When I was buying a new chandelier, I wondered if every chandelier can be dimmed. So I decided to find out and did some research. Here’s what I have found.
So can you dim every chandelier? Yes, you can dim any chandelier, but not all LED bulbs are dimmable. Unlike with standard bulbs and halogen bulbs, with LEDs, we need to buy the right dimmer. This article will tell you how it works and what you should pay attention to when dimming LEDs.
Are All Chandeliers Dimmable?
This is something that many people ask when they buy a chandelier. Can I dim my chandelier with LED bulbs?
The answer is simple. Yes, you can dim your chandelier, but not all LED bulbs are dimmable.
Unlike with standard incandescent and halogen lamps, with LEDs, we need to check if they’re dimmable.
The ability to regulate the main lighting as the chandelier is beneficial, especially in rooms such as the living room or dining room.
For this, we need to choose the right lamp, transformer, and dimmer.
During meals or games, the light should be the brightest.
In turn, for reading, watching TV, or during evening relaxation with a glass of wine, they should be dimmed.
Therefore, dimmers in chandeliers are the best way to create the right mood in rooms.
How Does Dimming a Chandelier With LED Bulbs Work?
The illuminating element of the LED lamp is the LED. This abbreviation stands for Light Emitting Diode.
The more electricity it passes through the LED, the more light it gives. Inversely, it works in the same way, the less power, the less light it gives.
How Do You Know If Your LED Bulb Can Be Dimmed?
In most cases, all LED bulb models are available in a dimmable version.
But standard dimmers are not. Make sure that the product name or specification mentions ”dimmable”. This way, you can be sure that the LED lamp is dimmable.
A dimmer is required to dim LED bulbs. In most cases, your dimmer is used to dim halogen and incandescent bulbs.
Each dimmer has a minimum power output of 40-80W. If you replace your old bulb with LEDs, the total power will remain below the minimum dimmer power. As a result, LED bulbs may not dim at all or very badly, causing them to flicker.
If your LED bulbs do not work with your current dimmer, select an LED dimmer up to 0-150W, as +/- 85% of the LED bulbs work with this dimmer.
Basics And Practical Tips For LED Dimming
Dimming LED lighting is not that easy – here are a few things to look out for.
Conventional and reverse phase control dimmers
There are two types of dimmers when it comes to LED dimming:
- Conventional dimmers – In the case of conventional dimmers, the voltage is switched on with a delay every time it exceeds zero on the alternating current sinusoidal graph, thus reducing its voltage.
- Dimmers with a reverse phase control function – Dimmers with reverse phase control function work similar, but switching on takes place at the point where the sinusoidal diagram crosses the value of 0 while switching off the voltage occurs at the appropriate moment of time during the half of the graph.
How To Install LED Light Dimmer Switch
Why Isn’t Every LED Light Dimmable?
When purchasing LED lighting, make sure that the packaging is marked as ”dimmable”.
Traditional bulbs or halogen lamps can be dimmed by reducing the voltage.
In the case of LED bulbs, it is not that simple.
The lamps need constant voltage (threshold voltage) to be able to shine.
The higher the voltage, the brighter the LED lights up. Therefore, the dimmer must act very precisely on the current-voltage of the LED.
Another difference is that the LEDs require direct current, so the power from the socket has to be converted using a technical ballast and compensated for dimming.
If this does not happen, the lamp, the dimmer, or both devices can be damaged during the dimming attempt.
Which Dimmer For LED Bulbs Should You Choose?
This is a tough question to ask because of the variety of dynamically developing LED technology.
We must also pay attention to the fact that not all LED bulbs are dimmable, and even most of them, which we supply with 230V voltage is not adapted to this system.
In such cases, the best solution is to buy bulbs dedicated to that control system or switch to a 12V installation, which is much easier to control.
Is it Possible to Dim Fluorescent Lamps Using a Standard Dimmer?
Most of the fluorescent lamps on the market cannot be dimmed. Using a dimmer, in this case, can damage the light source.
Fluorescent lamps marked as dimmable are available on the market, which is made to work with a dimmer.
And only these can be used in lamps to which the dimmer is connected.
What Effect Can I Achieve by Using Dimmable Fluorescent Lamps?
With dimmable fluorescent lamps, you can adjust the luminous flux according to your own preferences and needs – from full brightness to dimmed, atmospheric lighting.
Dimmable fluorescent lamps can be used in different rooms:
- dining rooms
- party rooms
- churches, etc.
Are there any special recommendations for the use of dimmable fluorescent lamps?
To achieve the best dimming effects, the value of fluorescent lamp power (or fluorescent lamps connected to one dimmer) must not be lower than 1/6 of the minimum load power and must not exceed 1/5 of the maximum load of the switch with dimmer.
LED Dimmer. The Most Common Problem
Usually, people assume that they can use a standard dimmer for LED lighting, but in most cases, this is not possible.
