Track Lighting

Help Please!
I am wanting to update my old linear track heads. I currently have eight 75 watt halogen bulbs mounted to a 9' ceiling. The lighting is great, and it is on a dimmer switch.
I just purchased 8 Hampton Bay Mini Track Heads. The bulbs that came with it came in a box that says, "GU 10 shielded 12v 50W (RK Halogen). By using this new bulb, I am short 200 watts, but was told I could buy up to 4 more track heads without the worry of it being a fire hazard.
I have one up and working, so I am assuming that I got the right kind of track head for the track. It sounds like most tracks can be used with most light bulbs.
Because this fixture is up high, I would eventually like to change the $3 halogen bulb (which I understand don't last long, to a $29 LED bulb. Not only will it last longer, but because the ceiling is so high, I won't have to be getting the ladder out as much.
I have contacted two different Home Depots, and one person told me that I cannot add an LED bulb to this unit, but another man said I could. I am wondering if a LED bulb will still work with my dimmer switch?
Can anyone tell me which is correct? I worry about it being a fire hazard.
I should have come here first, because I always get excellent advice.
Thanks in advance.
Kate
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Kate,
Good to hear from you again.
I think you should be able to use the LED bulbs if they say they are dimmab le and have the same voltage rating. They should have a much smaller curre nt drain for the same equivalent lumens light output. If you can find a pr oposed bulb, copy the manufacturers information from the box in the store a nd contact the LED manufacturer for more information. Since they are pushi ng LED bulb sales these days, the manufacturer should be happy to give you whatever information they have. Having the information about the present t ransformer and lights, etc, available when you call the LED bulb manufactur er should increase your chances of success.
I would also only buy one new LED bulb at first and try it to make sure it works (if the manufacturer says it will work).
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Your old bulbs were 12 volt too, right? The track has a transformer, right?
--

dadiOH
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I suspect the transformer is in the head, not the track. I really dislike those transformer heads myself.
I have dimmable LED's (R-30, 120v) on my track, and they work well.
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Aside from the fit, I'd suggest that you also test the light before deciding to switch. Incandescent bulbs give off a yellowish light that's reminiscent of candles, giving a cozy look to a room. Halogen bulbs give off a light that's still warm but closer to daylight. It's clear and pleasant. LED bulbs that I've seen up to now give off an unappealing cold light that I would describe as gray. (Who knew bright white light could be gray?) They also don't seem to illuminate as well. I don't know the technical details, but I've found that an LED flashlight that seems to glow notably brighter than an incandescent flashlight is nevertheless notably dimmer in terms of illuminating objects at a distance.
LEDs hold promise for very efficient lighting, but to my mind they're not there yet in terms of either price or quality of light.
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wrote:

My guess, the eye in darkness is sensitive to blue light and turns itself down so to speak. That's why airplane cockpits all use those red lights. as a test walk around on a moon lit night, notice your visibility, now turn on that flaghlight, turn it off, and voila! bet you're blind as a bat for awhile. Now try with a 'red' flashlight, you won't notice much difference.
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| My guess, the eye in darkness is sensitive to blue light and turns itself | down so to speak. That's why airplane cockpits all use those red lights. | as a test walk around on a moon lit night, notice your visibility, now | turn on that flaghlight, turn it off, and voila! bet you're blind as a bat | for awhile. Now try with a 'red' flashlight, you won't notice much | difference.
That's an interesting theory. It might explain why LED light could be perceived as gray, even though "bright gray light" seems to be a contradiction. I guess that would also apply to "cool white" flourescent lights, but I've never had those in a flashlight, so I've never had occasion to see how bright they'd appear to be in that usage.
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On Tuesday, March 11, 2014 10:42:13 AM UTC-4, Mayayana wrote:

