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dimmer switch

Postby TENFITTALL » Sat Nov 21, 2009 1:10 pm

hi, could i get advice on the following. i currently have a double switch in the kitchen, 1 feeds 8 halogen lights in the ceiling for the kitchen area (50 watts each) the other switch feed 4 halogen for the dining area (50 watts each) i would like to change the switch to both dimmers, could you advice what size of switch is req ie 2 gang 250w or bigger. thanks paul
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Postby ericmark » Sun Nov 22, 2009 1:15 am

Slider grid dimmers are available at 250, 400, and 630va and knob type at 220 and 400va to take the power you require likely only the grid dimmers will do and are two modules wide I looked at them on TLC web site.

However the halogen lamp relies on the envelope being very hot to reflect the tungsten back onto the element and using a dimmer will very much shorten their life.

Also any extra low voltage types will need to have inverters (transformers) which are dimable and matched to the switch. You have leading and lagging types and they don't mix.

And at £25 for the switch plus up £1 to £10 for plate and £1.10 for frame and up to £60 for new transformers if required (I could only find 300W models so may be more) you could be looking at a hefty bill.

I would re-think if in your place.
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Postby kbrownie » Sun Nov 22, 2009 10:22 am

What you do is calculate your total output needed to supply that particular lighting set up.
ie 8 lights x 50watts= 400watts
So your dimmer needs to be able to supply that output so you need at least 400watts rated one.
The watt rating on the dimmer switch, is the limit it can supply to, and normally about 5% less.
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Postby TENFITTALL » Sun Nov 22, 2009 5:53 pm

i am going to stay with standard switches as the dimmers that i looked at are arond £90 for a 1000 watt. thanks for the reply.
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