A natural and obvious progression from today’s emphasis on effective lighting is to have a method of saving, recalling and re-using certain lighting effects that have been created. Coupled with technological advances in various types of home automation, this has led to the development of lighting control systems.

A lighting control system is possibly the most striking improvement that you can add to your home. It allows you to take control of all the lights inside and out through the use of neat and compact control keypads instead of a wall-cluttering bank of unsightly switches, and allows you to set scenes throughout the house with the touch of a button. Lighting control can also be integrated with security and fire systems to add safety and peace of mind. For example, if the fire alarm is activated anywhere in the house, the lighting system can automatically turn on all lights that create a pathway to exit the premises, or if the security alarm is triggered, all lights can come on at full brightness and flash to alert attention and deter burglars.

Adding a lighting control system to your home gives you additional ways to express yourself and to define and emphasise certain key or favourite features.

In its simplest form, a centralised lighting control system will allow you to set up and save several different scenes (or moods) of lighting for a room or area, and then to recall any of those pre-sets at the touch of a single button. Other more advanced features include multi-room functionality (whereby any switch can control any light in the property), control over exterior and garden lights, motion and sunrise/sunset sensors, wall sockets for lamps and a number of related appliances (extractor fans, garage doors, water features, etc). In addition, there are built-in timers, plus the ability to set up security sequences, affording reliable security and complete peace of mind when absent from home.

The following are some of the benefits of a centralised lighting system:

  • the brightness of all lights can be varied
  • the rate of change of brightness (transition or fade time) can be varied
  • lighting can be quickly and easily changed or adapted to suit the current mood or activity
  • special features in a room can be highlighted
  • key scenes and settings can be stored and re-used whenever required
  • lighting can be timer-based or event-driven
  • dimming lights saves energy and prolongs bulb life
  • dimmed lights are much easier on the eye and reduce glare
  • the additional security measures that can be achieved with a centralised lighting control system give peace of mind when away from home