February 09, 2012
| by Steven Castle
If you’re like me, your home’s lighting is quickly becoming a mishmash of old incandescent bulbs, some CFLs and now newer, super-efficient LEDs. Only I want to be able to dim all of these lights.
Leviton believes it has the answer with its new Universal Dimmers that work with traditional incandescent bulbs as well as many dimmable CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps) and super-efficient LED (light emitting diode) lamps. Many LED lamps, for example, have drivers that may not be compatible with a dimmer. Leviton’s web site features LED and CFL compatibility charts for the dimmers.
The Universal Dimmers are available in two styles: the SureSlide model ($26 in Leviton’s online store) sports clean lines, sculptured controls and a contemporary rocker switch, and the IllumaTech ($25) model features a traditional push button switch and slide bar. Both devices address performance issues, such as flickering, reduced dimming range and low level start-up often experienced when incandescent-only dimmers are paired with dimmable LED and CFL bulbs. And they feature an ON/OFF preset function that preserves the selected dimmer setting.
The UL-certified dimmers offer single pole or 3-way lighting control when used with a 3-way switch. Each fits a standard wallbox and is suitable for multigang installations. The SureSlide model is available in white, ivory, light almond, black and brown, while the IllumaTech model is available in white, ivory, light almond, gray, black, red and brown
Steven Castle is Electronic House's managing editor. he has been writing about consumer electronics, homes and energy efficiency topics for two decades. He is also the co-founder of GreenTech Advocates