Most households are conscious of the long-life span that the Led lights provide during their usage. Led is energy efficient, and therefore they run by using significantly low power supply. Led light technologies are continuously developing with everyday latest emerging innovations. A LED light consists of a chipset, driver and heat sink as the three main components.
A led driver is responsible for power regulation and supply to the Led. It is also referred to as Led power supplies. The driver is used to protect the Led against any power surges that may arise causing them to be overheated. They are the transformers for your LED lights.
Some drivers are built internally while others are external. For most household use, the drivers used in light bulbs are internal while for most commercial and outdoors such as roadways, the drivers are external. The external drivers are preferred for outdoor because they are easy to replace.
The drivers also assist the led with the right amount of voltage to function and perform at their best. In fluorescent bulbs, the ballast is similar to the drivers and performs the same functions as the drivers. They usually act as a protective gear from the electric current.
There are generally 2 types of drivers: the constant voltage and constant current drivers.
The constant voltage requires a fixed output voltage with a maximum output current while the constant current requires a fixed output current. A constant voltage driver is mainly used for lighting applications and constant current drivers are used for high intensity LEDs applications.
A constant voltage driver keeps varying the electric current across the circuit to maintain a specified fixed voltage. On contrary, a constant current driver maintains a stable current while regulating varying current.
A constant current driver is used in individual light fixtures where number of LEDs can increase or decrease. A constant voltage driver is used where the number of LED lamps or luminaires connected to a power supply is changed as per the requirement.
Below are the 2 main purposes of the drivers.
For converting alternate current of high intensity to usable direct current of low voltage – Most LEDs run on a low voltage, which ranges between 12 and 24v. They can reduce the voltage of 120-277v, in order to make it feasible for working of LEDs.
To protect Led from the current fluctuations – Flickering and flashing of light usually caused because of constant fluctuation of the power supply.
The LED drivers have enabled the users to choose from simple to complicated power supplies for maximizing the energy efficiency of their appliances. They control the durability of all LEDs.
Highly efficient drivers are mostly chosen by customers as they are energy efficient. They increase energy saving, therefore, maintaining low electricity bills.
LED drivers are designed to be highly durable and can easily sustain in harsh climatic conditions. They are also water and dust proof. The ones recommended for such should have a rating of IP67. The ingress protection (IP) chart can tell a customer if the driver can withstand the environmental conditions.
In the case of dimming of the light bulbs or the led stops working before the prescribed timeline, you might consider checking if the problem is with the driver or the Led. Chances are the driver may be the problem as they operate at high internal temperatures. They are easily replaceable therefore increasing the lifespan of the Led.
Some drivers are serviceable while others are not. Most of the bulbs the drivers are wired inside which then simply means they cannot be replaced. For large fixtures whose drivers are external, they can be replaced in case of damage.
Drivers are expected to last significantly for a long period of time. They are built to give Led a good service to the customer. Consider checking on their usability, functionality, and reliability from the different manufacturers before purchasing any drivers.
LED drivers are made to last long. Their life expectancy can be determined by checking MTFB (mean time before failure) value. The IP rating on the product label shows the dust-resistive and water-resistive properties of your LED drivers.
With the vast applications of LED drivers, LED is becoming the new standard of companies and customers. The traditional lighting is losing its scope with the new lighting revolutions.