LED fixtures cooling and recessed light requirements


Old 12-26-13, 04:21 AM
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LED fixtures cooling and recessed light requirements

Searched and searched, didn't find much regarding the heat dissipation issue.

I realize that LED is the coolest (pun is only partially intended) type of light around. But it is still producing some heat. If installed as a recessed light and surrounded with insulation it probably accumulates heat at least accumulates it more than it would have if there was no insulation, that can't be very good for the life expectancy of the diodes.
I am not ready to remove the insulation, granted not extremely efficient one, but still insulation, from part of the attic above my bathroom and bedroom where I will install the lights.
Any suggestions?

Thank you in advance,

Last edited by pcboss; 12-26-13 at 08:43 AM.
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Old 12-26-13, 04:41 AM
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I have the package material from a 60W equivalent Cree in my hand.
"do not use in multi-bulb enclosed fixtures together with other bulb technologies (i.e. incandescent, halogen, CFL, etc)"
"Suitable for use in operating environments between -13F and +113F"
But nothing specific about up or down orientation or in recessed lights. The 113 sounds like more of a room temperature than a fixture temp.

At present I'm following the recessed light rating for actual watts and in virtually all cases a LED will be far below that rating. example: Max wattage might be 100 watts but my 60 watt equivalent LED uses only 9.5w.

If your recessed lights are IC (insulation contact) rated to allow being buried in insulation, they should be able to handle the lower power of the LED. Also, be sure those cans are AT (air tight) as well.

We will see if anyone else has read otherwise.

Old 12-26-13, 05:11 AM
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Thank you Bud,

I should have included at least the picture of my recessed light, shouldn't I

9W 12W 15W 18W 21W Bright CREE LED Recessed Ceiling Panel Down Light Bulb Lamp | eBay

I know, i know - China made, hence extra precautions.

Was thinking of maybe building an enclosure around each fixture in the attic with drywall and few ****s (oh the potty mouse police :bad poster: lol) ok, ok - horizontal elongated cuts? in the drywall for ventilation. Not sure how much cooling does it buy me...
Also was thinking I'll probably have to make a slightly larger than backside of the fixture hole to help with heat dissipation, I guess it's a poor design that dissipates heat well when not installed
Old 12-26-13, 08:46 AM
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The temperature range stated was the ambient range in which the bulb could be used.

I agree with Bud. I do not think the LED is going to get anywhere near as hot as an incandescent.
Old 12-26-13, 11:08 AM
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I have an LED reflector lamp in a recessed fixture in my bedroom. If I correctly recall the lamp is a 9 watt model (could be 12 watts) and was advertised as a replacement for the 65 (or 75) watt incandescent reflector bulb. My fixture is an IC model and is buried in insulation. Since my computer is also in the bedroom, not very far from this lamp, it is on a good number of hours of each and every day.

I have had this LED bulb in place for at least 1-1/2 years with no problems. It is a Lights of America brand, a brand I have not had the best of luck with in the past. The quality and quantity of light from this bulb is far superior to the incandescent or even the CFL (reflector) bulbs I used before that I would never use anything but an LED.
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