LANDSCAPE LIGHTING WORLD® FORUMS

Lighting Dormers

Discussion in 'Ask' started by joshua2415, Feb 4, 2020.

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  1. joshua2415

    joshua2415 New Member

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    I have been reading other posts about 2nd story lighting and figured I'd put my situation up for advice. Attached is the front of my house. I'm looking to highlight the 2 dormers. I already have Fat Boys, with the 2700K 38 deg lamps, highlighting the the walls in front of the house, and it looks beautiful. I recently ordered the expansion set of those, 2 for the dormers and 2 for other areas. My question is, are the Fat Boys too big for the dormers? The windows on them go into the attic, so I'm not concerned with light intrusion. I'm not sure how wide the dormers are, but to get an idea, the front doors together are 6 foot wide. I bought the Fat Boys for uniformity and convenience, so I wouldn't have to have diffe rent bulbs. Any input is greatly appreciated!

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  2. Evan Kruk

    Evan Kruk Online Liaison Staff Member

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    Beautiful home! Those large attic windows are really cool; sort of the classic touch on the modern vibe.

    As far as brightness, it is largely preferential so there is never a true right or wrong answer. The 5W LED bulbs in the kit you purchased may be a tad too bright for that up story area combined but, I'm also someone who prefers generally lower levels of illumination. To help decide this for yourself, I'd compare with the wattages you already have installed on the first story. If you think those are a good output level, match with those.

    As far as size, the Fat Boys will certainly be somewhat noticeable mounted on the gutter above the front door. Fortunately, the material and color of our fixtures complement your house well and as the lights patina they will only blend more with the home.
     
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  3. joshua2415

    joshua2415 New Member

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    Thank you for the complement! The light output of the bulbs on the lower part of the house is perfect to me, against the brown brick at night give a nice yellow glow. I'm not one for the pure or cool white. We have brown gutters on the house and hopefully, the bronze of the fixtures will blend nicely with shingles, as well. After I them up this weekend, I will post a new picture. Thank you again for the complement, the fantastic products, and the awesome customer service!!
     
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  4. Evan Kruk

    Evan Kruk Online Liaison Staff Member

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    Glad to be of help!
     
  5. joshua2415

    joshua2415 New Member

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    I do have another question. As far as running the the wires in the gutters, i don't want to leave them unprotected. I was thinking of running them through conduit of some sort, but don't want it to look unsightly. Can you give me an idea of what pros do with the wires?
     
  6. Evan Kruk

    Evan Kruk Online Liaison Staff Member

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    From what I've seen, more and more gutters now'a'days have the added guards on top so many installers will either simply hide the wire within the enclosed gutter and possibly use clips to further secure the wire (almost like Christmas light clips or whatever would really work for the style of gutter really). Running conduit up the downspout would likely be a bit tricky and not add much extra protection with the wire already being enclosed. But, for the horizontal gutters themselves, you could certainly add pieces of conduit for added protection where needed. The conduit won't add any extra protection in regards to water but, certainly against physical damage or any pesky squirrels or other animals you may have around.

    NEC codes are definitely more relaxed when it comes to low-voltage as well; no safety issues with running direct-burial rated low-voltage cables in gutters or even leaving the wiring itself exposed. But, its always good to double-check your local codes just to CYA!
     
  7. joshua2415

    joshua2415 New Member

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    one more question...not dormer related. Have i gone overboard with transformers? When all is said and done, I'll have a total of 6, 150 slim-lines. I have 3 planters beds that each have electrical outlets, so i figured each could have their own transformer, to save on trench digging and wire running all over the yard.
     
  8. Mesodude2

    Mesodude2 Member

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    It's possible you could accomplish what you're trying to do (avoid having a network of wires criss-crossing your property) with fewer more powerful transformers but there's nothing wrong with wanting to keep things tidy and organized in a way that works for you. Also, keep in mind that having multiple transformers gives you the flexibility to create different lighting zones and overall much more control over your lighting system.
     
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  9. Evan Kruk

    Evan Kruk Online Liaison Staff Member

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    Couldn't agree with @Mesodude2 more! If budget is no issue, having multiple transformers offers a number of benefits: simplify installation (especially with larger properties or complex installs), making troubleshooting or expanding a system much easier in the future, and flexibility/customization.

    My one recommendation would be to consider amperage on your circuits. With that many units, I'd expect some of them to be on different circuits but, I'd double check your circuits just to be sure none are being overloaded. A max loaded 150W slimline has a max draw of 1.2A
     
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  10. joshua2415

    joshua2415 New Member

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    Thank you Meso and Evan for the replies. The circuit that the 3 planter beds are on, is a 20 amp circuit. We had that specifically done for Christmas lights. The spotlights and pathlights around the house are on a standard 15 amp circuit. Currently, there are 3 slimline 150w transformers on that circuit, with I believe 15, 4 watt LED bulbs and 14, 5 watt LED bulbs, split between the 3 transformers. I do have a question about that 12.5 max draw of the transformer...how many lights would I have to load on one of those 150 watt units, to make it draw that much? I'm thinking it would have to be a lot, especially using LED bulbs. Correct me if I'm wrong, please. The last thing I want is to start popping the breaker or worse, because of too much on the circuit.
     
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  11. Evan Kruk

    Evan Kruk Online Liaison Staff Member

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    Apologies for the typo! A fully loaded 150W would have a max amperage around 1.2A; much lower than 12A. Of course, we recommend 80% max usage on a transformer so, to answer how you could measure amperage under the max, you would essentially need a digital voltmeter and some extra calculations on the entire system (or consulting an electrician). But, given the 20 amp and 15 amp circuits and the fact that not all 6 of the transformers are fully-loaded on any one circuit, measuring that amperage would really be unnecessary and you should have no issues with your home load wise.
     
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  12. joshua2415

    joshua2415 New Member

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    Evan, I appreciate the response. That 12.5 amps had me concerned. I looked at the spec sheet and it shows 12.5. Is that going to be changed? We still more lights to install, but it looks great so far. My wife and I have noticed more slow moving traffic past our house. Any one interested in installing landscape lights will definitely get referred to Volt!!!
     
  13. Evan Kruk

    Evan Kruk Online Liaison Staff Member

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    Glad to help clarify! After getting with the product dev team, that stat technically is correct (it involves the core and power draw of some sort) but, we do need to change the wording of it to make it more understandable on those slimline docs.

    Thanks for the help making us aware of that detail!