New Jandy light fixes nagging LED problems
Everyone loves LED lights for their efficiency. But when it comes to installing them in a pool, some issues are hard to get around. If you need a light powerful enough to illuminate 20 to 30 feet across the pool, an LED light has to be nine to 12 inches long. Not ideal when, depending on the placement in the pool, the wall beam may be only nine to 12 inches, giving you roughly four to five inches for the light.
But Jandy has come up with a solution. It’s Pro Series Watercolors Nicheless LED lights with HydroCool come in 4.6- and 5.5-inch lengths.
“What has always been the Achilles heel for LED lighting, and this is not just true for the pool industry it’s true for all LED lighting, is heat,” says David Goldman, vice president of product marketing at the company. He says everyone thinks of incandescent lights as hot since it’s the heat that makes them glow, and LEDs as cool since they produce light by electroluminescence. “But some heat is created, and even that bit of heat over time builds and builds.”
LEDs were long in order to provide an ample heat sink, but with Jandy’s HydroCool technology, the heat sink is mostly eliminated, allowing the light to be much shorter without losing any power.
To accomplish that, the company made the light out of new materials and constructed it in a new way. The lights now have an aluminum core, which not only helps transmit the heat, but also makes the light stronger. The lens is made of a diffuser material used in optical applications. “And then we’re molding them together using a third material, which is a thermally conductive polymer,” Goldman says. Molding the three materials together at one time creates a uni-body. “There are no breaks, no seams, no gaps. We don’t glue it, we don’t screw it, we don’t adhere or attach it to anything. When it’s done it is one part made of three uniquely different materials. We call it triple material uni-body construction, which isn’t very creative, but it’s accurate.”
The diffuser material also helps distribute the light more evenly. “You get much better transmission of the light throughout the water without as many shadows or hot spots,” Graham Orme, product and custom design manager for lighting and aesthetic equipment. “With a clear lens, you can tell from the shadows set on the floor or walls of the pool where the lens stops and the opaque material began. With this it sort of fades off. It’s subtle.”
The lights also come with a few helpful accessories, with others available to purchase as needed. Included with the light is a construction cover and cosmetic covers in gray or white to help the light blend into the pool.
The construction cover protects the light from any scratches or from inadvertently being cemented in, which “Improves serviceability down the road,” Orme says.
“They just peel off the construction cover and it’s like the light just came brand new out of the box a second earlier,” Goldman says.
Available to purchase as-needed are snap-on accessories.
“Particularity with lighter finishes, you will have a shadow on the bottom of the pool of the light reflecting off the surface of the water and back down, and it creates this halo,” Orme says. “We’ve built these accessories that are easy to install; they snap on. They stop the light from reflecting off the surface of the water, and then jutting back down and creating the shadow without sacrificing your overall illumination in the pool.”
In addition to being available in all the Jandy colors, the Pro Series WaterColors Nicheless LEDs also come in two versions of white, a warm white (2700K) and a daylight light (5000K). The different whites allow for designers to match the pool lighting to the rest of the landscape design. Plus, having a white available at a lower Kelvin helps it meet the requirements of dark sky communities.
To minimize light pollution, more cities are establishing ordinances that disallow lighting over 3000 Kelvin, Orme says. “Our light is one of the only lights that you can put in those dark-sky communities,” he says.
Though the warm white might be a favorite of landscape designers, Goldman says he prefers the daylight white.
“When you look at a pool that has those lights in them it makes the pool itself look awesome, especially with white and blue finishes,” Goldman says. “The first time I saw it, I couldn’t believe what a difference it made.”
This stronger, shorter LED light is only available for pool professionals.
“The lighting design is critical, and we do not believe DIYers are capable or have the relevant experience to do it,” Goldman says.
“Now you can have your most powerful lights where you need them,” Orme says, “and not settle for low-powered wattage just because you don’t have space.”
Jandy Pro Series WaterColors Nicheless LED with HydroCool
- Available in 6-, 12-, and 24-watt models
- 4.6″ (6 watt) or 5.5″ (12 and 24 watt)
- Comes standard in black with complimentary gray and white cosmetic trim rings
- Works with any existing automation system
- Three-year warranty when purchased from a professional