6 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Lighting

Summer is the perfect season to spend more time outside. Before you venture out, though, is your lighting looking right? Here are 6 tips you can use to get the perfect outdoor lighting for your space.

Remember the 3 types of lighting

6 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Lighting - LightsOnline Blog

There are three main types of lighting: ambient, task and accent. Each one has its own uses and applications in outdoor living areas. You can see all 3 main types of light in the image above.

Ambient light is the main source of light in a space. Common ways to get ambient light outside, depending on the space, include outdoor chandeliers, outdoor ceiling lights and outdoor wall lights.

Task lighting is used to highlight things you do in a space. Outdoors, that might look like using step lights to help people get around, adding deck lights so you can barbecue after sunset or placing post lights around your pool.

Accent light showcases special features and details in a space. Get accent lighting outdoors by using landscape accent lights to showcase your home’s façade, trees, rocks, statues, plants, water features – anything you like!

Keep security in mind

6 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Lighting - LightsOnline Blog

Outdoor lights keep your home well-lit, which can deter burglars and help your guests (or food delivery drivers) find you easily.

Most importantly, make sure all of your doors are illuminated. Front doors, side doors, garage doors – if it’s a door, it needs a light.

Outdoor wall lights are most commonly used to light up doors.

  • If you’d like to use just one light, look for one that is 1/3 of the door’s height.
  • If you want to use two lights, look for ones that are 1/4 of the door’s height.
  • The same advice goes for using lights above garage doors.

When it comes to outdoor lights, it’s good to err on the larger side. Outdoor lights are often viewed from further away, so larger lights will look more proportionate than smaller lights.

Take your indoor style outdoors

6 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Lighting - LightsOnline Blog

Think of your outdoor living spaces as extensions of your indoor spaces. Bring that thought with you when you’re shopping for outdoor lights! From modern farmhouse to industrial, coastal and modern, outdoor lighting is available in a great variety of décor styles so that you can take your look outside.

Or, if your home’s architectural style especially lends itself to a certain kind of light (for example: a great midcentury modern ranch house), then lean into that with your outdoor lighting!

Don’t overdo it

6 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Lighting - LightsOnline Blog

So, outdoor lighting is great, but you can have too much of a good thing. It’s possible to over-light your great outdoors. This is especially true with path lights because if you use too many of them too close together, they’ll look like an airport runway. Place path lights about 6 feet apart and stagger them on either side of your path. See how good the path lights look here?

You may also live in an area that has special rules around outdoor lights. You might need to look for ones that are “Dark Sky compliant,” which means they’re designed to reduce glare and concentrate the light, or you may need to look for ones that are especially energy-efficient.

Get the right bulbs

6 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Lighting - LightsOnline Blog

You’ll also want to make sure that these outdoor fixtures have the right lights. Along with bulb size, consider the color temperature of your bulbs. Whether you want a candlelight-inspired glow or something a little more like daylight, there’s a bulb out there to meet your goals. Just make sure to check the color temperature!

Also, since it can be tough to change the bulbs in outdoor lights, consider using LED bulbs that last much longer and use much less energy!

Add a little magic

6 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Lighting - LightsOnline Blog

Because string lights simply plug into a standard wall outlet, they’re easy to add to an outdoor space. Gazebos, pergolas, balconies, outdoor kitchens, trees, deck railings, trellises, patio umbrellas…there are so many different places that can benefit from the addition of string lights! (However, please don’t hang them directly over a pool.)

With these six tips in mind, you’re on the way to getting perfect outdoor lighting for your home! Shop our selection now and, if you need more help, reach out to our customer service team for assistance.

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