Outdoor light fixtures are meant to highlight the landscape and architecture of your residential space. They also act as security assists by deterring intruders from your home and property. Navigating your paths at night can really be difficult without outdoor path lighting. We Got Lites gives you a wide variety of the best outdoor lighting fixtures. Below are some of our best tips on how you can enhance your outdoor space as well as special considerations you need to keep in mind when buying outdoor lights.
Outdoor Lighting Features
The best way to save on your electricity bill is by installing Energy Star-rated outdoor light fixtures. Energy Star Certifications are provided by the government. Energy star-rated lights usually feature standardized pricing. Wall lights, floodlights and path lights are usually fitted with motion sensors that turn on whenever motion is detected. Motion sensing outdoor lighting fixtures are one of the best ways to deter intruders from your home and property. Solar powered outdoor lights are also budget and eco-friendly. They are common in post lights, flood lights and landscape lighting.
Installing low-voltage lighting fixtures is the best way to reduce on your energy expenses. Usually, modern low voltage lights features transformer packages, wiring and photocell or timer. They are normally accompanied with guidelines on design suggestions and proper installation. Some low-voltage outdoor light fixtures can be hardwired directly into an electrical junction box, while others can simply be plugged into an exterior power outlet. Due to their low voltage, the hardwired cables do not necessarily have to be buried underground. Most battery operated low-voltage lights adopt photocell charging or built-in charging panels that charge the battery during daytime.
Outdoor Light Fixtures Based on Location and Function
Outdoor lighting fixtures are categorized into groups depending on their location and function. Below are some examples:
Flood lighting is mainly used for lighting exterior buildings and other unique applications like billboards. In most cases, HID lamps are used for outdoor floodlights. Outdoor building lighting uses illumination with wide and narrow distributions. This depends on the building portion that is under illumination and the distance between the building and the flood light fixture. Floodlights are used in illuminating outdoor playgrounds or work zones at night. High-pressure sodium light and metal halide are the main types of floodlights.
Sport lighting is normally offered with a unique locking and aiming equipment known as goniometer. They are typically mounted on the side of the illumination space. Outdoor sport lights feature relatively narrow luminous intensity. High wattage sport lighting bulbs can be found between 1000 to 3500 watts. Usually, external and internal louvers are used to control the amount of glare and the light, therefore improving comfort for the observers.
Street and Road Lighting
Street light fixtures are used for lighting walkways and roadways at night. We Got Lites provides photovoltaic and LED luminaries for energy efficient street lighting. They are usually mounted on poles or arms and feature all types of HID lamps. Roadway application adopts sodium lamps, refractors, drop dish luminaries or ovate.
Outdoor path lighting fixtures are usually installed low to the ground to cast well-spread light. They can be positioned just above the ground and along informal landscape paths, driveways and sidewalks. They are meant to safely lead the homeowners and visitors from one point to another, especially at night. In most cases, bollards are used for in ground and walkway lighting.
Parking Lot and Garage Lighting
Parking lot and garage light fixtures usually adopt the use of flat-bottomed, lensed cut-off or semi-cut off luminaries. They are generally mounted on short arms or on top brackets were they can be arranged in single or twin configurations. Some fixtures are designed in four or more configurations such as outdoor string lights or outdoor rope lights. However, these are mainly used in outdoor entertainment venues. Wall mounted outdoor light fixtures are mainly used for smaller parking lots that lies adjacent parking structures or building. They are commonly referred to as wall-mounted luminaries or "wall packs".
These are typically outdoor light fixtures that are designed to assist with visual security of an outdoor space. They are designed to provide sufficient illumination that offer visual surveillance and security. Outdoor security lighting fixtures are often installed in accessible locations and feature sturdy casings to make them able to hold up to any form of vandal by intruders. Security lights are common urban area roadways, commercial buildings and behind most residential homes. They are designed with extremely bright bulbs to deter criminals. Floodlights can also be used for security lighting.
Landscape outdoor lights are meant to light gardens, plants, buildings, walkways and feature areas like swimming pools and fountains. They are usually mounted on trees or on poles as outdoor tree lights and outdoor pole lights. They are usually made in a sturdy designing with special housing and all-weather electrical hardware that protects them against corrosion and other outdoor related risks.
Outdoor Signage Lights
These are specifically designed to assist with signage. They feature asymmetric reflectors to ensure an even distribution of light to the surface of the sign. Just like other outdoor fixtures, they should be designed in all-weather materials capable of resisting corrosion and ice build-ups. An outdoor signage light fixture need to be mounted on top of the sign and aimed downwards to help concentrate the light and avoid light pollution.
Types Outdoor Lighting
Outdoor Wall Lighting
Scones and wall lanterns provides indirect down-lighting and up-lighting sources hence improving on the appeal of the landscape. For an outdoor seating area, consider using dimmable LED-powered wall lanterns and scones in pairs. This also applies to exterior windows, garage doors and patio doors. Installing a single wall lantern on the front of your house offers better illumination of the street address.
