Choose a dimmer - what to look for?

Dimmer is a device designed to control the brightness of the fixtures. In simple words, a dimmer is a dimmer. Imagine a situation where the same room is designed for both work and leisure. For example, while working in the living room, anyone will need brighter lighting than when watching TV. In the second case, the consumer would prefer a much more dim light. In order to be able to adjust the brightness of the same light sources, and not install additional ones, use a dimmer. The device, in addition to convenience, allows its owner to save a significant share of electric energy, as well as extend the life of light sources. In this article we will tell you how to choose a dimmer by power, design and type of lamp.

Bulb type

It is important to remember that there are dimmers that are suitable for a number of certain types of lamps, but there is no universal dimmer. The choice of a dimmer should be made depending on the type and power of the bulbs.

As you know, there are various types of light sources, including incandescent, LED, halogen, fluorescent, LED-modules, ribbons and rulers. At the same time, dimmers can be used in absolutely all types of lamps: for chandeliers, sconces, floor lamps, pendant, as well as for spotlights. Consider each type of light source separately.

Choosing a dimmer for incandescent lamps is much simpler than for other light sources. Another advantage is the simplicity of its connection: it can be installed instead of an ordinary switch. But it should be noted such a moment that by reducing the brightness of an incandescent lamp using a dimmer, the color of its glow will also change and become more red.

As for fluorescent lamps, it is almost impossible to choose a dimmer for them. Theoretically, this event is possible, but subject to the creation of a complex technical system with the additional use of an electronic ballast and controller. In this case, the dimmer itself will differ from that used for incandescent bulbs.

Choosing a light controller for energy-saving lamps, that is, for compact fluorescent (CFL), is somewhat easier. If the CFL already has a built-in ballast (PRA), then this bulb is easily dimmed with a conventional regulator. In the absence of a ballast, it will be dimmed with the same difficulty as a conventional luminescent one, which is very laborious and costly.

For halogen lamps, choosing a dimmer is very simple. In this case, you can use the regulator for incandescent bulbs, or purchase Dimmer specifically for this type of product. You should pay attention to the voltage from which the halogen runs.If it is a 12V voltage, then a step-down transformer is necessary.

The choice of a dimmer for devices based on the use of LEDs is more difficult. For 220V LED lamps, a dimmer is very easy to choose. The packaging usually indicates a dimmable model or not. If the marking indicates that dimmable led lamp (as in the photo below), the regulator can be used as for ordinary bulbs. Also, LEDs can be controlled using a remote control specially designed for this type of lighting source.

LED for photo dimmer

When choosing a dimmer for 12 V LED lamps, one should not forget about the use of a step-down voltage transformer, as well as the use of a special controller. To select a dimmer for LED modules, tapes and rulers, you must also pay attention to the voltage from which these devices operate. Usually this is 12V, and as mentioned above, for their operation requires the installation of additional devices, including a controller and a special intelligent control panel.

To make it easier for you to make a choice, we recommend that you study the following algorithm in the table:


It is also important to choose the right dimmer for power. In order to make the choice of a suitable dimmer, it is necessary to determine its rated power. For this, the total power consumption of the connected lamps is calculated. If it is incorrect to choose the parameters of the dimmer, then it may fail to work, or vice versa, immediately fail.

To understand what kind of power the bulbs have, just look at the packaging, all parameters should be indicated on it, which you should start with when choosing a dimmer for a house or apartment. If there is no packaging, then carefully examine the lamp itself, quality manufacturers on the body indicate the characteristics of their products.

Important point - when choosing a dimmer power, be sure to consider the margin, at least 20%, but better than 50%. For example, if the total power of the bulbs in the luminaire is 100 watts, the regulator should be rated at 150 watts.

Execution option

Well, the last thing I would like to talk about is how to choose a dimmer model. Today, there are not only classic rotary dimmers, but also keyboard, rotary push and even touch. In addition, the dimmers can be modular (for installation in a distribution panel), monoblock (standard), or for installation in a mounting box in a hidden way. Briefly consider the features of each embodiment.

Types of dimmers

The rotary-push light control is able to memorize settings (set illumination level), because switching on and off is carried out by pressing the rotary knob, due to which the desired brightness of the lamps is adjusted.

Key models work a little differently - the light is adjusted by holding the button itself for a certain time (usually 3 seconds). No less convenient option for controlling the light.

Well, modern touch models adjust the brightness of the bulbs by touching a finger with the sensor. It is very convenient, however, you will have to pay much more for a touch dimmer, so it is up to you to choose this option or better to prefer the classic model.

If we talk about the installation method, modular dimmers are used to control incandescent lamps or halogen light sources, provided that step-down transformers are used. Such a model can be chosen to turn on the lights on the stairs and in long corridors. A similar field of application is for dimmers installed in a mounting box. Nevertheless, the classic version of the execution is the most convenient, and we recommend choosing it to control the light in the rooms.

Finally, we recommend that you watch useful video reviews, which also provide tips on choosing a dimmer for your home and apartment:

Now you know how to choose a dimmer by power, type of bulbs and design, as well as what types of dimmers exist. We hope the information provided was useful and interesting for you!

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