Dimmer Switch Question?

Old 08-22-06, 07:10 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Sterling Heights
Posts: 286
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
Dimmer Switch Question?

When we go to bed we like to keep our hallway lights on all night with the dimmer set at its lowest setting to act as night lights.

Sometimes when the A/C comes on, the power draw from the A/C makes the dimmed hallway lights go out completely. But when the A/C finishes its cycle and shuts down, the lights do not return to their original "dimmed" setting; they remain unlit for the rest of the night.

In the morning, we sometimes forget to turn the dimmer switch to its off position because the lights already look like they're off. We leave for work all day; the dimmer stays on (at the low setting) but the lights are not lit. Will this cause any problems and does it waste electricity even though the lights are not lit.
Old 08-22-06, 07:24 PM
nap's Avatar
nap is offline
New Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: north
Posts: 3,821
Upvotes: 0
Received 2 Upvotes on 2 Posts
If there continues to be any power fed from the dimmer, then yes you are wasting power although if it is not enough to light your lights, it is very minimal.

I persoanlly do not care for dimmers. I have seen a dimmer catch fire. Luckilly this was is a steel box with steel conduit. If it wasn't it could have started a fire and burned down the brand new building.

I prefer using the proper lights for a purpose. If you desire some minimal night lights, I would look to some small cans or other fixtures that produce a very subdued lighting.

Just my opinion.
Old 08-22-06, 08:08 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 9
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
we do the same thing, having a light on all night. in a former home, we used the electroluminescent panel type night lights plugged into the outlets in the hallway. The typically use a less than a watt of power, and supply enough pale green light to see. they advertise that they cost less than 3 cents a year to operate. in the house we live in now, we don't have outlets in the hallway, so we have an end table at the end of the hall with a table lamp on it. we have a 25 watt (incandescent equivalent) fluorescent bulb in it. it uses 6 watts i think, and supplies plenty of light for the hall. just some thoughts.
Old 08-22-06, 08:19 PM
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: North of Boston, MA.
Posts: 1,967
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
DON"T be afraid! The night time is the right time.
If you'r afraid of the dark, Or have small children who are, There are MUCH better options. This one, I would not recomend.
Old 08-24-06, 06:33 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 120
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Upvotes on 0 Posts
buy a higher quality dimmer.

The cheaper dimmers always have a "pop"

for instance, take grandma's old rotary dimmer that pushes in and out to turn on and off and rotates to dim. turn it on and rotate is down to its lowest setting. notice the lights in teh room are still on, now push in the dimmer to turn the lights off. Push it in again to turn it back on, now notice the lights dont come on. You have to roate teh dial a bit until the lights "pop" on and then you can dim them back down.

This is what is going for you. Higher quality dimmers do nto have this "pop" and can be turned on adn off from their lowest setting.

by the way, if the AC comes on and turns the lights off and you do nto notice for a few hours - even if the dimmer is showing it is on, you are not using electricity. The triac in the dimmer has not reached its breakover piont yet to allow the flow of current.

no current flow = no electricity

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: