SnapRay Guidelight turns standard power outlets into safety night lights
By Nick Lavars
March 19, 2014
Placing guidelights up your hallway or down your staircase can involve bulky plugin solutions or a professional and expensive installation. SnapRays Guidelight, an easy-install outlet cover with built-in LEDs, could simplify this process by turning any standard power outlet into a night light without the need for re-wiring or batteries.
At a glance, the SnapRays Guidelight looks no different to a standard power outlet cover, but features patented "power extractors" on the backside. In removing the standard outlet cover and replacing it with SnapRays, these power extractors slot into the outlet and extract enough juice to power the LEDs without rewiring or using batteries. The company says this process takes only seconds and that the LED lights will last for up to 25 years.
Once installed, a built-in light sensor will turn the Guidelight on in the dark and off when it is light, automating things and avoiding unnecessary use of electricity. According to the company, the units draw 5 mA of power and costs less than five cents (US) a year to run.
Aside from energy savings and ease of installation, the unobtrusive nature of SnapRays adds further weight to its creator's claim as a convenient replacement for typical plug-in guide lights. While SnapRays look like a regular outlet cover, its ability to extract power from the wall while leaving the outlets free for other appliances means that it functions as one too.
The SnapRays Guidelight measures 2.9 x 4.9 in (7.3 x 12.5 cm) and less than a quarter-inch (6 mm) in thickness. It is compatible with standard outlets that have exposed screw terminals and operates at 100-120 volts (those used in the US, Canada, Mexico and certain Latin American countries). The team says it is looking at the potential for units compatible with European outlets but warns these are likely to be some ways off.
Two styles are available – the Duplex, which has two separate holes to fit over standard duplex outlets, and the Decor with one rectangular hole for use with standard decor outlets. The lights are available in white, light almond or ivory.
The team has taken to Kickstarter to raise funds for mass production and after setting a humble target of US$12,000, has just surpassed $360,000. It is offering single Guidelights at a pledge level or $12, while a pledge of $36 will put you in line for a pack of three. Shipping is estimated for May 2014.
You can hear from one of the company's founders, Sean Watkins, in the video below.