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Published Mar. 2, 2020

If you love going on long trips in your RV, good lighting is a must. You’re on the road for long periods, and interior lights can boost visibility when it gets dark. They also keep your RV bright, enhance your security, and create a cozy ambiance.

If you’re looking to replace your RV interior lights, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, we’ll tell you what to look for in RV interior lights and also answer some important questions you may have.

The Best RV Interior Light

Get creative with your RV’s interior lighting in more ways than one. The Mihaz lighting bars come with mounting screws, two adhesive tapes, and an electric connector. You can mount the lights on any even surface using the mounting clips or the adhesive tapes. You can also combine them using the connector for concentrated light. 

The three rows of LEDs in each bar emit up to 2200 lumens. The lights are built to last and will illuminate your RV for up to 50,000 hours with proper care. Their wiring is simple, so installing them is easy. The inner electrical components are housed in an aluminum casing to make sure the lights last long and don’t cause shock-related accidents.

Key Features
  • 6 watts
  • 12 volts power input
  • 108 LED lighting chips
  • DOT-certified
Specification
  • Brand Mihaz
  • Model MZLB01
  • Weight 12.8 ounces
PROS

Bright light (2200 Lumens)

Aluminum casings improves durability

Up to 50,000 hours lifespan

CONS

Wiring instructions are unclear

Supplier is slow in responding to complaints

You can use this lighting fixture to illuminate different compartments of your RV. The light it produces is enough to illuminate the bedroom, kitchen area, awning, and other rooms. It has a color temperature of 2608K. It also comes with mounting features you can use to install it overhead or on other types of surfaces. 

The outer lenses are made from polycarbonate, which is stiff and resistant to moisture, heat, and impact. The sturdy material protects the inner electrical components from different elements. In case you need intense light, you can remove the lenses. However, we don’t recommend it as the light may get damaged quickly. The lenses also help produce recessed lighting that doesn’t cause glare.

Key Features
  • Color temperature is 2608K 
  • 12-volt power input
  • Central on-off switch
  • 36.4 watts
Specification
  • Brand Lumitronics
  • Model LUM-ICL92
  • Weight 0.16 ounces
PROS

Ideal for individual rooms

All-weather hard casing

Easy to install

CONS

Uses a lot of power compared to similar lighting products

Poor light dispersion

Kohree understands that one lighting fixture won’t be enough for an RV, so it sells these lights in a pack of five. They have a color temperature between 4000K-4500K and produce natural white light. If you space them well, they will disperse light well enough to illuminate your entire motorhome. You can install the lights on any flat surface using the screws and nuts provided.

The three-way on/off switch allows you to use each light independently or light them all at once. Each draws a mere six watts, reducing your power consumption significantly. Each of the lights has 48 individual LEDs that emit 600 lumens. The lights can last for 60,000 hours with proper maintenance.

Key Features
  • Each light draws six watts
  • 600 lumens of light
  • 4000-4500K color temperature
Specification
  • Brand Kohree
  • Model HP321-HM
  • Weight 2.29 pounds
PROS

Last up to 60,000 hours

Removable anti-corrosive cover

Resistant to heat and corrosion

CONS

Lenses may leave yellow streaks on the surface

Lights may be too bright for some users

This two-in-one ceiling light is easy to install and produces natural white light for enhanced visibility. Its three-way switch gives you adjustable lighting options. You can switch all lights on, switch one on, or turn all of them off. The light fixture gives off 450 lumens of light. It produces very little heat and does not increase the room temperature in an RV, which creates a relaxed setting. 

The light’s hardy casing protects the interior components from harsh weather and impact. It is certified by Canadian Certification Standards (CSA) and has a long lifespan of 70,000 hours. Its flat back makes it suitable for use as a ceiling light.

Key Features
  • One-year warranty
  • Power draw is six watts
  • 450 lumens
  • Color temperature is 2833K
Specification
  • Brand Lumitronics
  • Model LUM-ICL98L
  • Weight 0.48 ounces
PROS

Screws are provided for easy installation

Three-way on/off switch makes light adjustment easy

Lasts up to 70,000 hours

CONS

Might affect some electrical appliances

Brightness may not be up to par for some users

DIY enthusiasts will love the flexibility of the Ampper kit. It consists of a string of lights placed on modules. Modules are the plastic units that house the light bulbs. The modules are made from high-quality plastic to protect the deep-seated LEDs. The kit has strong adhesive on the back, and you can attach it to any surface as creatively as you want. 

These strip lights will help reduce energy consumption. You can use them to light up your entire RV as the wiring harness length is 14.5 feet. Sixty LEDs on 20 modules produce all the light you need at night. The LEDs have a life expectancy of 50,000 hours. A 12-volt battery is enough to power the lights.

