LED lighting dimming & non-dimming.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by industeq, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. industeq

    industeq

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    Recently everyone is noticing many LED lighting products and styles. And the talk on less energy and a very environmentally friendly device.
    I have most of my residence and office warehouse with LED lighting and here is a few findings with using Clipsal.
    Presently I have been purchasing various types & sizes from China, Taiwan, and even testing the name brand like Philips, GE purchased from the local hardware store.
    I have spent thousands of dollars for testing for not only for checking for functionality on a Clipsal but for quality, feasibility, CRI, Etc.

    For the screw-in E27 type PAR series bulbs the ones rated dimming will go down to about 20% then either flicker or stay slightly illuminated.
    In the Tool-Kit I just set to the level needed and pretty simple to do.
    Strangely some rated non-dimming work fine with the Clipsal dimmer, for how long not sure but this is why I am testing.
    I did notice on a few that I mounted it started to generate a audible BUZZ from the 8 channel dimmer on one generic LED brand, it still works but noisy if in the garage.

    Some LED bulbs , tube lights will turn on in milliseconds compared to fluorescent with the Clipsal relay.
    The led Tube for fluorescent tube replacement types are nice as you remove the ballast and directly wire and a nice retro-fit.
    However the thin LED panels are far better and brighter than the tube retro-fit. I have several 600mmx600mm tested and I think that will be the future for office lighting.
    You can put 3~4 times the quantity of LED bulbs on one circuit compared to a incandescent as the load (wattage) is far less and drive with a Clipsal successfully.
    However check with the local electric codes and National Electric Code along with the city if re-wiring for LED as I did.


    One thing to consider if going to the LED is the electric RF interference. I spent hours troubleshooting my new house garage door opener remote on why it worked great during the day but failed at night. Only to realize that the LED entry lights outside masked the remote control signal when the lights were on the night timer.
    A quick way to test is put a FM radio near and tune to your station then turn the lights on. If static from the radio you will have remote problems.

    Many LED are native DC and use ?Drivers to take the existing AC voltage and step down to either a constant voltage or a constant current to be used with a array of LEDs.

    I am designing some hybrid solar & wind powered systems using a DC inverter and batteries for DC LED lighting at my office and ridding the AC all together.



    Regards
    Alan Dobbs
    Industeq, Inc.
     
    industeq, Apr 25, 2010
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  2. industeq

    Don

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    Many thanks for the great post!

    I'm keen on LED lighting myself, not being a big fan of compact fluorescent, and any information on how people are successfully using these light sources with Clipsal dimmers is very useful.

    Interesting about the interference problems you have experienced. I used to manage an EMC test lab, and am a bit surprised that modern products could meet the required standards and still interfere so badly that your remote control could be prevented from working.

    Don
     
    Don, Apr 26, 2010
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  3. industeq

    ashleigh Moderator

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    Don I think you might find EMC regulations are a little different in the USA compared to some other parts of the world - though I believe its gradually harmonising.

    It could also be some cheap crappy products that are just not compliant (and/or telling lies about their compliance)!
     
    ashleigh, Apr 26, 2010
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  4. industeq

    industeq

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    Yes I could not agree more.
    I have got samples from some manufacture that the photo and sales person convince me, but the actual product falls apart or rattles inside.
    There is no regulation in China compared to the hard to get UL regulation in the USA.
    I am finding out that even ETL is not as strict as UL.
    One that I chuckle over is most are FCC approved. but have electrical interference.




     
    industeq, Apr 26, 2010
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  5. industeq

    ashleigh Moderator

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    From the point of view of a manufacturer:

    - FCC is a matter of getting a test house to check a sample for (usually) radiated emissions and perhaps a few other conditions (it varies from country to country by the US is mainly radiated em.)

    - UL is all about electrical safety (in essence: will it burn your house down) - UL regs are totally differently bizarre compared to anywhere else in the world. (sigh)

    - ETL is easier to get then UL but appears to be not as widely known or trusted.

    When it comes to FCC, you can check the FCC web site. Every product that is genuinely tested for the FCC regs will be allocated an "FCC number" which must appear on the product. You can search the web site by that number, and pull up the manufacturers product data, test results, and so on.

    If you can't find the FCC number on the web site, or it does not match the product in your hand, then the label is most likely not genuine.

    Probably worth doing some spot checks.
     
    ashleigh, Apr 27, 2010
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