How to Secure Your Home With Outdoor Lighting

tan home with outdoor uplighting

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

Have you ever driven around at night and noticed that some folks leave their lights on overnight and other folks don’t? Maybe you’ve pondered if burglars would rather target the unlit home rather than the well-illuminated one? Or is your house in the dark at night? Are you wondering if you are a target for night-time burglars vs. your neighbors who have great exterior lighting? Let’s discuss how to secure your home with beautiful but functional outdoor lighting.

Types of Light

Each type of light comes with its benefits. Not all lighting is equal in lumens (brightness), which is an important factor when deciding on your exterior home lighting. 


This is one of the most common types of lighting you will find within a home and in commercial offices; however, this type of light has its limits. Fluorescent lights don’t perform ideally under low temperatures. However, the advantage of fluorescent lighting is that they have a longer lifespan of around 12,000-20,000 hours. The lumen per watt is 67-83.

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Another common home light, incandescent lights have a low initial cost but, depending on the bulb, could be costly to run. The disadvantage to this type of lighting is the shorter lifespan of around 5,000-10,000 hours. In addition, the lumen per watt is 17-23.

Mercury Vapor

A popular choice for security lighting, this light emits a bright, white light (although it can appear blueish-white). This type of lighting is used exclusively outdoors, and they have a long lifespan of more than 24,000 hours. This light has 80-100 lumen per watt.

High-Pressure Sodium Vapor

Used extensively for buildings, parking garages, and roadways. It omits a bright, almost golden light. This type of lighting has a long lifespan of more than 24,000 and has a high lumen efficacy of 100-140.

Low-Pressure Sodium Vapor

Very similar to other vapor lights, however, this lighting emits an even higher lumen efficacy of 135-180 lumens. The average lifespan for this light is 18,000 hours.

Choosing Your Outdoor Lighting

Now that you know about the lighting quality, let’s look at some exterior home lighting options available to you for how to secure your home.

Motion Sensor Lights

This is a great choice for when you want security but also want to keep your running costs down. Extremely popular with residential homes, these lights are fitted with a sensor that detects motion. Once motion is detected, the light is activated, illuminating anyone in its path.

front yard with outdoor lighting

Timed Outdoor Lighting

A great way of mimicking human activity, timed lighting can help in many ways. For example, you get to choose the times you want the lighting activated and then forget about it. They continue to work on your schedule, turning on at night and off again in the morning.


A popular choice for when you need to illuminate a larger area, such as a garage space or lawn. If you choose solar-powered floodlights, you can also benefit by saving costs on your utility bill.

Lighting Tips

Now that we’ve gone over the different types of lights available to you, the homeowner, let’s dive into a few tips when considering your outdoor lighting.

1. Save Electricity and Use LEDs

LEDs consume a lot less energy and are much better for the environment. They’re also virtually maintenance-free with their long lifespan.

2. Think Like an Intruder

This might sound grim, but think as an intruder would: have a look outdoor your home and make sure to light entranceways and walkways around your property.

3. Get the Correct Lights

Get the correct lights for the space you want to illuminate. An easy way to do this is to multiply the square footage of your area by 1.5. This will give you a rough estimate of the total wattage needed. For example, 50 square feet will require 75w.

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4. Think About Your Outdoor Lighting

If you have an entertainment area, think about the type of ambiance you want. Do you need a brighter light for security, or would a warmer, softer light work better for gatherings at Christmas?

5. A Light in the Hand Is Worth Two in the Bush

Create a bit of effect with your outdoor lighting by placing fairy lights in bushes or shrubbery. Illuminate paths by placing solar lamps along the walkway. Have fun and get creative!

But lighting is not just for the atmosphere; as we’ve mentioned before, it can also aid in boosting your security level. With those tips in mind, let’s discuss how your exterior home lighting affects your security.

Home Security

While stats by the FBI say that 51% of all burglaries occur in the daytime, that still leaves those that prowl about at night. Adding exterior lighting in strategic places can definitely aid in deterring intruders. If we take a look at the stats, we can see some alarming ones.

34% of burglars make an entrance via the front door.

This surprising fact might seem unbelievable, but, indeed, 34% of intruders will walk up to an unlocked door and enter. If you have strategic lighting right at your main entranceways, burglars are less likely to target your home lest they be seen.

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66% of burglaries are residential.

Only one-third of all burglaries target businesses. This is most often due to security levels, where homes are less likely to have a security system in place. Most thieves are opportunists and will target the home that looks the easiest to gain entry to. Lighting that reaches the perimeter of your property can help deter intruders.

Amateurs commit 85% of burglaries.

While most people who have suffered a home robbery will assume professionals targeted them, it’s far more likely that it was someone desperate. For example, if your house is well lit, thieves are more likely to pass your house in favor of one where they cannot be seen. So take a walk around your property and assess your lighting situation. If you find areas deep in shadow, then it’s time to contact a professional.

Consult A Lighting Specialist

But what outdoor lighting do you choose for your home? Don’t go it alone; it’s best to contact our lighting specialists at The Perfect Light for expert advice when deciding how to secure your home.

Our team can help create an outdoor lighting concept that will not only highlight one of your greatest assets but protect it. Contact our team today to get your free consultation, and take the first step in securing your home.

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