Cree LR6 Question - Dimmer??

karenmanessJune 2, 2010

I purchased two Cree LR6 LED recessed fixtures to go over my kitchen peninsula. My contractor is familiar with installing recessed lights, but this is the first time he has worked with LEDs. However, my understanding is that installation is pretty simple and not that different from installing more traditional recessed fixtures. He asked me today if we wanted to put our 2 LEDs on a dimmer. I said sure, but then started reading online about making sure LEDs are compatible with the dimmer selected, and about dimming perhaps not being all that impressive with LEDs (i.e. 30% not being all that different from 100%). I found the following statement on a website (can't remember where) and it makes sense:

"This LED downlight is so energy efficient, drawing only 10.5 watts, that youÂll need to make sure that the dimmer you choose has a minimum wattage rating to recognize a load so small, or that there are enough LR6Âs on the dimmer circuit to add up to what your dimmer needs."

So my questions are:

1. With only 2 LEDs on this switch, am I asking for trouble trying to dim? I know Cree publishes a list of recommended dimmers, but has anyone had good luck with any of these, in particular for only 2 lights?

2. Is the "dimmability" of LEDs worth it? In other words, if we go to the trouble to find the right dimmer and install it, is the range of brightness reasonable enough to make it worthwhile?


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The load of just 2 LR6 lights is probably too small.

If there are 4 or more lights, dimming does make sense.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2010 at 12:46AM
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A salesperson at LampsPlus demonstrated to me a couple of days ago a dimmer connected to one LR6. She also told me that it would dim more if more lights were connected to the dimmer. However, it did dim the one light sufficiently enough for me to consider putting a dimmer on the LR6 light that I'll have over the sink. If you have a LampsPlus near you, perhaps they can demonstrate how the dimmer would work when connected to one LED.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2010 at 3:55PM
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Well, we decided to give it a try. We put in the only thing we could find in stock at Lowe's that was on the Cree list of compatible dimmers - the Lutron Diva DVW-600PH. The Cree list says it's good for 1-7 fixtures, but with our 2 we are seeing a subtle flicker at 100% on the dimmer, and a pronounced flicker at anything less. Like people have mentioned, there isn't a huge difference in brightness across the range of the dimmer. I also know that 100% on the dimmer is not 100% of what the fixture can put out, and I would like them to be brighter. They are okay at 100% on the dimmer but I do think I'm sacrificing some brightness and I'd like to get it back. Therefore, I'm going to ask them to take the dimmer out tomorrow. Just thought I'd pass along our experiences. Other than the ineffectual dimmer/flickering issue, I do like the fixtures. The light color is nice and the fixtures themselves are very streamlined and sleek.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2010 at 9:08PM
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