You can use landscape lighting to showcase your plants, shrubs, flowers and trees. Outdoor spotlights provide a unique decoration to your garden. Outdoor spotlight fixtures require holes that are dug o enable the light fixture sit properly on the ground. They are common for landscape lighting since they do not usually compete with trees, plants and shrubs for attention. Outdoor landscape lighting can be used in highlighting the decorative nature of outdoor architectural features such as columns.
Outdoor Hanging Lights
Hanging outdoor pendant lights are contemporary designs for illuminating the front door spaces and enhancing the curb appeal of your residential home. They are usually designed in a wide range of styles, colors and materials. Add a dose of charm to your outdoor living space using copper or brass outdoor hanging light fixtures from We Got Lites.
Outdoor post lights add a dramatic statement to a drive way or back-side of the living space. Post lanterns are usually common in patios, backyards and pools and mainly used for entertainment.
Outdoor Ceiling Lights
These are also known as outdoor flush mount fixtures and are good for entryways, porches, patios and overhangs. Usually, outdoor flush mount lights are perfect for low ceilings and can be hung above the door to provide a perfect illumination for entryways.
Outdoor Deck Lights and Step Lights
These are meant to illuminate pool edges, sidewalks, driveway and walkways. They are should be installed low close to the ground to provide safety and security. Outdoor path lighting are literally designed to offer ideal safety and therefore should be covered on the top to evenly spread the light along the ground rather than creating a glare to the outdoor space. Outdoor step lighting enables you to avoid injuries associated with using stairways in dark. Apart from improving safety, they also add a welcoming glow to your space.
Deck and patio lighting makes your backyard appear more appealing and at the same time enhances outdoor security. Outdoor step lights and deck lights are great in highlighting the attractive aspects of your outdoor architectural home design. They are available in variety of colors which all blend easily with your outdoor home decor. You can choose contemporary LED deck lighting to avoid the problem of changing bulbs regularly in hard-t-reach destinations.
Outdoor Flood Lights
Outdoor floodlights cast light across wide areas, hence offering maximum security and safety. This discourages intruders from making their way into your home. The keep your yard well lit throughout the night hence creating an outdoor fun. Always ensure that your floodlight are installed about 9 feet high to avoid easy access by intruders and also provides a wider light field.
Outdoor Lantern Lights and Torches
These are festive outdoor lighting fixtures that adds a decorative element you resident. You can choose an open flame torch to add a romantic vibe or a flameless LED torch as a safety measure in your home.
Outdoor Cove Lighting
Cove lighting is used for highlighting fountains, outdoor living spaces, outdoor walkways swimming pools, outdoor architectural features and signs. Examples of cove lighting include:
Outdoor sign lighting
Outdoor decorative lights
Outdoor Lighting Tips to Consider
Create a lighting plan- Identify all the areas of your home yard where you intend to illuminate and then come up with a lighting plan. You can walk your home at night with a flashlight to see how best you can interplay your yards features with outdoor lighting fixtures. Ensure you note the ideal areas that deserve and need the lighting. These should be areas that you frequently use and dark places that are likely to compromise on your safety.
Do Your calculations
This is to determine the amount of light required by your outdoor space. To achieve this, you can multiply your area square footage by 1.5 inches to give you an estimate of the required amount of wattage.
Layer the lighting fixtures
There are three types of lighting which include task lighting, ambient lighting and ascent lighting. A good lighting design should include all the three layers. Ambient lighting offers perfect illumination setting for ambience and overall lighting for the space. Task lighting such as pendant lights installed above outdoor grill provides sufficient light for getting the work done. Ascent lights are mainly used for decorative purposes and can be interplayed with task and ambient lighting to enhance the overall styling.
Opt for Energy Saving Bulbs
Energy saving light fixtures are the recommended equipment for saving on electricity consumption. Outdoor LED bulbs with energy star rating are recommended because they are so far the most reliable energy efficient options. They produce the same amount of lighting just like incandescent bulbs. A LED light source has an average life span exceeding 12 years on average use.
Control the Amount of Light
Controlling the amount of light can be done by installing lighting motion sensors, timers or dimmers that help in saving energy by controlling the amount of light produced. Timers and photocells that run on solar energy can be programmed to turn outdoor lights on dusk and turn them off at the entry of dawn. Avoid overlapping to achieve a warm soft glow with no glare. Using bulls with maximum wattage results to too much brightness in your yard. Always consider using low rated wattage bulbs when while using multiple bulbs.
Protect the Dark Sky
You may consider Dark Sky approved lighting fixtures that reduce on light pollution. Dark-sky rated lights features full shielding that enables them to protect nighttime environment and minimize the glare. The international Dark Sky Association (IDA) adopts (FSA) approval program that identifies perfect outdoor lighting for minimizing glare. If you are living in a community with Dark Sky Ordinance, you will have to limit the amount of light produced by selecting outdoor light fixtures that are designed to direct lights downwards.