Key Features
  • 20 modules with 60 LEDs
  • One-year warranty
  • The adhesive tape makes for easy installation
Specification
  • Brand Ampper
  • Model Am-VIL02
  • Weight 5 ounces
PROS

Can be installed in different ways

Can be used in RVs and areas equipped with 12V power

Don’t consume a lot of energy

CONS

Lack of lenses greatly affects light distribution

Some of the LED modules may stop working after a while

Light dissipation is poor

Light bars are some of the best interior lighting fixtures for RVs as they cover a larger surface area. The AUDEW light bars come with double-sided viscose tape, so you can easily mount them on any flat surface. You can also use mounting clips to securely attach them to surfaces. 

Each of the bars features 72 LEDs that produce 500 lumens of light. The light they emit is very bright and has a color temperature of 6000K. The sun’s color temperature at noon is 5600K, so you can imagine just how bright these lights are. The lights draw very little energy, only 4.5 watts each. Each has an on/off switch.

Key Features
  • 4.5 watts power draw (each)
  • 1,000 lumens in total
  • 6000K color temperature
Specification
  • Brand AUDEW
  • Model Bestcombine1686
  • Weight 0.16 ounces
PROS

Easy installation with mounting clips

120-degree light spread

Long lifespan (50,000 hours)

CONS

No screws included

Might be too dim for some users

Best RV Interior Lights Buying Guide & FAQs

RV interior lights serve many purposes. They make an RV bright at night, help enhance your safety, and create a cozy atmosphere. When buying lighting fixtures for your RV, there are a few things you should prioritize, so you can determine the right kind of lights you need.

For example, the LED chips used in the lights can dictate how long they last and how often you must replace them. It also helps to know the best lighting brands, so you won’t get overwhelmed by the many choices on the market. This section will help you make the right decision when buying interior lights for your recreational vehicle.

RV double decker beds and good internal lighting

The Advantages of Owning RV Interior Lights

The main advantage of having good RV interior lights is adequate illumination at all times. Since the RV is your home when you are on the road, you must ensure it is well-lit at all times. Bright light has a positive impact on alertness; you won’t start dozing off when driving. It also creates the perfect atmosphere for tasks like cooking and reading.

A badly-lit RV puts you—and other road users—at risk. If you’re tired and the interior light is not bright enough, you may start to fall asleep and cause an accident, injuring yourself or other road users. If you want to enjoy your trip, the least you can do is invest in good RV lighting.

RV interior lights can also be decorative. You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars to give your RV a makeover. The best RV interior lights offer a cost-effective way to revamp an RV. They can be installed in various ways, and you can get different light colors to make it fun. You can also use the lights to create different atmospheres in different rooms.

Here are other benefits of RV interior lights:

  • LED RV interior lights save energy due to their low power consumption.
  • You can use them as alternative lighting when you need to turn off the main lights.
  • They make perfect replacements for OEM lights.

Types of RV Interior Lights

If you don’t know the type of RV interior light you want, you have a variety of options to choose from; the market is filled with them. However, if you decide to only focus on lights that fit your RV, your choices will become narrower. You can also limit the choices to those that fit your lifestyle. The fewer choices you have, the easier it will be for you to make a buying decision.

The type of lights you choose will determine the installation options as well as your RV’s brightness. For example, if you get lights that don’t produce many lumens, you will have to buy many units to ensure your RV is well-illuminated.

Here are the different types of RV lights:

  • Dome

As the name suggests, dome lights are typically dome-shaped and have many LED chips inside. Some have a switch in the middle for turning them on and off, while others have a switch on the side. They have tough casings typically made of plastic. The casings are usually removable.

Due to their shape, they can cast bright light over a large area while drawing little power. Their lightweight nature allows them to be installed with adhesive or screws. You can also use the lights to create cozy areas in an RV, such as a reading nook.

  • Ceiling

These lights are installed in multiple places on the ceiling of your RV for enhanced illumination. They have a flat surface that allows them to easily rest on even surfaces. If you like bright light, you can get several of them and install them closely. If you don’t like bright light, get fewer units.

These lights can be switched on and off from a central place if wired in a way that allows for it. Their application is not just limited to the RV ceiling; you can use them in other areas of the RV as long as you install them overhead. They dissipate light evenly and use minimal power, cutting down your RV’s energy consumption.

  • Light Bars

Light bars are common in RVs due to their brightness and ability to enhance aesthetics. They can be installed in almost any area of a recreational vehicle. Since they feature many LED chips, their brightness levels are usually higher compared to other RV interior lights. They have a long lifespan and emit light that is comparable to natural light.

