Discuss Downlights and the different varieties.. in the Electrical Forum area at ElectriciansForums.net

happyhippydad

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I was with a customer today discussing installing new downlights.

I can't quite see the point in installing the really expensive ones as opposed to the cheaper ones. I don't mean the silly cheap ones on ebay that will just fall apart, but for example...

Lap fixed LED from screwfix £7 approx (good reviews and feel like good quality) compared to JCC, robus, enlite etc etc £15-20?

Also, do you guys prefer integrated LED downlights or ones that you can change the bulb? Again, I struggle with the concept of integrated as you have to change the whole downlight when they go. Are they supposed to have a longer life expectancy? A quality LED lamp is supposed to have about 15 years life expectancy so why not just fit a downlight with a quality changeable LED lamp as opposed to an integrated unit?
 
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SparkyChick

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Personally I avoid integrated fittings as much as I can. Styles and such change so rapidly these days I dread the thought of having to explain to a client I can't simply replace the one that's failed because I can't get the fittings any more. So I tend to go for lamps that use GU10 bulbs ;)
 

Andy78

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I have had problems with GU10 leds since I started using them. Cheap brands and expensive brands.
I have had problems with cheap integrated led fittings.
I have had minimal to negligible problems with the mid range integrated fittings I use.

The GU10 form was designed for the purposes of housing a halogen light source. This was not designed for housing a led source, this is a retrofit solution and pretty much the definition of a bodge.

Just look at the heatsink chip cooling solutions provided with integrated led fittings and it should become apparent that the GU10 form is not the best format for housing such equipment.
 

Midwest

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Failure rate is not much of an argument IMO, as both formats will last a very long time, unless you have the misfortune (like me) to install some particular examples. In the most part, if they fail, they fail pretty soon after installation.

I would like someone to give some more prices of a good GU10 lamp (notice I didn't say bulb) and can (sorry HHD, not LAP), compared to your average integrated ones. 1st floor etc installation, don't see how you can install anything other than a good quality integrated, which can be covered by insulation. Can the others?

If you're concerned about lamp replacement, JCC hybrids are easily replaceable by the end user. Think there some others on the market.

On the other hand, I've recently gone over to the dark side, and fitted some Philips Hue gu10's in my house. Output's a bit on the mean side. See Aurora and doing some 'Smart' lighting with GU10's, better output. Perhaps thats where the market will start to go.
 

Andy78

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If you're concerned about lamp replacement, JCC hybrids are easily replaceable by the end user. Think there some others on the market.
JCC have now discontinued this line and flogged all their stock to a wholesale discounter.
 

Andy78

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That didn't last long, did it. Wonder how the warranty will work on that then?
I believe JCC have kept the legally required amount for warranty purposes, but all their sale stock has been got rid of. This info came from the discounter who was flogging them on a facebook group and using this reason to justify the low prices they were selling for. Might need verifying.
 

Midwest

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I believe JCC have kept the legally required amount for warranty purposes, but all their sale stock has been got rid of. This info came from the discounter who was flogging them on a facebook group and using this reason to justify the low prices they were selling for. Might need verifying.
Your post prompted me to read this piece;

JCC FlameGuard Downlights – End of an Era - JCC Lighting, Latest News - Downlights Direct Advice - https://www.downlightsdirect.co.uk/advice/lighting-brand-names/jcc-lighting/jcc-flameguard-downlights-end-of-an-era/

Seems they got their fingers burnt with the FGLED6. The V50, now only has a 3 year warranty. But it seems its a third of the price of the old FGLED10 etc.
 

Andy78

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Seems they got their fingers burnt with the FGLED6. The V50, now only has a 3 year warranty. But it seems its a third of the price of the old FGLED10 etc.
Seems more sensible. I did think their 7-9 year warranties were a bit ambitious. It's an evolving technology so the early models are clearly destined to become obsolete.

I have heard good things about the V50 model so far. It is very similar to the KSR models I have been using for few years now. They also do a CCT version.
 

NDG Elecs

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I normally lean towards Enlite E8 and E5s. Found them reasonably priced (online) and no failures to date that I know of.
I avoid Lap gear generally but I actually don't mind their LED GU10s, very good price and of the many I've fitted only been called back once. Screwfix swap them for new with no quibbles.
I would prefer non integrated fittings but they are largely harder to come by these days.
 

Midwest

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Seems more sensible. I did think their 7-9 year warranties were a bit ambitious. It's an evolving technology so the early models are clearly destined to become obsolete.

I have heard good things about the V50 model so far. It is very similar to the KSR models I have been using for few years now. They also do a CCT version.
I convinced a guy to replace his troublesome MR16 luminaires in his house. Populated his whole house with JCC FGLED6's. Big mistake. Still replacing them one by one, 3 years on. In fairness to JCC, he just rings them up, and they send him a replacement FOC. Hope the last one goes before JCC run out of stock. :)

Not a good advert for integrated.
 

davesparks

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Personally I use eco600s from ecostar, I've found them to be incredibly reliable and they look better than most as you can't see the individual LEDs.
The price is a bit much for some people but I've never had an issue with it.
 

Andy78

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I convinced a guy to replace his troublesome MR16 luminaires in his house. Populated his whole house with JCC FGLED6's. Big mistake. Still replacing them one by one, 3 years on. In fairness to JCC, he just rings them up, and they send him a replacement FOC. Hope the last one goes before JCC run out of stock. :)

Not a good advert for integrated.
Definitely not, but that range seemed to be very flawed. I once went to a large house full of failed JCC integrated fittings, not the FGLED but presumably a forerunner.

