- 1 Top 6 Best Dimmer Switch
- 1.1 #1 Lutron Credenza Plug-in Dimmer Switch – Top Pick
- 1.2 #2 Cloudy Bay In Wall Dimmer Switch – Honorable Mention
- 1.3 #3 Treatlife Smart Dimmer Switch – Best LED
- 1.4 #4 TP-Link HS220 Kasa Smart Dimmer Switch – Best Smart
- 1.5 #5 GoSund Smart Dimmer Switch – Best Budget
- 1.6 #6 Lumary L-DS100 Smart Dimmer Switch – Best Quality
- 1.7 How We Decided
- 2 Dimmer Switch Buying Guide
To help you find the best dimmer switch to install in your home today, we spent 10+ hours testing 13 different switch options. As we tested each unit, we specifically looked for ease of installation, universal compatibility and wide dimming ranges. We also measured smart functionality, if available.
With these features in mind, it was easy to pick the Lutron Credenza Plug-In Dimmer Switch as our top pick. It’s the easiest to install, offers the most versatility and is the easiest switch to use on our list. Keep reading below to learn more about the Lutron Credenza and the other dimmer switches we chose as the best switches for this year.
Top 6 Best Dimmer Switch
#1 Lutron Credenza Plug-in Dimmer Switch – Top PickWHY WE LIKE IT: The Lutron Credenza plug-in dimmer switch is simple, affordable and reliable. If you have floor or table lamps that you want to be able to dim, this dimmer switch is your best bet.
The Lutron Credenza dimmer switch is simple and straightforward, without any kinds of bells or whistles to mix you up. It does what it’s supposed to do, and it does it extremely well. This is the only switch on our list that doesn’t require any kind of wiring or installation. Simply plug the cord into the wall, then plug your lighting into the other end and you’re ready to go.
This dimmer switch is perfect for floor lamps, table lamps, and seasonal or decorative lighting like Christmas trees. The Lutron can handle halogen bulbs and incandescent bulbs up to 300 watts total. You get a simple design here, as well, with a slide dimmer that you move up or down to adjust brightness level. If there was one thing we could improve, we would have liked to see some kind of on/off indicator light on the switch for added convenience.
Note: Lutron also manufactures many other LED dimmer switches including the Lutron Maestro that works with 150 Watts of dimmable CFLs, or 600 Watts of halogen bulbs, as well as other smart dimmer switches like the Caseta in-wall smart lighting system that’s similar to the Philips Hue and uses a remote control to change the light level, and a hub to connect with home automation systems.
Most of the best smart home devices have something like this so it is a bit odd that it is missing.
#2 Cloudy Bay In Wall Dimmer Switch – Honorable MentionWHY WE LIKE IT: The Cloudy Bay in-wall dimmer switch is super easy to install and includes everything you need to get started with the installation process. It features a simple and sleek design for a great price, making it an excellent choice for DIYers and home owners.
The Cloudy Bay in-wall dimmer switch is about as unassuming as can be, with a simple rocker switch design and white faceplate. This is an excellent choice for anyone who doesn’t want something too flashy while still getting all of the functionality that a reliable dimmer switch offers. It’s also super affordable, which makes this option all the better.
You can connect up to a maximum of 600 watts to this single pole dimmable switch, and it’s compatible with LED, CFL, and incandescent bulbs, which is an impressive range of compatibility. It’s also super easy to install, but we recommend being extra careful with the faceplate as we found it to be a little fragile during installation. The dimmer itself works just as advertised, although it’s not as sensitive as other switches and offers a more limited dimming range, which is a fairly small price to pay for such a great product. If you are looking for something similar for an outdoor area, the best WiFi outdoor outlet is a great place to start, because you can then use smart switches like this in that area.
#3 Treatlife Smart Dimmer Switch – Best LEDWHY WE LIKE IT: The Treatlife Smart dimmer switch is an excellent dimmer for LED lighting applications in smart homes with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. If you’re looking to get into smart LED lighting, this is the best dimmer switch for you.
If you’re looking to get into automating your light switches with a smart dimmer switch, the Treatlife Smart Dimmer Switch is an excellent starting point. This pack includes 4 switches that you can install around your home, and they even work with LED lights at a maximum of 150 watts. They can also support incandescent bulbs up to a total of 400 watts. Be aware that these are single pole switches, as well.
