Landscape lighting is a great way to enhance the safety, security and ambiance of your house. If it is done right, your home can become the beautiful, well-lit house in the neighborhood. But if done wrong, your home can quickly become an eyesore. While there are many examples of great landscape lighting, today the professionals at The Perfect Light are going to talk about landscape lighting mistakes, so you know what NOT to do. Here’s a list of the most common outdoor lighting mistakes you should absolutely avoid.
1. Excessive Lighting
A lot of people make the mistake of going overboard with their lighting. However, an overly lit home not only looks bad, but it isn’t good for your electric bill either. Outdoor lighting must be subtle and should illuminate your yard and pathway in a way that doesn’t hurt your eyes. It can also make your yard or home more difficult for people to see as it creates more of a glare. One way you can prevent this is by installing lights with glare guards. This way the lights become more focused and directional and only illuminate what they are supposed to.
2. Not Using LED Lights
By now, you should know that LED lights are a better choice than incandescent light bulbs. While LED’s have a higher upfront cost, the cost of maintaining them is less than incandescent bulbs. LEDs last longer, are usually made from a more durable material, and are more energy efficient. According to the Department of Energy, residential LEDs use 75 percent less energy and last 25 times longer than standard incandescent lighting. Using LED lights for your outdoor lighting can be a great way to lower your electricity bill.
3. Not Protecting Fixtures or Outlets Properly
Outdoor lights are often vulnerable to weather hazards, moisture, debris as well as harm from animals. That is why it is important to protect your lighting’s fixtures and outlets from the get-go. Many homeowners don’t always take the precautions necessary and end up with expensive and beautiful lights breaking or malfunctioning within the first few months of installation. To avoid this mistake, here are some tips you can follow to protect your outdoor lights.
- Use weatherproof outlet covers
Weatherproof outlet covers provide secure coverage around the plug and outlet and prevent moisture from causing a short circuit.
- Do careful digging
Before you start doing yardwork, make sure you locate any fixtures, wires or cables running through your yard, so you don’t accidentally hit them. Before doing any digging, call 811 and have a professional inspect your yard for underground utility lines.
- Use materials made for outdoor use
Whether it’s fixtures, extension cords or bulbs, it’s vital that they are made for outdoor use only. In addition, make sure they are weather resistant and “suitable for wet locations.”
4. Not Using Lighting Controls
Installing lighting controls such as dimmers and motion sensors is a great way to save money on your electric bill. With dimmers you can control the atmosphere and decrease how much energy is being spent on lighting. However, it’s important to be aware of the types of bulbs that are most compatible with dimmer switches. Installing dimmer switches for bulbs that can’t be dimmed won’t work—it will only reduce the efficiency of the light bulb.
There are also a variety of motion sensor controls available on the market and are increasingly becoming more common. Motion sensor controls turn on when they detect motion and turn off a short while later. These are especially great for security lighting.
5. Visible Fixtures
One of the rules of good landscape lighting is to make sure the fixtures themselves are not visible. Placement is very important when it comes to outdoor lighting. While you can’t always hide the light source itself, it’s important to place the fixture or lamp in a spot that shields the light source and eliminates glare and excessive brightness.
Avoid Mistakes with The Perfect Light!
If you want to make sure your home is NOT the eyesore of the neighborhood, you might need the help of some landscape lighting professionals from The Perfect Light! Whether it’s event lighting, outdoor lighting or holiday lighting, our team has got you covered. Call us today at 972-304-3330 for a free lighting consultation!