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2024 Comprehensive Guide to LED Track Light

LED TRACK LIGHT

Speaking of track lights, the recently popular LED magnetic track lights are definitely indispensable, but today we will mainly analyze the regular LED track lights. If you want to know about LED magnetic track lights, then this blog will guide you to Get a comprehensive understanding of LED track lights.

DUNK

What is LED track lighting? How it works?

LED track lights are LED lights that are installed on tracks. They glide smoothly along the track can be adjusted for multiple lighting angles and are generally used in places that require accent lighting. It is an ideal light source replacing traditional tungsten halogen lamps and metal halide lamps.

LED track lights must be installed on matching track guide rails. There is a voltage input in the guide rail (usually 110-120V or 220-240VAC, low voltage DC12V-24V can also be customized). There are conductive metals on both sides of the guide rail. The high-quality material is generally copper (inferior quality material is iron), and there is a rotatable conductive copper piece at the connection of the track light. During installation, it is necessary to ensure that the conductive copper piece on the track light is in contact with the conductive metal strip in the track rail. Only after contact can the track light be energized and emit light.

 

What are track lights used for?

LED track lights can be used for many different applications

  • Commercial places: The flexibility and controllability of track lights are very suitable for commercial places, such as shopping malls, supermarkets, exhibition halls, etc. Track lights can adjust the angle and light direction to create an ideal lighting effect, making the goods more eye-catching.
  • Home places: Track lights can not only meet the basic lighting needs of the home but also improve the interior decoration effect and create a warm and comfortable home environment. Suitable for bedrooms, living rooms, kitchens, study rooms, and other places.
  • Office places: Track lights can provide soft and uniform lighting effects for office places, making employees’ visual experience better, thereby improving work efficiency. Suitable for offices, meeting rooms, corridors, and other places.

What are the benefits of Track Lighting?

  1. Good lighting effect: Track lights can adjust the lighting angle and light direction as needed to make the light more uniform, and softer and have better lighting effects.
  2. Controllable quantity: Track lights can add or reduce lamps as needed, the quantity is controllable, very flexible, and can be freely combined as needed.
  3. Easy to install: The installation method of track lights is very simple. You only need to fix the track on the ceiling and then install the lamps. It is easy to operate and suitable for homes and commercial places.
  4. Beautiful appearance: Track lights have a beautiful appearance and usually adopt a modern and simple design style, which complements the interior decoration style.
  5. Energy saving and environmental protection: Track lights use LED light sources, which have high light efficiency and lifespan, can significantly reduce energy consumption, reduce energy waste, and are low-carbon and environmentally friendly.

Track lighting rail and head types

In order to distinguish these types of track lights, you need to figure out the track rails and track heads first.

The slide rails are divided into 2-wire slide rails, 3-wire slide rails, 4-wire slide rails, and 6-wire slide rails. The first three are mainstream products in the LED lighting market. The “wire” mentioned here refers to the wires that are powered inside the slide rails. 2-wire refers to “L, N wire”, 3-wire refers to “L, N, G wire”, and the four-wire system adds a signal line on the basis of the A signal line, which is convenient for multi-way control of the lamps of the entire track lighting system.

Track head. The track head generally refers to the joint where the track light is installed on the slide rail. According to the track bar specifications, it is mainly divided into a 2-wire track head, a 3-wire track head, and a 4-wire track head. The track head can only be installed on the corresponding track bar.

According to the above track bars and track heads, track lights can be divided into single-way track lights and dual-way track lights. Among them, single-circuit track lights include 2-wire and 3-wire track lights, while 4-wire track lights belong to 2-circuit track lights, also known as three-phase track lights

In terms of safety, 3-wire track lights are better than 2-wire track lights. If you need 0-10V or DALI dimmable track lights, you can only use 4-wire track heads and 4-wire track bars.

Many customers ask me if your lights will fit my track. Do you know the answer now? Track heads are not interchangeable, so before purchasing LED track lights for your existing track, please obtain a detailed information data sheet from the manufacturer. Mixing incompatible track heads with your track system may result in malfunction, damage, or safety hazards.

Track light wattage and voltage

There are 110/220V and low voltage 12V, 24V and 48V LED track lights, the track light power depends on the housing/style, some styles of track lights can power up to 50W but other styles may not power up to 50W.

Track light typesGU10 Track lightsMR16 led track lightsCOB LED Track lightsMagnetic track lights
Wattages3W 5W 7W3W 5W 7W7W 10W 15W 20W 25W 30W 40W 50W6W 12W 18W 20W 30W
Input voltage110/220-240VAC 50/60Hz12VDC or 24VDC110/220V-240VAC 50/60Hz48Vdc or 24VDC

 

How to choose LED track lights?

High-quality LED track lights usually have the following characteristics. When choosing LED track lights, you can pay attention to these aspects.

Choose the right track head for LED track lights. As mentioned above, track lights are available in 2-wire, 3-wire, and 4-wire. If your existing track is 2-wire, you can simply purchase LED track lights with 2 wire track headers.

