Selecting Control Devices

Current State of the Industry

The outdoor lighting business is changing rapidly. Controlling the power supply has come a long
way from the days of the simple photocell. Although still used, the mechanical timer and photocell
combination is being replaced by higher tech control methods.

Digital Timers

Digital timers allow a power supply many start times as well as different daily start and stop
times. Most digital timers can be combined with photocells for various seasonal adjustments.

Astronomical Timers

Astronomical timers are also becoming very popular. These controllers are normally set for the
coordinates of the area. The timer automatically adjusts its start and stop time depending on the
season of the year. Multiple settings are also available with this type of timer. Astronomical
controls are very effective when the job requires an indoor power supply or in an area where a
synchronized commencement is desirable.

Smart Home Technology

And now, clients may have smart home technology installed. A power supply can be plugged into
an outlet that is controlled by the system. This effort will allow the system to be turned on and off
automatically or through a remote control or smartphone. It is very important to check the
compatibility between the power supply and the controlled receptacle. This check is especially
important if dimming is required.

Swimming Pool Control Systems

Did you know that some power supplies can also be controlled through swimming pool control
systems? Normally there are several available auxiliary relays. A separate circuit breaker and
receptacle can be run through an auxiliary relay to control the power supply. Using this control
method, dimming is accomplished through the secondary side of the power supply.


Several manufacturers have recently made dramatic breakthroughs with power supplies that
have WI-FI control. These power supplies also have zone control capabilities, dimming, and
color-changing options.


Of course, all jobs have certain control requirements. We encourage you to become acquainted
with all current control options.