Available dimmers usually have a minimum power output of 50 watts.
Since LED lamps have a lower power output than halogen lamps, for example, when an LED lamp is connected to a dimmer, the minimum power output will not be reached.
This causes the light to flicker or overheat.
In a lamp with halogen or common incandescent bulbs, the lamp hardly lights up when dimmed by up to 50%.
When you do the same with an LED bulb, you get exactly 50% brightness.
Therefore, a standard dimmer will not work correctly with an LED bulb.
For LED bulbs, you need to use a special dimmer dedicated to this type of lighting.
Which LED Dimmer Do You Have To Choose?
It is best not to choose the cheapest model because this type of equipment has the lowest durability at the lowest price.
It is important to pay attention to the power range of the dimmer.
If you have a 100 W lamp, you must have a dimmer in this power range.
In addition to the possibility of dimming or brightening the light, we will also be able to use many other functions, with which the dimmer is equipped.
These include different light modes and the possibility of switching off the lighting after a certain period of time.
Of course, it all depends on the version of the controller we have chosen. We can divide them into two basic models, and these are the following:
- LED dimmer 12V
- LED dimmer 230V
The first are 12V controllers, which are perfect for controlling low-voltage lighting such as: LED strips, LED modules and LED bulbs with screwed-in threads or halogen low-voltage power supply.
The latter option has been designed for dimmable light sources 230V, which we connect directly to the mains voltage, which is valid in our country. These are usually LED bulbs adapted to dimmers, with built-in controllers.
Dimmer For LED Bulbs
Depending on the lighting system that we have in our home or office, we will have to choose the right light dimmer.
In the case of low-voltage installations based on tapes or LED modules, we can find:
- LED dimmers with remote control
- A dimmer for LED tapes, which will also operate a dedicated for a given light source control system (Mi-Light)
- Surface-mounted dimmer
- Wall dimmer
- LED touch dimmer
When it comes to LED 12V bulbs, look for dedicated light sources for your control system, as most of them are equipped with a dimmable block.
The dimming of 230V LED bulbs is already a more complex system.
As we all know, most LED bulbs have a built-in converter, so they are not suitable for dimming.
In response to the needs of modern customers, manufacturers decided to create dimmable LED light sources 230V.
They are equipped with an internal controller and are usually available in sets with a dedicated dimmer (as in the case of surface-mounted lamps or plafonds), or a dimmer must be purchased separately (in the case of dimmable LED bulbs).
How Do You Connect the Dimmer?
LED dimmer 230V (LED lighting regulator) is connected directly before dimmable light sources.
Install the phase wire (L) in the dimmer and then lead it out of the second hole of the device directly to the bulb socket.
The neutral wire (N) takes directly to the socket.
What Kind of Dimmer for LED Bulbs?
When choosing a dimmer switch for our LED lamps, we should select dimmable light sources from only one manufacturer.
Depending on the bulb manufacturer, a different type of internal controller may be used, so that its dimming may take place in different ways, faster or slower, smoother or more steadily.
Of course, when buying an LED dimmer, we have to choose only those dedicated to modern technology.
They are usually in the form of a traditional switch or a wall panel.
Remember also that in most cases, traditional phase dimmers will not work even with dimmable LED bulbs.
In the case of a traditional dimmer, we will often be able to observe glowing LED bulbs or a real light disco.
Then the best solution is to switch to a dedicated dimmer for LEDs or a 12V light source.
How to Select the Dimmer for a Lamp?
Packaging for dimmers, transformers, and LEDs are marked with R, L, and C.
For all parts to work, they must be marked with the same letter.
For example, if you have a dimmable 230V diode, you usually need a commonly available phase dimmer (R, L) for conventional transformers. If you have a dimmable 12V LED with an electric transformer, you will need a phase dimmer (R, C).
Thanks to this we have a lot of freedom – but when buying a lamp, we should know which transformer and dimmer will be suitable to avoid potential problems.
Basically, in addition to conventional and reverse phase control dimmers, there are also universal dimmers, which are a combination of the above.
In addition, the dimmer must match the lamp. Many dimmers are still designed for the basic and maximum quantity of halogen bulbs and lamps, so they do not work with LED lamps because they need a much lower amount.
Advantages of Dimmable LED Lights
In addition to the options for creating different lighting moods in the room, dimmable LEDs also have other advantages: By dimming the lamps, you can extend their lifespan and also save energy because a dimmable lamp consumes less power.
Dim and Save Yourself Unnecessary Nerves
If you pay attention to dimmable lighting and which components of the dimming function work when you buy LED lighting, you will save yourself unnecessary nerves during installation and avoid damaging the lamp and dimmer.
After a successful installation, you can sit comfortably on the sofa in the living room with your partner and make a toast to the fact that from now on, you can create the perfect mood in any situation. Cheers!
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