During construction, installation for LED lighting systems must carefully observe various safety guidelines set forth by the National Electric Code (NEC). For low voltage LED lights, such as wiring, compliance with Class 2 guidelines are recommended.
The standards are designed to reduce risks surrounding fires, shocks and premature lighting failure.
Power and Electrical Wiring
Class 2 regulations for low voltage luminaries must adhere to specific performance standards. When it comes to power supplies, the low voltage 12V DC driver should be 60 watts or lower. Furthermore, 24V DC drivers should operate at 96 watts or lower. As a refresher, a low voltage LED work lights are stepped down from a standard AC voltage (such as 120V AC) to a low, DC voltage (usually 12V DC or 24V DC).
When a Class 1 circuit and a Class 2 circuit are utilized, the components should be separated, according to NEC guidelines. A solution to this concern is the application of a heavy-duty junction box.
Class 2 electric wiring for permanent lighting installations supersede mainstream rubber-based coatings commonly found in mainstream appliances. This requirement is critical because wiring for permanent installations are typically hidden behind walls. If the wiring components are surrounded by insulation, they could be prone to excessive heat generation.
Labeling and Inspections
Streamlining Class 2 compliance can be done by checking the labels of power supplies and wiring components during purchase. In fact, inspectors generally look for markings from an authorized regulator (NRTL) to ensure compliance. Examples of popular NRTLs include UL and ETL.
To avoid delays during inspection and construction, individuals should be ready to provide a wiring diagram for the intended lighting installation. This is usually a requirement in the permit process. Checking for Class 2 compliance is conducted on low voltage lighting units during the rough-in (initial) inspection process.