Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

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Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby latino » Tue Sep 17, 2013 3:23 pm

Hi Everyone,

Just want to ask your advice with swapping the 40 odd halogen downlights in our home with more cost effective lighting. They are MR16 ones and current transformers are ones no one has ever heard of its called a Aurona.

I have tried a couple of LED's and have gotten flickering. I thought it was due to them being on dimmers so was arranging an electrician to remove all dimmers when last night the LED's in the rooms without a dimmer began to flicker. So I am annoyed now. Flicker appears to be randon but prominent at night but this is when they are on (Duh lol).

Trying to determine the best solution to this.

Option 1. Removing dimmers and changing transformer to the Osram redback in the area which we use 90% of the time. Dining (4 lights), Kitchen (4 lights) and living room (8 lights). And then change over the rest of the house with 20w energy saver halogens. And then hope to find an LED which plays well with this set up.

Option 2. Converting the areas we use the most to GU10 fittings and using energy saver halogens for the rest of the house.

Option 3 - Buy LED kits with drivers and change these in the most used area plus halogens rest.

Option 4 - Change the whole house to GU10 without dimmers.


I am a novice at this so these options are just me speaking out loud with minimum knowledge. If the guru's in the house wish to add to this discussion and give me options I would be interested in listening.

Cheers

Gaston
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby LEDMAD » Tue Sep 17, 2013 4:22 pm

You are right, I have never heard of 'Aurona'. Are you sure this isn't a typo and it is really 'Aurora' ?

You can get flicking for several reasons.
    - Incompatibility between the electronics in the MR16 LED and the electronics in the transformer.
    - Incompatibility between the dimmer and LED and transformer.
    - The LED is failing, or has failed
    - Ripple current messages on the mains power (around 10pm each night for 30sec, and some other fixed times)
    - High frequency flicker due to poor design of the electronics. Normally this is at 100Hz, and so is only indirectly visible.
    - Very high frequency flicker due to PWM dimming
MR16s are the worst for compatibility as they get connected to random transformers and random dimmers of all eras from multiple vendors. So they often don't work all that well.

The only reason to stick with MR16s is that
A) You have already purchased them and can't return them, OR
B) You really need to avoid any re-wiring.

Otherwise if you are going to re-wire the LED kits like these are a better option. In this case make sure your electrician installs 3 pin mains plugs. So in the future you can replace them yourself if one fails. The kits are a bit more expensive that the GU10s, but offer better performance. So it makes sense to change over the lights that get the most use first.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby latino » Tue Sep 17, 2013 4:44 pm

Thanks for the response LEDMAD. Yeah one of the options is to get LED kits but the decent ones are mighty expensive and the good affordable one like the iglobe comes in a small size.

So should I rule out a MR16 to GU10 conversion even if this works out to be less expensive. I have seen some inexpensive GU10 LED's with good ratings and also was reading that GU10's without a dimmer would offer a flicker free solution.

Thoughts?

I will also check the ripple current because it seemed they were flickering at 9pm. But then I checked the next day and this was not the case. I have returned an order of LED's which flickered but still have a couple in my daughters room so will keep an eye on that one tonight.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby LEDMAD » Tue Sep 17, 2013 4:56 pm

Without dimmers, all of these solutions will work.
- Osram Redback with MR16 LEDs
- GU10 LED
- LED Kit

It also *might* be possible to get a better quality MR16 LED (like the Philips 7W) and even keep your existing transformers. Further it *might* also be possible to run multiple LED from one of your existing transformers, to increase the load per transformer and get them to work. This involves some more trial and error however.

The kits are brighter, more efficient, tend to dim better (but still not perfect), are available in higher wattages (if you want), should last longer as the electronics aren't being cooked inside the hot light like with a GU10 and often come with a longer warranty. You need to decide if this is worth the price premium. Keeping in mind they will probably be half the current price and twice as good in another 5 years.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby latino » Tue Sep 17, 2013 5:04 pm

Interesting. The 7w Phillips was on my list to try but they have gaps and leaves the ceiling kind of open for dust and creapy crawlies to crawl through.

So at the moment it appears the Osram Redback or GU10 are my options. This will depend how much a sparky will charge to re-wire these things together.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby Bthree » Tue Sep 17, 2013 5:26 pm

latino wrote:Interesting. The 7w Phillips was on my list to try but they have gaps and leaves the ceiling kind of open for dust and creapy crawlies to crawl through.


Started using these and I like them, they seem to work on existing transformers without problems, wrote a bit of a story in another LED thread.
You are right they do create an opening into the ceiling space (some of the others do to), I intend to place a sealed metal can over each light sit the transformer on top and add the insulation back to almost cover the lot.
The 7w master Philips run at about 60-70 degrees (halogens around) 250 degrees to there is virtually no risk of fire and trapped heat can flow back into the room if any.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby latino » Tue Sep 17, 2013 10:07 pm

Pulled out my transformer to check if it was hard wired or connected via a normal 3 pin socket... Hard wired. I have supplied pics below of the dimmers I have also pic of the transformer no one has heard of. It is rated as 20-60va.

Having a look at the iglobe website they mention that if it is a 20-60va there is a good chance their globes would work....... How do you like my chances with dimmers removed?

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/20/cs7z.jpg/

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/850/gdir.jpg/


Not sure if it worth mentioning this afternoon I was in the room with no dimmers around 7pm for an hour with no flickering.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby latino » Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:33 am

Another question (sorry). How does the Brightgreen DR450 behave without a dimmer.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby Gordon-Loomberah » Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:52 am

Gaston, it is best if you can upload the images to the forum and post them inline, rather than having a link to an external hosting site- links change over time, pictures are deleted etc, leaving a blank space in your post that your description may not cover for those reading at a later date.
It also means people who want to see the image are not hit with annoying pop-up advertising!
Thanks.
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Re: Assistance with Halogen to LED swap

Postby LEDMAD » Wed Sep 18, 2013 10:08 am

latino wrote:How does the Brightgreen DR450 behave without a dimmer.


I assume you are talking about the MR16(GU5.3) variant of the DR450 and not the GU10 variant.

On Brightgreen's web site they imply that the DR450 will work with any transformer. But this is not true. The box they come in has a list of compatible transformers on the side of the box. But even when using transformers on this list I have had problems. Ranging from very dim light output to an intermittent flicker (without any dimmer in the circuit). They did work 100% on the Redback and old magnetic transformers however.

I haven't had any problems with the GU10 DR450, But they don't use an external transformer. They are not as bright as good 50W halogen however.
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