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An Easy Guide To Choosing The Right Lighting For Your Backyard

Written by:
Allen Brown
Amir Abbas Habibi

Many people love spending their nights out in the backyard, whether it is with family and friends or enjoying a cocktail alone. Lighting your backyard properly can make a huge difference in how comfortable you feel and how fun your night will be.

Tips for choosing the right lighting:

1. Use Solar-Powered Lamps 

Using solar-powered lamps during the day saves energy and money while still providing ample lighting at night that won't attract bugs or get too hot from all of its artificial light. High-quality outdoor solar lights can come in handy, especially if you live in an area where it's sunny during the day so that they can power up nicely during the day and last all night. Solar lamps are easy to set up, move around the yard if needed, and look great outdoors.

2. Stick to Natural Lighting As Much As Possible

Adding too many lights to your backyard can be harsh on the eyes and make people feel uncomfortable. Instead, focus on using natural lighting from the moon or strategically placed lamps that will help lighten dark areas of your yard without being overpowering.

3. Use Accent Lighting Sparingly

Incorporating accent lighting into your backyard can add a nice touch, but using it too much will take away from the natural feel of your yard. The best place to incorporate accent lighting is in pathways that lead into and out of your backyard or next to outdoor seating areas.

4. Use Motion Sensors Lights Near The House

For added safety and security, place motion sensor lights next to entrances to your backyard where they will come on when people come or go. Motion sensor lights can also be used to illuminate walkways and pathways, the sides of your house or garage, and under decks.

The size of your yard will determine how many lights you need to install throughout it, but common lighting goals are soft light, which is achieved through low wattage bulbs placed around the outline of the yard so that there are no harsh shadows; accent lighting for trees, garden beds, paths, statues or other focal points in the yard; path lighting for night time navigation on foot or bike; and task lighting for smaller areas like patios or porches where you might place a table with chairs.

5. Keep In Mind How Far Away from The House You Wish To Sit

The further guests are from the house, the more lighting is necessary for people to feel comfortable. If you plan on sitting near the house, just a few accent lights will be necessary. However, if you plan on being a bit more secluded in your yard, then more light may be needed.

6. Make Certain That All Lights Are Approved for Outdoor Use

Check with your local Better Business Bureau or the Consumer Products Safety Commission to ensure all of the lights you plan on using are safe for outdoor use and not prone to blowing out during windy weather, which could cause a fire hazard.

7. Create A Dynamic Environment

For those looking to create a dynamic environment that will impress guests and family alike, consider these easy steps.

Tip #1: Use low wattage light bulbs

Using an excessive number of bright light bulbs in your backyard is harsh on the eyes and can look like you're trying too hard. Instead, opt for softer lighting and use lots of lower wattage lamps to create a more natural experience. If hosting gatherings or parties with hundreds of guests, be aware that there may be long periods between activities - any superfluous lighting fixtures during such times will only help make the yard appear unattractive once the crowds start gathering again. Leave some lights off so as not to disturb others after they turn in for the night.

Tip #2: Use pillar candles

Pillar candles are an excellent way to provide lighting for your outdoor space without using any electricity at all. You can place them anywhere you need some extra light and they're notably less intrusive than the traditional lamp or overhead fixture. Add a scented candle, such as cinnamon or apple, to increase the air of comfortability.

Tip #3: Use strings of lights

String lights are a trendy way to light up your yard now that more people are turning away from harsh lighting fixtures. They're cheap and easy to install almost anywhere, making them a good choice for those looking for a quick fix solution where there is no current electrical outlet installed in their backyard.  Be sure not to hang them too low as this will disrupt the flow.

backyard and garage lighting

Adding lighting to your backyard can add a dynamic feel, but use caution and remember that some guests might not want too much light. This article has some easy tips on how to provide just enough light without needing electricity or being uninviting.

By Naser Nader Ibrahim

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