How to Make your Lamp Cordless in 6 Easy Steps?

  • Home Decor 101
  • Posted by: amy-golden
  • Jul 11, 2024

Having a cordless lamp can enhance the aesthetics and functionality of your home, especially whether you want to eliminate the need for a nearby power outlet or simply prefer the style of a cord-free setup. To turn your corded lamp cordless is easier than you might think, therefore, consider the use of rechargeable battery packs and exploring alternatives to find out the answer for “How to make your lamp cordless” in this blog. 

Project Overview

Difficulty Duration Costs
Easy 10 mins $45 (Includes battery bank and AC-DC power inverter)

There is a way to make any lamp cordless and also the quickest one: Get a rechargeable lithium power bank with an integrated AC-DC power inverter, which transfers power from DC (Direct Current in home electricity) to 110V AC (Alternating Current on a battery) to run a typical AC appliance, such as a lamp. Though this no-drill method is by far the simplest answer to the question “how to make a lamp cordless”, its two main disadvantages include the noisy cooling fan that requires air circulation to function and the pricey inverter.

In this blog, we focus on the procedure to make a lamp cordless with the use of a battery, which is very simple and only requires a few essential steps. Here's a detailed how-to and materials needed for the project. 

Materials You’ll Need

To convert corded lamp to cordless, you'll need the following materials:

  • Rechargeable battery pack
  • A rechargeable battery pack
  • Wireless controller
  • Screwdrivers
  • Pliers
  • Mounting tools

When selecting a wireless power source to do cordless lamps work, there are several key elements related to battery power should be considered as below:

1. Operating voltage: Ensure that the voltage output and amperage of the battery pack matches the requirements of the lamp. Cordless lamps typically operate at specific voltage ranges (e.g., 3.7V, 7.4V, etc.).

2. Battery type: Lithium-ion batteries offer good energy density and cycle life, making them suitable for lamp application in making a lamp cordless.

3. Physical size and form factor: The battery pack should fit well within the base or form of the lamp without being too bulky or heavy. Consider the dimensions and shape to ensure it integrates seamlessly.

4. Safety features: Look for built-in safety features such as overcharge protection, over-discharge protection, and temperature management to ensure safe operation and longevity of the battery.

5. Charging mechanism and time: To have a cordless lamp, consider using induction charging (wireless charging) or USB charging that may have differences in both cable requirements and charging speed. 

Here's a table summarizing different battery types for cordless lamps based on their voltage, amperage and lifespan:

Battery Type Voltage Range Typical Amperage Lifespan
Lithium-ion 3.6V - 4.2V 2 - 10 Ah 2 - 5 years or 300 - 500 charge cycles
Lead-acid (Sealed lead-acid, SLA) 2V per cell (commonly 6V, 12V, etc.) 4 - 12 Ah 3 - 12 years or 300 - 700 charge cycles
Nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) 1.2V per cell (can be stacked for higher voltages) 2 - 6 Ah 8 - 10 years, up to 20 or 200 - 1000 charge cycles
Alkaline (AA) 1.5V per cell 1.2 - 3 Ah Single-use; not rechargeable

Note:

  • Lithium-ion batteries a preferred choice for powering smaller lamps and other portable electronic devices when making a lamp cordless
  • Lead-acid batteries offer affordability and durability, but their heavier weight and bulkier size may be limiting factors for portable lamps and other applications where compactness and lightweight are prioritized
  • Nickel-cadmium batteries have a longer lifespan and robust performance, however, their higher self-discharge rate and environmental considerations may influence their suitability for specific applications
  • Alkaline batteries are a popular choice for powering everyday devices due to their convenience, availability, and relatively long shelf life, but have lower current delivery capability

Step 1: Disassemble the Lamp

The first step in making a cordless lamp is to ensure the lamp is unplugged from the power outlet and turn it to the off switch to prevent any risk of electric shock or damage during handling. Then, you can start disassembling the lamp from bottom to top. This involves systematically removing components starting from the base and working your way up to the lamp head. Here are the detailed steps that you can follow:

  • Opening the lamp from the bottom, look for screws or clips that secure the base cover. These are typically found on the underside of the lamp
  • Use a screwdriver to remove the screws
  • If there are clips, use a plastic pry tool to gently pry open the base cover. Avoid using excessive force to prevent damage
  • Turn the lamp back, unscrew the top of the lamp and then remove the top (or the lampshade).
Disassembling the desk lamp helps to access the internal components (source: frances mcmichael)
Disassembling the desk lamp helps to access the internal components (source: frances mcmichael)

Step 2: Detach the Lamp Cord

Once you have accessed the internal components, you can begin to unwire the lamp by removing it from the current electrical cord. If the lamp is hardwired or directly connected to electrical wiring without a plug, you'll need to disconnect it from the electrical box. 

This typically involves safely removing the wires from the terminal screws or wire connectors inside the electrical box. You may need to unscrew or remove a cover to access the wiring connections. Typically, there will be wire nuts or terminals securing the lamp cord wires to the lamp's internal wiring. After that, gently pull the wires free from the lamp base or electrical box.

