Dimmers Can Provide Ambiance Throughout Your House

Sometimes you want to create a mood with your lighting. Dimmers not only add ambiance, but can help you create a number of different lighting schemes in one room.

For example, if you and your family are busy in the family room, but still want lights on in the kitchen, you can dim the lights in the latter room, turning them up to full strength when preparing a meal. Want to create a romantic setting in your bedroom? Use the dimmer controls to keep the lights on at a less intense level.

Dimmer controls are more sophisticated than ever. Today’s four types give you the flexibility to design a lighting plan that best suits your needs. Here are the basic facts, from the American Lighting Association.

  • Toggle dimmers allow you to vary the intensity of the lighting by using a small slider next to the toggle switch. The toggle lets you turn the lights on and off, while the slider allows you to alter the light’s intensity. These dimmers are pre-set, which means you can set them at a favorite intensity setting that will remain each time you turn on the switch.
  • Slide dimmers provide full-range manual dimming control. Some have touch buttons that allow you to return to the previous lighting level when the lights are turned on, and others have indicator lights that glow in the dark, so they’re easy to find.
  • Touch dimmers let you vary the intensity of the lighting by pressing a button. They also have one-touch recall of the previous lighting level. Some have delay features that give you time to leave a room before the lights turn off.
  • Integrated dimming systems let you create multiple preset lighting scenes within a room. They can be recalled with the touch of a button from a single wall box, or with a hand-held wireless remote control. Some can now be programmed via mobile devices, like smartphones or tablets.

Dimmers can even save you money with energy savings. Some CFL and LED bulbs are designed for dimming, and save energy when lights are reduced. Be sure you checking the bulbs’ packaging to make sure they are dimmable.

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