I'm happy with KSR. Been using them for over 4 years with only 2 faulty in that time out of many hundreds. They have altered their fittings' design slightly in the time I've been using them, but the visible parts match older ones very well.
 

happyhippydad

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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
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Well some interesting replies there with a big divergence in attitude towards integrated and non integrated.

I shall be sticking with non integrated I think. Like SC said, not being able to find a replacement 2 or 3 years later when they've gone out of stock would be embarrassing!

Cheers guys:)
 

davesparks

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You could always keep a small stock of spares yourself, order an extra fitting each time and you'll soon have enough to cover yourself.
 

Midwest

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Personally I use eco600s from ecostar, I've found them to be incredibly reliable and they look better than most as you can't see the individual LEDs.
The price is a bit much for some people but I've never had an issue with it.
I did try to price them up before when you previously recommended them, could not find any prices on-line. Guess if you have to ask, you can't afford them. :)
 

ChrisElectrical88

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Click spotlights evertime. Use the exact same core unit and then you get the correctly IP rating covers for the envioment.

Each on comes with a built in click plug for easy loop in and out connections.

Fitting, LED lamp and besel about £12 all in. Will save you 1 few minutes a fitting.
 

davesparks

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I did try to price them up before when you previously recommended them, could not find any prices on-line. Guess if you have to ask, you can't afford them. :)
They are wholesaler only as far as I know, the standard eco600 is around £30+vat off the top of my head
 
JCC have now discontinued this line and flogged all their stock to a wholesale discounter.
Yep. I’ve got a box of them that I’m about to send back. Customer first wanted half cool white and half warm white, then changed their mind to all warm white - but ....... you can’t get them anymore...

I’m using Lucecos now.
 

mattg4321

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I fitted about 100 Ecostar downlights that were specified on a job about 5 years ago and thought they were very nice. Would use them again, but the cost is pretty high.

I wouldn't use the integrated emergency packs again though. Rubbish!

I think I got them from Edmundsons.

I also fitted some Nemesis units also from Photonstar. They were nice too, and dimmed really well I seem to remember.
 

Electric Magic

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There are a number of GU10 insulation coverable fittings. Enlite EFD Pro, Ansell Edge (with a 50p attachment), and Knightsbridge Evolve to name a few (all of which also use pushfit connectors and cost between £4 and £7 each). Only time I use integrated fittings (and then it's either Halers or Aurora M Pro) if there's insufficient space in the void for one of the GU10 fittings above.
 

Marvo

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Never used the integrated fittings, they're not widely available here.

As for whether it's worth paying more for some brands of GU10, I'd say it is.

There's lots of considerations when specifying an appropriate lamp for a customer. Obviously price is one and reliability another but for some customers power factor could be very important if they're not billed in kwh for example. Some cheaper lamps have a power factor below 0.5 and their running costs would be sky high compared to a lamp with a PF of 0.9 or higher.

Stability under dimming is another and whether they will dim using both forward and trailing edge PWM which would mean the same lamps could be used everywhere on a premises. Also colour rendering and consistancy of colour throughout the premises is very important to some customers.

Product consistancy over time is another factor, cheaper brands tend to change internal components from one batch to another, this results in many inconsistancies from colour rendering and stability under low dimming levels to reliability.

I've always stuck with Enlite lamps, we had a commercial contract where we installed over 600 dimmable GU10's a couple of years ago and to date there's been zero failures.
 
My go to fitting is Enlite E8's. I'm a pretty firm believer in the fact that an integrated fitting can be designed properly to dissipate heat, rather than trying to cram it all into a gu10 style lamp plugged into a largely empty tin can!
Years back I kitted out a few rentals with the old deep can gu10s to take megaman gu10 cfls....they were a complete disaster, constantly failing, all now been replaced by E8s.
Have fitted hundreds now, only failure I'm aware of is 1 that failed after a day.
I like the fact that the E8 is a 'cover all' solution at a sensible price. Good for bathrooms, good for having fibreglass on top, interchangeable bezel colour, ticks a lot of boxes for me.
 

Starjack

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Well some interesting replies there with a big divergence in attitude towards integrated and non integrated.

I shall be sticking with non integrated I think. Like SC said, not being able to find a replacement 2 or 3 years later when they've gone out of stock would be embarrassing!

Cheers guys:)
You could be dead in 3 years time. Live for the moment.
 

Starjack

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I was with a customer today discussing installing new downlights.

I can't quite see the point in installing the really expensive ones as opposed to the cheaper ones. I don't mean the silly cheap ones on ebay that will just fall apart, but for example...

Lap fixed LED from screwfix £7 approx (good reviews and feel like good quality) compared to JCC, robus, enlite etc etc £15-20?

Also, do you guys prefer integrated LED downlights or ones that you can change the bulb? Again, I struggle with the concept of integrated as you have to change the whole downlight when they go. Are they supposed to have a longer life expectancy? A quality LED lamp is supposed to have about 15 years life expectancy so why not just fit a downlight with a quality changeable LED lamp as opposed to an integrated unit?
Did you tell her about your new Toolbelt o_O
 

davesparks

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What! I'd rather buy a GU10 + can :)
It's horses for courses I guess, personally I find GU10s and other low cost integrated fittings to be ugly and I'm pretty sure my customers wouldnt accept them either.
 

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