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Thread: Parallel mixed bulb fixture behaves strangely with maestro cl dimmer

  1. #1
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    Parallel mixed bulb fixture behaves strangely with maestro cl dimmer

    I constructed a light fixture for my new dining room. It consists of seven lights wired in parallel. They are different bulbs (list below). Each run through a satco switch (90/1670).

    Before running the wires through the ceiling I assembled the maestro cl (MACL-153MR-WH) in series with a two pronged plug which I plugged into the wall. The switch itself is not grounded, which may be my problem, but I thought it would be a useful exercise since I won't have a chance to get into the attic for a few days.

    The problem is, when the switch is off two of the lights are still lit. The two lights still lit are the two lowest current bulbs (each is 1 Amp). But when I turn these two lights off (at the satco switches) the other five come on! I've adjusted the lower set point with no change in this behavior.

    Bulb list:
    Archilelago lighting:
    LVTS-ED2118022K1: 2.5W
    LVTS-ED1918022K1: 2W
    LVTS-ED1918022K1: 2.5W
    LTS14C10027K1: 1W
    LTS14C10024K1: 1W
    LTS14C15024K1: 1.3W
    PLT lights:
    PLT-KG456SSCL22K

    Should I wire it up and see if the ground solves my problem? Do I have incompatible bulbs?

    Thanks,
    Brandon

  2. #2
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    As an update:

    I finished wiring the fixture complete with ground. The results are the same.

    I continue to get ghosting from the two low wattage Archipelago bulbs (LTS14C10027K1 and LTS14C0024K1).

    I swapped them out for a 2W and 3W bulb I had extra but then the entire assembly has a very small range for dimming and the peak output is severely diminished.

    I think the problem is in the mixed nature of the bulbs. Can the Lutron Maestro handle different wattage LED bulbs in parallel?

    Brandon

  3. #3
    Authorized Lutron Contributor
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    Good afternoon gotrocket,

    With digital dimming controls you will sometimes experience an LED that does not fully turn off or it will keep trying to strike when the control is turned off. This is due to the fact that digital controls utilize a digital off not a switched of in order to keep some illumination on the indicator lights. Sensitive LED products can detect this very small trickle charge and be tricked into turning on.

    Also, we cannot recommend controlling more than one type of LED product on a single control. When controlling more than one type of LED you might get interaction between the multiple products resulting in many different kinds of misbehavior.

    At this point in time Lutron has not conducted any testing on the Archipelago LED products that you have installed. Without test data we are unable to recommend a dimmier since we would be unable to guarantee the performance that you will experience with our controls. In the even that you are locked into these LEDs, we would suggest contacting Archipelago and asking them for a list of compatible dimming controls that they have verified through their compatibility testing.

    If selecting another LED is an option we would suggest visiting our LED selection tool, found at www.lutron.com/ledtool. This LED selection tool will allow you to generate a list of compatible LED products for all of our LED rated dimming controls. You will all be able to access a testing report for each of the LEDs listed here. The report will provide you with a list of all the dimmers we can recommend for that LED, the amount of LEDs each dimmer can control and the dimming range you will experience.

    Please let me know if you have any questions.

  4. #4
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    Thank you for your feedback. The website for Archipelago LED lights indicates that they have done some testing with the Maestro dimmer but only testing on one type of bulb was performed at a time. They tested quantities of 2 and 8 with successful results. Is there any diagnostic tests that I can do to help understand the issue? Buying a set of replacement bulbs or a replacement dimmer are a bit expensive to use as a troubleshooting method. Is there a dummy load available from Lutron to help with low wattage performance? I understand there would be an efficiency hit but I don't think the additional load would need to be very large and the functionality could be restored.

    Thanks again for your help.
    Brandon

  5. #5
    Authorized Lutron Contributor
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    Good morning gotrocket,

    There is no dummy load that we could recommend, however you might be able to still use this dimmer and LED product together. If you replace just one of the LEDs with an incandescent or halogen it will in must cases stabilize a circuit with misbehaving LED bulbs. Due to the resistive nature of incandescent / halogen bulbs it should provide enough resistance out to the bulbs so that the trickle charge of the indicator lights do not remain on. Please note that by doing this you will notice that the LEDs will not dim as low as the older style bulb.

    Please let me know if you have any questions.

  6. #6
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    I took your advice and replaced one of the LEDs with a similar incandescent bulb. In the future I'll try to replace the bulbs with higher wattage LED bulbs in the hopes that the higher output bulbs will come with a higher tolerance for current leakage to feed the switch.

    Thanks again for your input and feedback.

    Brandon

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