Ever since I started working with Outdoor Lighting Perspectives I’ve been somewhat of an outdoor lighting snob of sorts. I not only notice outdoor lighting much more than I used to, but I take note of the issues that I see over and over again. Here are some of the top outdoor lighting mistakes:
Poor Quality Fixtures or Bulbs. There are hundreds of low voltage outdoor lighting systems for homeowners to choose from. Although some people may go straight for the cheapest option, that is usually a good way to describe their quality: cheap. Ensure that the fixtures and bulbs can do the job they are intended for, whether it is to spot light a tree or illuminate a path for safety purposes. Take solar lighting for example, how often do you see path ways that are lined with tens of lights? That’s not efficient lighting. In most cases, a halogen or LED fixture can take the place of 5+ solar fixtures.
Take your location into consideration when you are choosing outdoor lighting fixtures as well. Will they have to withstand ice and snow? Are they exposed to salty air? You’ll want to make sure that fixtures will last once they have been installed. For instance, copper is a great option for coastal areas because it can handle the salty moisture.
Lack of Professional Design. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, our systems are all about design. We want to make our clients’ properties as beautiful as they can be and you can’t do that without a clearly planned out design. In terms of bad lighting design the most common mistakes are:
Poor fixture placement. Where the fixtures are placed is incredibly important for lighting design. It ensures that they are doing their job, and makes sure that your home is more safe and secure. Have you ever walked out of a house and been blinded by a floodlight? That shouldn’t happen!
Over lighting your property. Every inch of your property doesn’t have to be lit. Your outdoor lighting company should discuss with you your favorite parts of your property, what you would like accomplish with your outdoor lighting and the most commonly traveled paths on your property. Just enough lighting to properly illuminate those areas should be installed, not much more.
Not adjusting the lighting. A good outdoor lighting designer will come by your property after the lights have been installed for a final adjustment. Every bulb angle and fixture position should be looked at to make sure each one is doing its job. Sporadic lighting adjustments may also need to be made throughout the lifecycle of the system to address changes to the landscaping.
No Lighting Controls. Every one of our outdoor lighting systems comes with a timer because it is incredibly important. You don’t want a system that is only on when you flip a switch. By setting the lights to be on from and to a certain time of day it increases the safety, security and beauty of the property. Imagine that you come home from work at 7pm and your lights aren’t on. The neighborhood kids were playing outside earlier and a ball accidentally landed on your walkway, but you can’t see it. It’s an injury waiting to happen and it wouldn’t happen if you had the system on a timer.
All of these outdoor lighting mistakes are easily avoided by working with a professional outdoor lighting company. If you any questions, please reach out to your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives.