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Thread: NON IC rated lighting

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    DIY Junior Member bergyblue34's Avatar
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    Default NON IC rated lighting

    I have purchased halogen 4" non-ic lighting. I've come up with the novel idea of covering them with 10" clay pots to insulate and keep insulation off the housing. Anyone have an opinion? Question of the day, "Wht even make Non-IC lights at all? Where can you use them except in-between floors on a two story house. Oh brother.....

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    Electrician ActionDave's Avatar
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    Check the instructions or contact the manufacturer. As I understand them non-IC are meant to be in open air. The pot may or may not have enough air volume.

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    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    An IC fixture has a hi-temperature cut-out switch. If you put in too high a wattage bulb, the temp. switch will cause the lamp to turn off and on every few minutes. If the fixture in this example was non-IC....you just get to call the fire department!

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    Licensed Electrical Contractor Speedy Petey's Avatar
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    If you keep the pot far enough away from the whole fixture it will work fine. No different than making sheetrock boxes and covering them (which was common back in the day).
    I can tell you a 10" pot will NOT cut it. More like 18" or 20". And then it will strain the ceiling sheetrock pretty good.

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    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    There are prefabricated boxes for this purpose. I have seen nice ones made from 2" XPS. As stated above, the can must have a good amount of free airspace around it.

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    IT must not only have "free air space" around it, but also "air flow" to remove the heat buildup, which means it should be "open" to the atmosphere.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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    Home Builder ckl111's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bergyblue34 View Post
    I have purchased halogen 4" non-ic lighting. I've come up with the novel idea of covering them with 10" clay pots to insulate and keep insulation off the housing. Anyone have an opinion? Question of the day, "Wht even make Non-IC lights at all? Where can you use them except in-between floors on a two story house. Oh brother.....

    You answered your own question. You use IC lights in an insulated ceiling and a non-IC light everywhere else. You can use an IC light everywhere else too but it is a waste of money.

    Insulation contact (IC) lights are designed to be air-tight so that it doesn't leak warm, moist air from the house into the cold attic and condense into water in the winter. If you live in Florida you won't have this problem but if you live in a cold climate, you will. They tie into the vapour barrier of the house in new construction.

    They are more expensive than their non-IC counterparts. Most IC potlights nowadays already come in a big metallic box that can be buried in blown-in insulation. Read the manufacturers instructions including the approved trims that go with the can. Enclosed trims like a shower light usually specify a lower wattage bulb. Local inspector may also have their own requirements.

    There are some "retrofit" IC potlights that can be in direct contact with insulation. http://www.cooperindustries.com/cont...0_ei700rat.pdf It's really not worth the hassle to make a non-IC potlight suitable for use in an insulated ceiling.

    All quality potlights have temperature sensors whether they are IC or non-IC. It's a fire protection issue. The only time I have ever had problems with the temperature sensor constantly turning the light off was when the ceiling was spray foamed. The spray foam was TOO good at insulating so it retained too much heat in the can. If I have to foam a ceiling, I wrap the light in fiberglass insulation to keep the foam off the potlights.
    Last edited by ckl111; 04-02-2013 at 08:02 PM.

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    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckl111 View Post
    The only time I have ever had problems with the temperature sensor constantly turning the light off was when the ceiling was spray foamed.
    I just love it when the customer changes the bulbs and installs bulbs that are larger than what is called for. In such a case I charge for a service call being it was not the fault of the installation or the equipment. I am easy but I am not cheap

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    My point on solder was that it doesn't take much wattage to generate enough heat to make things dangerous. Most solder melts in the 400+-degree range, and wood/cellulose, and a lot of other things will burn at lower temps than that. IOW, it doesn't take much to make enough heat in an insulated space to make a fire hazard. For sound insulation, and where you may want to close off say the second floor, you may want insulation in all of your ceilings...using an IC-contact fixture is in the noise pricewise compared to the labor and risk should you need to get insulation in there for whatever reason on a non-contact one.
    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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