Sealing IC rated recessed housings

Discussion in 'Remodel Forum & Blog' started by hockeydad, Jun 29, 2009.

  1. hockeydad

    hockeydad New Member

    Messages:
    12
    Quick question. I installed some IC rated Halo 6" airtite recessed lighting cans in an attic space during my remodel. I used aluminum tape to more completely seal off the units (gaps around the ring, the seams, etc - they didn't look very "airtite" to me). One is over a shower with a sealed lens with a 45 watt bulb in it. The can gets burning hot! I don't know how hot, but it would burn my hand. This one can is much hotter than the others that do not have the sealed lens.

    Is this hazardous? Did my "sealing" of the can with aluminum tape make it too air-tight?
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    22,019
    Location:
    New England
    Verify the maximum wattage with that lense covering. If you are not exceeding it, it should be okay. The fixture has a thermostat in it that will shut off the lamp power if it gets too hot. Course, you are dependent on that working properly. IC-AT units are supposed to be okay when covered up with insulation.
  3. jch

    jch New Member

    I agree with Jim. You should buy a fixture rated "IC-AT" (Insulation Contact, AirTight), rather than modifying a simple "IC" fixture.
  4. Scuba_Dave

    Scuba_Dave Extreme DIY Homeowner

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    885
    Location:
    South of Boston, MA
    Use a CFL bulb, very little heat
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,019
    Location:
    New England
    An AT rated fixture should work sealed since it does not state what kind of insulation might be around it...it could be something like foam, which would make it AT. They don't specify the type of insulation. Just don't exceed the wattage with a sealed lense on it.
  6. hockeydad

    hockeydad New Member

    Messages:
    12
    Here is what I installed:

    http://www.lowes.com/lowes/lkn?action=productDetail&productId=60010-337-H7ICAT&lpage=none

    It is called an "airtite housing" and is IC rated (however I believe their website has an error. The paragraph calls it IC, but the spec sheet says no to IC rated - I believe this to be incorrect since the model is ICAT!!)

    But as I said, it is NOT very air tight, IMHO. Lots of gaps. The thrust of my question is are these gaps a design feature to ensure some air flow around and through the unit for cooling, thus did I defeat the design.

    It is rated for 75 watts; I'm using 45 watts and it is HOT! My insulation is blown fiberglass (the white stuff). I am going to purchase a thermometer that can measure high temp because I am curious.
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,019
    Location:
    New England
    You can do electrical soldering with a 15W iron. Yes, a 45W bulb will get hot. Put a sealed lense over that housing, and yes it will get hot in there. Paper will start to smolder at about 375-degrees. Too hot to touch is easy to attain in many lamps.
  8. PEW

    PEW DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    487
    Based on the part number, the manufacturer says it is both AT and IC.

    Just be sure the part number of what you have is the same as on the link you provided.
  9. mattbee24

    mattbee24 In the Trades

    Messages:
    100
    Location:
    Fremont, OH
    On Halo's website, that can is listed as IC rated and air-tite. But, it does show that with the covered lenses the max lamp is 40w. It would be rated for 75w if it was a non-IC can. If it were me, I would take the tape off and change your bulb to a 40w. Your trim should have a gasket on it. That is what makes it "air-tite".
  10. jch

    jch New Member

    Agreed. You can see the datasheet here:
    www.cooperlighting.com/specfiles/productinfopdf/H7ICAT.pdf

    40W (A19 bulb)

    The footnote on every page of the spec sheet also says:
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