We were of course most pleased with the Treatlife switches’ ability to automate your home lighting through smart home features like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. You can even use an app to control the lighting in your home through this switch. The app is easy to use and the switches are easy to install, too, making these a no brainer for your smart home setup. Unfortunately, the switches can only use 2.4 GHz WiFi, which isn’t as snappy as 5 GHz bands, but this wasn’t too big of a deal during our testing. If you are looking for special lighting, the best LED strip lights are an easy to use alternative that also looks great.
#4 TP-Link HS220 Kasa Smart Dimmer Switch – Best SmartWHY WE LIKE IT: The TP-Link Kasa Smart Dimmer Switch is the best smart dimmer switch we tested on this list. With tons of smart functionality and customization, you can tailor all of the lighting in your home with ease.
If you’re looking for the most convenient and comprehensive smart dimmer switches, you can’t pass up on the TP-Link HS220 Kasa. This dimmer switch is absolutely top of the line when it comes to smart home functionality. With the Kasa app, you can control absolutely everything about this switch. You can create lighting schedules, control brightness, and create pre-set scenes for a variety of lighting situations. The lights even feature a “Gentle Off” feature, which allows you to dim the lights in your room automatically over time to create a more relaxing bedtime mood or to indicate to yourself that it’s time to start getting ready for bed.
The Kasa smart dimmer switch is also really easy to install, and it doesn’t require connection to a smart home hub to work. Keep in mind that this is a single pole dimmer switch, which isn’t as versatile as 3 or 4 way switches. The switch includes a quick installation guide that’s really easy to follow, which makes the whole process simple enough for anyone to follow along. You can use this switch with up to 300 watts of incandescent bulbs or 150 watts of LED bulbs. However, we did notice seom buzzing when you use the switch with more than one LED light bulb, which was kind of a bummer. However, there were no issues with incandescent bulbs that we experienced. Here’s a pro tip if you are looking to save money with smart lighting: You can also read best smart thermostats and save even more on your electric bill.
#5 GoSund Smart Dimmer Switch – Best BudgetWHY WE LIKE IT: The GoSund Smart Dimmer Switch works with a wide range of lighting products, including LED bulbs and ceiling fans. It also is fully compatible with smart home setups for the ultimate level of convenience.
Finding a smart dimmer switch that can work well with a wide variety of lighting fixtures seamlessly can be difficult at times, but the GoSund Smart Dimmer Switch does it all. It can work effortlessly with LED bulbs without causing any kind of flickering or buzzing, making it the best LED dimmer switch no flicker. The GoSund can even work with ceiling fans up to 100 watts, which is very impressive. The only light bulbs that don’t work with this switch are smart light bulbs.
The GoSund dimmer switch is really easy to install and doesn’t require any kind of smart home hub to enable the smart functionality. You’ll be able to use voice control and smartphone apps to control the switch entirely. Set scenes or create lighting schedules from your fingertips using the GoSund app. You can of course still manually control the switch, which features an easy-to-use touch panel and single on/off button. While the lowest setting wasn’t as dim as we would have liked, we still enjoyed everything the GoSund Smart Dimmer Switch has to offer. Dimmers are all about controlling light to get the best effect for you, much like the best warm white LED strip lights.
#6 Lumary L-DS100 Smart Dimmer Switch – Best QualityWHY WE LIKE IT: The Lumary L-DS100 Smart Dimmer Switch is well made and easy to operate, making this the best quality dimmer switch on our list. It’s also super easy to install with standard wall plate compatibility.
The Lumary L-DS100 smart dimmer switch is an excellent option on our list of the best switches on the market today. These switches are super easy to install since they’re compatible with standard wall plate configurations and can be screwed in or snapped on. After installing the switches in the wall, you just need to connect them to your WiFi network before you can use voice or app control.
The Lumary smart dimmer switches are also really easy to use, whether through the app or manually on the switch itself. We were most pleased with the sunset and sunrise mode that the Lumary switches offer, which schedule your lights on/off based on your local sunrise and sunset times. The Lumary lacks a fade on and off mode, though, but in light of all the other benefits this switch provides, this wasn’t too big of a deal. The best smart outlet can make your home even more intelligent.
