Adding a LED Light to an Existing Fixture

We wanted just a little light in the cabin to watch TV or work on the computer. Our solution was to install a LED light in one of the already existing overhead fixtures. The LED puts out just enough light that it makes a perfect night light and pulls very little power. It also has a pleasing glow.

This installation is adaptable for any ceiling fixture that is operated with its own on/off switch. It would not work with lights that are operated in a bank from a wall switch.

Before you begin, turn off the power to your light fixture at the breaker panel.df_adding_led1

I installed a LED (West Marine P/N 2613255) light in my light fixture over the stove. I first drilled a hole beside the incandescent bulb (take the bulb out first) just off center of the reflector. Make sure you leave enough room to put back the bulb, as you don’t want it touching the LED unit. Then run the LED wires through the hole, using silicon sealer to glue the LED to the reflector (or if you like you could actually use sheet metal screws to attach it). Allow a little silicon to “ooze” though the hole to help protect the wires from the sharp edges you just drilled. Then I used a toggle switch (West Marine P/N 211763) which I ran through a 1/2″ hole in the side of the light fixture and secured. Be sure to use only “butt” connectors to connect the wires; do not use “twist nuts” as twist nuts can vibrate loose and cause an electrical issue. Use the existing wiring on the df_adding_led2incandescent light as a guide as to how to wire in the LED. Reinstall the incandescent bulb and turn the circuit breaker back on.

We added the LED light while in the Bahamas where switches are a little hard to come by. Next time I would see if I could find a switch that is the “On/Off/On” type, as you wouldn’t need to drill the 1/2″ hole in the side of the light fixture. This would make installation much easier, and I would only have needed to drill one small hole.

This was a very easy installation, one that is designed for beginners. This also might work well for the head.

Leslie & Doug Folkerth
Happy Clamz – NT 32-127