Outdoor Lighting- An Intro

Outdoor home lighting schemes should be thoroughly thought out. You should contemplate your home’s overall look, your safety requirements, and the impact your outdoor lights will have on your neighbors. If you live in an urban area, there are probably streetlights providing light to the front of your house, so exterior lighting is not a necessity but more of an aesthetic choice. On the other hand, if you live in outlying suburbs or in the country, you probably don’t have streetlights! Homeowners in these suburbs and towns without streetlights need to provide their own lighting solutions. Wherever you live, the issues for how to select the right lighting are similar.

First of all, think like a designer as you consider your outdoor lighting choices. You will want to highlight the beauty of the home that you are so pleased with. You will find a huge array of outdoor home lighting fixtures from which to pick. But choosing the right lights is a challenge. Which one of the many styles of lighting will show off your home the best? How much light is the right amount, and where exactly should you put the lights?

Normally the main entrance is the structural focus of a building and you should start your lighting layout there. Decide upon a favorite style of light fixture or set of fixtures for your main entrance to put into the ceiling or on the wall close to the door. Outdoor lights come in a multitude of styles such as antique, modern, and urban and are made from materials like stainless steel, wrought iron, and wood. Fixtures could be, recessed, flushmount, or pendant, to name just a few. There are many great choices.

Go out and shop for some light fixtures, bring home several of the best ones and see for yourself which ones look best with your house. This is where you try to imagine what it will look like. Next, try to determine if that same style of light fixture will match well with other landscape features, such as walkways, your driveway, or even a specimen tree. Keep it simple and keep it soft, keep it subtle. Only use as many lights as you need. You want to aid people’s vision, not spotlight a stage show!

Safety is a concern that nobody can afford to overlook. There is a need to light the access walkways and driveways that bring you and your visitors to your doors. There are some lights that you might want to connect to a timer so they are not on all night, and other lights you may want to have on all night.

And let’s say you are going to take out the trash after dark or look for a pet through a side or back door. The outdoor lighting in the back and sides of your house might be on a motion sensor to work just when you need them. There are differing views about whether bright lights at night deter crime and vandalism, or whether they actually help the perpetrators to see better what they are doing. One can’t help but assume that the surprise of the motion sensor light must scare away some burglars.Find expert advice about  Outdoor Lighting read here

Please be considerate of your neighbors as you make plans to install your outdoor lighting fixtures. Floodlights are not recommended but lighting fixtures that can be directed to a small, focused area, such as spotlights and step lights, are suggested. Keep in mind that too much light is as bad as not enough light. Too much light makes the contrast between light and dark too harsh. You are blinded as you move out of the bright light into the darkness, and as you approach an over lighted area in the dark suddenly you can’t see where you are stepping.

Glaring, too bright residential outdoor lighting is a source of light pollution. This excess of light is sometimes known as Light Trespassing when it spills over into your neighbor’s property, shining in their bedroom windows for example. Make sure that you are within the laws of your town when you install outdoor lighting fixtures. Good neighbors are worth keeping as friends, so don’t pollute their property with your outdoor lighting system. Choose your outdoor lights carefully and light pollution won’t be an issue.

Light pollution is just another form of environmental degradation that impacts all of us! The Dark Sky Movement, as they have been dubbed, are scientists, green crusaders, and concerned citizens who are raising the issue of light pollution. Imagine not being able to see the Milky Way Galaxy with the naked eye; this could happen in a decade from now. Looking into the universe through our night sky adds another dimension to our world. Let’s not loose that.