A step-by-step guide for planning outdoor landscape lighting

If you’re like us, you are thrilled to be able to spend more time outside enjoying the summer months. We waited all winter for this!

Our homes expand into the great outdoors during these warmer months, so you’ll want those outdoor areas to be comfortable, beautiful, and well-lit so you can enjoy them well into the evening hours. You’re going to want to be able to see when it’s time to top off that cool summer cocktail!

Before any purchases are made, spend some time planning out what your dreams are for your outdoor landscape. Let us help you out by providing some questions you’ll want to consider and answer before you head on over and visit us.

front of home during evening
Where could your home use some additional outdoor lighting?
Step 1: Determine which areas need updated lighting.

As you start dreaming of outdoor landscape lighting, take some time to discuss these ideas with your family members.

  • Which areas does your family utilize most in the evening hours?
  • Are there areas you currently avoid because they’re not well-lit. Would outdoor landscape lighting open up completely new areas to you?
  • Are there softscape or hardscape areas you’d like to show off at night with some focused lighting?
Step 2: Think about what are your home’s best features that currently are under-appreciated?
  • Do you have some foliage, shrubs, or trees that would shine under some beautiful lighting?
  • Is there an area that could become a great place to gather with proper lighting?
  • Are there pathways that would be more safely traversed if you had some new outdoor landscape lighting?
Step 3: Measure the size of the outdoor zones you’d like to update.

Once you know what you’d like to illuminate, determine how many fixtures you’ll need by measuring the areas you want to update. Take some time to measure the distance from the home to determine the amount of wire you’ll need and what the length of fixture runs will be in order to be evenly spaced in succession.

walkway with pathway lights
Measure once and then once again to make sure you have enough fixtures and wattage for pathway lights.
Step 4: Decide how many fixtures you’ll need.

This will be one of the most important steps as you plan your outdoor lighting plans. Some key things to consider will be:

  • How large is the area? If you’re looking at pathway lighting, usually a space of 5-10 feet is optimal. How many fixtures is that for your area?
  • Do you want to illuminate any trees? The height and even the type of tree you’re going to illuminate will determine how many fixtures you should purchase and what kind.
Step 5: Calculate the wattage and run length.

Add up the total amount of wattage from each fixture to determine the amount of power you’ll need to run your new landscape lighting. For example, if you have 15 pathway lights each using a 4-watt lamp, your total wattage will be 60 watts. Knowing your wattage will determine what kind of transformer you will need.

You’ll also want to figure out how long your run is to determine the correct transformer. For example, you have 15 path lights each spaced 7ft apart in a row, this means your total run length will be 105ft. Having the right transformer will ensure you receive the fully-powered lighting you desire.

Outside of a home with porch and steps at night.
Determine all of your outdoor lighting needs and then go search for what you want.
Engage the experts!

At The Lighting Gallery, our experts are certified in outdoor lighting from planning wattage to setting up a beautiful, functional environment, we can help! Stop in for a consult for your beautiful outdoor oasis.

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