The famous isolation drive. Common high-quality track light drivers include LIFUD, OSRAM, PHILIPS, DONE, etc. These isolated drivers can guarantee the service life of track lights in commercial environments for at least 5 years or more, or even up to 10 years.

high brightness. Good LED track lights should be equipped with top-grade LED chips with high lumens, which will save a lot of energy and provide higher brightness.

High CRI. Track lights are used as accent lighting fixtures in clothing stores, retail stores, museums and other places. They are often used to highlight the features of an object and restore its true appearance. Color rendering is particularly important. The higher the display index, the higher the ability to restore the true condition of the object. The CRI of track lights is generally above 90, and it is best to reach 97.

Beam angle. For led track lights, the led beam angles include 15°, 24°, 36° and 50°. For accent lighting, the beam angles are 15°, 24° and 36°. If you need basic lighting, the 50° beam angle is the first choice.

No flicker. When you use your mobile phone to take photos or videos of the LED track lights at close range, there are no ripples on the screen and the lamp tubes do not flicker. Such track lights can best create a lighting environment and reduce damage to eyesight.

Low glare value. The best led track lights usually have an anti-glare design and a special low glare value lens. The track light housing should be a deep reflector. UGR<19 is the standard, preferably less than 15.

 

How to install LED track lights?

As mentioned above, LED track lights include 2-wire, 3-wire, and 4-wire track lights, which correspond to the corresponding track bars. Different track lights have different precautions when installing. Generally, the installation of LED track lights is the installation of the lighting system, including the installation of track rails, the installation of track lights, and the installation of corresponding accessories (such as L-shaped, 4-shaped, and T-shaped connectors). For more information, you can watch the following video or download the installation instructions of LED track lights here.

 

What are the common quality problems of LED track lights?

Whether in commercial places such as supermarkets and clothing stores, or in home environments such as kitchens and restaurants, we often see some LED track lights with quality problems. Even after our careful selection, some common quality problems are inevitable. Because many manufacturers will reduce costs and attract customers with low prices. But these low prices are achieved by using inferior materials and processes, rather than technological innovation, so this has a great impact on the quality of LED track lights. Here, we list a few of these problems.

LED track light flickering problem

LED track light flickers for the following reasons

The LED light board does not match the LED driver. Under normal circumstances, the current of a single 1W lamp bead is 280~300mA and the voltage is 3.0~3.4V. If the lamp bead chip is underpowered, the light source will flicker. If the current is too large, the lamp bead cannot withstand it and will be on and off. In severe cases, the lamp bead will burn out. In this case, a new LED driver needs to be replaced to match the LED chip.

The driver power supply is damaged, just replace it with a power supply of the same specification.

The lamp housing does not dissipate heat, and the driver power supply has an over-temperature protection function, but the heat dissipation performance of the lamp material does not meet the requirements. When the driver over-temperature protection is activated, a flash will occur. If the LED track light has poor heat dissipation performance, it is difficult to replace it. So choose aluminum track lights.

 

LED track light does not light up

Common reasons and solutions for LED track light not lighting up are as follows.

Positive and negative poles are connected in reverse. When installing the track, the positive and negative poles on the track bar are not connected correctly, resulting in a circuit failure. In this case, just reconnect the L and N wires of the track bar.

LED driver burns out. Some inferior LED power supplies often use cheap raw materials and have a short lifespan. When the ambient voltage used is unstable, it is easy to burn out the power supply. Please choose a brand of indoor LED power supply. Common high-quality drivers include PHILIPS, OSRAM, LiFud, DONE, Eaglerise, Boke, GS, etc. The lifespan of these drivers is at least 5 years.

LED chip is broken. If the parameters of the power supply do not match the parameters of the lamp beads, the lamp beads will burn out and may not light up. Another possibility is that the LED chip is of poor quality, short lifespan, and easy to damage. Common well-known LED chips include Philips, Bridgelux, Citizen, CREE, Jingyuan, and domestic OSRAM.

 

Low brightness problem

The brightness of LED lamps determines its energy-saving ability. The lower the power of lamps with the same brightness, the lower the purchase price and the lower the energy consumption. However, some low-end LED track lights often have the problem of low brightness.

For newly purchased LED track lights, if its brightness is very low, it may be that the supplier has falsely reported the power of the lamp. Some low-priced LED track lights on the market usually have false power and brightness, such as the actual power is only 10W, but it is marked as 15W or 20W on the lamp body and packaging.

If you find that the brightness of the LED track lights you use suddenly decreases, it may be caused by too much light decay of the lamp. Some cheap track lights usually use low-quality LED lamp beads with small chips and insufficient heat dissipation. Excessive temperature will greatly reduce the initial luminous flux of the LED lamp beads. After installation, the actual output of the lamp is 100lm/W, but when the lamp is used for one month or half a year, the actual output of the lamp will drop to 70lm/w or 50Lm/W.

 

How many track lights are there on one circuit/meter?

Usually, the length of track rails is 1m, 2m and 3m. According to the track lighting guide, the conductor of each track bar can handle a 10A, 220V (or 15A, 120V) lighting circuit, supporting about 2000W. However, in order to prevent the circuit from overloading, it is recommended to reserve 20% of the total load power. Therefore, the safe capacity of the lighting circuit is about 1600W. According to our practical experience, it is best to install no more than two track lights on a one-meter track bar.