4 ideas for DIY Outdoor Lighting

Cabin in the night forest

Making the smallest changes in our homes often have the biggest effects. In this blog post, we’ll talk about the way lighting can transform an outdoor space. And don’t worry, you won’t need to enlist the help of a professional. Here are four ideas for DIY outdoor lighting.

Outdoor patio lighting

Although patio season has sadly passed, there’s no reason you can’t make the most of your outdoor sitting area all-year round. Now that it’s getting dark earlier, it’s best to use multiple light sources for your patio. Try hanging outdoor string lights around the outside of the house, and installing path lights around the perimeter.

LED lights

Not only are LED lights highly efficient and look great, they are also far better for the environment. There are a wide variety of outdoor LED light fixture types available, from LED path and step lights to LED rope and string lights.

Deck lighting

Make the most of outdoor lighting. Think not only about the appearance of your outdoor space, but the safety of the area too. Ensure deck lighting highlights your steps, and install lights around the perimeter of the deck too.

Pond lighting

As with deck lighting, installing pond lights ensures your outdoor space not only looks good, but that people can move around safely at night. Think about adding lights around the pond’s exterior to make the surface or the water flow, or to accentuate a waterfall or other feature. Underwater lighting can also be used to highlight fountains or sculptures.

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How to Choose the Best Patio Lighting Fixtures

Your patio is an extension of your home, a doorway from your inside haven into your outside oasis. Because of its importance, the patio must be lit correctly for safety reasons, and illuminated beautifully for design purposes. This two-fold function is not easy, but it is definitely possible.

Choosing patio light fixtures is not a process to be taken lightly. You can run to your local store and purchase any old fixture, but if you perform this process in haste, you may not be happy with the outcome. Patio lighting serves many purposes and if it is not considered carefully, it can devalue not only your landscape, but also your treasured home.

Patio lights serve three main purposes: aesthetic, safety and function. Safety is a must since all homeowners are serious about keeping people out of harm’s way. Aesthetic and function are personal preferences, though most homeowners opt for function first and design last.

When selecting your patio lighting fixtures, determine which of the three are most important. Obviously safety is first, but what would you like to accomplish next? Function is quite necessary and recommended if the patio will be used a lot; however, some lights can accomplish two or three purposes simultaneously. These fixtures would be ideal for the homeowner who desires a stylish, yet functional patio.

Types of Patio Lighting

Generally, the best choices for your patio are solar or LED lighting because they are both highly efficient and cost-effective.

LED light bulbs are known for their long lifespan which is typically 10 times as long as compact fluorescent bulbs. They also last longer than incandescent bulbs. While LED lighting fixtures will cost more than traditional ones, you will recoup the costs rapidly since the maintenance is cost-effective due to their efficiency. LED bulbs are also one of the safer choices because they do not generate a copious amount of heat. They are safe around children and neighboring plants.

LED bulbs come in warm white and cool white, a classification determined by the brightness of illumination they produce. Warm white emits stronger light similar to incandescent bulbs. Cool white emits illumination similar to a moonlighting glow and offer the opportunity to create a special ambience around the patio area.

Solar lighting is also cost-effective and very safe. It is also popular due its ease of installation which basically involves “jamming” the fixtures into the ground; no wires; no mess. They also come in a variety of colors and styles and are a great choice for the homeowner concerned about the way the patio looks and how its design matches the overall décor of the home.

Solar lights also contain photo cells that take in the sun’s energy during the day and emit this energy at dusk. You can also purchase motion sensors so the lights turn on and off when they detect movement.

Though some work is involved, your patio lighting design should be fun and enjoyable. If you get stuck with the logistics, consult with a professional designer or ask a friend or neighbor for assistance.



Where to Begin with Patio Landscape Lighting

A patio is an extension of the home, a place where children play, family gathers and birds come to find shelter. Your patio is a piece of your home even though it is located outdoors. You should feel about your patio the same way you feel about your home. And the best way to bring the comfort of home to the outdoors is with the right patio lighting.

The greatest patio lighting is evident when the sun starts to set and the moon emits a soft glow on your landscape. This is the time for your patio to shine. Don’t simply choose whatever you think will function in the space. Consider your patio another room of your home and treat it the way you would a new room design. Recognize how a little lighting can create for you the backyard oasis of your dreams. With only a little effort, a lot can be accomplished.

Don’t just install some lights. Create an experience.

If you are dedicated to spending some time on your patio lighting, put together a plan to map out your thoughts. Browse magazines and websites and cut out your favorite spaces. Gather inspiration from your neighbor’s landscapes (don’t be a peeping tom!) and compile your designs into one place so you remain organized.

Don’t get overwhelmed during this step. Some homeowners think they should devise complex architectural blueprints and as a result they become overly confused. Create your plan according to what you know and stay in the moment. The experience should be fun and enjoyable. Any information you gather will be not only helpful to you if you are installing the lighting yourself, but also to a professional who will not know your style had you not performed this step.

Your plan should consist of the following:

Budget: Yes, you need to consider budget. You may not be able to afford the landscape of the stars, but you will be surprised by how elegant your patio will look with a few simple additions. Stay within your budget so you don’t have buyer’s remorse. You can do a lot with a little if you just do your research.

Lighting type: Determine what type of lighting you want to add to your patio. The first step is to know the function of each light. For example, if you have an area you want highlighted like a climbing rose bush or a decorative lattice fence, a spotlight will illuminate it nicely.

Power – If you are not a professional, you may need to consult with someone who knows how much power you have and what you are willing to spend on your monthly electric bill. If you want to install the lighting yourself, you can use solar powered lights which are easy to install.

With a little elbow grease, you can transform your patio into a backyard beauty. Remember to plan your strategy first, set a realistic budget, acquire the help of a professional and take your time. The end result will definitely be worth it.