What Do You Need For Outdoor Lighting?

A great lighting system adds a warm, inviting glow around your home. It also makes your yard safer and more appealing to you and guests.

Make sure all bulbs are rated for outdoor use. If a light fixture will be exposed to rain or snow, a wet location rating is required.


For lighting large outdoor spaces, a flood light is a good choice. These are typically installed in the ground or mounted on structures, walls and poles. LED flood lights are often designed to disperse the light evenly at every angle, and they use significantly less energy than older halogen bulbs. They also last far longer and require little maintenance.

Consider using a combination of tasteful landscape lighting from below and attractive flood lighting from above to create layers of lighting throughout your property. This provides both safety and beauty, while creating the perfect ambiance for entertaining guests or enjoying a cup of coffee on your porch.

Having adequate lighting on sidewalks, pathways and driveways helps deter accidents from taking place and discourages vandalism and crime. A study found that outdoor lighting reduces crimes against property by as much as 39 percent.

When installing path lights, be sure to choose fixtures rated for outdoor use and a transformer that is designed for low voltage lighting. This will help prevent moisture damage and ensure that your new fixtures will not overheat or short circuit. Unless you are an experienced DIYer, it is best to have Miami Outdoor Lighting install your exterior lighting to avoid tripping over wiring in your garden beds or accidentally cutting through a low voltage cable with a shovel.

Choose a lighting style that complements the exterior of your home, including the colors and materials used for your siding, doors and windows. For instance, pewter and black outdoor lights look beautiful with blue-painted walls, while golden or bronze fixtures are an excellent match for earthy wall colors.

Whether you have a traditional, contemporary or transitional home, the right lights can add to your curb appeal. If you prefer a more modern look, consider using sleek, simple fixtures to complement your house’s architectural features and create consistency. For more traditional or formal properties, choose fixtures that have a classic look and may even feature gold or bronze accents. Regardless of your preferred style, always be sure to purchase lights that are rated for outdoor use and that the bulbs are designed for these fixtures.


In addition to enhancing beauty and safety, outdoor lighting also adds value to your home. Even if you’re not ready to take on a major landscape renovation, a well-planned lighting system can make your yard more usable and appealing after dark. To achieve the best results, work with a professional who understands the types of fixtures and how to use them to create an inviting nighttime environment.

Start your plan by mapping out your goals for the lighting system. Fixtures intended to improve visibility and security need to be placed differently than those meant to highlight design elements or accentuate features of the landscaping. Then, select an appropriate type of fixture to meet those needs.

Floodlights provide a wide pool of light for illuminating large areas like driveways, while spotlights disperse a narrower beam. To avoid over-lighting an area, select a fixture with a beam angle that matches the size of the area to be illuminated.

If you want to emphasize specific features in your garden, choose a spotlight with an adjustable beam angle to highlight their shape or texture. Spotlights can also trace fascinating light paths on a deck, around the pool or at the entrance under the awning of your house.

A light aimed up at a tree or structure creates drama and highlights details you wouldn’t see on a regular basis. If you want to light a tree without disturbing its foliage, opt for an inground well light instead of a traditional pendant.

Path lights help mark walkways and paths after dark, improving safety and adding curb appeal to the front of your home. Choose path lights with a durable finish to resist corrosion and wear. Powder-coated steel or soda lime glass are two options that are tough, attractive and easy to clean.

Wall sconces are an elegant option for lighting a porch or patio. These wall-mount fixtures come in a variety of styles to match your décor and are available with dusk to dawn controls so you never have to worry about remembering to turn them on. They’re also an ideal choice for illuminating stairs or other vertical surfaces.

Inground Lights

Inground lights can be a great addition to your landscape. They add a sophisticated touch to your home, while also illuminating features such as garden walls and trees. Inground lighting can also be used to illuminate pathways, which will not only make it easier to move around at night but will create a warm and welcoming curb appeal.

When choosing inground lights, consider their wattage or lumens to ensure they are not too bright. This is important because lighting that is too bright can cause glare. In addition, it’s important to choose fixtures that are rated for outdoor use. Using bulbs and fixtures that aren’t designed for the outdoors can lead to premature fixture failure due to humidity and temperature change.

Pathway lighting is one of the most common uses for inground lights. Often called well lights, they are circle-shaped fixtures that install into the ground and are usually placed about 8 to 10 feet apart along a walkway or pathway. They can help guide guests through your yard after dark and are a great way to highlight important elements in your landscape such as statues, sculptures and plants.

Similarly, accent lights can be placed in your landscape to highlight specific areas of interest. They can be installed in the ground or on a wall and are available in a wide variety of styles, finishes and color temperatures. In order to find the right accent light for your space, it’s a good idea to grab a flashlight and go out at night and walk through your yard to see what you might want to highlight. This will help you narrow down your choices so that you can select the perfect fixture for your space.

A lighting designer can help you decide which landscape lights will work best for your space and create a plan that will both be functional and attractive. They will also help you choose a transformer that works best for your system. For example, some transformers allow you to dim your landscape lights so that they don’t become too bright and create a glare.

Wall Sconces

A wall sconce is an attractive way to light up the entrance to your home. Use them to highlight architectural features, like columns or archways, or even planters and other features in your yard. Look for ones with hoods to be able to direct the light and avoid "washing" an entire area with brightness. These lights also work well in front of doorways to help guide nighttime guests without them having to squint to see who's there.

Sconces can be paired with other types of lighting to create a more complete landscape lighting system, like the one shown here. String lights and a hanging fixture provide ambiance while a pole-mount uplight adds a more focused beam of light for safety.

You can also use outdoor sconces to accent specific garden ideas like this raised bed with herbs and flowers. The sconces are paired with low-voltage ground-level uplights to illuminate the beds, and they are also accented by brighter accent bulbs.

The other type of outdoor lighting that you'll want to use is recessed fixtures like these flush mounts, which are installed in the ceiling directly above outdoor dining tables or seating areas. Look for options with a bronze finish to complement the ceiling color and other details in your space.

Outdoor sconces can also be used in the side of a deck or porch to add light for a safe walkway. You'll want to make sure that the fixtures are rated for outdoor use and are compatible with your existing electrical system. Most low-voltage landscape lighting systems require a transformer that converts 120-volt household current into the 12 volts needed to light up your fixtures. Look for a transformer with a high enough wattage rating to power all of your planned fixtures, but no more than 80% of the max wattage.

You'll also need to have some form of outdoor lighting to light your driveway, sidewalks and other walkways in your yard. Adding some of these fixtures will allow you to enjoy your outdoor spaces even after the sun goes down and will increase your home's security.

A great lighting system adds a warm, inviting glow around your home. It also makes your yard safer and more appealing to you and guests. Make sure all bulbs are rated for outdoor use. If a light fixture will be exposed to rain or snow, a wet location rating is required. Floodlights For lighting large…