What Is IC Rating, And Is It Important?

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One of the most important aspects of home design is interior lighting. Of course, lighting provides visibility to people living in the house, but it also highlights your home decor and color scheme. There are different types of lighting which is important in IC Rating that you can install in your house to create a robust effect that can complement the decor. 

Downlights are in the latest trend now, and you will see them in almost every modern house. When you are planning to install downlights, make sure that those lights are safe for your home. You should know that downlights may or will come in contact with the home’s insulation. If the insulation comes in contact with lights, it might cause a disaster. That is why IC Rating was built to keep you safe and protect your home. In this article, we shall find out what IC rating is and if it is important. So continue reading to know more. 

What Exactly is IC Rating In Lights?

Every building or every house has insulation which is used for thermal management. These days a layer of insulation in the walls and ceilings protects the houses. This will help in creating a barrier to heat flow, thus ensuring your home is warm during winter and cool during summer. Now, if the rolls or batts of insulation touch the downlight, it might ignite and cause a fire breakout. The fire will then quickly spread throughout the roof before homeowners can be aware or do anything about it. This will create a disaster for anyone living within the area. In severe cases, it may lead to property damage, injury, or loss of life.

Most lighting in the house generates heat of a certain amount, but if it isn’t IC-rated, there will be an increased risk if the light comes in contact with insulation. Other lighting fixtures do come in contact with insulation, but it is not the case with downlights. Downlights tend to reach an incredibly high temperature to generate light, and halogen lights can reach up to 300 degrees Celsius, which can be dangerous around insulation. That is why IC ratings were introduced. 

The IC rating or Insulation Contact Rating by agencies like iElecrical is used for measurement to determine if a certain kind of downlight is suitable for your home. The rating means that these lights are safe to use when a home is covered by building insulation. It depends on the lighting system’s barrier, which leaves space between the insulation and light. This is done by creating two layers of metal casing separated by a pocket of air that can diffuse the light’s heat. Because of the gap, the exterior of the metal won’t get heated up to a temperature that is considered dangerous. 

Importance Of IC Rated Lights? 

Normal lights don’t need to be IC-rated as they do not make direct contact with insulation in the house. However, recessed lights or downlights must always be IC-rated before you start using them. The lights with an IC rating can be safely rimmed and directly covered with insulation, making the installation easy. The importance of IC rating of recessed lights are:

  • They Are Safe: If your downlights are IC rated, you will be sure your home will be safe. The heat of the lights won’t get in touch with the insulation to cause a fire. So, there will be no chance of any disaster or fire hazard in your ceiling. 
  • They Can Help You Save Money: With IC-rated lighting, you can save a significant amount as you won’t have to spend on unnecessary repair costs. You don’t have to ask your electrician to frequently check your lighting fixtures as there won’t be any damage risk.
  • Energy Can Be Saved: You can also save a great amount of energy by using IC-rated recessed lights because of the insulation in the house covering them. The heat that lights will generate will not be lost. Also, you don’t have to face problems with blinking lights. 
  • Easy To Install: IC-rated lights are easy to install because the electricians can easily lay insulation without breaking the entire area of ceiling to install lights. This also means that your home’s insulation is in better working condition while your structure is also lit with recessed lights. 

So, if you are planning to install recessed lights, just remember that they will need an IC rating for better safety. Get in touch with the expert electricians Adelaide, as their service is affordable, and they already have IC-rated lights. 

How To Know If Recessed Lights Are IC-rated or not?

It’s very easy to identify a light that is not IC-rated; you will see insulation glowing around it. This happens because lights around the house pass through the ventilation holes, which causes the light to shine. To check, you can also take out the bulb and have a look inside the fixture. If you see the color inside, then it is not IC-rated. 

Insulation Choices

If you are insulating your roof or ceiling with recessed lights that are not IC-rated, use the least flammable one, like Rock Wool, as it burns only at a temperature of 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit. No recessed lights can generate temperature up to that level which can cause any ignition. Another safe insulation for your ceiling is Fiberglass. It is less rigid and can easily fit into small areas or corners. 

Loose-fill cellulose insulation is a recycled paper that is treated with flame retardant. It burns at 450 degrees Fahrenheit and can begin with smoldering material. However, Rock wool is the best insulation as it has the best fire rating. The worst is cellulose insulation; it can cause a fire if the material is within 3 inches. 

Wrapping Up

Recessed lights which are IC-rated can guarantee your safety and won’t cause any disaster in the future as compared to non-IC-rated lights. However, you can add inflammable insulation to your ceiling so the lights won’t fire. But it is only wise to go for IC-rated lights from iElectrical as no good inflammable materials are available for insulation.