Went to Home Depot yesterday looking to replace an existing 120v, 2' trac
light setup in my kitchen. The existing heads didn't throw much light and I
thought replacing the trac with a 4' piece and adding heads would be nice.
I saw the all in one kits that included 44" of trac and 4 heads but they
were not very attractive. I really liked the low voltage pendants. These
work in a 120 volt trac and each has its own transformer. I asked about
dimming these and the guy said that it could be done but Home Depot does not
sell the dimmer.
I replaced the 2' trac with a new 4' 120 volt trac. Snapped in the new
pendants and voila! nice bright light; really bright light; too much light.
So I went to my trusted computer and looked up low voltage dimmers, and WOW
they are very expensive! And now I'm not sure if they will work. Are the
electronic low voltage dimmers designed to replace my existing 120v switch?
Will one dimmer control the transformers in each pendant?
Or will they only work on a 12v trac that has just one main transformer?
I am not an electrician (just a plumber) but I don't think that the low
voltage dimmer will work because you have a 120 volts at the switch. I think
they may be set up if you have 12 v at the switch and it would control the
I would try a regular dimmer switch on it. I would also wait until one of
the electric gurus to answer you as I am not totally sure of myself.
Many of the "electronic" transformers can be dimmed with the
"expensive" dimmer. I have done it where there is one of these
electronic transformers for a string of 12 volt lamps. I have
never done it for individual units essentially in parallel. I
would heck with the manufacturer's web site or call them.
Jeff Guay wrote:
Go to an electrical supply house. You can buy a dimmer rated for your
application and it shouldn't be much more than a designer dimmer would cost.
It will replace your existing wall switch.
Why don't you just put in lower wattage bulbs and save some heat and
electricity? When you dim a bulb using a dimmer the color temperature of
the bulb changes. The bulb will begin to glow with a warm orange tone as
you lower the dimmer setting. That may not be the look that you want in
So you're running low-voltage lamps using a 120v track. Each light has
a transformer that steps down the voltage to 12v. I don't see how you
can connect a low-voltage dimmer switch to a 120v line. Have you
thought about using the 120v pendants and increasing the wattage of
the bulbs? Or replacing the bulbs with a reflector flood or something
similar. Surely that would throw more light than a low-voltage lamp.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.