How to Make a Camping Bucket Light

How to Make a Camping Bucket Light

If you love aesthetics and want to enhance your camping experience, a camping bucket light is for you. It’s a simple DIY project that you can easily make at home. If you don’t know how to get started, this guide will help you learn everything about how to make a camping bucket light.

What’s a Camping Bucket Light?

As the name suggests, it’s a common light put inside an empty plastic bucket. It gives a beautiful illumination with the shape of decals you attach to the bucket. Not only that, but the bucket also keeps the wiring and lights safe from getting stomped or tangled in your feet.

In addition to that, a camping bucket light keeps the bugs away. Even if you place it in your pop-up truck camper, you can upgrade the aura inside with the beautiful bucket lights. 

Now let’s discuss how to make a camping bucket light on your own.

Camping Bucket Light DIY

Before starting the DIY step-by-step guide, you have to arrange the following things:

  • One white bucket
  • Drop cord
  • Lantern/led lights
  • Junction box
  • Marker
  • Screw driver
  • Drill machine
  • Bolts

Now follow these steps:

Step 1

First of all, you need to grab a junction box and remove its end plugs. To do that, take a screwdriver and start opening both of its screws. After that, remove the plugs.

Step 2

Take a marker and upturn the lid of the bucket. Now you have to mark the lid for the holes. Place the junction box on top of the lid and mark it through the big holes in the junction box. Then mark the tiny holes of the junction box on the lid.

Step 3

After marking the drilling spots, it’s time to drill through the lid on the same spots. The holes will help you to pass the wiring separately in the bucket. Use 15/64 and ½ inch drill bits to make holes in the lid. Make sure that you don’t exert much pressure. More than necessary force might destroy the lid.

Step 4

The next thing you have to do is join the junction box with the lid using the ¼ by 1-¼ inch bolts. The bolts will go through the small holes to firmly attach the junction box. Moreover, the larger hole should be perfectly aligned with the center of the bucket’s lid.

Step 5

Take a drop cord and peel its insulation using electric pliers. Gently cut off the insulation without damaging your hand, as sometimes the insulation becomes hard to take off. Now fit each ending of the wire with the respective terminals and insert the drop cord in the larger hole. Make sure you leave about 4 inches out of the lid.

Step 6

Now attach the terminals to the junction box. You can follow the junction box color code if you are new to this. Generally, the white wire connects with the silver box, and black connects to the brass. After attaching the terminals, install a 1-inch screw to install the light with the box.

Step 7

Adjust the lights properly inside the bucket and then cover the lid. You can also stick decals inside the bucket that will make the camping night more pleasing than ever.


  • If you are doing the electric work for the first time, it’s better to take help from a professional. Even though the camping bucket light doesn’t require high power transmission, it’s better to be cautious in even the smallest of the activities.
  • Some people make the mistake of keeping a heavy-duty light bulb inside the bucket, especially in the winter season. Although it looks beautiful, it also increases the temperature inside the bucket. If you have put the bucket inside your small camper to keep the surroundings warm, it can melt away the plastic. As a result, your camper might catch fire if you don’t take quick action.
  • It’s better to use a filament bulb with a regulator to maintain the outcoming heat.
  •  Moreover, you can use incandescent light bulbs as they emit less heat.
  • If you are camping in the rainy season, it’s better not to use a camping light bucket. Since the water can directly contact the wiring of the junction box, it’s safe to keep the light bucket inside the tent or the camper.

Final Words

Follow the above steps to prepare the bucket, wiring, and junction box for a DIY camping bucket light. However, you can use different light bulbs in any arrangement you want. You can also hang the light on the trees and make the camping night more beautiful.

Warwick Braith

Warwick Braith is a thrill seeker at heart. He loves getting outdoors and testing his limits in the wild. As a blogger for YapQ, Warwick provides readers with insights and tips on how to get the most out of their outdoor experiences. Whether it's hiking, camping, or simply exploring nature, Warwick knows how to make the most of it.

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