Landscape lighting systems have become increasingly popular among homeowners. Think back to the last time you took a drive through any residential neighbourhood after dark. Chances are the majority of homes you passed by had some form of landscape lighting design. This is because today’s landscape lighting systems provide homeowners with a wide variety of benefits. Sure, there’s the obvious aesthetic benefit of illuminating the unique architectural features of you home, but there are many other benefits as well. Some of these additional benefits include added safety, improved security and an increase in the overall value of your home.
With all these benefits provided by one effective landscape lighting system, it’s no wonder that outdoor lighting has become a popular area for homeowners to focus on. However, if you do not have knowledge of current lighting design trends, techniques and best practices, you may end up with an ineffective and tacky-looking design. Worse yet, if you opt for a DIY installation, you could wind up creating potential safety hazards around your home and property.
To help you create the best landscape lighting design for your property, our experienced landscape lighting experts have compiled a list of landscape lighting Do’s and Don’ts. We encourage you to read this list before planning your next design, making any purchases and installing any bulb, fixture or wire.
Do Use a Variety of Different Lights
Using the same kind of lights – same colour, same intensities – in all areas of your landscape lighting design will not help you achieve the aesthetic look you’re likely going for. Instead, using the same lights across your whole system will make your landscape lighting design appear dull, flat and un-textured.
We recommend using a variety of lights that have different colours and intensities. This is not to say that you should use red, green and every colour under the rainbow, but rather that you should incorporate a variety of soft, warm colours throughout a number of areas around your home and property to create depth and ambiance.
Do Use the Right Amount of Fixtures
When it comes to the fixtures in your landscape lighting design, less is not always more. In fact, when homeowners try to cut costs by skimping on light fixtures, it often ends in disappointment. Sometimes, homeowners will opt to increase the brightness of their bulbs instead of purchasing and installing the appropriate amount of fixtures needed for their landscape lighting design. When this happens, it creates a stark contrast of extreme brightness and extreme darkness in your design. This is far from the ideal lighting style you are likely looking to achieve, and will act as more of a distraction than anything else.
If you are looking to cut costs, we recommend installing your landscape lighting system in phases or zones. Start by illuminating the area closest to your house and work your way out. This will help make the installation easier, less costly and will guarantee that each zone is illuminated in just the way you want it.
Do Not Isolate Areas of Your Property
It can sometimes be difficult to decide what areas of your home and property are most important to include in your landscape lighting design. If you do not plan out your design correctly, you may end up isolating areas of your outdoor space. Take walkways and trees for example. These are common areas to illuminate in a landscape lighting design, however if you light up only these areas, and leave the surrounding areas completely unlit, you will isolate the space and create adverse effects.
To ensure you are not creating an extreme lighting contrast, we recommend incorporating other areas of the larger landscape into your outdoor lighting design. This can be as simple as placing lights in the plant beds and trees along the outer edge of your property.
Don’t Rely on Solar Lights
Solar lights may seem like a great, environmentally-conscious option in theory, but the fact is there are some downfall to using solar lights as well, and if you want to have a consistent and effective landscape lighting system, it’s best not to rely solely on solar lights. The main problem here comes from the inconsistency of the effectiveness of solar lighting. While they might work great in the summer months when the sun is shining bright for the majority of the day, you will see these lights perform 30-50 per cent less efficiently in the winter.
If you are looking for environmentally and energy-conscious ways to illuminate your outdoor space, we suggest using LED lights. LED lights use a fraction of the energy that hydrogen-based bulbs use and are reliable for use all year long. On top of that, LED lights also provide a wide variety of colour options to choose from.
Do Contact a Professional
Whether you’re simply planning your next landscape lighting design, or you have a chosen design that’s ready to be installed, it’s best to contact a professional landscape lighting company. At Nite Time Decor Oakville, our experienced team of landscape lighting professionals can help you design an outdoor lighting design that is perfectly suited to your home and property. Contact us today to get started!