Friday, July 29, 2016

Low-Glare LED Disk Downlights From Cost Less Lighting

Photos and captions of this report were placed first in a web album , of the same name. I am informed by a happy first purchase of one of each, of lights offered here :

LED Surface Mount Down Disk Light - 4 Inch 120V Dimmable- White 

On Invoice, Item 11-4JBOX-LED-700L

LED Surface Mount Down Disk Light- 6 Inch 120V Dimmable - White    

LED Surface Mount Down Disk Light- 6 Inch 120V Dimmable - White
On Invoice, Item 11-56JBOX-LED-900L

LED Surface Mount Down Disk Light- 9 Inch 120V Dimmable - White  

On Invoice, Item 11-LED-SM9D-WH-3K

These Made In China lights are packaged in similar simple cardboard boxes.

A blackness is seen behind the lens in packaged 4" and 6" lights.

A twist-off cap, discarded, was thought necessary for diode board protection from painting. I don't see the need. A competent painter would work with lights detached. Isn't that a purpose of those orange quick couplings?

Without lens, diodes at full power are modestly glaring. As power rises, light grows from a central dot at each diode, to fill the diode's rectangular shape.

Light fills the acrylic lens quite uniformly, non glaring, individual diodes not sensible.

At stage left on my test stand is Nicor DLS56, accepted as box-labeled 1022 lumens,  at (observed) 15 watts. At stage right is 11-4JBOX-LED 700L, claimed at the Cost Less Lighting site, to be 840 lumens at (observed) 12 watts. A 3000°K color match 
is evident.

6" light ready to run on my test stand. See that alone in the family, the 6" light has knockouts for mounting to a 4" square box, with larger 4 3/4" screw pitch.

The lens can not eliminate light concentration over the diode array, then brighter than the 4" light.

At stage left on my test stand is Nicor DLS56, accepted as box-labeled 1022 lumens,  at (observed) 15 watts. At stage right is 11-56JBOX-LED 900L, claimed at the Cost Less Lighting site, to be 1095 lumens at (observed) 15 watts. The Cost Less Lighting 6" luminaire seems less bright than claimed. A 3000°K color match is evident.

Study the clip mounting of a 4" light, for a 4" can. The green grounding wire  must go, for correct position of that clip. Where I will want these as exterior illumination from eaves, replacing dead 65 watt floods on 4" cans, the keyhole knockouts will remain, taped-over too.  Else, bugs are attracted by points of light, pulled to sure death trying to fly safely up toward stars. I will regret power draw increase from 9 watts to twelve, vs. 4" Glimpse. Think to dim them to half power. I gave up on making sense of green grounds for Glimpse too, up on a dangerous ladder.

Springs for can light retrofit are more useful than clips, the only option with Nicor DLS56 and the derivatives of Sylvania 70732 at Lowe's. I discarded the green ground, in-the-way at one of the four screws loosened for spring holders. Find a tiny Philips drive.

The 30 watt converter block on 9" lights will barely fit in a new RACO 175 box with few wires. Here I gave up, and mounted the block by itself, cutting and extending low voltage DC leads.

The block is flush with the ceiling here, but screws for luminaire engagement with keyholes are not available.

Drill holes at 120° apart outside the diode array, and screw the luminaire to lath and plaster above.

Drill and employ three holes for deck screws, outboard of the LED board. The ceiling is drywall over lath and plaster, so drill and hope for good bites. The method may require control of orientation and a pilot screw, for takedown and reset. If bugs could find this, foil tape the keyholes.

On this interestingly-painted ceiling, rings of Saturn, I have a flying saucer!

In praise of good glare numbers, study more at blog post Luminaire Luminance Definitions .


Micah McLellan said...

Hi Phil- have you ever tried out Ilumigreen's "pancake" LED lights? I'm looking to install new lights in my unfinished basement and read almost all of your LED reviews. I wasn't sure if there was a "preferred" light that you recommend in today's market for j-box fixtures, but the Ilumigreen products caught my eye. Thanks for any insight you might have!

Phil Norman said...

Hello Micah,

I kike the simplicity of Ilumigreen wafer lights. I don't think the bare diodes are pretty, but that is only my opinion. Please do try them, and if you will, report your findings. We might create the Google Photos album, and a blog post you author. Here is my report as a PDF:

Micah McLellan said...

Thank you Phil for the report! I am leaning on giving these a day in my basement. I agree the bare diodes may look annoying. I wonder if the "opaque" vs "clear" option would help mask that look. I'll be sure to report back.

Cost-wise these seem to run about $33/each (including dimmer module).