Home: Outdoor Lighting Power Supply

What Is An Outdoor Lighting Power Supply?



Has your outdoor lighting power supply ever failed you? If your installing new low voltage lighting then choosing the right power supply will give you years of reliable use.

If you're starting from scratch I'm glad you stopped by. Knowing exactly which power supply you'll need is critical to get the best performance from your outdoor lighting.

So what exactly is an outdoor power supply? You may have heard them referred to as low voltage transformers.

Low voltage transformers reduce the power output coming from your normal house current (AKA line voltage), to help power your low voltage lighting fixtures without damaging them.

Before getting started, you'll need to know what type of power supply is right for your needs. There are two types of power supplies to choose from: electronic and magnetic transformers.




Electronic Transformers

Pros: Electronic transformers tend to be much smaller than magnetic transformers. They can be installed close to your outdoor lighting fixtures and easily hidden from view because of their compact size.

Cons: Electronic transformers tend to give off a buzzing or humming sound, making them unattractive in locations used for social gatherings.

Their lifespan tends to be between five and six years when operated within the manufacturer's recommended temperature range.

If an electronic transformer gets hotter than the recommended temperature range, the transformer's lifespan decreases.




Magnetic Transformers

There are two types of magnetic transformers to choose from. The square type also known as a stack laminated transformer and the doughnut shaped type known as a toroidal transformer.



Stack Laminated Transformers:

Pros: Stack laminated transformers are inexpensive magnetic transformers with a lifespan ranging somewhere between 15 and 20 years.

Cons: They tend to operate at about 80 to 85 percent efficacy and are known to give off a buzzing or humming sound similar to that of an electronic transformer.



Toroidal Transformers

Pros: A toroidal transformer is a magnetic transformer that has a lifespan between 20 to 25 years and tends to operate much quieter than it's stack laminated cousin.

Toroidal transformers operate at about 90 to 95 percent efficacy which means you'll consistanly get the best performance out of this power supply.

Cons: They tend to be a bit more expensive.

The magnetic transformer's ability to continuously do it's job over the long haul without needing replacement is a big advantage.

Spending a little more money now will save you from having to replace multiple outdoor lighting power supplies over the course of a few short years. You can also be certain that it's performance will always be top notch.




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