Landscape lighting isn’t an unnecessary accessory to a property. It may be a good idea to invest in outdoor lighting fixtures as they highlight the texture of your plants and improve the ambiance of your exteriors. Also, landscape lighting could help deter thieves and keep your property safer.
Installing one requires you to hire professionals that provide installation services, such as Portland Oregon landscape lighting. Yet to guide them, you first need to create your design. Your landscape lighting won’t be as functional if you end up with an ineffective or tacky-looking design.
To help you create the best landscape lighting design, consider the following do’s and don’ts:
Do’s Of Landscape Lighting
- Use LED Fixtures
Since you have the liberty to choose the type of lights to use for your landscape, opt for LED fixtures. They could last longer and use lesser energy than incandescent light bulbs. Also, they come in a wide variety of color temperatures and designs.
Nowadays, households often utilize LED fixtures that give off a yellowish light or ones that come in clear finishes. Because of its versatility, using LED fixtures can be your ticket to achieving any theme or look for your landscape!
- Choose Fixtures That Complement Your Home’s Color Scheme
To create a polished and clean look using landscape lighting, pick fixtures that complement your home’s existing color scheme. This will help you narrow down your options and ensure that your property looks aesthetically appealing.
If your home’s exterior is painted with earth tones and brown accents, look for light fixtures in bronze. White fixtures are great options if your home is painted in darker hues, while black fixtures work well with any color scheme and theme.
- Space Out Light Sources
One of the most common mistakes homeowners make when lighting their outdoor space is putting too many lights in one area. Sure, this trick can brighten any area. Yet grouping light sources too close to each other will prevent you from highlighting the beauty of the fixtures.
When designing landscape lighting, don’t forget to space out light sources. For example, when lighting your deck or patio, make sure that the fixtures are spaced four to six inches away from each other. Lights in your pathways should be six to eight feet apart.
- Use Enough Fixtures To Light Your Property
As an attempt to save money on landscape lighting, some homeowners would use fewer fixtures and increase the brightness of the bulbs they’re using. This trick might create alternating areas of extreme brightness and darkness, making your exteriors unattractive.
If you have a limited budget, opt to install fixtures in phases, concentrating on specific areas around the house. For example, instead of lighting your entire backyard or lawn one time, consider purchasing fixtures for your walkway first and then work on your deck or patio next.
By focusing on one area at a time, you can achieve the look you want without breaking the bank.
- Use Accent Lights
Today, outdoor lights come in different shapes, sizes, and colors. If your budget allows, you can even customize fixtures to better suit the existing aesthetics of your home.
If you want to light dark corners in your landscape, use accent lights. By picking the right design, even a small accent light can do wonders for dull-looking corners in your outdoor space.
Don’ts of Landscape Lighting
- Avoid Using Fixtures That Are Too Small
The appearance of your exteriors can leave an impression. Even if you spend a lot of money renovating your outdoor space, your efforts would be useless if the area isn’t properly highlighted during the nighttime.
The solution? Don’t use fixtures that are too small. For example, since your front door is the focal point of your home’s exteriors, use fixtures that can properly highlight this area. If you’re going to use a single light fixture next to your front door, choose one that’s about 1/3 the height of the door. When using two, look for fixtures that are ¼ the height of the door.
- Don’t Light Staircases And Pathways In The Same Way
Even though both your staircases and pathways are located outside, these areas require different types of fixtures. Stairs will create shadows when you add a small amount of light, which can become a safety hazard. On the other hand, pathways don’t create shadows no matter what kind of fixture you use because this area is on a flat surface.
To properly light your outdoor staircases, use LED accent lighting on the side of your deck post to cast a soft glow downward. This will illuminate your staircase, making it easier for guests to see the steps.
When it comes to lighting pathways, it’s best to stagger lights on both sides to create balance. This will also ensure that your pathways have sufficient lighting for safety without going overboard.
- Refrain From Bulbs With High Wattages
Aside from the aesthetics, you should also pay attention to the functionality of the fixtures. Using bulbs that are more than 75 watts can create glare, which could be uncomfortable for some of your guests. Your property might not feel welcoming if your landscape lighting creates this effect.
The best wattage for landscape lighting is 40 watts or lower. Light bulbs with this wattage can effectively light garden beds, pathways, and other landscape areas.
- Don’t Use Solar Lights
Although solar energy provides countless benefits, it’s not the best source for your landscape lighting. Solar-powered landscape lights produce minimal illumination, which means that you can’t properly highlight the best features of your landscape.
Because they’re weather-dependent, using solar lights will also prevent you from lighting your landscape as often as you want to. If it rains heavily during the day, your landscape lighting won’t have power. As a result, you’ll end up with a dark, unsafe landscape at night.
- Don’t Overdo It
There’s a fine line between an aesthetic landscape lighting design and going overboard. If you want to achieve the former, you need to avoid using too many fixtures in one area. This will only draw more attention to the lights, not to a specific space or object in your property.
You should also refrain from adding fixtures if you don’t have any plans on how you’re going to use them. Aside from making your backyard too crowded, too many light fixtures can also mean higher energy bills.
Knowledge Is Power
Adding lighting fixtures to your outdoor space is exciting, but make sure that you’re doing it properly. Making hasty decisions, like using one type of fixture for different areas or not paying attention to the wattage of the bulbs, will only result in stress and more expenses.
If you want to end up with a landscape lighting design that will transform your property, maximize the tips in this article. It’ll be easier for you to choose the right fixtures and install them in the right places when you follow several do’s and don’ts!