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Thread: Sealing IC rated recessed housings

  1. #1

    Default Sealing IC rated recessed housings

    Quick question. I installed some IC rated Halo 6" airtite recessed lighting cans in an attic space during my remodel. I used aluminum tape to more completely seal off the units (gaps around the ring, the seams, etc - they didn't look very "airtite" to me). One is over a shower with a sealed lens with a 45 watt bulb in it. The can gets burning hot! I don't know how hot, but it would burn my hand. This one can is much hotter than the others that do not have the sealed lens.

    Is this hazardous? Did my "sealing" of the can with aluminum tape make it too air-tight?

  2. #2
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Verify the maximum wattage with that lense covering. If you are not exceeding it, it should be okay. The fixture has a thermostat in it that will shut off the lamp power if it gets too hot. Course, you are dependent on that working properly. IC-AT units are supposed to be okay when covered up with insulation.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    DIY Senior Member jch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hockeydad View Post
    Is this hazardous? Did my "sealing" of the can with aluminum tape make it too air-tight?
    I agree with Jim. You should buy a fixture rated "IC-AT" (Insulation Contact, AirTight), rather than modifying a simple "IC" fixture.
    ----------
    - John

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    Extreme DIY Homeowner Scuba_Dave's Avatar
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    Use a CFL bulb, very little heat
    DIY Handyman (not 4 hire)
    I have enough to do to my own house

  5. #5
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    An AT rated fixture should work sealed since it does not state what kind of insulation might be around it...it could be something like foam, which would make it AT. They don't specify the type of insulation. Just don't exceed the wattage with a sealed lense on it.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  6. #6

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    Here is what I installed:

    http://www.lowes.com/lowes/lkn?actio...CAT&lpage=none

    It is called an "airtite housing" and is IC rated (however I believe their website has an error. The paragraph calls it IC, but the spec sheet says no to IC rated - I believe this to be incorrect since the model is ICAT!!)

    But as I said, it is NOT very air tight, IMHO. Lots of gaps. The thrust of my question is are these gaps a design feature to ensure some air flow around and through the unit for cooling, thus did I defeat the design.

    It is rated for 75 watts; I'm using 45 watts and it is HOT! My insulation is blown fiberglass (the white stuff). I am going to purchase a thermometer that can measure high temp because I am curious.

  7. #7
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    You can do electrical soldering with a 15W iron. Yes, a 45W bulb will get hot. Put a sealed lense over that housing, and yes it will get hot in there. Paper will start to smolder at about 375-degrees. Too hot to touch is easy to attain in many lamps.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  8. #8

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    Based on the part number, the manufacturer says it is both AT and IC.

    Just be sure the part number of what you have is the same as on the link you provided.

  9. #9
    In the Trades mattbee24's Avatar
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    On Halo's website, that can is listed as IC rated and air-tite. But, it does show that with the covered lenses the max lamp is 40w. It would be rated for 75w if it was a non-IC can. If it were me, I would take the tape off and change your bulb to a 40w. Your trim should have a gasket on it. That is what makes it "air-tite".

  10. #10
    DIY Senior Member jch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattbee24 View Post
    On Halo's website, that can is listed as IC rated and air-tite. But, it does show that with the covered lenses the max lamp is 40w. It would be rated for 75w if it was a non-IC can. If it were me, I would take the tape off and change your bulb to a 40w. Your trim should have a gasket on it. That is what makes it "air-tite".
    Agreed. You can see the datasheet here:
    http://www.cooperlighting.com/specfi...pdf/H7ICAT.pdf

    40W (A19 bulb)

    The footnote on every page of the spec sheet also says:
    When using an Air-Tite trim to meet California Title 24 air tight compliance, an additional gasket is required between the finished ceiling and
    the trim flange ring. For California Tite 24 compliance use accessory trim gasket GA-ATRIM. Order separately in a 6 pack: GA-ATTRIM-6PK
    ----------
    - John

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