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Old 09-27-2014, 08:10 AM   #1
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Help with Low Voltage Recessed Lights


So I have a lot of 3 inch recessed electronic low voltage lights. There are as many as 10 on each circuit and they were installed in 2007 so they are halogen bulbs (50 watt).

The way they are wired is from the dimmer switch it outputs line voltage to each recessed junction box, in the junction box is a transformer which lowers the voltage and then runs through a very narrow chase into the actual recessed fixture to the bulb (MR16 50Watt halogen). I am routinely having issues with these lights. The bulbs and/or transformers fail on a very regular basis.

I want to stay with the 3 inch recessed fixtures and I want to achieve (in order of importance):
- Get the lights to work consistently so I can stop changing/replacing parts.
- Get more light in the space.

Some things to note:
- The dimmer switch will get really hot.
- I have tried LED bulbs but they don't work correctly (I am assuming because of the transformer type).
- I have no idea what rating the dimmer switch is but it would have to powerful as it is pushing 500 watts or more.
- I have replaced the dimmer with an electronic low voltage dimmer switch and it didn't seem to improve anything.

Any help is appreciated.

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Old 09-27-2014, 02:16 PM   #2
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Help with Low Voltage Recessed Lights


What make and model are your lights ?
Are they in contact with insulation ?

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Old 09-27-2014, 08:56 PM   #3
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Help with Low Voltage Recessed Lights


Your lamps and transformers are simply running too hot !
Heat build up is killing them.
Improve ventilation !

Using LEDs will improve matters as they produce less heat.
But if there is no or little ventilation them even the leds
Will not achieve full life span.
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Old 09-27-2014, 09:30 PM   #4
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Help with Low Voltage Recessed Lights


Quote:
Originally Posted by knightsae
So I have a lot of 3 inch recessed electronic low voltage lights. There are as many as 10 on each circuit and they were installed in 2007 so they are halogen bulbs (50 watt). The way they are wired is from the dimmer switch it outputs line voltage to each recessed junction box, in the junction box is a transformer which lowers the voltage and then runs through a very narrow chase into the actual recessed fixture to the bulb (MR16 50Watt halogen). I am routinely having issues with these lights. The bulbs and/or transformers fail on a very regular basis. I want to stay with the 3 inch recessed fixtures and I want to achieve (in order of importance): - Get the lights to work consistently so I can stop changing/replacing parts. - Get more light in the space. Some things to note: - The dimmer switch will get really hot. - I have tried LED bulbs but they don't work correctly (I am assuming because of the transformer type). - I have no idea what rating the dimmer switch is but it would have to powerful as it is pushing 500 watts or more. - I have replaced the dimmer with an electronic low voltage dimmer switch and it didn't seem to improve anything. Any help is appreciated.

You need a special dimmer for magnetic low voltage lighting. This is why your transformers are failing. Cheap dimmers have a DC component which kills transformers. You said you tried an electronic magnetic dimmer. Did you ever have a transformer fail when you used it?

Is the dimmer in a plastic or metal box? Are their other dimmers in the box? You need to derate dimmers when they are ganged.
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