Unlike incandescent lighting, LED lighting relies on a self-contained power supply that also acts like a current and dimmer control system called an LED driver that is separate from the wall dimmer switch. The LED driver takes high-voltage alternating current power from the electrical line and converts it into low-voltage direct current power. It also adjusts to keep the current constant so that an LED light functions as expected based on its design and use.
Why is dimming so important when designing, manufacturing and installing LED lighting?
LED DIMMING PERFORMANCE
The amount of light in any living or working scenario has a significant impact on many things you might not have considered. For example:
- Lighting affects how people interpret color and space, which is important in interior design. The level of light can make a room feel hotter or colder.
- Different levels of dimmed light can change people’s moods. A dimmed light source often makes people feel more comfortable in certain settings, such as restaurants and doctor’s offices.
- The ability to dim a light source can make certain people feel more in control of their comfort levels, which improves their mood and productivity.
- Dimming an LED light also saves energy, which helps to protect the environment. People also benefit from saving money.
THE LED DRIVER AND PERFORMANCE
If the LED driver is incompatible with the LED light, the rest of the system and/or the purpose of the lighting, you usually will not get the type of LED dimming performance that you desire. For example:
- You might move the slider and the light does not dim as expected or at all.
- The light might be steady but too dim.
- One or more lights in an LED fixture might flash on and off or flicker.
- An LED that you turned off at a dimmed setting might turn on during the next use at its maximum level.
ADDITIONAL PERFORMANCE CONSIDERATIONS
An LED driver affects the overall performance of any attached LED light. When you dim an LED light, you affect its lifespan and energy efficiency. Part incompatibility that leads to poor LED dimming performance can result in changes in voltage and current or higher than recommended temperatures that reduce the LED’s life and make it less energy-efficient.
LED drivers vary by manufacturer in design and quality. For more information on how LED drivers are matched to a specific LED system, contact Energy Recovery Products today!