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John Deere Maintenance Monday: LED lights

You can replace lights on older tractor models with safer, more effective LED lighting.

New lights for old tractors

Click here to ask a question and find more useful maintenance tips

 

Radio interview source: Jason Breuer, product manager, John Deere

In this edition of Maintenance Monday, we're weaving new technology in with the old. Ed from Missouri has an older tractor and wants to upgrade the lights. He currently has the original round, incandescent lamps and is wondering what new replacements are available.

Art Klein with John Deere says Ed is in luck -- the company is now able to replace lights on tractors from the 60s and 70s with LED lighting. It's become the top choice of lighting for many electrical applications, and now farm machinery is joining the revolution.

"They offer very even distribution," Klein says. "They're very easy to use, plus they're easy on the eyes because they provide a light that's very similar to sunlight. They also have incredible life."

Halogen lamps have a life span of somewhere between 400 and 600 hours. LED work lights last up to 40,000 hours.

No need to retrofit

LED lights are also easy on machinery electrical systems.

"Electrical draw on the tractor is 20% to 50% of what the old lamp was," Klein says. "So it's got a very low current draw, and is very easy on the batteries and alternators. You can run into issues with electrical load because when you're at the limit of what you can do with your electrical components on the tractors, a lamp that takes much less current is really a neat item."

The LEDs are directly interchangeable with the tractor's round sealed beam lamps, so there's no need for retrofitting. Klein says it's new and exciting technology for older machines, but not a lamp that competes with high intensity discharge, or HID, lighting, which is the premier lighting on tractors today. However, for the era of tractors that we're talking about, it's a good upgrade and a vast improvement.

Ed gets a free John Deere cap for submitting his maintenance question, and you will, too, if we use your question in our program.

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