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Installing Recessed LED Slim Pot Light

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  • #747573
    GTokley
    Pro
    Madoc, ON

    I am thinking about installing Recessed LED Slim Pot Light at new house in some of the rooms. I am wondering what would be good a brand of lights to buy? Is it a good idea to install a dimmer switch? What is a recommend spacing for Led Slim pot lights. Also what is the best way install these lights. I know I can find some of this info online.

    Greg
    Do More of What Makes You Happy

    #747594

    Spacing depends on what sort of area lighting you want , they definitely have spec’s for this either on the website of the specific lights , or I’m sure they will have info on the box or in a pamphlet inside the box ,
    I would definitely put a led dimmer light switch ,
    They are really easy to install ,

    #747602
    Doobie
    Moderator

    I just buy the ones at HD whateber the brand that suits my needs. They rotate out lights all the time, so look for lights that get clearanced as quite often, it’s not because those clearance lights are bad, they just seem to change them out frequently. I don’t think one model lasts more than a year or two on the shelves. The manufacturers constantly change their packaging and/or models.

    Is it a good idea to install a dimmer switch?

    I do in most cases. Sometimes it is simply not warranted. That’s up to you to decide for the given application. Dimmer switches cost more than simple on/off switches is maybe another consideration.

    What is a recommend spacing for Led Slim pot lights.

    That may depend on what is behind the ceiling you are installing them in. You may want to look before you commit to see that there are no joists or rafters or other hard to deal with obstructions behind where you think you want to lay them out never mind low attic clearances that make running wiring a bit of a challenge if being placed close to exterior walls.

    Another factor is if its a flood versus a narrow beam. That can dictate how far apart you place them. Size of the light itself may be another consideration. Too big a pot too close in series sometimes can look weirdishly ‘too big’ for the given application.

    If it will be in an insulated ceiling, look for the pots that are made for those. Years ago, you had to get a box housing that the pot would sit in, but with LEDs nowadays and their much lower heat emmisioms, they make many that are suitable against insulation on their own. If it’s for a bathroom, there are special pots for damp/wet applications also. Check the labels for what type they are and how they can be used.

    Also what is the best way install these lights. I know I can find some of this info online.

    Easiest way for me is with a hole saw of the appropriate size. They make shallow ones specifically for this purpose that are cheaper than full depth standard hole saws. Bosch makes them.

    Another alternative is with a Roto-Zip with the circle cutting jig accessory.

    Cutting a round hole with a hand saw cutter for drywall is a fools endeavor.

    Whatever you do, cut the hole exactly to manufacturers instructions. Too big, you will have challenges trying to make it sit right. Too small, it is a dog to make bigger without really mucking up the edges of the hole or sometimes devising a jig of sorts to drill it out bigger with the proper sized hole saw.

    I accidentally used the wrong sized too small hole saw cutter one time and used two floor to ceilling pole jacks to put a piece of ply to the ceiling backed with some thin styrofoamy gasket between the ply and the ceiling to avoid damage to the ceiling and used the proper sized hole cut in the ply to keep the hole saw in place from skipping around to enter the new cut out. It worked, but it’s a job fix I could have done without had I been paying attention to which hole saw I had grabbed by accident. There may be real pro techniques to deal with either type of dillema that I’m unaware of, but that’s what I did when I mucked up with drilling a few holes too small one time.

    What I’d like to get more abreast of is spacing/illumination knowledge. There are people who specialize in that sort of thing. I’d like to learn more myself how they go about that.

    Remember Greg, grain of salt here. I’m not a real pro, but I have done pot lights before.

    #747603
    Miamicuse
    Pro
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    is there any reason you are going for “slim” instead of the standard ones? Limited attic head room? They have no housing and can fit in very tight space as long as the attached junction box can slide in there, but you can’t change bulbs like you can with a conventional recessed housing where you may want a directional MR16 task bulb.

    Spacing depends on application, ambiance vs task vs accent etc…have different recommendations.

    Most LED lights are dimmable now. however I would not buy any dimmer switches until you have selected the actual light or bulbs. That’s because the dimming curve and the LED need to be compatible, or else you will end up with dimmers that does not dim on 70% of the slide and suddenly brightens on the last 20% as the curve is not linear, or you end up with slides that you turn to the lowest possible and it will not shut the LED off except to a low dimming flicker. Both Leviton and Lutron publish a LED dimmer compatibility guide so you can find the most compatible dimmer to pair with the specific light you have.

    In general though, I personally feel that INTEGRATED LED lights are a two edge sword. They may be easier to install, but if the bulbs go bad, you have to replace the entire fixture. Even though the bulb supposed to last a million hours, you are still faced with scenerios that doesn’t exist with conventional lights. Let’s say you bought eight LED lights to install in your living room, and 1 year later one of the LED no longer works, it may be the bulb but it’s not replaceable. So you need to buy a new fixture. You found out that color/size/model is no longer being made, and you can’t get a new one to match perfectly. Your option is to find one that looks like it, or change out the other seven to a new set. With conventional recessed lights you can change out the bad LED bulb, or change out the housing and you don’t care what the housing looks like, any 6″ housing can replace any 6″ housing as long as the clearance above fits.

    #747607
    Doobie
    Moderator

    See Greg, I just learned a whole bunch from Sami I was completely oblivious to in regards to the dimming issue and buying all-in-one fixtures non changeable fixtures. Partly because I haven’t done any pot lights in years but I’m about to. Need to go check what I bought now.

    Good info Sami!

