Avoid These DIY Landscape Lighting Mistakes

January 27, 2021

Landscape lighting is the perfect way to invest in your home and to invest in your quality of life. An attractive outdoor lighting design can both soothe and add tranquility to your day. This exciting project has the potential to enhance your mood or to become your biggest headache.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of ways landscape lighting can go wrong and our professionals have seen it all. To help you avoid any DIY disasters in this new year, we’ve put together a list of the most common outdoor lighting mistakes.

Choosing the Wrong Voltage

Planning your perfect outdoor lighting design involves many factors. The various techniques used to highlight your home require different levels of illumination. Some areas require soft, low-powered lights, while other areas need bright, high-powered bulbs. Using the wrong voltage in the wrong areas can be a result of purchasing cheap, low quality lights or maybe simply not knowing the specifics of your lighting design. Professionals know what voltage to use in all the right places. We understand that weak illumination or off-putting brightness can ruin the end result.

Professional Tip – Make use of LED bulbs. Though LED bulbs cost more, they outperform other bulbs and will save you money in the long run.

Too Many or Not Enough Fixtures

One common mistake is to add more lights than needed. Sure, your personal preference plays a role in your lighting design, but without the proper expertise, you could find yourself with a design that is not attractive. Adding too many light fixtures can result in blinding lights and unnatural illuminated pathways. While not adding enough light fixtures can leave you with excessive dark areas and poorly lit pathways. Using the appropriate fixture for the right location is another key to the success of your project. Skilled designers will know which fixtures work best for your desired results.

Professional Tip – It’s best to start your project with “less is more” and add lights as needed.

Incorrect Placement

The ideal outdoor lighting design will illuminate all the best features of your home. Placement of light fixtures plays a huge role in your design. Professionals install and position the light fixtures to achieve the optimum ratio of light needed in that area. The slightest incorrect angling of your light fixtures can create a very unpleasant glare and will do nothing to highlight your home’s unique architecture.

Professional Tip – Carefully measuring the distance between your light fixtures can help create an even appearance.

Using Low-quality Products

It’s tempting to purchase lights and products advertised at the big box stores, but you get what you pay for. Typically, these low-priced items are not going to last. Unfortunately, when you choose to purchase retail products opposed to commercial grade, you end up with inferior items that are not made for a long-term lifespan. Ongoing issues with wire connections could also be a consequence of low quality materials. The time and energy required to research the quality of products on the market can be daunting. The experts at Mobile Illumination use top-quality outdoor products that are skillfully engineered and tested.

Professional Tip – Seek out reputable companies that offer warranties on their products.

Lack of Automation

Many people who design their own landscape lighting leave out a particularly important feature – automated control. The idea of having to manually control your outdoor lights daily is burdensome. Currently, there are many different automated options for your outdoor lights such as analog timers, digital timers, photocells, astronomical timers, Wi-Fi / bluetooth smart control, and a combination of controls. The flexibility and creativity that automation provides should be considered. Professional lighting companies are familiar with the different transformer control system options as well as smartphone controls. They can easily be incorporated into your design and deliver an amazing experience.

Professional Tip – If you want exciting features like color control lighting, you’ll want to choose a design that allows you to use an app on your smartphone, tablet, or computer to manage your lights.

Failing to Have a Design

Designing an outdoor functional lightscape takes a lot of preparation and planning. Lightscaping involves more than installing a few spotlights and lining pathways with solar lights. It’s about creating visual appeal through intentional design and placement of accent lights. This distinction is present when you can tell the difference between a DIY landscape lighting property and one that went with an experienced professional.

An expert design team will have in-depth knowledge of a variety of lighting techniques, know how to play with light and shadows, and can create a cohesiveness that ties it all together while showing off a home’s best features.

Professional Tip – Give us a call! Our experienced team at Mobile Illumination will work with you to create a lightscape design that will exceed your expectations. 

Have Any More Questions?

We’re here to help! Give us a call and we’ll answer any questions you have about your string lighting.