You have done everything possible to make your yard and house look amazing. You don’t want all that hard work to go unnoticed at night. You can turn off the darkness with a few strategically placed outdoor lights and a simple switch. Landscape lighting is a great way to make the most of your home and draw attention to valuable plants.
Low-voltage landscape lighting is a popular choice today. It’s safer than 120-volt systems and easier to use. Low-voltage lighting can produce a wide range of effects, from subtle glows that wash over low garden walls to moonlight reflected from trees to powerful 120-volt lights. A pleasing lighting scheme is more than choosing the right hardware. It’s also about art.
Landscape lighting is usually dependent on the stepped-down power of your home.
A simple system can be installed by homeowners in just a few days. Landscape lighting specialists are familiar with all the fixtures and how to arrange them for the best results.
Prices for individual fixtures start at $20 Cables are 70 cents per ft. A transformer is available for $200. The average cost for a 10-light system that is installed by a professional is between $2,000 and $2,500.
To prevent overheating, keep fixtures clear of debris and leaves. To ensure that other circuit members aren’t affected by life-threatening voltage overloads, replace burned-out bulbs as soon as possible.
Fixtures and transformers have a warranty of one to ten years. However, fixtures made from brass, copper, or stainless steel should last indefinitely.
Pros are the best option if you don’t want a hand in it. You can find one through the Association of Outdoor Lighting Professionals. These are our top design tips.
If you are aiming ground lamps straight up into the foliage, make sure to also lighten the trunk. The uplift crown will appear like an unidentified UFO if it isn’t. Place two 20-watt downlights at the highest point of a tree to illuminate foliage. Make sure they don’t cross each other.
Fixtures should not be placed closer than 20ft apart “You need light pools to guide your eyes from one plant to another, not continuous illumination.”
Bullet lights should have 12-degree beam spreads. They should be aimed at architectural details or corners of your home. Softer wash lights can fill the gap between them.
Place fixtures near the base to bring out textures.
Two or more lights can be directed at an element worthy of attention, such as a fountain, tree swing or arbor. Crossing beams reduce harsh shadows caused by one light shining on an object.
The canopies that are placed on top of posts 18-24 inches in height reflect light into the planting beds. They can also be used to mark the path. They are unique in that they have a style and a finish that is not found in other lights.
This diffuse, soft light is ideal for brightening flat facades and privacy fences.
These compact, versatile fixtures often have bulbs that emit a narrow beam, which is useful for lighting specific house features, tree trunks, and garden structures.
You can see the bulb from a distance by burying it in the ground soil. Well lights can be used to illuminate the undersides of plants or to graze the base on a wall or facade. You can choose from fixed or swiveling bulbs.
To create a moonlit effect, these fixtures are often placed high on trees and branches. Side glare is eliminated by a cowl-shaped shroud that wraps around the bulb. You don’t want your LEDs to be damaged or destroyed by climbing up to replace them.
A typical beam is wider than a bullet, usually 40 degrees or more. It also shines brighter than a wash light. A collar minimizes side glare. To lighten tall trees and large house facades, use sparingly.
LEDs last up to 40,000 hours and can be used for 20 years, which is a lot longer than halogen bulbs, which only burn out after two years. LEDs also consume 1 to 11 watts, compared to 20 to 60 for halogens.
This means that halogen systems can be installed at a lower cost due to smaller cables and transformers, as well as operating and maintenance costs. Over the 15-year period, you could save up to 50%.
However, LEDs do have some drawbacks. They are more expensive than halogens at $5 per bulb. Many LEDs emit a cool blue light at 6,000 K (kelvins) color temperature.
Instead, look for warm-colored temperatures, around 3,000 K. Also, make sure to check the light output in lumens to ensure you are getting enough brightness. Although LED performance is improving it still falls behind halogens. The biggest problem with solar-powered fixtures that use LEDs is their poor output. These fixtures might be bright enough to highlight a garden edge, but not enough to light up your home.
Where can I buy the components? You can find all the parts you need online at websites or local hardware stores.
Low-voltage cables (left), must be buried at a minimum of 6 inches deep. The fixture is held in place by a plastic spike (center).
A few feet from the foundation, upward-facing bullet lights shine a light on the most striking architectural elements of a house. These lights are directed at dormers, large porch columns, and deep eaves.
A couple of 20-watt bulbs are sufficient for trees less than 20 feet in height. Three to five 35-50 watt uplights may be required for a 50-foot tree.
Landscape lights can be used in many places, not just at the front of your house. Tree-mounted downlights are mounted on the tree and upward-pointing lights from the well invite people to enjoy this swing.
Garden fixtures should be higher than the plants you are trying to illuminate in order to properly lighten a bed.
Sometimes you don’t have enough light to just dial up the full moon. A few tree-mounted lights can also be used to lighten the stone patio.