Xenon lightbars linked with dimmer

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Old 02-15-07, 12:23 PM
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Xenon lightbars linked with dimmer

I installed a series of Portfolio brand xenon lightbars (from Lowes) under the cabinets in the kitchen. In an attempt to take the easy route, I utilized an existing outlet located in an "appliance garage" on the counter.
The entire series of lightbars are linked together, with the final cord routed to the inside of the appliance garage. Plugged directly into the outlet everything works fine.

However, without enough forethought I did this all with the intention of using this little touchpad dimmer (same Portfolio brand) that was sold next to all the undercabinet lighting (the kind that plugs into the outlet and then you plug you light into) - so all cords would be secured out of site and I would just mount the tiny touchpad on the outside of this appliance garage.

My chain of lights amounts to a total of 19 60-watt xenon bulbs (1140 total watts). I unfortunately wasn't thinking enough to realize that the dimmer was only rated to 200 watts (could be considered a lamp-dimmer).

Am I correct in understanding that I will need a dimmer that is rated at 1100+ watts? The highest one I've seen is 1000-watts in a wall-mounted style.

For simplicity, I would obviously prefer to find another lamp-dimmer style that I could just plug into without any wiring (or cutting into the tile backsplash), but looking for advice on what is the "safe" thing to do.

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Old 02-15-07, 12:29 PM
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Yes, you need a dimmer rated for the total wattage of whatever is plugged into it. Good luck finding something that wattage.
 
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Old 02-15-07, 01:04 PM
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Thanks for the response.

One more question - So assuming I'm going to need to resort to using a wall-mounted dimmer in order to get anywhere near the rating I need for my lights. Is there any reason I can't just cut the plug off the cord and attach directly to the dimmer and source?

**I realize this probably isn't code, but are there any realistic concerns to doing this?
 
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Old 02-15-07, 04:24 PM
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I don't know of anybody that makes a dimmer that can handle what you have, even in a wall mount.

And no, you cannot cut the plug off the cord. For several reasons.

Also, make sure you have not strung together more of these than allowed by the manufacturer.

Furthermore, you have almost certainly violated the electrical code by using your appliance circuit for lighting.

And finally, you may find that you have sapped so much power from this circuit with lights that you cannot run appliances from it any more.
 
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