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Emergency lighting, power failure lighting, etc.
#1
question 
I've been working on increasing the safety in my home, and one thing that I haven't addressed fully is emergency lighting. I do have lots of flashlights, hurricane lanterns, etc., and I always have a flashlight on my person, plus I have a generator. So I'm set for long-term power outages in that regard. Where I'm lacking is automatic emergency lighting that will turn on during the event of a power failure.

I think that's important for a few reasons. My 4 year old daughter does not carry a flashlight like I do, so if I'm not right next to her when the power goes out, she will be totally disoriented and possibly hurt herself accidentally. She could fall down the stairs, run into the wood stove, or a million other things.

Also, in the very unlikely event that an intruder cut electricity before invading, I would be at a huge disadvantage.

I've considered a few options, but none of them seem reasonable. The most common solution is to buy one of those plug-in rechargable flashlights that turn on during a power outage, like this one:

http://www.amazon.com/Amerelle-71134CC-S...lure+light

However, that's not going to work for me. My biggest problem is with little kids who cannot resist the urge to unplug them and play with them. Not only are the likely to be lost (or simply unplugged when you need them) but it's a risk of electric shock to the kid. The other issue is I simply don't have outlets in the right spots where I would need the light. My house is old, and outlets are scarce. There is no outlet in my upstairs hallway, and all the downstairs outlets are blocked by furniture or low curtains.

Of course I could get the commercial style emergency lighting like this:

http://www.amazon.com/Morris-Products-73...y+lighting

But that would require wiring that would be a huge project, and would look ugly in a residential setting.

Now I'm starting to think of options that are more streamlined, but can't find anything close to what I'm looking for. One idea I had was to find some sort of normal looking light fixture, such as a floor lamp or ceiling fixture, that has battery backup built right in. Can't find such a beast.

The other idea I had was some sort of automatic battery backup that hooked up at the circuit breaker panel. That would be a little bit of a project because the limited number of circuits in my house means that other things (non-lighting) will inevitably be on the same circuit as my lights. I really want the battery to be dedicated to lights only.

So, any ideas?
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#2
If there's an outlet on the other side of the wall from the hallway you could fish some wire from it up to the other side and put in a light similar to what's in your second link. I'd be careful if you do that as to what kind you order. You want to get one that can be directly wired and not something that needs an outlet and a wallwart. Don't know if that'll work for you or not, but it's something I would look into doing.

This is actually something I've thought about here, I added some powerfail lights in my basement, and wanted to add some to the upstairs hallway at the top of the stairs. Just haven't gotten to that yet.
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#3
One or more nannies with lighted breastesses?

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Fembots reconfigured to replace the gas canisters with "high beams"???

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I have the answers to all of life's problems.
Smile
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#4
streaker69;127534 Wrote:If there's an outlet on the other side of the wall from the hallway you could fish some wire from it up to the other side and put in a light similar to what's in your second link. I'd be careful if you do that as to what kind you order. You want to get one that can be directly wired and not something that needs an outlet and a wallwart. Don't know if that'll work for you or not, but it's something I would look into doing.

This is actually something I've thought about here, I added some powerfail lights in my basement, and wanted to add some to the upstairs hallway at the top of the stairs. Just haven't gotten to that yet.

Hmm, that's not a bad idea. I could do that in about an hour. I don't know if I'm crazy about how that would look though, and that only solves the problem in the hallway. I have no clue how I'm gonna do the main living area downstairs. Even if I include all of the spaces directly above each outlet down there, there's no good place to mount a light like that. It's a small split level house and all of my walls are occupied by something, like the TV or the wood stove or windows. There is one perfect spot for a light, but no outlet near it. I'm either gonna have to think outside the box, or deal with opening up the wall to run cable. Or maybe run some cable up from the basement.
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#5
Hey look what I just found:

http://www.earthtechproducts.com/emergibulb-4w-led.html

Looks promising!
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#6
http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Beams-MB280-Rea...ing+system

see if that works
"Fighting for peace is like screwing for virginity"

goofin, proud to be a member of pa2a.org since Sep 2012.
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#7
Heh. Those are almost as good as my suggestion.
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#8
goofin;127541 Wrote:http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Beams-MB280-Rea...ing+system

see if that works

Sweet. I think it's perfect. Thank you!

