Dim the Lights, Please.

We depend on lighting for everything we do and have become accustomed to using dimmers in our homes to create ambiance or to set the ideal light level for a particular task.  Dimmers have evolved over the years and today we have a wide variety of models to select from. Each offers unique features to meet specific needs and even reflect personal style. Here are a few things to consider as you stroll down the dimmer aisle:

Dimmer / Bulb Compatibility

Choosing the right dimmer/bulb combination can be a confusing task, especially since there are so many different types of dimmers and bulbs available. Be sure to read the labels carefully for guidance because the best way to get optimal performance from your dimmer is to ensure that the bulb you use with it is compatible. 

Wiring Options

All dimmers are designed for either single pole, 3-way or multi-location applications. Some models are single pole and 3-way capable. But what does this mean? In a nutshell:

  • Single Pole - On/Off control and dimming of the light from a single location.

Single Pole

  • 3-Way - On/Off control of the light from two locations. The main dimmer is in one location and the remote is in the second. 3-way is typically used in kitchens or hallways.

3 Way Switch

  • Multi-Location - On/Off control and dimming of the light from three or more locations. The main dimmer is in one location and the remotes are in the additional locations. This format is typically used in great rooms, so the same lights can be controlled from multiple locations throughout the room.



*Be sure to reference the packaging to choose the dimmer wiring option best suited for your needs.

Types of Dimmers

Technical stuff aside, what we all really want is a dimmer that meets our lighting needs and looks good in the room.  Here’s a quick glance at what’s available:

Smart Dimmers
These dimmers have embraced smart technology, making dimming not only about ambiance control but about convenience as well.  Smart dimmers let you dim, time and switch your lights on and off from your smartphone or tablet using your preferred technology -  Wi-Fi®, Z-Wave®, HomeKit™, or Bluetooth®.  They are all compatible with LED bulbs, so any choice is the right choice.


Slide Dimmers
These contemporary dimmers all feature a slide bar for dimming and either a rocker switch or push button for ON/OFF.They each have a different look for individual style preferences.



Traditional Dimmers
The perfect complement for traditional décor, these rotary or toggle models let you enjoy the latest dimming functionalities without compromising retro style.



There’s still a lot to learn so be sure to download our Dimmer Buying Guide for all the details!