LEDs are available in a range of color temps. They range from the cold look you describe to ones that are much warmer. Many stores now have displays where you can see them. If you find the temp range that you like, at least them you have a better idea of what to look for. The soft ones that I've seen in the store look pretty good to me. But of course until you take one home and try it, who knows.
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On 03/11/2014 10:44 AM, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:
[snip]

People have different preferences. I'd rather have WHITE light than yellow (as you get from "soft white" or "warm white").
--
Mark Lloyd
http://notstupid.us
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On Tuesday, March 11, 2014 1:13:56 PM UTC-4, Mark Lloyd wrote:

I agree, it's a personal preference thing. Something that no one has asked regarding the OP, did she ask the person at HD why they said she could not use an LED with that track lighing?
And as far as the question on the dimmer working with LEDs, AFAIK, if the dimmer will work with transformer lighting, it will work with LEDs. Many/most dimmers are not designed to work with transformers, switching power supplies, etc.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Hi, I have about dozen LED bulbs(half warm white, half daylight) What I am finding, Wattage saving is ~80%, works with dimmers of all kinds very well, works well with IR sensor switch {electronic switch type). Dimmer does not work well if I mix LED with other type bulbs(CFL, incandescent) due to difference in current draw. They go full brightness instantly. I am waiting to see how well/long they last B4 getting more. They are mostly indoor but I put a pair of 60W rated(12W consumption) ones in garage GDO socket. Heat is not a concern.
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The main thing to know about using LEDs with an existing dimmer is that the dimmer has to be de-rated to handle the LED load which is very different electrically than an incandescent bulb. In other words, a dimmer designed to handle 600 watts of incandescent bulbs may only be able to handle 60 watts of LEDs. If you can figure out the make/model of the dimmer, check with the manufacturer for the de-rating factor.
Tomsic
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Do you have a link for that. I have never heard it

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On Wednesday, March 12, 2014 12:03:56 AM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

That's what I was thinking too. I agree the load of LED lighting is different from an incandescent and that is the issue. But I haven't seen a dimmer manufacturer where they say you just derate an incandescent dimmer and you can use it with LEDs. The dimmers I've seen have been specifically designed and rated for use with LEDs. Plus it doesn't seem to make sense. A typical incandescent dimmer is 700W, 1000W. If you replaced 700W of incandescent with LED, it would be what, about 150W? That's already one hell of a self imposed derating, if you will, so you'd think any dimmer would pretty much work.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Hi, Dimmer just works with LEDs in my case. Sounds like over rated one can't handle lesser load? Hard to understand.
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On Wednesday, March 12, 2014 11:32:31 AM UTC-4, Tony Hwang wrote:

The issue is how electronic dimmers work versus the loads. An incandescent looks like a resistor. LED look like a switching power supply. I recall reading a more in depth article about it a few years ago. Dimmers work by only turning on power for part of each AC cycle. The conventional Triac type turn on after the AC waveform crosses zero and is on the way up, ie the leading edge. Incandescents don't care. But switching power supplies have a problem with that. Don't remember the specifics, but as I recall dimmers made to work with them regulate the power by turning off as the AC waveform goes from max, back down to zero, ie on the trailing edge.
What all that means from a practical standpoint, IDK. Like if you have a regular dimmer and it works, will something bad happen to the dimmer? The LED power supply, over time, etc.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Hi, Regardless, dimmer's function is how much juice it passes per cycle of sine wave. Switching PSU, by design has wide range of tolerance as far as input goes. (For an example, they can take universal input voltage, frequency) In my case, dimmer works well but if I mix LEDs with other type bulbs, then they all individually start flickering narrowing down dimming range. I did not see anything on the LED packaging other than it mentioned dimmable.
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On Wednesday, March 12, 2014 4:28:30 PM UTC-4, Tony Hwang wrote:

Yes that's the function, but how you chop up that AC waveform and turn it into something that is no longer a sine wave affect different types of loads differently.
Switching PSU, by design has wide range of tolerance as far

Look at the dimmers. Lutron for example. They have different products that work with LED versus those that work incandescent.
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