Landscape lighting is used illuminate walkways, accentuate foliage and landscape features. It not only provides safety when it’s dark, but also increases the amount of time that can be spent enjoying the outdoors. A recent study by the American Society of Landscape Architects found that ninety-two percent of Americans are now interested in lighting up the exteriors of their home.
Much of the new popularity of landscape lighting is due to advances in technology. Installation of landscape lighting used to be a costly undertaking, and was seldom used outside of large estates or businesses. But new advancements with low-voltage systems have made landscape lighting much less expensive and easier to install, sometimes as fast as one day. The new systems are also more flexible and easier to update. To give a price range, 15 to 20 lights can be installed for less than four hundred dollars per light, including a 600-watt transformer.
If you are considering the installation of landscape lighting, there are several steps you should consider.
Define Your Purpose
First, think about the purpose of your landscape lighting. You may be interested in creating an attractive and inviting night-time atmosphere, you may be interested in increased security, or you may just want to illuminate landscaping boundaries.
Make a Sketch of Your Yard
Once you have decided the purpose of your landscape lighting, make a sketch of your yard. Include all foliage, paths, and objects, and make a note of the height. Consider shadows, light reflections, light absorptions, and obstructions. This will help you decide the number and placement of the lights.
Pick the Locations of the Lights
Now that you have defined the purpose of your landscaping and considered all of the details in your sketch, you are ready to decide the placement of your lights. Lights for security may be placed differently than lights for atmosphere or safety. Soft lighting can be hidden under foliage; feature objects can be illuminated with spotlights; and short stake lights are perfect to light up pathways.
Determine How Much Effort You are Willing to Commit
If you have a large project, 120 volt lighting may be necessary, which requires the greatest effort and expense. There are guidelines that require an expert licensed electrician, such as the 18-inch minimum depth of the wiring. Lower voltage lighting can use an outdoor transformer, and are much less expensive and easier to install.
Always trust licensed certified electricians for advice and guidance. Call the experts at Pike’s Electric.