ETA: Just ordered it. Will report back.
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#9
Doesn't your wood stove produce light from the glowing embers?

Two things you're neglecting to consider--

First, the only way a power outage would cause her to be 'blind' would be in the middle of the night. She'll be sleeping in the middle of the night, as will you. If it happens at night when it's dark and you're awake, you will have the flashlight and you can go to her and bring her to your lantern lit room. So from that perspective, you will already have a light source so she will not be stumbling blindly.

Second, a lot of emergency lighting is set to turn on the moment you lose power. While this serves the purpose you're after, do you really want your house to become brightly lit at 2am when there is a fluke power outage that will be corrected within 30 minutes?

I think what goofin posted is ideal, personally--you control when it's on. (I think I may look into that myself, that would work out great in areas where you don't want to install permanent lighting.) But that doesn't alleviate the concerns about your daughter, you still have to be present to flick it on and then you're back into a plug-in/hard wired solution that turns on the lights during an outage--which could still happen at 3am and wake up the whole house, or wake you up enough to think something shady is happening and put you in a panic state, which could cause you to grab your gun. And waking up from a sleep state to investigate a noise/occurrence creates an inherent risk when armed.

I think your ideas for putting up emergency lighting are good, but I'd be hesitant to install anything that comes on the moment power goes out with the exception being around the stairs.

Just food for thought, because you asked Smile
Vampire pig man since September 2012
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#10
Camper;127557 Wrote:Doesn't your wood stove produce light from the glowing embers?

Barely, when the stove is running properly there is some glowing red light inside, but no little to no flames. After your eyes adjust to low light, it can provide a TINY amount of space lighting, for maybe a 4-5 foot radius. But if the power suddenly shuts off, your eyes wont be adjusted and you'll be pretty much blind.

Camper;127557 Wrote:Two things you're neglecting to consider--

First, the only way a power outage would cause her to be 'blind' would be in the middle of the night. She'll be sleeping in the middle of the night, as will you. If it happens at night when it's dark and you're awake, you will have the flashlight and you can go to her and bring her to your lantern lit room. So from that perspective, you will already have a light source so she will not be stumbling blindly.

Most of the time that will be the case, and it shouldn't be an issue. But not all the time. It gets dark before 5:00pm now, so there's a good 4 hour window when it could be an issue. If she's upstairs playing and I'm downstairs, I don't want her to panic and try to come downstairs in the pitch black and fall down the stairs.

Camper;127557 Wrote:Second, a lot of emergency lighting is set to turn on the moment you lose power. While this serves the purpose you're after, do you really want your house to become brightly lit at 2am when there is a fluke power outage that will be corrected within 30 minutes?


I think what goofin posted is ideal, personally--you control when it's on.

I agree, that could be an issue. I think you can turn off that system with the remote, but it still will come on automatically. Maybe I won't install any in the bedrooms, just do the hallway, stairwell, living room and kitchen.

Camper;127557 Wrote:(I think I may look into that myself, that would work out great in areas where you don't want to install permanent lighting.) But that doesn't alleviate the concerns about your daughter, you still have to be present to flick it on and then you're back into a plug-in/hard wired solution that turns on the lights during an outage--which could still happen at 3am and wake up the whole house, or wake you up enough to think something shady is happening and put you in a panic state, which could cause you to grab your gun. And waking up from a sleep state to investigate a noise/occurrence creates an inherent risk when armed.

Negative, it comes on automatically. There is a "remote" that plugs in, and it wirelessly sends out a signal to all the other lights to turn on. But then I think you can shut them off with the remote if you want.

Camper;127557 Wrote:I think your ideas for putting up emergency lighting are good, but I'd be hesitant to install anything that comes on the moment power goes out with the exception being around the stairs.

Just food for thought, because you asked Smile

I hear ya, it makes sense. The other thing that could be an issue is it will come on even during the day, if the power goes out. If I'm at work and the power fails, it will just drain the batteries. The good thing is that you get 40 hours of runtime though, and they take standard alkaline batteries, so that's not a HUGE issue.

I think it's just a preference thing. If the lights come on when I don't actually need it, that's not gonna bother me. You know the phrase, "rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it."
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