Advice & tips from Kelowna Electricians at Epic Electric
Exterior lighting will not only enlighten the character and brighten the aesthetic appeal of your home, it can also be an important added security measure. Exterior lighting projects come in different guises. You may want to install exterior lighting above a doorway, ground lighting to a walkway or driveway, lighting to a garden, patio, porch, or pergola, or a flood lighting fixture on a motion sensor or timer for an additional layer of security. The sky is the limit with what you can accomplish with exterior lighting, but you need to keep your feet firmly on the ground in order to have any installation completed efficiently and, above all, safely.
BENEFITS OF EXTERIOR LIGHTING
Making your outdoor living space as inviting as your indoor space can have a variety of benefits. Exterior lighting can create a warm and welcoming environment for guests and add an enlightening elegance to your outdoor landscape. You can more easily navigate your landscape at night, and with clearly illuminated walkways there’s less risk of slips and falls. Your home will not only look more appealing, but exterior lighting will add value to your home both aesthetically and through the addition of this added security measure.
LIGHTING THE WAY
You can improve your home’s security with path and flood lights, activated by motion sensors that can customise when and how the lights are turned on and off. Path lights along the walkway from your driveway to your doors ensure a safe walk. Flood lights can illuminate a stairway, garage, or dark entryway. This will welcome visitors while at the same time discouraging intruders. Always install lights – preferably LED which last up to 18 years – high enough not to be reached from the ground. This height will also ensure a wider cone of light across a larger area.
Landscaping lights are used to showcase architecture and landscaping – the twin pillars of your home’s aesthetic appeal. Add wall lights and ceiling lights to the outside of your home to highlight architectural features, illuminate your door or porch, and create a warm and inviting atmosphere for your guests. Install well lights, spot lights, in-ground lights, recessed lights, or hanging lights. The options are endless, but so are the problems than can occur if you don’t install exterior lights correctly.
CHOOSE THE POWER
You have to consider how you are going to power your exterior lights. You can choose from line voltage, low voltage, or solar power. Line voltage lighting operates at 120 volts, the same voltage as the appliances in your home. Installing these fixtures outside requires the use of conduit to protect the wires and an electric junction box, rather than an outlet, to power the fixtures. When less light is sufficient, installing low voltage lighting is preferable because it is safer to work with and more energy efficient. Ideal for accent lights, path lights, and small floodlights, the fixtures for low voltage lighting are smaller and less obtrusive, use less energy, and are less problematic in locations that get a lot of rainfall. The wiring does not require tools, and the cables do not need to be buried underground. The third option is solar power, which is the cleanest and most renewable option, easy to install, and ideal for illuminating areas where line or low voltage is inaccessible. Solar powered lighting requires no wiring but must be installed where the fixture will receive plenty of sunlight (at least 8 hours) to provide illumination throughout the night.
There are numerous exterior lighting techniques available to increase your home’s security, safety, and appearance. But whatever you do, make sure you do it right. Whatever you decide upon don’t do it without the assistance of a qualified electrician. When in doubt, always call the professionals at Epic Electric. Our electricians are highly trained and have extensive experience in all aspects of exterior lighting projects. Whether you’re about to start a project or are just finishing one, the best (and safest bet) is to always have us take a look.