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Old 10-23-2009, 10:07 AM   #1
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Dimming 12V lights


I have 12V lights in a cabinet and was able to dim them for subdued lighting. Then we moved and the problem popped up. The electricians put in the same transformer used before but now the lights only come on full blast. We've tried three different dimming switches and none has worked. Of course, their explanation is "these lights can't be dimmed" ... but they did dim before the move. My hunch is the problem is in the wiring from the transformer to the switch. Any ideas?

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Old 10-23-2009, 11:16 AM   #2
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Dimming 12V lights


I am not entirely certain I understand what you are saying, but let me take a crack at this. You had some 12V lights in a cabinet, and a dimmer switch that worked. Then you moved. I assume you took the cabinet with you, although you didn't exactly say that. Then you hired an electrician to wire up the cabinet in the new location? You say that the electrician used the same transformer as before, by that I assume you mean the same make and model, but you didn't exactly say that, so maybe it was the same type of transformer? And the electrician put a new switch in, or maybe you used an existing dimmer switch in the new house?

Anyway, I have 12V halogens in my house. I also have a dimmer switch made by Lutron. When I ordered the switch, the supplier was very careful to ask the exact make and model of transformer, because as I understand it there are two types of low voltage transformers manufacturered, one is called a magnetic transformer, the other is called an electronic transformer. The two require different dimmers, both of which by the way are different than standard 120V dimmers. So perhaps you have the wrong type of dimmer switch on your circuit.

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Old 10-23-2009, 01:51 PM   #3
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Dimming 12V lights


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Originally Posted by jerseyguy View Post
I have 12V lights in a cabinet and was able to dim them for subdued lighting. Then we moved and the problem popped up. The electricians put in the same transformer used before but now the lights only come on full blast. We've tried three different dimming switches and none has worked. Of course, their explanation is "these lights can't be dimmed" ... but they did dim before the move. My hunch is the problem is in the wiring from the transformer to the switch. Any ideas?
1. Perhaps 3 dimmers are popped because of miswiring.
2. You need a voltmeter to trace the problem.
3. Try each dimmer before and after installation with a simple lamp-source-dimmer series circuit.
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