Monday, March 7, 2011

Exterior Motion Detector Security Light

Two months ago, I installed this light as a replacement for the Lazy Daze exterior “porch/door” light.


It’s an LED light manufactured by Starlight, Inc., The Smart Light 1000.

Manufacturer's Information
Motion Detection Function- Dual PIR Sensor
  • Star Monitor alerts you when your battery is low (They are referring to the LD house battery. The light does not use a battery)
  • Daylight Sensor- turns light off during daylight hours (A nice feature. I leave the light on 24/7)
  • Can also function as a regular porch light
  • Installs easily, uses same hole pattern and wiring as most standard lights
  • Reverse polarity protected, will not be damaged by cross-wiring
  • Microchip distinguishes between people and small animals or blowing debris
  • 1 yr manufacturer warranty
It has worked very, very well putting out a bright light over a large area. The light can be adjusted for area covered and sensitivity. We do a lot of boondocking where there is no one else in sight so personal security is a concern. When the light is activated by simply turning on the light switch, a blue light flashes on & off, much like the blinking light on an automobile security system. The purpose being to alert a ne’er-do-well that a security system, of some type, is in play. Hopefully, they will move on to an easier target. Failing that, security Plan B is activated.
Installation
The light is a direct replacement for the LD light. The four mounting screw holes line up perfectly with the holes securing the existing light. The only challenging part of the job is removing the existing light. The four screws come out easily enough. However, true to LD form, a good bit of a five gallon bucket of caulk was applied to the back of the light when it was installed. It took a sharp putty knife and a pair of pliers to remove the back of the light, little piece by little piece. A five minute install job took the better part of an hour. When scrapping the caulk off, you do need to be careful to not cut through the wires where they come through the exterior siding. A side note, but I was surprised to find that the siding under the light was just primed and not painted with the final coat of paint. I had guessed, wrongly as it turned out, that the porch light would be installed after the paint job. Not that it matters, because the footprint of the new light is bigger then the footprint of the old. This also covers up the occasional “oops” that leaves a scratch in the primer when removing the old light.
The wiring is simple because it doesn’t matter which wire from the light attaches to which wire from the LD. Once the old light & caulking are removed just follow the instructions supplied with the new light. Before starting the job, have a tube of your favorite caulking on hand. The instructions say to put a bead of caulk into a grove that runs around the perimeter of the light before applying the light to the siding. This prevents water from seeping into the light.

The new light is activated, of course, from the same switch as the old.
Contributor: Ed Daniels
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