitty

Posted: Sun Oct 30, 2016 9:37pm

Post Subject: Light switch

Thanks Tony, you've been a great help as I didn't want to swap them without knowing the facts.

Most Read

Newsletter Sign Up

Canal Boat monthly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Like us on Facebook



Follow us on Twitter

Cache: Disabled for this object  Total Queries: 43.  Total Objects: 162.  Total Unserialized: 3. Total Runtime: 0.35 seconds.