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Outdoor Lighting Made Easy, Sort Of

By Errol Grange

The great outdoors seldom conjure images of fantastic lighting schemes. But, for those of us living in the mighty suburbs of this great nation, nothing quite compares to well-planned outdoor lighting fixtures. To be sure, you have to take the time to get your lighting scheme just right if you ever hope to have your friends and family to brave the bug-infested wilderness of your backyard. No one wants to spend a summer evening swatting at pests by the light of a few paltry citronella candles.

Candles? No, no, no. Your outdoor fun-times will be had by the light of designer fixtures and energy-efficient bulbs. Where to begin, you ask? We begin with the paths leading to your home: the driveways and sidewalks. For driveways and perimeter illumination, you can’t go wrong with a set of post lights. Most of these lights run on solar power, so you don’t have to bother with cords. They range in size from 3-inch models to standing, 5-foot poles. They work to create a very cozy, though somewhat dim lighting scheme and should be used as secondary light sources.

Now, effective lighting for your outdoor soiree will mean you’ll have to mount an array of wall-mounted fixtures and perhaps even a crane light. While you can find solar versions of these fixtures, if you really want the best light quality, you’ll have to run them through your electrical grid. So, yes, the privilege of a well-lit outdoor party will come at the cost of your electrical bill. Well, actually, if you use the more efficient LED lights, you may be paying more than you would with your typically halogen.

The wild entertaining aside, if you want to truly protect your home and property, you would be well-advised to install a series of motion-activated security lights. These motion-controlled outdoor lights are mounted from overhangs and corners to improve visibility and safety. Most of these security lights have the power of spotlights, meaning they cast good amount of light. Of course, the last thing you need is a darkened corner or driveway.

When the moon makes its appearance, the dream of an outdoor party doesn’t have to die. With the right lighting scheme and the right outdoor fixtures, you can create a festive, inviting atmosphere all night long. Indeed, if you’re keen on making things a touch more festive, you may want to consider putting up a few stringed lights. These festive lights can create a sparkling outdoor extravaganza. Nothing gets people talking like a sheet of sparkling lights. Of course, as with all outdoor fixtures, make sure the stringed lights are rated for outdoor use.

The key to efficient outdoor lighting is planning ahead. Get your measurements and sketch out your ideas to maximize your time.

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Topics: Landscaping Gardening | Comments Off


Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Grange, Errol "Outdoor Lighting Made Easy, Sort Of." Outdoor Lighting Made Easy, Sort Of. 25 Aug. 2010. 31 May 2016 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Grange, E (2010, August 25). Outdoor Lighting Made Easy, Sort Of. Retrieved May 31, 2016, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Grange, Errol "Outdoor Lighting Made Easy, Sort Of"

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