Dimming LED Lights
There are a number of ways which you can dim LEDs. Mains power 240V LED down lights and globes are most commonly dimmed using a phase control dimmer such as a leading edge, trailing edge or universal dimmer.
These types of dimmers cut off sections of the sine wave and reduces the time the light receives power. Leading edge cuts the leading edge of the sine wave, whilst trailing edge cuts the trailing part of the sine wave.
The electronic circuit in the LED lamp or external LED transformer allows this change in the sine wave and adjusts the forward current supplied to the LED chip(s) which in turn reduces the light output.
Dimming 12V LED Lights such as MR16 LED Downlights
It is possible to dim 12V LED down lights using existing halogen transformers, however a lot of the time, significant flickering, audible hum, and higher output at low dimmer levels can occur.
There are a number of factors which affect how well a retrofit LED downlight will perform when dimmed. Dimmer types and different dimmer qualities, transformer compatibility, minimum loads of the dimmer, whether the LED is 12V AC or DC are all combinations that need to be matched for the LED light to operate correctly.
If you are considering the use of a dimmable 12V retrofit LED downlight, we recommend considering a 240V supplied lamp or dedicated dimmable LED driver.