Landscape Lighting Mistakes to Avoid

Landscape Lighting Mistakes to Avoid

Jul 6th 2023

Designing a cozy and inviting outdoor landscape can be harder than it looks. You need to find the right type of lights for your landscape in the right price range that will last for many years to come. Beginners and first-time homeowners commonly make the same mistakes when picking out their first landscape lighting scheme. Read on to learn some of the most important lighting mistakes to avoid.

Mistake #1: Using Cheap Solar Lights

Though they may sound like a good idea in theory, cheap solar lights do not stand the test of time in your landscape. Solar power may seem more environmentally friendly, but the panels on cheap outdoor lights tend not to last very long. They don't give off much light either, requiring more lights to give off the same glow. Made of plastic, these solar lights also break easily. Save your money in the long run by investing in quality lights right from the beginning to keep them out of the landfill and in your landscape. The good news is LED lights have gotten much more affordable and energy efficient.

Mistake #2: Forgetting to Focus on Both Looks and Function

Lights serve two very important roles in your landscape; highlighting the best parts of your garden and helping you see where you're going. Prioritizing one over the other may lead to discontent later down the line. Instead of only lighting your new pergola, archway, or favorite tree, it's essential to be able to walk along the garden path. On the other hand, lighting up the right features in your landscape can improve the overall ambiance of the space.

Mistake #3: Choosing the Wrong Type of Light Fixture

There are a wide variety of lights to choose from, and it can be easy to pick the wrong one for your space. Be sure you know what your landscape requires. Path lights are meant to guide you along walkways while up lights are meant to highlight features like trees or archways. Downlights are mounted above the ground and cast pools of light down near your feet. Floodlights are meant to illuminate large areas. Choosing the right type of fixture for your area can mean the difference between an enjoyable landscape and a confusing disarray.

Mistake #4: Not Taking Technical Precautions

There are a few potential problems to be aware of when installing your lights. First, you need to take precautions against weather and other natural disruptions. If you don't use waterproof connections, then it is very likely that sooner or later, your wiring will fail. When using a transformer (a device that decreases the voltage of your regular household current so it's easier to use for outdoor connections) you need to keep in mind that it can only handle so many lights at any one time. Be sure not to overload it.

Mistake #5: Going Overboard

It's easy to think that if some lights are good, more must be better. This isn't true. Keep your lights looking elegant and manageable by simplifying and only using them where they're necessary. Pathways, stairs, and a notable feature or two are good places to start. This helps the important things stand out, just like they should. For a variety of adorable lighting options to start off with, be sure to visit the landscape lighting options at DripWorks.