Lamp Hacks: LED Retrofits & Unique Customizations

Lamp Hacks: LED Retrofits & Unique Customizations

Range Govindan
Aug 30, 2011

Old lamps are not something that you should throw away. There's so much that you can do with them, especially if you have a bit of technical knowhow, which will allow you to use one of these hacks to get more life out of your tired lighting fixtures. You can also experiment, because if you break your lamp, it's not that much of a loss. Here are a few cool ways to hack your lights into something almost new.

There are quite a few different ways to hack your lights. Many hacks are aesthetic, converting older-looking light fixtures into something more modern, but there are also a lot of ways that you can convert your existing lamps to LEDs, especially if they are halogen and CFL lamps. All incandescent lamps can take new LED bulbs. It's actually starting to make financial sense to switch all of you incandescent bulbs to LED bulbs. While the initial cost can be high, it will pay off in the long run.

1. Turn Your Halogen Light into an LED Light: This will allow you to turn a halogen light fixture, ie a table or task lamp, into an LED light. This hack turns the LED light into a battery-powered version, which is perfect for decorations or emergency lighting when the lights go out.

2. The Keyboard Circuit Lamp: This hack will result in a pretty light, that will look quite interesting on your workstation. To make this hack easier, it's best to use an existing USB LED light and create the circuit sheet lampshade. The circuit sheet comes from an old keyboard. You'll need to pull one apart to find one. Clear packing tape was used to create a cylinder. You can either create your own USB light using the right resistors or make one that plugs into a socket but when hacking with electricity, it's best to know what you are doing.

3. Convert a CFL Table Lamp to LEDs: LEDs are more energy-efficient than CFLs, but it makes sense to convert your existing CFLs into LEDs instead of just buying new lamps. You'll need to disassemble a CFL lamp and perform the hack on it to convert it to LED use. You'll also need to get some LED on a board, preferably one that's long so that you can make it fit into the enclosure. The whole procedure looks complicated, but the step-by-step instructions help to get through the difficult bits.

4. Turning an IKEA Knappa Upside Down: This lamp is a ceiling light fixture, but that didn't stop this hacker from turning it into a floor lamp. The new floor lamp is somewhat big, but if you've got the space, it makes for a unique way of lighting your living room. Copper tubing was used as the base and then extended to act like a continuous stalk. Then, wire was used to fix the light to its new home. You can even use some of the tubing to create some more decorations, like leaves. The cable needs to be snaked around the tubing. You can hack it further by using an LED light bulb.

5. Modern Hacked IKEA Lamp: Weaving together an expensive-looking modern lamp from an existing one isn't has hard as you think it is. $15 worth of materials gives this intriguing and complex result.

The Best of IKEA Hacks
An IKEA Lamp Made Out Of IKEA Dog Bowls
Make Your Own Custom Lamp Out of Ikea Parts

(Images: Paintphone, ChrysN, Mark S. Burgunder, AM Creatives)

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