    #747611
    GTokley
    Pro
    Madoc, ON

    is there any reason you are going for “slim” instead of the standard ones? Limited attic head room? They have no housing and can fit in very tight space as long as the attached junction box can slide in there, but you can’t change bulbs like you can with a conventional recessed housing where you may want a directional MR16 task bulb.

    The only reason I mention slim pot lights was I like the looks and how easy they look to install. I am concerned if is issue with light or it burns out. This one of the reasons I am asking the question. Thanks for you info this very helpful.

    Thanks Kevin & Brian for you advice.

    See Greg, I just learned a whole bunch from Sami I was completely oblivious to in regards to the dimming issue and buying all-in-one fixtures non changeable fixtures. Partly because I haven’t done any pot lights in years but I’m about to. Need to go check what I bought now.

    Good info Sami!

    Glad this thread has been helpful to you as well Kevin.

    Greg
    Do More of What Makes You Happy

    #747614
    Doobie
    Moderator

    Glad this thread has been helpful to you as well Kevin.

    It has. In fact, what are slim pot lights?

    #747616
    GTokley
    Pro
    Madoc, ON

    Glad this thread has been helpful to you as well Kevin.

    It has. In fact, what are <em class=”gdbbx-bbcode-italic”>slim pot lights?

    I might be calling them the wrong name. But here is what I am talking about slim recess lights.

    https://www.homedepot.ca/product/illume-4-pack-of-4-inch-led-panel-light-kit/1001212914

    Greg
    Do More of What Makes You Happy

    #747623
    Doobie
    Moderator

    Glad this thread has been helpful to you as well Kevin.

    It has. In fact, what are <em class=”gdbbx-bbcode-italic”>slim pot lights?

    I might be calling them the wrong name. But here is what I am talking about slim recess lights.

    https://www.homedepot.ca/product/illume-4-pack-of-4-inch-led-panel-light-kit/1001212914

    So, in what manner are they ‘slim’? by virtue of how they are slim protruding from the face of the drywall?

    #747625
    Miamicuse
    Pro
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    So, in what manner are they ‘slim’? by virtue of how they are slim protruding from the face of the drywall?

    They are slim because there isn’t even a pot of can or housing. All you have to do is cut the hole, connect the wiring, toss the junction box into the attic, then pop the light in.

    #747627
    Miamicuse
    Pro
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Lutron’s LED compatibility tool:

    https://www.lutron.com/en-US/Pages/LEDCompatibilityTool/Compatibility.aspx

    Leviton LED compatibility Guide:

    https://www.leviton.com/en/docs/LED-Compatibility-Selector-User-Guide.pdf

    Now it doesn’t mean if you get a random LED bulb or light, that it will not dim satisfactory using a generic dimmer, it may, it may not. These guides help you find the best fit dimmer to pair with a particular brand/model light or bulb.

    #747676
    Doobie
    Moderator

    So, in what manner are they ‘slim’? by virtue of how they are slim protruding from the face of the drywall?

    They are slim because there isn’t even a pot of can or housing. All you have to do is cut the hole, connect the wiring, toss the junction box into the attic, then pop the light in.

    Thanks. So what ideally are they designed intended for?

    #747693
    Miamicuse
    Pro
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Thanks. So what ideally are they designed intended for?

    They are “canless”, so they do not require the typical headroom above your ceiling to fit a can which can be 6″ 7″ even 8″.

    You also do not have the issue of heat associated with canned lights, which are either IC or non IC rated, and may require insulation to be held back at a certain distance, depending on code. Even if you are using exclusively LED bulbs, you still need to do this since the canned lights can be used with incandescent bulbs.

    also, these are typically easier to plan from down below. In traditional canned lights you have to worry about attic framing clearance. These lights are about 3/4″ thick, so when you cut open a hole and find a joist in the middle of the hole, you may be able to still install it as long as you can fit the junction box through, depending on the thickness of your ceiling rock.

    #747695

    Exactly even with furring strips they might be able to get under the above floor joists , so it’s more installer friendly ,
    Like Miamicuse mentioned , those old style halogen recessed lights use to get very hot ,
    That’s why they needed to be installed in the insulated boxes .

    #747698
    GTokley
    Pro
    Madoc, ON

    Here is the where I got the idea to go with Recessed Led Slim Pot Lights.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOK_EH5YHjM

    Greg
    Do More of What Makes You Happy

    #747720
    Doobie
    Moderator

    Thanks. So what ideally are they designed intended for?

    They are “canless”, so they do not require the typical headroom above your ceiling to fit a can which can be 6″ 7″ even 8″.

    You also do not have the issue of heat associated with canned lights, which are either IC or non IC rated, and may require insulation to be held back at a certain distance, depending on code. Even if you are using exclusively LED bulbs, you still need to do this since the canned lights can be used with incandescent bulbs.

    also, these are typically easier to plan from down below. In traditional canned lights you have to worry about attic framing clearance. These lights are about 3/4″ thick, so when you cut open a hole and find a joist in the middle of the hole, you may be able to still install it as long as you can fit the junction box through, depending on the thickness of your ceiling rock.

    Thanks. Makes sense.

    #747731

    Here is the where I got the idea to go with Recessed Led Slim Pot Lights.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOK_EH5YHjM

    Yes I remember you posted something from that guy before , I don’t recall if it was the pot lights but I remember you posted from his videos

    #747749
    GTokley
    Pro
    Madoc, ON

    Here is the where I got the idea to go with Recessed Led Slim Pot Lights.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOK_EH5YHjM

    Yes I remember you posted something from that guy before , I don’t recall if it was the pot lights but I remember you posted from his videos

    Yes I posted other videos from this guy. I find his videos helpful.

    Greg
    Do More of What Makes You Happy

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