Modern electrical devices provide a number of additional features. Many users have already appreciated dimmers that allow you to smoothly dim the lighting, creating an atmosphere of coziness and comfort to the room.
When choosing such devices it is important to pay attention to their compatibility with the category of the light source. For example, a dimmer for incandescent lamps is designed specifically for this type of lighting fixtures.
In order not to get lost in the store and not get lost in the variety of offers, you should first find out more information about the dimmers, agree? All the necessary information is collected in our article.
We described the principle of operation, the pros and cons of using dimmers, gave a detailed classification of devices and outlined the rules for their connection. Review of the best manufacturers and models will help you choose a practical and high-quality model of the dimmer.
The content of the article:
- The principle of dimmers
- Dimmers: advantages and disadvantages
Types of regulators for incandescent bulbs
- According to the principle of the regulators
- By type of construction devices
- According to the method of installation of electrical appliances
- By way of dimming
- Standard connection option
- Tips for choosing dimmers
- Top Dimmer Manufacturers
The best models for incandescent bulbs
- Universal dimmer DELTA from Siemens
- Light control Celiane from Legrand
- Turn-push dimmer from ABB
- Mira dimmer from Lezard
- Conclusions and useful video on the topic
The principle of dimmers
Dimmers - handy devices that allow you to change the degree of illumination of the premises, reducing the power of the lamps. The basis of such devices can be based on various solutions.
The simplest device is the usual rheostat, the disadvantage of which is considerable heating during use.
To avoid this, household power transformers are included in the supply circuit to compensate for temporary voltage surges.
Even the simplest dimmer can perform important functions (+)
More modern and convenient devices are considered dimmers, the design of which is based on semiconductors - synistors, thyristors, dinistors.
Such devices guarantee easy control of unlocking / locking moments associated with the change of current direction in the circuit.
Dimmer circuit on thyristors. The most simple type of dimming device, which can be easily made by hand, having elementary technical skills (+)
The devices that generate self-oscillations are also made on the basis of transistors: in this case, the main nodes are high-power field elements.
Read more about the device and the principle of the dimmer work in this article.
Dimmers: advantages and disadvantages
The advantages of dimmers include:
- Comfortable brightness control. In some cases, this can be done remotely or using an acoustic signal.
- The ability to use regulators as switches for igniting and extinguishing lamps.
- Reducing the load contributes to the extension of the period of operation of lighting devices.
- Modern models often have a programming function that allows you to simulate the presence of the owner in case of departure.
The assortment of specialized stores presents a wide range of devices that differ in their design, design, cost, a variety of different options.
Extremely convenient device is a remote dimmer, which allows to turn on and turn off the light, as well as to change its brightness at a distance using the remote
At the same time, these devices have a number of certain disadvantages. First of all, they are sensitive to overheating, therefore it is recommended to install them in rooms with a temperature not higher than + 25 ° C.
When using dimmers, you must observe a minimum level of loads equal to 40 watts. If this indicator is frequently violated, the regulatory mechanism will fail prematurely.
Impulses can become sources of radio interference. To compensate for this not too pleasant effect, coils with capacitors (LG filters) are sometimes introduced into the circuit.
If powerful long-filament lamps are included in the circuit, you should be careful not to apply the minimum voltage to them, as the instruments may start singing.
It is strictly forbidden to connect TVs, computers, tablets, radio receivers to the power circuit. It is not allowed to connect electronic ballasts (electronic control gears), fluorescent lamps.
According to the calculations of specialists, a 50% reduction in the power of an incandescent lamp using modern dimmers saves 15% of electrical energy.
The issue of discussion is energy savings in the regulation of work. incandescent bulbs.
Research scientists have shown that the use of modern types of dimmers contributes to some reduction in power consumption, but this figure can hardly be called impressive.
Types of regulators for incandescent bulbs
There are several options for classifications of devices for controlling the brightness of the light bulbs.
According to the principle of the regulators
All models can be divided into two broad categories:
Mechanical. These include simple budget devices operating on the principle of a rheostat. They have a handle, turning which you can increase or decrease the voltage, which causes a change in the intensity of the light flux.
Mechanical devices manufactured by different manufacturers, have the same type of design. However, they may vary in quality due to the technical characteristics of the parts used and the careful assembly.
The mechanisms of individual models can also be added special components that contribute to a smooth process control and / or ensuring stable dimmer operation with minimal electrical supply current.
Electronic. Regulators are quite complex instruments that are controlled on the basis of ordinary or touch buttons.
An integral part of such devices is a microcontroller, which significantly expands their capabilities in comparison with mechanical analogs.
In models of dimmers, as a rule, overheating protection is provided, which turns off the device when a certain temperature is reached, as well as against a short circuit.
Here are just a few additional features that can be equipped with such devices:
- installation of several control panels located in different zones of the room;
- the ability to regulate the work of regulators at a distance;
- use of standard and custom light source modes;
- Connecting the dimmer to the light sensor, thereby achieving an automatic adjustment of the intensity of artificial lighting, depending on the degree of natural.
