Outdoor Lighting Tips For Home And Garden
If you are the proud owner of an independent house, you will always be looking for ways to add embellishments to make it more appealing to those who visit and to give you pleasure from just being at home. Whatever the size of your house, outdoor lighting is an important factor to consider. Here we take a look at outdoor lighting under two categories – outdoor home lighting and outdoor garden lighting.
Outdoor Home Lighting
If you seriously consider how you would like to light up a sit-out area outside your home like a patio or backyard, you can make it into a nice place to be at night. Depending on your budget and the amount of area to be lit, you can choose your lighting options accordingly. Here are a few useful pointers that can also apply to outdoor garden lighting but there are a few special considerations you need to make for outdoor garden lighting which we will deal with separately.
Create an Exterior Lighting Plan
Start by considering the external layout of your home, with particular reference to the back sitting area but do not neglect the frontage as well. You can draw out a lighting plan yourself or seek the help of a professional.
Types of Lighting
Once the lighting plan is in place, you need to decide what type of lighting you require – focus lamps emit a powerful beam but may not be energy-efficient and they tend to generate more heat. LED lamps are a popular option nowadays.
Types of Fixtures Required
Depending on the type of lights you choose, you will need to have the fixtures and wiring installed. You need to consider the desired effect that you want to achieve depending on what it is you want to illuminate, the area that has to be lit and the number of focal points that exist.
The quantity of light emitted by a light source is expressed in lumens. A lumen is the basic unit of light output which tells you how much light a particular bulb will emit. This information is usually provided by the bulb manufacturer and is available on downloadable charts for calculating the amount of light required for a particular area from a single light source.
Natural Light Factor
Consider the effects of natural light as well – the combination of moonlight and your lighting can create some awesome effects. Other light sources should also be taken into consideration like light from neighboring properties, for example.
Add a Contemporary Touch
Don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles. Contrasting styles of fixtures can complement each other in a surprisingly and startling way.
Don’t overdo it
Although you need to provide sufficient outdoor home lighting, you need to know the limits. You don’t want your outside area lit up like a Christmas tree. For instance, soft lighting which just throws enough light around on pathways to indicate to the walker where to go next will do just fine.
Tip: Try using solar lighting wherever practical and eliminate the need for messy wiring.
Outdoor Garden Lighting
Providing light to your garden brings its own unique challenges. However, with a bit of common sense and creativity, you will be able to highlight the best features of your garden at night. Try these simple tips:
- Standing fixtures amongst flowers impart a pleasant ambiance to your garden.
- If you have a swimming pool, place lights around the pool. This not only makes the area safe at night but the reflection of light on the water looks good.
- For small ponds and fountains, you can work wonders by using underwater lighting.
- While lighting up paths and walkways, ensure that the light is adequately shaded to prevent the glare from hitting the eyes.
- Use focus lights appropriately for highlighting certain objects like a garden gnome, rocks, and boulders. Always use warm yellow or orange light to illuminate objects.
- Pay special attention to steps and walls – concealed lighting creates a mystic effect in alcoves and recesses in walls.
- Factor in the different seasons that your area is subject to. The fixtures and bulbs that you use in your garden should be geared up for extreme weather conditions.
- Shadows can create an equally enthralling effect as light. For example, a wall with intricate stonework can be beautified by the shadows created by the individual stones.
Outdoor Garden Lighting Tip: Blue light intensifies the color of green leaves.
While making your exterior lighting plan, here are a few important considerations to make:
- Safety Factor: Provide enough light outside to ensure that people can walk safely at night
- Security: Exterior lighting should be positioned to keep intruders at bay.
- Layering the Light: Don’t just use a single type of light – create different textures of light like ambient light, accent lighting, spotlights, and strip lights and so on.
- Use Solar: Solar lighting is a good maintenance-free option for outdoor spots that receive long hours of sunlight.
- Focal Points: Use focus lights effectively for lighting up a particular tree or flower bed
- Frontage Light: Do not neglect the front of your home – keep it sufficiently lit and the house number illuminated for the benefit of first-time guests.
- Try Different Colors and Hues: Once your fixtures are wired up, you can try changing bulbs to see how different light textures can create different effects.
- Budget Considerations: How much will the entire project cost you on a monthly basis? You don’t want to be encumbered with inflated electricity bills that will become a financial burden.
If you follow these basic lighting tips for illuminating the outside area of your home, you will see the difference and so will others. Your hard work of maintaining a beautiful garden and creating a comfortable outside area for sitting will not go unnoticed. Once you get going with these must-know outdoor lighting tips to beautify your home, you can use them as the basis for even more great ideas that you will probably get. So, get started in making your home the best place to be.