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Old 11-26-2013, 11:40 PM   #1
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LEDs parallel or in series


I just installed two recessed light fixtures (LED). They are wired in series (end of the run with single pole switch). The LEDs are dimmable and the switch (Lutron) is for dimmable LEDs.
I have two problems:
1. light intensity is different in each fixture
2. when I move dimmer knob all the way up the fixtures flicker

The switch is adjustable, and I played with it for a while, but was not successful.

What is wrong? My wiring, switch or LED lights?
Any help will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 11-27-2013, 01:02 AM   #2
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What do you mean, that you have the lights wired in series. Lets start from the beginning. Picture of the fixtures, make & model, how they are wired from the power source, to the dimmer, then the lights, or power source to first light fixture, then the next, then the dimmer if the dimmer is on a Switch leg.

Really if you are seeing different voltages at each fixture, the first place to start looking is how the dimmer. Second is how they are wired.

Really, unless the dimmer is rated for use with LED lighting fixtures, you can see issues like this, along with the fact that you are placing too much resistance on one fixture over the other, will not only shorten the lifespan of the control circuit in the fixture if it is all one assembly, and not a bulb with a control circuit, and LED's (Light Emitting Diodes).

Think of Resistance like stepping or folding over a Garden Hose. You leave it laying on the ground, water flows unrestricted. You pick up the hose and start folding it over to restrict the water, you are placing more resistance on the flow, so that less water exits the end of the hose.

In turn, you are causing also back pressure on the hose at that point, so you can end up blowing a hole in the hose before where you folded it, or it will force your hand to let loose of the hose, allowing water to then flow unrestricted.

So get us a drawing of how the lights are wired, along with manufacturer of the dimmer switch and lights along with fixtures, also what are you voltages at each light fixture, then with the power off, what is the resistance at each fixture, we can go further with this.



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Old 11-27-2013, 03:10 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by januwan View Post
I just installed two recessed light fixtures (LED). They are wired in series (end of the run with single pole switch). The LEDs are dimmable and the switch (Lutron) is for dimmable LEDs.
I have two problems:
1. light intensity is different in each fixture
2. when I move dimmer knob all the way up the fixtures flicker

The switch is adjustable, and I played with it for a while, but was not successful.

What is wrong? My wiring, switch or LED lights?
Any help will be greatly appreciated.
some "LED's" do not play well with certain dimmers or vise versa , i would say that is where your issue is.
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Old 11-27-2013, 05:02 AM   #4
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You can't wire them in series. Your starting off with only half the voltage to each lamp.

Wire them in Parallel. If your using the below Lutron dimmer.....it should work fine. They have come along way...that dimmer will work for both CFL's (dimmable type) and LED's.

I have a couple of them.

http://www.lutron.com/en-US/Products.../Overview.aspx
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Old 11-27-2013, 05:29 AM   #5
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ALL AC home wiring is parallel wiring. You are using the term "series" wrong in this application.

If you literally did wire them in series it is very wrong and can burn out your equipment.
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Old 11-27-2013, 05:32 AM   #6
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To verify the dimmer is ok....disconnect one light....and control the remaining light. If there are still issues, the dimmer might be the problem.

Is it a new dimmer?
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Old 11-27-2013, 07:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Speedy Petey View Post
ALL AC home wiring is parallel wiring. You are using the term "series" wrong in this application.
Well I wouldn't exactly say "ALL". There are some examples of series wiring around the house. Remember those Christmas tree lights where one bulb burned out and it took out the entire string? Maddening!

You can run lights in series and that includes (raw) LED lighting. But by "raw" I mean just the LED's and not the LED household bulbs. The household bulbs already include the power supply, filter/converter within the base and the power supply is expecting full household voltage as opposed to the voltage which has dropped because of the series connection.
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Old 11-27-2013, 08:23 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Sanders View Post
Well I wouldn't exactly say "ALL". There are some examples of series wiring around the house. Remember those Christmas tree lights where one bulb burned out and it took out the entire string? Maddening!
Yeah, you're right.

I should have been clearer, I meant building wiring.
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Old 11-27-2013, 08:55 AM   #9
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I worked at a place that had some outdoor accent lighting that was 4 100W bulbs in series. They weren't that easy to get to so it always sucked when you had to go out in the freezing cold and hope you didn't have to check all four of them before you hit pay dirt.
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Old 11-27-2013, 10:50 AM   #10
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Thank you all for your feedback. I will rewire my fixtures this evening and report.
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Old 11-27-2013, 07:50 PM   #11
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I rewired the light fixtures to parallel configuration and everything works fine.
Thanks for straightening me up
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Old 11-28-2013, 11:17 PM   #12
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Was that Cletis under cover ?
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