Electronic devices are extremely convenient in operation, their disadvantage can be considered only the high cost.
By type of construction devices
Depending on the design features, there are three main types of dimmers:
- Modularwhose appearance resembles automatic switches. Such devices, compatible with incandescent bulbs, are usually installed in distribution cabinets. Their adjustment is made by button or key.
- Mounted, with installation in special boxes, the device which is provided for at the stage of electrical work. They are compatible with various types of lighting products.
- Monoblockworking similar to conventional switches. The devices require a two-wire connection, which makes it possible to break the circuit of the phase wire, causing a load.
To control the lighting in residential areas most often used the last option.
According to the method of installation of electrical appliances
Depending on the installation option, there are two types of dimmers: internal and external.
Internal assembly. This option is used when laying hidden wiring. In this case, the devices are mounted in special boxes, which are specially arranged in wall niches.
Manufacturers pay special attention to the development of models of overhead dimmers. Devices often have original designs and exquisite colors.
Outdoor accommodation. In electric circuits on the surface of the walls are mounted dimmers.
Due to their attractive appearance, they are not only of practical importance, but also perform a decorative function, placing accents in the interior.
By way of dimming
When choosing a model, you need to consider how on / off / adjustment is performed.
Based on this criterion, we can distinguish the following options:
- Tilt & turn - knobs with a button, pressing which allows you to turn on / off the light, and rotation - to control its intensity.
- Swivel - when turned on, the lamp lights up with a minimum degree of brightness, which is increased by rotating the button.
- Keyboard keys - lighting is adjusted by holding down the key.
- Sensory - A modern version that allows you to control the lighting by touching the sensitive plate of the screen.
- Remote - regulation of work is carried out at a distance using the remote control, but often duplicated in the traditional way.
There are also models where the acoustic principle is used. In this case, the lighting device can be lit or extinguished by voice command or clapping.
Standard connection option
Connecting the dimmer to the lighting system is quite easy, it should only be borne in mind that, depending on the modification, the device may have two or four terminals.
When connecting the device to the circuit, you must follow the safety regulations. All manipulations should be carried out with the power cut off, using tools with good insulation.
The design of monoblock models provides two terminals through which it is necessary to connect a broken phase of the lighting circuit. As a rule, such devices are installed instead of switches in the existing socket.
Instructions for connecting the dimmer
The process consists of the following steps:
- First of all, you need to unscrew the bolts and remove the switch, disconnecting from the wiring.
- Then carefully consider the marking of the terminals, where the arrows indicate the incoming and outgoing phase. For clarification, it is possible to test with a tester.
- With the polarity of the cores remaining in the socket, are connected to the terminals of the dimmer.
- After that, the dimmer is inserted into the box and hardened with screws or in another way.
- At the end of the process, electric current is again supplied to the circuit to verify the correct operation of the connected equipment.
With connecting dimmer with four terminals, two of them are attached to the broken phase of the lighting circuit, and the control button is taken out to the other two.
Tips for choosing dimmers
When selecting a regulator for incandescent bulbs, it is important to consider all the above features. In addition, experts recommend to pay attention to a number of additional nuances.
If the device is planned to be placed in a room with a temperature above +25 ° C, it is better to use a model equipped with built-in ventilation or a fuse.
Light control with a dimmer is made using the phase cut-off method. In this case, part of the sinusoid is cut off, which leads to a decrease in the voltage applied to the lighting.
Dimmers are designed for a certain power of lighting devices, which must not be exceeded. If the regulating device is planned to be connected to a chandelier or a group of lamps, then the total indicator should be taken into account.
The cost of products varies widely. The most budget options are keyboards and turntables, but the electronic ones provide more options. If desired, you can build a simple model. do-it-yourself dimmer.
Since the work of electrical equipment is directly related to the safety of housing, it is better to give preference to products of reputable brands whose products are highly valued in user reviews.
Top Dimmer Manufacturers
Let us name several well-known brands of electrical goods, in the catalogs of which a significant place is devoted to small products, including various types of dimmers.
Legrand. A large French company, which is considered a leader in the global core market.
Numerous enterprises located in 80 countries produce more than 215 thousand product items, including various dimmer modifications.
Legrand dimmers feature reliable, safe operation and long service life. The model range is quite wide: in the catalogs one can find both traditional and original versions.
Dimmers from the Celiane series are characterized by high performance, as well as an elegant design. For the design of devices, the manufacturer also offers interchangeable frames of various colors.
The advantages include flexible pricing. The company offers both exclusive expensive devices and devices at a budget price.
Simon. Spanish holding company with headquarters in Barcelona. The company specializes in the production of electrical installation equipment in different price categories. The assortment includes elite product lines and budget class models.
Simon products are practical, functional, have an original appearance. In the catalogs you can find various modifications of dimmers, including sensory and rotary, as well as effective solutions with backlighting.
