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Lutron MA-T51 Countdown Timer Review

by Lorenz Prem
published on December 3 2011 11:47 pm

I have been looking for the perfect bathroom timer for while now. My old wind-up timer won't stay on anymore. Enter the Lutron MA-T51, a timer with seriously good design. Let's take a look at what makes it tick (it's actually silent).

Usage Model

The engineers at Lutron did their homework. They figured out how a timer should work. I want my timer to keep the bathroom fan running for some time after I leave. I don't want to do anything special to get that done. That's it.

The Lutron delivers. The big face button activates the fan and starts the timer. I turn the timer on when I enter the bathroom. When I am done, I just leave. The timer will turn the fan off at a preset time after it was turned on. If I want to turn the fan off, I just press the button again. The timer works just like a switch.

The user can set the countdown duration in six steps from 1 to 60 minutes. The timer displays a dim red light next to the active setting. The small rocker switch on the right of the body selects the mode.The timer function of the MA-T51 can also be disabled, which makes the timer behave like a normal switch.

My timer is set to 45 minutes, which is enough time to finish my shower and for the fan to do its work after I leave.

This model is perfect for me. I use the timer as I would use a wall switch. I don't have to think about it at all. I just turn the lights on, and the timer takes care of the rest. Nothing to turn, nothing to set, perfect.

Best of all, anyone can use it. If someone else walks into the bathroom, they would think the Lutron MA-T51 is a switch. They'd use it correctly, because everyone knows how a switch works. Small children will have no trouble using this timer. It's so simple even a teenager can't help but use it properly.

Build quality

Once installed the timer functions perfectly. The main button is very responsive. It takes only a light touch to turn the timer on. The controls are similarly sturdy.

The body of the switch is made from plastic. The mounting plate is made from aluminum. Overall the Lutron MA-T51 leaves a solid impression. It's made to last.

Which model is right for me?

Lutron makes it easy to choose. There is a version for a single location, and one for multiple locations. Both versions work with motor and lighting loads.


The MA-T51MN is available in a bewildering range of color. White is good enough for me. Lutron seems to thing otherwise.


The Lutron MA-T51 timer is the first timer I have seen that actually works. It gets the job done, and it's a pleasure to use. It's so simple that any child who can flip a switch can use it. I won't be looking for a better model until this one breaks. Judging by the build quality of the MA-T51 that wont for a very long time.

About the Author
"Lorenz is the founder of Hingmy. When he is not reviewing power tools or improving the site, he is building things in his workshop or playing hockey."