Battery pack for LED lights is quickly revolutionizing how we light homes with artificial light sources.
Foremost, LED lights are getting more popular owing to their versatility, longevity, and energy efficiency.
Remember, they have a great transition converting electrical energy to light energy.
Therefore, if you have a smaller battery and need more light, you are better off going with LED lights.
If you have an LED project and would like to power it with a battery pack, today’s article is for you.
It looks at what to consider, available options, and safety measures you must take when dealing with LED battery packs.
Considerations When Choosing Battery Pack for LED Light
(LED lights around a luxury room)
When selecting a battery pack for LED lights, knowing there’s nothing like a perfect battery is essential.
Some battery packs work best in high-intensity LED lighting systems, whereas others excel in demanding environments.
Here, we provide the factors to consider when picking the best battery pack for your LED lights.
Single Use or Rechargeable
The scale of your LED lighting project can determine the type of battery pack to install. For example, if you are lighting up a Christmas tree for the festivities, it may be cheaper to buy a single-use battery.
However, a rechargeable pack is more suitable if you use a battery to power your lights for an extended period.
The only downside is that they have a faster discharge rate, which may be unsuitable for remote LED lighting applications.
Consider the voltage requirements of your LED strip before purchasing a battery pack. A 12V LED strip requires a battery supplying a similar voltage.
If you supply a higher voltage, you risk damaging your LED strips. Conversely, supplying a 24V LED strip with a 12V power supply will result in dimmer lights.
Power vs. Energy
(Changing an LED light at home)
A battery pack’s capacity determines how long it lasts from full charge to when it’s empty.
Therefore, it’s vital that you know the energy contents of battery packs of different chemistries, like alkaline and lead-acid batteries.
To know a battery pack’s energy content, multiply its voltage (V) by capacity.
For example, a NiMH battery with 1.2V may have the same capacity as a lithium-ion battery supplying 3.2V.
The difference is that the latter has a higher voltage and energy content.
Additionally, battery packs with high power capacity are better for projects with high drain rates.
The time a battery pack sits on the shelf is also crucial, as single-use batteries have longer shelf lives.
If you plan to illuminate an area once every few months, you are better off going with a battery pack comprising primary batteries.
On the other hand, if you decide to use rechargeable batteries, ensure you store them with some charge.
Failure to do so damages the battery pack meaning it loses its ability to hold a charge.
Cost and Quality
The cost of a battery pack is not directly proportional to its quality. Instead, always go for reputable manufacturers with thousands of positive reviews.
Additionally, compare a battery pack’s performance characteristics and see if it matches the lighting requirement of your LED lights.
Different Battery Packs for LED Lights
(Rechargeable alkaline battery packs)
There are various battery pack technologies for LED lights across the world. Generally, the following are more common due to their reliability.
Lithium-ion Battery Packs
Lithium-ion battery packs rely on the reduction of lithium ions to keep energy. Their negative terminals comprise graphite, whereas the positive ones comprise a metal oxide.
Additionally, they have nominal cell voltage ranging from 3.6V to 3.85V that pairs with a self-discharge rate of 0.4 to 2.5 percent monthly.
Generally, it’s a prevalent battery type for eclectic vehicles and some consumer electronics.
NiMH Battery Packs
NiMH battery packs comprise several nickel metal hydride batteries that are rechargeable. They have a higher energy density with a nominal voltage of 1.2V.
Moreover, the NiMH battery packs are substitutes for similar non-rechargeable alkaline batteries.
They have a high energy content suiting them for high-drain LED lighting projects.
On the downside, they have a higher discharge rate of 13.9 to 70.6 percent monthly at room temperature.
Alkaline Battery Packs
Alkaline battery packs have a potassium hydroxide electrolyte and a nominal cell voltage of 1.5V.
As such, when powering a 12V LED strip, you will connect 8 such batteries to form a 12V battery pack.
Moreover, their low energy capacity makes them suitable for low-drain LED projects.
Safety Practices To Protect Your Battery Pack
(Charging a small battery)
When handling a battery, you may encounter many dangers, including overheating and electrical shorts.
In extreme cases, the battery may explode, causing a fire in your premise. Consequently, you may experience burns resulting from exposure to the electrolytic contents of the battery.
- You must consider some factors to stay safe when handling a battery pack.
- Use compatible chargers to prevent overcharging and overheating.
- Don’t overcharge to protect your battery pack’s cells.
- Don’t over-discharge to avoid reducing the battery pack’s capacity.
- Store the battery pack with 40 to 60 percent of the charge remaining. The reason is that storing an empty battery will lead to it losing its capacity.
- Don’t expose the battery pack to excess heat or direct sunlight.
- Please don’t drop your battery; it may lead to internal short circuits. Moreover, any poor connection within the pack can lead to a fire outbreak.
- Avoid touching your battery pack with wet hands.
How can you charge an LED battery pack?
Charging an LED battery pack depends on the manufacturer’s instructions and the pack’s charging technology.
Remember, different battery packs have varying charging methods. Additionally, start by confirming whether your battery pack is rechargeable.
The reason is that you risk an explosion when you charge a single-use battery pack.
Next, connect the battery pack to a charger which you will then connect to a wall socket.
At this stage, ensure you have a firm connection at both ends to avoid damaging your electronics.
How long should you expect the battery pack to last?
How long a battery pack lasts depends on its quality, capacity, and usage.
For instance, a battery pack powering 300 LEDs will last less than one powering a single light, given that they are of a similar capacity.
Additionally, a battery pack will drain faster when you use it continuously versus intermittently.
For example, a battery pack powering a LED flashlight lasts longer when you turn the lights on for short periods.
On the other hand, it drains faster if you keep the flashlight on continuously.
Another determinant is temperature, as extreme heat causes a battery pack to drain faster. On the other hand, cold temperatures reduce its capacity.
Either way, a battery pack lasts longer when used within the normal temperature range.
Is a battery for LED lights expensive
LEDs use the normal DC batteries we have in our electronics or homes. Their wattage-to-lumen conversion is high, meaning you can use a small battery to power the lights.
The only catch is that the battery should supply a voltage matching the energy needs of the LED.
Moreover, batteries are relatively cheaper in comparison to other energy storage devices.
Therefore, when you compare the cost versus benefits of any battery pack, you can be sure that the benefits outweigh the cost.
Battery packs keep our homes illuminated during power outages or in an outdoor setting. And the good thing is that you can use them to power LED lights that drain little power.
If you compare LEDs with incandescent lights, you will find that the former converts close to 90 percent of energy to light.
Incandescent lights convert less than 20 percent of incoming power to light.
Moreover, you can assemble several individual batteries to form a pack supplying the required voltage.