Dimmer Switch: How to stop filament buzz?

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I have a 100W globe style bulb attached to a simple 2-way dimmer. The thing (the bulb) buzzes like crazy on anything other than full on and full off. You can even see the filament flapping in the inert breeze.
Is there no way to fully remove this buzzing? I know a little about the higher speed switching techniques involved, and I also know about the wave deforming that some do. But is there not something foolproof? Seems like something that should have been solved by now.
Thanks
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On Aug 31, 4:42 pm, "Thomas G. Marshall"

Its the bulb, try different styles. A lower watt should buzz less.
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ransley said something like:

I need a lot of light here, so I have it at 100W and it is *barely* enough, in my opinion.
Further, some bulbs will be worse than others I'm sure, but I'm looking for a solution that hopefully doesn't muck the waveform into something that makes filaments want to flap around.
--
"I don\'t want FOP, God dammit! I\'m a DAPPER DAN MAN!"



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Thomas G. Marshall wrote:

Blow The Style Police - put in a strip light - that will function! Though you will see all the creases that age has brought on ... and the faults in decorating the room!
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Charles said something like:

Seems like either the controller or the controlled is gonna buzz when at 1/2 power.
Is there no way for these things to have a variable transformer that reduces V amplitude while maintaining the waveform as a (roughly) 60 Hz sine? Or would that buzz as well?
Curious...
--
"I don\'t want FOP, God dammit! I\'m a DAPPER DAN MAN!"



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According to Thomas G. Marshall

Switching bulb styles and/or manufacturers, perhaps trying out a 100W rough service bulb is a good first & cheap step. Get away from the ultra cheapies.
If the dimmer is an ultra cheapy, switching to a $20-$30 (I'm fond of Leviton and Eagle sliders) unit will sometimes resolve a problem that switching bulbs won't.

You don't want to know how big, heavy or expensive a 600W variac is.
They don't fit in a receptacle box.
And they make electrical noise as they get older.
--
Chris Lewis,

Age and Treachery will Triumph over Youth and Skill
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We have found that Philips bulbs buzz less than most other brands such as GE or Sylvania with the Leviton dimmers we use.
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Assuming you have a three way dimmer and a standard switch at the other end and not two dimmers in series: I've found Lutron dimmers to be silent even with problematic lamp types like "G" . If you haven't already, try a Diva or Skylark
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Try a lamp designed for a fan or a garage door opener. They are designed with more support of the filament. Just a different brand may work.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
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Try different type dimmer or another one, some times triac can go bad and it will fire only half of cycle or at 180 degree instead of 360 when that happens it can get very noisy specially at minimal load, 100W at triac that can pas 3 amp. is minimal, I would change dimmer. Tony
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On Aug 31, 4:42 pm, "Thomas G. Marshall"

All dimmers work with a Triac that basically "chops" the flow of electricity to a certain duty cycle giving a certain brightness. A bulb with a heavy duty supported filament will help, like a fridge or oven or fan bulb. I got some Chinese bulbs rated for 130 volts at the dollar store, they glow more yellow than regular bulbs but have no buzz and have lasted a long time. The decorative globe bulbs are among the worst for filament rattle. They also make a dimmable CFL bulb now too, but they only work for about 85% of your dimmers upper range. You could also try a screw base halogen, they are dimmable.
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RickH said something like:
...[rip]...

Ok guys, thanks. Asked and answered. Since what I want is the decorative globe, I'm pulling out the dimmer and putting back in the regular switch. Unfortunate.
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Thomas G. Marshall wrote:

Maybe a heavy duty bulb, which has additional filament supports in it, would be quieter?
You could always add a bridge rectifier and filter cap to the dimmer's output so the bulb runs on DC. <G>
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
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What brand of bulb is it. We find that most brands will buzz, but Philips bulbs don't, or at least not as much.

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I have three wall sconces in our living room that are on a remote control dimmer. One of the bulbs is a standard 60W light bulb, the other two are 60W bulbs made for ceiling fans. I ran out of the ceiling fan bulbs when one burned out, so I just screwed in a standard bulb. I prefer the ceiling fan bulbs simply because they are smaller in size and don't stick down below our light fixture. They cost slightly more, but they're generally built stronger to endure the vibrations of a ceiling fan.
Anyway, the standard light bulb buzzes (rings) a lot, but neither of the ceiling fan bulbs make a sound at dimmer settings. Might be worth trying a ceiling fan bulb.
Anthony
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As you have said, the buzzing/humming is due to the filament of the lamp vibrating. So, any incandescent lamp with more filament supports will be less noisy. Try lamps with different filament construction too; some are noisier than others. Lamps with heavy thick filaments are less noisy than lamps with thin light filaments.
The ultimate solution is to wire a "debuzzing coil" into the circuit or replace the dimmer with one that has the coil built in. Most dimmer manufacturers list debuzzing coils as accessories, but you'll probably have to get them on line as I've never seen any in retail stores. Also, you will need room in either the wall box where the dimmer is or the junction box where the fixture is mounted to install the coil. Just wire the coil into the circuit between the dimmer and the lamp in the black lead.
The coil is just an inductor which smoothes the edges of the sharp on/off pulses which the dimmer sends to the lamp as the lamp is dimmed. Those pulses set up reversing magnetic fields in the lamp support leads which twist the filament 120 times a second. When the dimmer is full on, it sends the normal smooth sine wave from the line to the lamp.
TKM
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ISTR that maybe 30 years ago there were sold these little buttons that you were supposed to stick on the bottom of your light bulbs to make them last longer. they also made the bulbs a little dimmer. I don't know if they just dropped the voltage or also rectified it. I was just a little kid at the time so my memory is a little furry. I couldnt find anything on a web search, anyone remember what I am thinking of? (I don't know that they really did a whole heck of a lot...)
nate
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N8N wrote:

Back in the 1980 I had a business partner who's brother in law tried to get us to sell them for him. It was a disk that dropped into a regular Edison 120vac lamp socket. It was just a rectifier, a simple rectifier that supplied pulsed DC to the bulb. It was called a Power Saver and the bulb did light up a bit dimmer.
TDD
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If a 100 watt bulb is necessary for sufficient light why have a dimmer? Replace it with a regular switch! Aternatively if the 100 is too bright put in a smaller bulb! This is just another incompatibility of the variuos el-cheapo electrical gadgets that are sold. For example most (cheap) dimmers won't or shouldn't be used with the now much touted CFLs! Because they are incompatible!
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On Wed 08 Oct 2008 07:41:40p, terry told us...

the
it,
dimmer's
Any dimmer would be incompatible with an ordinary CFL unless it is a *dimmable* CFL. There are distinct design differences in the balasts of the two types of CFLs.
Many filaments will buzz depending on the percentage of dimming at any given point. The more the light is dimmed, usually the more the filament is more likely to buzz. If the OP normally dims the 100 watt bulb significantly, then a reduction in wattage may change how much, if any, the bulb will buzz. A change in type and/or quality of dimmer may make a difference as well.
--
Wayne Boatwright
(correct the spelling of "geemail" to reply)
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