Well-planned lighting can really enhance your outdoor space, increasing visibility and creating atmosphere to extend your hours of enjoyment.
Lighting can make or break your garden, so take time planning exactly what kind of illuminations you want and where.
Sketch a rough plan of your garden, marking all the key features. Identify which features you want to enhance – a pond, a tree, steps – and any that you might want to keep in the dark, like an old shed.
Be flexible: the best lighting plans combine fixed lights with ones that can be easily moved to accommodate the changing seasons and plant growth.
Outdoor lighting should be fluid, with different types of lighting creating different effects across your garden:
Make sure you don’t create too much glare when using outdoor lights. For example, you don’t want lights at the bottom of your garden pointing directly back at the patio or decking where they might dazzle someone sitting there; likewise, you don’t want sunken lights pointing directly upwards.
The first priority of exterior lighting must be to make your garden safe.
Always make sure that any potential tripping hazards are well lit, including any changes in level, like garden steps and low walls. Recessed lights tend to work well in these areas, providing low-level lighting to reduce the risk without being obtrusive.
When it comes to selecting lights for your garden, make sure that you only buy those that are specifically designed for outdoor use. Garden lights have an “IP rating” which indicates how well protected a light fitting is against water ingress: most outdoor lights should have an IP rating of at least 4. If in any doubt, speak to an expert.
If you choose to install your garden lighting yourself, make sure you follow these important safety steps:
Never take risks with electrical safety. We recommend that you always employ a qualified electrician to install or test your outdoor lighting.
For environmentally-friendly lighting, choose solar. With an internal battery that charges during the day, solar lamps give off a soft light from a low wattage LED during hours of darkness.
If you require a bit more power from your garden lighting than solar can provide, LED is a good choice. Although generally more expensive upfront than the halogen alternative, LED light sources have a long service life and low energy consumption, making them more affordable in the long term.
Need further help or advice choosing your outdoor lights? Give our customer services team a call on 01592 747980 - we're here to help!