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All About Landscape Lighting-Tips from the Pros

SilverMoon Lighting can create a bath of glowing light, professionally designed to best showcase your property after the sun sets.

It’s true, your house and yard look first-rate, you’ve worked hard and taken pride in its street appeal. Don’t let your hard work fade into darkness. Strategically placed lighting can continue to display your beautiful home’s architectural features, drawing attention to the beautifully designed plantings and trees.

Most landscape lighting today utilizes low voltage because It is safe and less costly to install.

The Parts of a Low-Voltage System and Step-down Transformers

  •  Transformer: Reduces 120-volt household current to a safer 12 volts. These Outdoor lighting transformers are designed for easy installation and come in an array of finish options.
  •  Bulb: The brightness, color, beam width, and electricity usage is determined by the bulb you choose.
  •  Fixture Housing:  Protects the bulb from elements and helps shape the light beam.
  •  Stake: Holds the fixture in place.
  •  Cable: Carries current to the light through lead wires.

Should You Do it Yourself?

Homeowners can install a simple lighting system over a weekend. However, for stunning effects, hire a landscape lighting specialist who has experience with a variety of fixtures and ways to best arrange them.

  •  Cost? Individual fixtures start at around $20. Cables run 70 cents per foot, and a transformer can be had for about $200. A 10-light system installed by a pro typically starts at about $2,000 to $2,500.
  •  Maintenance? Maintain fixtures so they remain free of leaves and debris which will prevent overheating. Replace burned-out bulbs to prevent circuit overloads.
  •  Longevity? Fixture and transformer warranties range from one to 10 year.

How to Map Out Your Plan

If you don’t want to lift a finger, engage a landscape lighting professional (Association of Outdoor Lighting Professionals).
Professional design tips below:

Trees: Aim a bullet, flood, or downlight straight up into foliage, while also bathing the trunk in the light. Lighting trees from above by placing downlights as high in the tree as possible and do not cross their beams.
Planting beds: Place fixtures no closer than 20 feet apart creating pools of light, guiding the eye from one plant to another.
Home façade: Using bullet lights with a 12-degree beam spread, aimed at the home’s corners or architectural details.
Garden walls: Position fixtures close to the garden wall base to create textured beams.
Focal points: Highlight a focal point—such as a fountain, a swing, or an arbor—by aiming two or more lights reducing the harsh shadows that form when only one light shines on an object.

For more outdoor-lighting design ideas, consult the classic guide The Landscape Lighting Book, by Janet Lennox Moyer, or call SilverMoon Lighting for expert advice, top-grade fixtures, and quality installation.  We install both landscape and holiday lights with care and integrity to ensure your lighting system works for years.