What are Timers
Timers, in the lighting industry, are devices used to control the on/off functions of lights and other electrical equipment. There are three main types of timers: mechanical timers, digital timers, and astronomic timers.
Mechanical timers, also known as analog timers, are simple spring-wound devices. They utilize a spring mechanism behind the dial face to track time and schedule on/off cycles. These timers can be programmed to turn lights on and off multiple times within a 24-hour period, with hour intervals between actions. They are commonly used for daily lighting schedules, both indoors and outdoors. However, it’s important to note that mechanical timers may require manual resetting after power outages.
Digital timers, on the other hand, offer more flexibility and advanced features. They function similarly to mechanical timers but provide additional programming options. With digital timers, users can set multiple on/off set points or cycles within a 24-hour period, with intervals as short as one minute between them. Some digital timers even allow for longer schedules, such as a 7-day cycle, and can automatically adjust for daylight savings time. To ensure accurate timing, digital timers often come equipped with backup batteries.
Astronomic timers, a type of digital timer, are specifically designed to handle the timing of the sun. These timers have built-in programming that enables them to precisely schedule lights based on sunrise or sunset times, eliminating the need for separate photocells. Astronomic timers are available in different versions, such as 7-day or 365-day models, depending on the size and complexity of the lighting control requirements. More advanced astronomic timers can handle a large number of events or cycles, making them suitable for applications like holiday lighting in various settings.