Appropriate Sizing for Outdoor Light Fixtures
The right size of outdoor light fixtures should strike an ideal balance between its proportion and the amount of light produced. A single light fixture installed for the front door be one third of the height of your door. It is important to consider the appearance of your fixture from the street when deciding on the appropriate size of the fixture. In most cases, lighting fixtures tend to look half of their exact size when in streets compared to when they are up close. If you intend to illuminate both sides of the front door using lantern, then the fixture should be quarter of the door’s height.
Opt for Weather Resistant Lighting Fixtures
All outdoor lighting fixtures should be made of high quality, weather resistant materials. The material should be non-corrosive with UV resistant finishing to enable it to survive in multiple climate conditions.
Lighting Techniques to Enhance Curb Appeal
You have probably invested money, time and effort to ensure that your living space looks great in daylight. Your home also deserves to maintain this appearance even after the sun set. Outdoor lighting fixtures lamps up your home in a decorative manner to improve on security and safety. We Got Lites offers a variety of contemporary outdoor light fixtures to make your home a stylish, safe and social place, ready to welcome guests at any time of the day. There are a variety of lighting techniques to help you highlight your landscape as well as the best features in your home. The following are some of the outdoor lighting techniques that we think every home owner should know:
Outdoor Tree Lighting Fixtures
Let your landscape present a different lighting theme by night scaping the plants and trees. Outdoor lighting adds a sense of visual appeal, making your space feel more expansive. You can start by selecting a few focal points that you want to highlight such as sculptures, trees, and other areas of your landscaping. This will create an interesting and unique lighting style in your outdoor spaces all year round. Giving your home a moonlight effect is very simple by using outdoor light fixtures on trees, shrubs, and other plants. Hanging low-intensity, wide-angled lighting fixtures can create this effect.
Outdoor tree lights are ideal equipment for illuminating wide areas of your lawn. Highlighting your shrubs and flowerbeds is a cheap way of spreading circular light patterns in your lawn. You may consider down-lighting your driveway using outdoor tree lights, especially if your lawn has stones or pavers that needs to be highlighted. Light the trees at the extreme end of your yard to make your property look larger. Avoid lighting all the trees in your residential home and only focus on those trees that are likely to create visual interest with outdoor lawn lights.
Light the Way
Use outdoor path lighting along pathways, sidewalks, or steps leading to the different doors of the home. Outdoor patio lights and outdoor porch lights are subtle sources of illumination for enhancing the stylish lawn statements or providing a perfect blending with the front yard. Outdoor post lights enhances the front yard by offering a soft glow and atmospheric casting.
Lighting Up the Entryway
The first impression you get when entering your home in the evening is lighting. It is a good idea to extend your warm welcome to the visitors by providing a well-lit entry. You may consider ceiling light fixtures, wall mounted lanterns or hanging pendants to coordinate the appeal of the entryways. Outdoor pillar lighting fixtures are ideal for installing entry lights.
Highlighting Your Home Exterior
Outdoor lighting is an ideal way of highlighting the exterior architectural features and design language of your home. The four simple techniques of showcasing your home exterior includes down lighting, up lighting, silhouette lighting and cross lighting. Down lighting serves to illuminates light on the object from above while up lighting shines light onto an object from a focal point. Both lighting dimensions add some level of highlight of outdoor features. When using outdoor up lighting fixtures, always ensure to minimize light pollution by aiming the light fixture in a way that captures light by overhangs as much as possible. Down lighting fixtures are installed from upward position to cast light on surfaces such as water pools. Down lighting can also work best as security lights. With cross lighting, the light is aimed at an angle on both sides of the architectural feature or object under illumination. The low angled light source acquires the surface texture, thereby creating a beautiful shadow. Silhouette lighting is meant to direct light at the back of an object, hence creating a silhouette. It is mainly used for garden lighting.
Turn your pool into a glowing oasis using LED outdoor string lights or outdoor floodlights from We Got Lites. The amount of light required by the pool is determined by the tile and liner used in the pool design. Too much light can give your pool a murky appearance during the night.
Always ensure that all your home’s entry points are properly lit for safety and security. Wall mounted lanterns or outdoor post lights can be used for safety and security lighting. For garage doors, you can install a single fixture or use a wall-mounted lantern to enhance visibility at night. Outdoor hanging lights can be used to illuminate any side of a garage or house.
Outdoor Entertainment Areas
Outdoor entertainment needs a combination of task, accent and ambient lighting that keep the space lively throughout the night. For outdoor cooking areas, consider using task lighting to provide sufficient light on both ends of the grill. Outdoor coach lights fixtures provides soft lighting around conversation areas. The can be used as pendant, wall scones, ceiling mounted or outdoor recessed lights. To extend your audience sense of space in the party, you may consider lighting a tree in the lawn’s backyard to draw their attention backwards.
Purchase your modern outdoor light fixtures from We Got Lites online store. We stock a wide range of affordable fixtures from renowned lighting companies such as Hampton Bay. You can choose from various designs, illuminations and finishes including rustic outdoor light fixtures, white bulb outdoor lights, outdoor lighting fixtures with brass or copper finishes among others. We are your one stop shop for great priced home and industrial outdoor lighting.