Light bars either have on/off switches or on/off buttons, making them easy to use. You can install the lights on any flat surface in your RV. For added brightness, you can install more than one bar. Their housings are made of all-weather materials to safeguard the internal components and to improve their lifespan.

What to Consider When Buying RV Interior Lights

Buying RV interior lighting is much easier if you know what to look for. While some features are found in all lights, the best RV interior lights have better features—like higher-quality LED chips. These features have an impact on the price and dictate how well the lights will perform. They might also affect installation options. These are the most important features to consider.

  • Voltage

The voltage required to power your RV LED lights plays a major role in their functionality. Most RV interior lights use 12 volts of direct current. This is good since the power can come from your RV’s batteries. Getting the voltage wrong can cause the lights to blow out. If the voltage is low, they may not draw enough power to produce adequate light.

Some RV batteries can exceed 12 volts, putting your lights at risk. To solve this problem, you can use an energy regulator. Alternatively, you can get RV LED lights with surge protection. Energy regulators also help when there are power spikes that could damage all your lights.

  • Wattage

It’s important to check the total wattage your lights will draw. This will affect your motorhome’s energy consumption, especially if the energy source needs to be charged. A lot of lights draw four to 10 watts of electricity. In a house, this is average consumption. However, if you install a lot of 10-watt lights in your RV, you will need to closely monitor the energy consumption.

It’s worth noting that low-wattage lights are likely to appear dim, and you may need to install many of them in your RV to get good lighting. However, if you want the lights to create a cozy ambiance, lower wattage products are a great choice.

  • Color Temperature

The color temperature, or correlated color temperature, measures the brightness or dullness of a light. The Kelvin scale is used to measure color temperature, hence the “K” after the numerical values. A 1000K light is dull and appears orange, which is similar to the light produced by a candle. Modern house bulbs have a color temperature between 3000K and 4000K. They produce warm white to cool white light.

The color temperature of much brighter lights is 5000K-6000K. They emit bright, white light that is as clear as daylight. Anything higher than 7000K is dangerous to the human eye. The color temperature of your RV interior lights will determine the color you see when you switch them on. If you prefer bright light, get fewer pieces and space them well for better coverage.

Tips for Buying and Using RV Interior Lights

If you want your RV interior lights to serve you for a long time, you have to choose them carefully. The last thing you want is your lights to blow out the minute you install them. Fortunately, we’ve included some information to save you the hassle of trial and error. The first thing you should do is determine where you want to install the RV lights. If you want lights you can use in the kitchen or or ones to use as reading lights, they should be bright.

Effective task lighting must not cause glare and shouldn’t be super bright to cause eye strain. Lights with a color temperature between 3000K and 6000K are ideal for task lighting. If you choose lights with a lower wattage, you will need more of them. You can buy a dimmer or lights with a three-way switch if you are affected by bright light. Three-way switches allow you to easily regulate the light intensity. Dimmable lights can create an intimate setting.

Here are some additional tips:
  • Make sure the lights you’re thinking of purchasing are suitable for RVs.
  • Check that the lights have the right certifications. Energy Star, DLC, CSA, and CEE are some important certifications.
  • The lights should not consume a lot of power, or they will drain your RV’s battery.
Scenic view of RV with internal lighting turned on

Best RV Interior Lights FAQs

Asking the right questions can save you a lot of frustration. You’ll get helpful answers and will be able to make an informed buying decision. This will allow you to choose RV interior lights with a long life expectancy and low energy consumption, which will help cut down energy costs. Here are our answers to the most-asked questions about RV interior lights.

Q: Can I use halogen lights for RV interior lighting?

Yes. However, these lights use more power than LEDs and have poor light output. They also produce more heat and are more likely to burn out fast.

Q: What is the average lifespan of RV interior lights?

LED light bulbs have the longest lifespan compared to other lights. Their average life expectancy is 50,000 hours. Fluorescent lights produce light for up to 15,000 hours. The lights with the lowest life expectancy are incandescents, which only provide 2,000 hours of light.

Q: Is it possible to customize RV interior lights?

Yes, you can install LED bulbs in any lighting fixture. However, you must be knowledgeable about circuitry and lighting installation. You must also check whether the fixtures are bright enough for the space.

Our Top Pick

After examining a variety of RV interior lights, we’ve chosen the Muhaz Upgraded LED Interior Light Bars as the best lights for your RV. There are many reasons why we love them⁠. They have a long life expectancy, low energy consumption, a high color temperature, and emit very bright light. The bars cast bright light and can be installed in different ways.

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