Switches and controls

An explanation of the range of options

Fitted lights, such as wall and ceiling lights, tend to be controlled by wall switches. Although many wall lights do come with an individual fitted switch.

Freestanding lights, such as floor and table lights, usually have an individual switch incorporated into the actual fitting, an integral switch.

A dimmer control works by reducing the power sent to the light source. They give a great flexibility to lighting schemes as you can adjust the level of light whenever you need more or less. This means you can easily accommodate changes in natural light levels and create different moods. Many light fittings now come with an integral dimmer control. With floor standing lights, this is often be a foot operated dimmer.

It’s also become more common to have touch control lights, which are operated by touching a part of the light base. These may be either true dimmers, or stepped dimmer controls. Stepped controls have a fixed number of settings from on to off.

Automatic switches are a good option for cupboards and storage areas. They can be fitted to come on when a door is opened and go off when it closes, as with a refrigerator light.

Time clocks and time switches allow you to control when your lights come on in the same way you can control your heating.

Sensor controls are a good option for security lights outside your home. Triggered by motion, they can be set to come on as someone approaches and switch off automatically after a set period of time.

Switches and controls are available in a wide range of finishes, including brass, chrome and wood.