Any issues with dimming a photocell?

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  #1  
Old 08-20-06, 10:44 PM
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Any issues with dimming a photocell?

I recently wired two porch light fixtures from a dimmer (Leviton sliding). They work, as do the photocells on each one that turn them off during the day.

Do you see any issues if they are in a dimmed state with the photocell switches (which use power from the circuit) working reliably? Testing was limited, but they seemed to work so far.

I recommended that they leave them at full voltage unless they were outside and wanted them dimmed at the moment.

What do you guys think?

I see that Leviton (and Lutron as well) have 1-800 technical support phone numbers. Maybe I'll give them a call and see if they can satisfy my curiosity. But I thought I'd see what y'all thought or surmised or experienced first.
 
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  #2  
Old 08-21-06, 08:34 AM
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The maker of the photo cell or light fixture should be who you ask. I have never seen this type of setup before and would also like to know what they have to say about it, so post back if you get an answer.
 
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Old 08-21-06, 12:17 PM
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In my previous house I had a photocell (three-wire type) that the output was connected to a dimmer on my porch lights and also through a time switch and then a dimmer for Christmas lights.

I dialed the dimmer(s) back just a bit from full brightness to make the lamp bulbs last longer. I never had any trouble with this setup over a fifteen year period.
 
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Old 08-21-06, 12:38 PM
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excellent point furd. Is the photo cell on the line side or load side of the dimmer?
 
  #5  
Old 08-21-06, 01:41 PM
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Line side...always.

supply...photocell...dimmer...lamp
 
  #6  
Old 08-21-06, 01:59 PM
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I think in the OP example the pe is built into the fixture.
 
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Old 08-21-06, 03:00 PM
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It does read that way. Maybe it is okay but I wouldn't do it that way.
 
  #8  
Old 08-22-06, 01:38 AM
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Yes, that's why I'm curious about it.

LINE...DIMMER...PHOTOCELL/LAMPS

The photocell is in series and operates on the dimmed voltage. I'm thinking that it might not work if dimmed too much, which is why I make the recommendation to leave it on full when not needing it to be dimmed. They just wanted the ability to dim the fixture when they were in the backyard and didn't want it so bright. But they also live on the other sode of the USA and need the photocell for security lighting.

It's working so far.
 
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