Dim, dimmer, dimme$t 💡

A good piece that answered my question. Nice nuggets like these therein:

A dimmer works by switching the current on and off a huge number of times every second, so the lightbulb is essentially spending fractions of a second ‘off’, though you can’t tell.

Older dimmers used a resistor, rather than switching the current on and off, and so you didn’t save electricity – instead, the excess current was converted into heat energy.


What a dim post.


Taking a dim view? image

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I’m not sure if I should lighten up, or switch off this conversation, but who knew dimmers had such a shady past? There’s no need to be too harsh on the old dimmers since they were just trying to keep things lit, but those old resistor dimmers were a real heatstroke of genius. Thanks Peep for enlightening us by shedding some light on the situation.

Makes sense why it is so hard to get them to work with the newer LED bulbs, and why it is hard to develop or find good dimmers now that the gov is basically banning selling of incandescents which worked well with this kind of dimmer.

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Thanks for sharing. Dimmers are evil on LED bulbs. The flashing thing sucks. Heat is bad. I can’t get wyze bulbs to work in the overhead ceiling fan because it has a dimmer on it. I’ll hardwire it to bypass the dimmer one day.

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Tread lightly. There’s a technical thicket surrounding this clearing. Disembodied eyes floating in darkness. Sinews and haunches. Coiled to pounce.

Which is to say: This subject gets complicated fast if you stray beyond the clearing. :slight_smile:

I have a very old dimmer switch controlling an incandescent bulb. I’ve been using it regularly at near maximum-dim for a long while.

As it happens, the dimmer and the bulb are both about ten feet from my WiFi router.

My v2 cam most distant from the router has the flakiest connectivity and I’d chalked it up to distance and noise from the nest of demon wifi neighbors next door.


Its signal passes from the router through (what I now suspect to be) a ‘gauntlet of interference’ from the dimmer switch, house wiring and bulb.

That can’t be good.

Also within ten feet of the router:

A powerful ceiling exhaust fan in the kitchen, controlled by a quality, matched rheostat, about twenty years old. Used less frequently but usually at low-to-mid speed when we do.

If this combo also contributes significant noise, it’s a wonder anything stays connected. :slight_smile:

Preliminary findings:

  • Interference from the dimmer may exist and if it does it doesn’t help.
  • It may not be a single problem. It may be two or more things affecting connectivity intermittently.
  • Chasing down problems like this in an environment you don’t control (wifi neighbors close by) is a fool’s errand.image


Does a Wyze bulb dimmed low via WiFi and the app create significant RF noise?