One of the things that we didn’t think about updating when we started our renovation was the lighting. However, once we started thinking about how we would actually be using our RV, we realized that our lighting was in serious need of some updating!
There were two main areas of lighting that we decided we needed to update: exterior lighting and interior cabinets, closet, and other closed areas.
Our RV had decent lighting on the inside, but there are very few lights on the outside. The few lights that are on the outside do very little to actually light the area around them. We knew that we’d be doing a lot of boondocking and staying in Walmart or Cracker Barrel parking lots. Although we try to park in well lit areas at these places to stay safe, it is not always an option. So we thought we should install some spotlights on the outside of our RV to help keep us safe and provide more visibility. After all, houses use spotlights for the exact same reason, and since our RV is our home, we thought it only made sense.
There are some differences between an RV and a traditional home, though. So we made a list of some of the top things that we were looking for in our RV lighting.
- Battery Operated: I didn’t want to have to try to wrestle with wiring and difficult installation, so that ruled out any spotlights that had to be hardwired into our RV.
- Controlled Motion Activation: Since we find ourselves in a lot of different situations, we wanted lights that could easily adapt to our circumstances. So after some research and asking around, we decided that we wanted a spotlight that was able to be motion activated, but that we could also turn on & off with a remote. That way, when we are in a campground and parked directly next to another RVer, we can turn off the light with the remote and don’t have to worry about it shining in our neighbor’s window.
- Easy to Mount / Dismount: We wanted spotlights that we could hang outside of our RV to add extra light above our motorcycles and the sides of the RV. However, we wanted something that we could easily take down before we start driving down the highway.
These three criteria led us to the MB370 Spotlights with Remote Control from Mr. Beams. They are battery operated, so we don’t have to fuss with difficult installation. Each remote control motion sensor light comes with its own remote, which allows us to control the brightness from 60, 90, or 140 lumens. We can also control the auto shut off time from 30 seconds with motion activation, 1 hour, or 4 hours. And our favorite feature of the remote controlled security light is that we can manually turn on and off the lights from the remote! (I am sure that the RVers who park next to us are very thankful for that feature as well! ;) And the lights come with this really cool wall mount that allows you to unscrew the light itself from the mount and take it down when we drive!
These lights are so easy to use and have given us a lot more peace of mind when we are parked in poorly lit areas.
For good measure we also got Mr. Beams MB480 UltraBright Lantern with USB Charging Port. This really comes in handy when we are camping. It comes with a removable top and hanging hook, so we can either hang it up in our tent or just set it on a table and it does a great job of throwing a ton of light out for its compact size! One of the best features is that it has a USB port in it. That means that when we are out camping, we can actually use the lantern to charge our phones or any other USB-compatible device we have with us!
So that solved our problem for our outside RV lighting, but we realized that there were a lot of closed in areas inside our RV (like cabinets, the closet, and other storage areas) that could also really use some light. The wall lights inside the RV do a pretty good job of lighting the open areas of our RV interior, but there are so many little storage areas that the light just can’t reach. We thought about stashing some flashlights around the RV to help us with this problem, but with how often we seem to misplace stuff, we decided against it. Also, we wanted light that could really brighten up an entire cabinet and not just be a beam of light fixed on a small area. So we did some more searching online and found that the same company that makes our spotlights also makes these really cool LED night lights with a built in sensor. The MB700 Mini Stick Anywhere Lights are a great size for slapping in our cabinets and make a huge difference at lighting up those closed in areas at night. We also put some in our RV’s under storage areas, which makes it way easier to see in the dark. Again, a huge plus with these small wireless LED lights is that we don’t have to wire them into our RV and since they run off of batteries, we can easily change where we put them.
For extra big closed-in areas, we chose the MB990 UltraBright Ceiling Lights. They are motion sensor ceiling lights that of course run on batteries. (If you haven’t noticed yet I really like avoiding having to wire new lights into our RV!) These work essentially the same way as the other LED night lights, but they are a little bigger and brighter. And like all of the other lights, their batteries last for a long time (at least 35 hours on each set of batteries)!
A cool thing about Mr. Beams is that the founders started the company because they wanted to make lights that could be taken completely off grid by using battery power. They are now a leader in this field and have dozens of different lighting options. So whether you own an RV or a home, or even just love to go camping, check out Mr. Beams lighting solutions. Their products have already done an awesome job of making our trip a little brighter. ;)
Thank you, Mr. Beams, for being the diamond sponsor of our renovation! For more info about our renovation, click here.