There are multiple parts to this, but they are connected..

1) With the advent of LED lighting 15 amps is overkill for a dedicated light circuit. A 16 AWG 300-ft-max circuit could be run off a 3A breaker. That would permit 36 x 10 watt lights.

2) Are there any designated lamp sockets that only LED lamps could fit. eg E4, GU 7.5 or whatever. This would make ceiling insulation less of a problem.

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    Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. The first part of your question isn't a question; it's just a statement, and really isn't necessary for the second part. And, the second part comes perilously close to asking for a product, which is off-topic here. Jul 4 '18 at 16:05
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    I agree with Daniel. It's an interesting topic though, and the explanation probably involves the diminishing return on downsizing wire vs. potential higher-current usability. 16 AWG solid wire is probably marginally cheaper (if at all) than 14.
    – isherwood
    Jul 4 '18 at 16:18
  • It may ahead of this time that incandescent lamp replacements forge ahead with an incompatible socket. What fire safety improvement or cost savings are in buying a 5A breaker with a sealed LED bulb? Jul 4 '18 at 16:41
  • Since you mention 3 amp breakers I’m assuming this is European?
    – Tyson
    Jul 4 '18 at 16:59
  • Do you build a lot of houses? Or are you just armchair theorycrafting? What is the problem you are trying to solve? Would you have this only be allowable in certain wiring methods or all of them? How would you assure the cable/wire has the same durability and tensile strength as existing cables and wires? Jul 4 '18 at 18:32

This is an interesting question or whatever. Here's some info.

1) NEC Table 240-.6 (A) lists the circuit breaker trip ratings starting with 15 amps, and NEC Atricle 240.4 (D)(3) tells you you need to connect a #14 AWG conductor to it. Point is your asking why can't we change a standard, and to start the electrical community would have to rewrite a lot of the NEC and then manufacturers would have to embrace it. I would say good luck on trying to get all of that done.

2) Actually reference the last comment that just came up. When you design fixtures just for LED's just like compact fluorescence(see the biax or type PL base lamps), you design them with a specific base that you cannot interchange. Everything else you are looking at are retrofit items that replace an old technology with new. In the meantime we must design lighting loads with the highest rated wattage the fixture will accept whether it is an incandescent or an LED.

Hope this sheds some light.

  • Thank you for number 2. I have seen them in Home Depot, but the flexibility of light color, lumens etc is limited. It does however solve the massive IC canister size and that they are pain in a retrofit with foam insulation. I'll shut up now (in my armchair) Jul 4 '18 at 21:02

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