To make a corded lamp cordless, simply remove its cord (source: view along the way)
How to make your lamp cordless, simply remove its cord (source: view along the way)

Step 3: Install the Battery Compartment

In this step, you first need to prepare the battery compartment, ensuring that it fits securely within the lamp base or be mounted in a way that maintains the lamp's stability and balance. Next, begin to connect the wiring by linking the wires from the battery compartment to the corresponding terminals inside the lamp base. Use wire connectors or soldering techniques, ensuring secure connections.

Prepare the battery compartment and securely connect it to the lamp base (source: damsel in dior)
Prepare the battery compartment and securely connect it to the lamp base (source: damsel in dior)

Step 4: Integrate the Battery and Wiring

Now you need to determine where the battery pack will be placed within the lamp so as to fit securely and not obstruct other components. If necessary, mount the battery pack using brackets or adhesive to keep it stable inside the lamp base or housing.

Then, connect wires from the battery pack to the corresponding terminals inside the lamp base or socket. Use connectors or soldering techniques for secure connections. Ensure wires are routed neatly and securely to prevent them from interfering with moving parts or getting damaged.

Screw the bulb into the lamp socket, ensuring it is securely seated and aligned properly with the lampshade or fixture. LED bulbs are preferred for cordless lamps due to their energy efficiency and longevity. If the lamp does not have a switch and you prefer to add one, wire the switch in-line between the battery pack and the LED bulb socket.

Securely connect the battery and wires (source: etsy)
Securely connect the battery and wires (source: etsy)

Step 5: Reassemble the Lamp

Using the finial or clips to  reattach the lampshade, base cover or bottom cap that were removed, ensuring all components are correctly reattached. If you disconnected any wiring during the disassembly process, reconnect it according to your notes or markings and make sure that all connections are tight.

Follow the reverse order of these above steps and reattach the lampshade (source: power tech)
Follow the reverse order of these above steps and reattach the lampshade (source: power tech)

Step 6: Test Your Cordless Lamp

To have a cordless lamp completely done, it's essential to ensure that it is functioning correctly. Here’s a step-by-step guide to testing your cordless lamp after reassembly or before initial use:

  • Make sure all internal components, wires, and connectors are securely in place as well as all screws and fasteners are tightened properly.
  • Use the power switch to turn on the lamp.
  • Observe if the light flickers or dims unexpectedly, which could indicate a loose connection or a battery issue
  • Test all functions including brightness settings, color temperature or timers
  • Unplug the charger and use the lamp on battery power. Ensure it operates correctly and for an expected duration on battery power.
  • Plug the lamp into its charger if it has a rechargeable battery. Ensure the charger is properly connected to a power outlet.

Once you have confirmed that the lamp is functioning correctly, you can start using it confidently.

Test your newly converted cordless lamp before using it (source: all things target)
Test your newly converted cordless lamp before using it (source: all things target)

Optional: Wireless Control Options

To make a cordless lamp be equipped with wireless control options, you can integrate wireless control options into the cordless lamp setup. This enables remote operation, so you may change the color, brightness, and even turn the lamp on and off without having to touch it directly.

There are several widely used wireless control choices such as:

  • Modules for Bluetooth
  • Smart switches or plugs with WiFi
  • Remote controls that use infrared (IR)
  • Smart home helpers with voice control

As directed by the manufacturer, integrate the selected wireless control module into the wiring and programming of your lamp, providing your cordless lighting setup an additional level of automation and convenience. Indeed, wireless control and cordless lighting make for a perfect combination, offering both convenience and aesthetic appeal in making a lamp cordless. If you're interested in further learning more about hiding lamp cords to achieve a better cordless look, you may find our article about How to hide a lamp cord useful!

Conclusion

To sum up, following these steps can help you make a lamp cordless by successfully transforming your lamp into a cordless fixture, enhancing the overall look of your space and eliminating the need for proximity to power outlets. This DIY project not only improves functionality but also offers a cleaner and more streamlined look for your living or working space. Enjoy the convenience and versatility that your newly DIY cordless lamp brings about!

FAQs

Is it possible to use a solar panel to charge the battery?

Yes, in fact, a solar panel can be used as a renewable energy source to power the charging circuit and charge the battery.

How do I determine the appropriate voltage and current for the charging circuit?

You can determine voltage and current for the charging circuit of your cordless lamp's battery pack by methods such as checking battery specifications, understanding charging requirements, and determining the charging current by setting the charging current to around 0.1C to 0.5C of the battery capacity. 

How do I attach the battery pack and charging circuit?

Some methods to attach the battery pack and charging circuit to have a perfect cordless lamp are dedicated housing, 3D printing, or securing components internally within the lamp base.

What kind of light source is appropriate for a cordless lamp?

LED bulbs are the optimal choice for energy efficiency, longevity, and performance in making a cordless lamp, however, CFLs and incandescent bulbs can still be used depending on specific preferences or requirements. 

What type of battery is best for a cordless lamp?

To make a cordless lamp, lithium-ion batteries are often preferred for their high capacity, long life, and lightweight properties, but NiMH batteries can also be suitable. Evaluate factors to determine the best battery type that meets your requirements for portable lighting solutions when carrying out the project of turning a lamp into a cordless lamp.

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Author

I work as a freelance blogger in Seattle, Washington. I've been freelancing full-time for 5 years. I'm interested in anime, resin art, and mechanical keyboards.

amy-golden

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