10 x 10W low voltage halogen spotlights - Dimmable?

20 Oct 2008
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United Kingdom
My brother in law is an electronics engineer so not up to speed on electrics. My sister has a centre light which will be surrounded by 10 10w low voltage halogen lights (They have said spotlights but think they may have meant downlights?) Anyway they want to have the centre light dimmable and the spotlights dimmable. At moment they have a double switch, one for main light, and other for halogens and are wanting to install a double dimmer instead. my brother in law has told them this is not possible but am sure I have seen this done before. Am afraid I don't have any more info at moment but can get any info asked for...

Can anyone advise if this is do-able? If so is it only with specific bulbs\downlighters and are there specific dimmers that work?

As I said sorry this is so vague, my sister doesn't have internet access and I had shown her this site when she was last here and her other half sent me a text this evening and said if I let him know what other info is required he will get it to me!

Hoping someone can assist and prove this site to be as helpful as it looks!


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You can get a 2 gang dimmer to do exactly what you are talking about, http://www.tlc-direct.co.uk/Main_In...ate_Index/Ultimate_Dimmer_Switches/index.html the only problem may be if the down lights are low voltage as you say, or elv which use transformer/s, in which case the transformer/s need to be capable of being dimmed(some are not) & this may be what your b.i.l is talking about. The other consideration is the type & rating of the centre light
It is possible to dim 12 Volt halogen lamps, providing the 'transformer' feeding the lights is suitable for use with a dimmer and the dimmer is suitable for use with a transformer. (the 'transformer' is most likely to actually be a switch mode power supply, but there are some proper toroidal transformers around).

It was common to de-rate dimmers by about 50% to cope with the hefty initial current drawn by halogen lamps, so a 250 Watt dimmer would normally handle about 125 Watts of load. This is not always necessary now - check the manufacturers instructions.

It may be possible to swap a non-dimmable power supply for a generic dimmable power supply.

Dimming halogen lamps can reduce the life expectancy of the lamps. When dimmed, the lamp innards don't get hot enough for the halogen regeneration process to work properly.
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