A non-IC rated can light is supposed to have a 3 inch gap between it and any insulation. IC rated can lights have a double housing with an air gap to make insulation contact safe. On the other hand most surface mount lights have insulation inside the actual fixture very close to the bulb and electrical connections. Ex Should there be insulation inside a light fixture?
This seems very inconsistent to me. How is it that for can lights you need a large air gap or extra layers to keep the insulation from combusting, while for surface mount lights the insulation is right inside the light and its not combusting?