LED bulbs

Old 12-17-14, 04:59 AM
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LED bulbs

This might be a dumb question, but can a LED bulb get "weak"? I've got a nice little LED flashlight that runs on 4-AA batteries. Problem is the bulb brightness is practically non-existent. If I stick my face right up to it, I can see the light come on and off when I cycle the switch, but it's useless for any lighting. Already swapped batteries and cleaned any accessible contacts with no improvement.
Old 12-17-14, 05:19 AM
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Did it ever work correctly? I have some cheapo brand new ones that will barely light the sidewalk when I'm walking.

I'm not positive, but I don't think it's the LEDs so much as the electronics. LEDs pretty much work or they don't in my experience. Could be wrong...
Old 12-17-14, 04:06 PM
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I use a AAAA pencil type led light, and occasionally the cap end will get a little funky and will lose copper to copper contact. I have to take it apart, clean it with an abrasive to shine up the copper. Otherwise it will be very dim.
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Old 12-17-14, 06:30 PM
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LEDs DO deteriorate but it is a long time. The time frame for LED longevity is usually measured as the time for the light output to drop to 70% of the original output.

One problem I have found is that because of the very low current drain LED flashlights are very susceptible to the slightest bit of corrosion on the battery contacts, the current is so low it can't "burn through" the corrosion. I have to periodically remove the battery and clean the contacts, usually by just rubbing them with a coarse bit of fabric is all that is needed, or sometimes by just "rolling" the battery in the holder. For heavy duty cleaning you might try a new pencil eraser but be sure to follow that with a dry cloth to remove any rubber particles.

The cheaper the flashlight the more often I have to do this. The cylindrical free ones at Harbor Freight that take three AAA cells are notorious for this.

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