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Lighting technology has changed. LEDs are rapidly replacing tungsten lamps in domestic and commercial spaces – so why aren’t we also switching to LED dimmers to control them?

Old dimming vs new technology

LEDs are a world apart from tungsten lamps – and not just in terms of the energy they consume. LEDs run on a continuous forward current; unlike tungsten, which use an alternating current.

Why does that affect dimming? We’re glad you asked…

A TRIAC dimmer, used for donkey’s years to control everything from Edison lamps to CFLs, is made for alternating current technology. Pair an LED lamp with an old fashioned dimmer that was made for tungsten, and it will flicker and buzz.

Flicker & Buzz

A small copper coil built into a TRIAC dimmer vibrates at different frequencies to disrupt the power reaching the lamp, controlling the light output.

Disrupt the power to an LED driver in the same way, and you will see that disruption to the continuous forward current. The light output will flicker. The coil will buzz as it works harder to control the lamp.

How can you fix it?

With a TRIAC dimmer – you can’t. LED lamps need to be paired with digital dimming technology. No coil? No flicker, no buzz*.

Our multi-award winning ZGRIDLED+ replaces the copper coil with digital software, for flawless dimming control on 5-250W circuits. 

*when paired with good quality, compatible LED