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Old 01-21-2015, 09:09 PM   #1
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Radio/TV interference from stock LED lights

I am finding that one particular LED fixture in our 2300 causes bad interference in radio and TV operations. Anyone else have that? In other RVs I used cheap ebay LED retrofit bulbs direct from China, and never had any problems.

What I gather from reading is that the LEDs that are regulated to operate at certain voltages are the noisy ones, where the unregulated ones are not. I always bought the unregulated ones, and they worked great.
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Old 01-22-2015, 11:38 AM   #2
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Ground feedback? Someone on here used a ground loop isolator or something to solve their noise issue.
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Old 01-22-2015, 12:32 PM   #3
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Are your leds direct wire to 12VDC or is there AC-to-DC transformer involved? Slightly different isolation approaches so why I'm asking.
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Old 01-22-2015, 12:48 PM   #4
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They are 12V native...but there is still a converter to deal with. So plugged in the convertor is going AC to DC. Not plugged in and no gen they're getting only 12V.
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Old 01-22-2015, 01:44 PM   #5
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Geotex, when I had it plugged in inside my workshop, even if the main breaker was tripped, the noise from turning on the same light fixture traveled down the ground wire and made my workshop radio terrible.
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Old 01-22-2015, 01:46 PM   #6
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I'll be interested to hear the isolation fix. I can retrofit NOS 921 or 1156 fixtures and use my ebay bulbs for $10-15 per fixture, and probably be done with the issue. I'd hate to do that though.
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Old 01-23-2015, 07:56 AM   #7
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Try a ground loop isolator. About $15.00 at Best Buy.
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:05 AM   #8
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I don't know much about ground loop isolators. All I see are ones that filter out noise on the audio side of devices. My TV picture scrambles when I run the offending LED light.
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:12 AM   #9
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Sorry, I was thinking audio. The same principle might apply. I see your unit is a 2014. Would not your warranty cover the problem?
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:22 AM   #10
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I've lost faith in the dealer's service department. They say they fix things when in fact they did nothing. Plus it costs enough time and gas money to get there and back that I'm better off fixing it myself. So much for buying nearby to get good service.

This AM I'll go out and swap the light panels around and see if it follows the panel. I don't see why it wouldn't.
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Old 01-23-2015, 08:39 AM   #11
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I am kinda with you on dealers service. Thought you might have a good one near you. I have given up on the ones in my area and do things myself.

Google helps when reaching various issues. You might find some info. there.
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Old 01-23-2015, 09:57 AM   #12
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I just took a handheld AM radio out to the RV. Every LED fixture interferes with the signal. By the time I turned on 2 or 3, I could not even hear the actual AM program. So then I tried the dash radio, which I had not done until now. It is also affected by the fixtures. I have 4 days left on warranty. I'm going to the dealer today to ask for new, different fixtures.

Earlier this winter when I had the RV in my work building, the LED lights were sending noise down the ground wire of the shore power cord and causing radio interference on the workshop radio. Someone on another forum said the ground wiring in the RV was acting as an antenna for the noise, then transmitting it down the wire to the building's wiring. So, imagine what could happen at a campground. I could affect the TVs and radios of my neighbors.
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Old 01-23-2015, 10:34 AM   #13
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The issues with noise is due to the circuitry being implemented to drive the LED. Lower end/cost LED lighting are built without suppression/isolation circuitry. Higher end/cost LEDs will be and also carry the mark of the FCC indicating compliance with standards to prevent EMI/RF interference. When there's a power supply involved taking 120VAC to 12VDC, it's often easy enough the swap in a higher quality replacement with suppression and call it a day. With direct to 12VDC, your best bet it to install ferrite chokes on the leads to the LED(s). Install the chokes as close to the diodes as possible - yes, you may need to put one at each light fixture/strip. Another thing you can do for your A/V equipment is to also put chokes on the power cords (my Jensen TV in our new Heritage Glen came with an optional choke to install) and you can also get HDMI cables with ferrite cores for suppression, and there are many quality shielded component cables. Chokes can be bought at Radio Shack and many places online for a couple bucks. If you cannot get a choke with a core small enough to clamp "just right" on the leads, loop a coil of the lead through the core and around the choke (not ideal, but it will work). Laird and Fair-Rite are a couple of major ferrite choke manufacturers.
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Old 01-23-2015, 10:39 AM   #14
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My FM radio shut down to a hum when I turned on my LED lights in the living room. I read that Wildcat at the Goshen Rally had been replacing the LED bulbs to cure the problem. Maybe warranty could send you new LED bulbs to correct the problem.
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Old 01-23-2015, 01:46 PM   #15
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I'm back from a visit to the dealer. They brought out their best tech guy to check it out. He thought it must be the bulbs, but the warranty mgr wants him to check wiring and such first. I was not ready to leave it today, so it will have to wait. In the meantime I will try disconnecting the light circuit at the fusebox, and running a temporary connection from a standalone 12v battery directly to one of the lights, and see what happens. That would isolate the lights, at least.

I did install an inverter, and a couple of ammeters with shunts, into the RV wiring. I cannot come up with a scenario where they cause the LEDs to make noise, but I don't want the dealer to have to question them. So I'll disconnect them and see if anything changes, and leave them disconnected when it goes to the dealer.
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Old 01-23-2015, 01:49 PM   #16
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geotex, thanks. From what I've seen on various cords before, both + and - go through the choke, right?

If by any chance you can show a link to one that you think is the right size for a 14-2 DC cable, please do.
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Old 01-23-2015, 01:51 PM   #17
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In post 12 above, I worded something wrong. Of course I have used the radio before, but I don't think I have listened to AM on it while parked and using the LED lights.
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Old 01-23-2015, 02:40 PM   #18
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NEW: LOW PROFILE OVAL SURFACE MOUNT 22 LED, CEILING LIGHT W/ SWITCH | Command Electronics :: Manufaturers of Lighting for RV, Marine, & Trailers

No sign of FCC approval. The cheap LED lights I got on ebay don't have that either. My recollection is that the problem comes when you get LED lights that are designed to operate over a wide voltage range. In this case 12-30V. The ones I always bought were the basic 12V spec instead of the ones designed for a range. I did that because I had read about noise from the latter. Never had a problem with the cheap 12V ones.

I have emailed them to see what they think.
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Old 01-23-2015, 02:56 PM   #19
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I have a 2015 SUNSEEKER 3010DS and was having problem with my TV for certain OTA channels. When the LED light below the TV is on I do not get the channels in question. If I turn the LED light off I get the channels clear as they were meant to be. This problem only happens with the LED directly below the TV is on. If all the other LED lights are on it does not affect the TV.
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Old 01-23-2015, 03:17 PM   #20
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For TV reception the problem seems to be my light that is nearest the TV, like yours. For radio it is all of them.
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