Wiring tlc rope lights to mains dimmer

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Building DIY' started by leonski, Dec 30, 2011.

  1. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    Hi,

    I want to install some TLC rope lights and hopefully wire them to the light circuit.

    I realise that this is possible if I cut the plug off but get a bit stuck from there. I'm hoping to change an existing light switch into a double so that the rope lights have their own switch and the main light in the room is still controlled separately.

    Would it be possible to wire the rope lights this way and if so, which wire goes where?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. tonycooling

    tonycooling
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Messages:
    601
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Ratings:
    +10
  3. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    Purchase the dimmer and it'll have full instructions with it on how to wire it up.
     
  4. tonycooling

    tonycooling
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Messages:
    601
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Ratings:
    +10
    I bought one of the touch sensitive dimmers from TCL...oh and the remote....
     
  5. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    Thanks, yes I have the new dimmer but unbelievably it says nothing about cutting plugs off and wiring tlc rope lights into it. So basically when i cut the plug off i can literally wire it to the back of the lightswitch without having to pull wires from anywhere else?
    Thanks again
     
  6. tonycooling

    tonycooling
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Messages:
    601
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Ratings:
    +10
    Hi, don't mean to sound rude, but it doesn't sound like you know too much about home electrics. I think you may be as well getting an electrician in. You could quite easily end up electroduting yourself or even worse someone else.

    Just my thought, hope I didn't offend.

    Regard
    Tony
     
  7. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    Can you explain this bit again please?
     
  8. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    Haha don't worry I'll be going nowhere it. However, the guy that's wiring it for me said we might need to pull an earth wire from somewhere - maybe another light? Basically we are not sure about wiring lights that were designed to be used with a plug into a light circuit.
    Thanks
     
  9. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    Is there an earth wire on it? If yes it needs earthing. If no then it doesn't.

    Simples!
     
  10. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    Cheers,
    After cutting the plug off there are just 2 wires - a brown and a blue. So can we just wire these into the dimmer switch?
     
  11. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    Yup - remember brown is live.
     
  12. BlueWizard

    BlueWizard
    Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Messages:
    21,341
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Ratings:
    +3,958
    I would consider wiring the dimmer to an electrical outlet. That should simplify things. Though you probably don't want to plug anything other than lights into the outlet.

    Steve/bluewizard
     
  13. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    It will only work if you have a neutral at the dimmer, take a pick of you switch and il tell u how to connect it?
     
  14. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    Not sure how to post pictures but it's a twin dimmer switch from b&q. Has 2 blocks on the back with 3 holes in each - L1, L2 and and a symbol on the other.
     
  15. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    Ok and how many cores of cable are at the existing switch and what colours are they?
     
  16. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    What do they say?
     
  17. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    The back of the existing dimmer switch has L1 with a red wire, L2 is empty and C with a red wire. There is also a yellow and green wire going to a little connector on the side (the new dimmer also has this connector).

    I've looked at the instructions but to be honest they mean nothing to me. The guy fitting will probably understand but said I should ask the questions on here as this is where I got the idea initially so people must have done it all before.
     
  18. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    They will only say to connect one of the red/brown into the symbol with the line and slanted arrow which is the switches common and then the other in L1 which is your switch wire, the earth should be put to the back box or if the dimmer is a metal one then to the fitting itself if it has a terminal
     
  19. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    Ok the only way you could do it so they would switch separately is to link over the two common terminals (the one with the symbol) with abit of cable then the existing red for the ceiling light in L1 then you would have to put a new brown single core and earth from the other L1 to the brown of the rope light. Then pinch a neutral and earth from the existing ceiling light straight to the rope light.
     
  20. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    So we can copy this setup into 1 of the blocks of the new dimmer but how do the brown and blue wires connect to the other block?
    Thanks
     
  21. leonski

    leonski
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    64
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Ratings:
    +1
    Ok I'll show him this later and hopefully will be sorted.
    Cheers again
     
  22. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    You can't just connect the rope light straight to the dimmer as you haven't got a neutral at your switch so it wouldn't work, if you took a neutral from the lounge light which would be black then crimped that onto the blue of your rope light then connected the brown of the rope light into L1 of the switch and earth into backbox
     
  23. neilball

    neilball
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    2,794
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    133
    Location:
    Scottish Borders
    Ratings:
    +590
    I would suggest using either a switched/fused spur as the connection point between dimmer and rope light or use a lighting 5A plate with 5a plug. This will allow you to neatly terminate the rope light (which is a portable lighting fixture) to the fixed cabling of the house (the solid core copper cable of the lighting circuit).
     
  24. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    I think your missing the point, it dosent make any difference if you put a fused spur in via the dimmer he's still missing a core of cable neutral or s/w depending on the way he's wiring it so it won't work and to put a fused spur in off the ring and mix the 2 circuits is an awful idea
     
  25. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    I think Neil's point was that by putting in a spur you get a neutral at the dimmer.

    Not sure why spurring off a ring is an awful idea?
     
  26. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    How are you going to get a neutral by putting in a spur unless he takes it off the ring and it's an awful idea as you shouldn't mix two circuits which is what he's doing if he spurs off to feed the dimmer whilst there are lighting feeds already at the dimmer. Just doest make sense to do it that way.
     
  27. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    No, no one is suggesting joining the two circuits. The idea was to gain a neutral by spurring off the socket circuit which provided it is the ONLY one it's connected to then it's perfectly fine.

    Whether it is the best idea depends on the wiring positions but there is nothing wrong with it from an electrical perspective.
     
  28. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    This just sounds as if you are putting in a spur to gain a neutral but then taking it via the two gang dimmer to control the rope light?
     
  29. Geps

    Geps
    Active Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2011
    Messages:
    1,137
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Ratings:
    +181
    Yes - but a spur (in my eyes at least) is both live and neutral - not just neutral.

    I've never seen a spur where they only use one conductor.
     
  30. Tomc88

    Tomc88
    Standard Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Messages:
    38
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Walsall
    Ratings:
    +1
    Oh and leonski just thought of an easier way to do it with out adding any new cables from the light to the switch but will only work if you have another switch back to back with the one with the dimmer but let me know if you have and il do you a drawing.
     

Share This Page

Loading...
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice