Light dimmers and why they’re worth having

Remember the last time you were watching TV and the light of a nearby lamp was dazzling you unpleasantly? You eventually switched the lamp off only to expose your eyes to additional strain, since watching TV in the dark damages your vision.

Such situations happen often, while the solution to the problem is plainly simple. It’s an adjustable light switch, commonly referred to as a dimmer.

Dimmer – an eye– and pocket–friendly device

Light adjustment is beneficial for your eyes. With light dimmers, you can easily improve your comfort while working on a computer or watching TV. You can also effortlessly reduce visual discomfort when you wake up to take care of your children at night or when you wake up to dark, winter mornings. In addition, dimmers are of great help for those who care to have a pleasant atmosphere during dinner at home or in a restaurant.

Don’t forget about the economic advantages of dimmers, too. Your electricity bill can be substantially reduced after you’ve decided to install dimmers in your house.  Limiting the use of light by a quarter means energy savings of about 20% – a good solution for your house and the environment.

How do adjustable dimmer switches work?

The principle of operation used by the mechanism of this device has changed over the course of more than a hundred years, for this is how long light dimmers have been around. Back in the day, a dimmer was a type of potentiometer controlling current flow. Today, dimmers are chiefly based on electronics.

Traditionally, dimmers present themselves as knobs, handles, or sliders on a panel that one can use to freely adjust light intensity. This kind of dimmers is the most popular in Poland. Moreover, current market offers include rotatable electronic dimmers additionally fitted with a light intensity memory module, room presence detector, time switch, etc.

The next generation of light dimmers includes electronic dimmers with a touchscreen that are undoubtedly advantageous for their soft start functionality, i.e. the ability to slowly light up and switch off lightbulbs.  These dimmers resemble a simple panel, often in glass, that matches very modern interiors perfectly. 

What lightbulbs are compatible with light dimmers?

Technical parameters of light dimmers may vary depending on the type and power of lighting you are going to use them for.  Thus, it is good to know the exact type of lamp (incandescent, halogen, LED) the dimmer will be used for in the future before you buy the dimmer.

Remember that an incorrect match between the dimmer and an incandescent or fluorescent lamp might damage both devices.

  • Traditional lightbulbs – most dimmers were extensively compatible with older lightbulbs. However, in practice these lightbulbs provided essentially no power savings because what had been saved by the lightbulb was used by the dimmer.
  • Energy–efficient lightbulbs – not all lightbulbs of this type are compatible with dimmers. That is why you should always check if the dimmer you choose is compatible with such light sources. There is a wide variety of dimmer models suitable for energy–efficient lightbulbs available on the market.
  • LED lamps – these must be dimmable LED lamps. In this case you should also check if the dimmer can precisely control current parameters and if it is suitable for use with LED lighting.
  • Halogen lighting – dimmers may cooperate with halogen lamps when the latter are supplied with 230 V electric power.

Remember that when you use a dimmer, the light source in a lamp will never reach 100% of its intensity. It will oscillate between 80-90% instead. Therefore, if you want to be sure to achieve high brightness in the room when you need to, choose lightbulbs with accordingly higher power.

A few words on controlling adjustable dimmer switches

Electrical equipment manufacturers understand that futuristic visions of a smart building of quite recent past are today’s reality. For this reason, new solutions for light control constantly appear on the market. They use infrared or radio waves. These systems integrate dimmers with a control panel responsible for other functions within the house (e.g. air conditioning or heating).

Manual or touchscreen control obviously continues to be the most common type of control:

  • Manual Control - this is how we still most frequently adjust lights in the room. We adjust light intensity to suit our needs by moving a slider or turning a knob.
  • In Touchscreen Control, we adjust light by pushing and holding the glass panel of a dimmer long enough, just like in cell phones.

OSPEL light dimmers – beautiful fittings with good prices

Light dimmers manufactured by the Polish company OSPEL are available in a plethora of beautiful, subtle colours – from white and ecru to metallic ones. Aesthetic and made of materials of perfect quality, they match modern interior decorations exceptionally well.  OSPEL is offering dimmers with pushbutton knobs. High quality and good price of our dimmers ensures that our customers are satisfied. We encourage you to contact our distributors.