Summary: Learn how to install low voltage spotlights and the safety considerations when wiring low voltage spotlights.
Low voltage lighting is becoming increasingly popular, as it is long lasting and energy efficient. A transformer is used to reduce the mains voltage to just 12 volts. Another advantage with low voltage lighting is that the risk of an electric shock is minimal on the low voltage side of the transformer. However, as with all jobs involving electricity, safety is paramount and there are some important points to remember.
As mentioned above the risk of an electric shock on the transformer side of the circuit is slight, but remember the transformer is connected to the 230 volt mains supply and therefore must be treated with great caution.
When positioning low voltage spotlights in a ceiling with floorboards above ensure there is at least a 130mm (5 in) gap between the ceiling and the floorboards to prevent the risk of overheating.
When fitting low voltage lighting in an upstairs room, clear away any insulation material from around the light fittings. Similarly when lighting a loft conversion, the roof insulation must be removed from around the light fittings.
Always read the manufacturer's instructions carefully as the installation process may vary for different light fittings.
Use a power drill with a hole saw attachment of the same diameter as the spotlights to cut out the holes.
Connect the spur cable to the transformer via strip connectors. Use a connector strip for each core.
Feed the pre-wired leads on the harness through the holes so that each light fixture is supplied by a lead.
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