Dernek GROUP. A major manufacturer, producing all kinds of electrical products under the brand Lezard, aims to produce affordable high quality products.
Dernek focuses primarily on mass demand, offering products with a simple design at affordable prices.
Products included in the Mira (Lezard) line are available in a variety of colors. Among the options offered - a spectacular shade of "golden metallic"
At the same time, Lezard appliances exhibit good working properties. In their manufacture, high-grade plastic and stainless steel are used, and the thought-out mechanism of the device is equipped with a fuse.
Berker. German family firm founded in 1919. All products manufactured under this brand are manufactured at a large enterprise located in Germany in Schalksmühle.
Mostly the brand produces products in traditional design at affordable prices. Berker dimmers are characterized by impeccable quality of mechanisms, ease of use, neat appearance.
Schneider electric. Founded in the XIX century, the French company offers a wide range of electrical accessories, which are highly appreciated by professionals.
Among the branded products are push-button and rotary controls, as well as universal models suitable for different types of lamps.
The Schneider products are characterized by original design, as well as exclusive quality, which guarantees reliable operation and long product life.
High quality products are distinguished by reliability and durability, using modules and interchangeable frames. The disadvantages include only relatively high cost.
ABB. Swedish-Swiss company, which occupies a leading position in the production of high-tech electrical equipment.
In the manufacture of products, impact-resistant and UV-resistant materials are used, which imparts increased strength to the products and prolongs the service life.
The design of dimmers is distinguished by elegance and expressive colors; spectacular fluorescent brands are used even in basic collections.
The advantages include ease of installation, comfort in use, the possibility of modular solutions.
Makel. Turkish manufacturer engaged in the release of electrical products for almost four decades.
Product lines are manufactured on German equipment with close monitoring of all processes. The catalog presents various types of products exported to 40 countries of the world.
Makel's affordable goods come in a large assortment, making it easy to find an attractive model of dimmer or other electrical accessories.
Available Makel products are characterized by good performance, practicality and functionality.
To facilitate installation, differently colored conductors are used, as well as robust mounting clips to ensure stable contacts.
The best models for incandescent bulbs
Let's give some examples of popular devices in different price categories, having made of them a peculiar four of leaders.
Universal dimmer DELTA from Siemens
The series includes both push-button and keyboard dimmers. The device, easy in installation and operation, can be used even at the considerable loadings which are given on lamps.
Dimmer DELTA from the largest German manufacturer has a classic design and excellent quality. The device is made of high quality plastic, resistant to mechanical damage.
Devices are suitable for various types of light sourcesincluding incandescent bulbs. Separate modifications included in the line have additional functions.
These include, for example, the ability to memorize the level of light that was set during the previous switching on, or the ability to regulate the flow of light from different parts of the room.
Light control Celiane from Legrand
The Celiane series from a famous French manufacturer combines dimmer models that are compatible with various lamps, including incandescent devices. The line includes products designed for a total power of 300 to 600 watts.
The models are made in four exquisite shades: white, ivory, titanium and graphite. In addition to the usual, there are also waterproof modifications with high degree of protection.
Of interest is the intelligent version of the device, thanks to which a smooth drop in lamp power over an hour or a stepwise adjustment of the light intensity is available.
Turn-push dimmer from ABB
Dimmers 651500842 with a rotary-push mechanism suitable for use with incandescent lamps with a capacity of 60-400 watts.
The devices of this series, made in the original colors, are made of highly durable plastic and metal alloys that are resistant to corrosion and deformation.
The lining and caliper used when mounting the product on vertical surfaces are also included with the ABB 651500842 dimmer kit.
The scheme for connecting the device allows you to connect a switch to it. This makes it possible to ignite and extinguish the light from two different places, but access to the controls is provided only from the main device.
To turn on the lamp you need to press the knob, turning which you can increase or decrease the brightness of the lighting.
When you turn off the device will remember the last position of the button, so that when you next turn on the brightness of the light will be set automatically.
Mira dimmer from Lezard
The mechanical device is designed for a load not exceeding 800 watts. Regulation is carried out by rotating the knob: it allows you to change the resistance, which leads to an increase or decrease in the brightness of the lamp.
The device is enclosed in a housing standard for this type of electrical fittings. Its design allows you to easily connect the dimmer to the already laid lighting schemes.
The advantages of the model include ease of use, a long period of operation, the budget price.
Conclusions and useful video on the topic
The video presented in detail describes three modifications of the dimmers, known to the French company Schneider Electric, and also describes how to connect them:
Light controllers designed to work with incandescent bulbs are handy instruments that increase comfort and quality of life. A wide range of products that may differ technical solution, the presence of various functions, a variety of designs.
Dimmers of different types are extremely easy to install, which allows for installation on their own. It is only important to strictly observe the safety rules and carefully carry out all manipulations.
Have experience choosing or using dimmer for incandescent bulbs? Or want to ask questions on the topic? Please comment on the publication and participate in discussions. The feedback block is located below.