How We Decided
After we received the different dimmer switches, we got right to work installing them in our living spaces to measure how easy the entire installation process was. The difficulty of installation can vary depending on what type of switch you buy and the existing wiring in your home, but we specifically looked for clear instructions and universal compatibility when it came to face and wall plates. The best dimmer switches are easy to install and don’t need a neutral wire, and shouldn’t require you to hire an electrician unless you feel super uncomfortable doing the job yourself.
After installation, we measured the dimmer switches on their ease of use. If installed correctly, the best dimmer switch will easily dim or brighten the lights in your room and provide a good range of brightness. If the dimmer doesn’t offer much range, it’s not very useful, so we didn’t include those kinds of switches on our list.
Finally, we also measured overall smart functionality on each of the switches we tested, but we didn’t penalize non-smart dimmer switches for a lack of smart features. Smart switches should provide more convenience than frustration, so we only included options with apps that were easy to use and didn’t require connection to a smart home hub.
Dimmer Switch Buying Guide
The Most Important Features to Consider
Before you even start researching different dimmer switches, you need to know the wattage of your bulbs to ensure they will be compatible with the dimmer switches you purchase. You’ll also want to know how many light bulbs in total you’re going to be dimming with a single switch so you can avoid overloading the switch. Each dimmer has a total allowed wattage that you don’t want to exceed.
- Dimmer Type
As you’re figuring out wattage numbers, you’ll also need to figure out how many switches are going to control the lights and what type of dimmer you need to enable the proper installation and setup:
- Single-pole: If you’re controlling your lights from a single dimmer, purchase a single-pole switch.
- Three- or Four-way: If you’re controlling your lights with single dimmer and at least one other switch in a different location, purchase a three- or four-way dimmer.
- Multi-location: If you’re controlling your lights with four or more dimmer locations, purchase a multi-location dimmer.
- Plug-in: If you’re controlling table or floor lamps, purchase a plug-in dimmer.
- Bulb Types
There are a ton of different bulb types available today, and most of them require a specific kind of dimmer switch in order to work properly. Let’s take a look at light bulb types and compatibility below:
- Compact Fluorescent (CFL): Only work with dimmer switches if they are labelled specifically as dimmable. CFL bulbs that are dimmable can work with some halogen and incandescent dimmer switches, but not all models.
- Halogen: Compatible with most dimmer switches.
- Incandescent: Compatible with most dimmer switches.
- Magnetic Low Frequency: Compatible with most dimmer switches.
- Electronic Low Frequency (ELV): Compatible with most dimmer switches.
- LED: Some are dimmable, but most LEDs don’t work with dimmer switches due to their low wattage.
- Control Style
Dimmer switches can be controlled in a number of different ways, and the type of control style you choose is entirely personal preference. Take a look at the list of different styles below:
- Slide: The most common form of dimmer. Slide the knob up or down to adjust brightness.
- Rotary: Turn the knob left and right to adjust brightness.
- Rocker: Rocker switches that dim look just like traditional rocker switches, but include dimmer slider to the side or below the switch. When you flip the switch on, the lights will return to brightness as defined on the dimmer slide.
- Toggle: The same as rocker switches, but the on/off switch resembles the classic toggle switch.
- Scene Selector: Multiple buttons with different, pre-set brightness levels.
- Tap: Touchpad or button control.
- Smart Home Functionality
With the ever-growing popularity of smart homes, it’s also important to consider how your dimmer switches will function with smart home systems like Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit and other options. If you’d like to control your lighting and dimming functionality using your smartphone, look into switches that support that feature.
Dimmer Switch FAQs
Are dimmer switches safe?
All in all, dimmer switches are completely safe for use within your home. They don’t require any special wiring or extra precaution. However, it’s important that you install them correctly and safely, and that you don’t overload them with too much wattage. Otherwise, they can become a safety hazard.
Are dimmer switches easy to install?
Dimmer switches are so common today that most are designed to fit the standard light switch box openings. A quick search on Google will pull up a million different tutorials for how to install these switches and those tutorials are easy to follow. Just remember to cut power to the switch you’re replacing so you don’t shock yourself in the process!
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