Quality outdoor lights not only make your space look more inviting at night, they also enhance your family's safety. You're less likely to trip when your walkways and patio are well lit, and would-be criminals are less likely to bother you, too. But with so many outdoor lights on the market, choosing the right fixtures is not always easy. Here are four simple tips to help guide your decision.
Match Your Home's Architectural Style
Make note of your home's architectural style before you even start shopping for light fixtures. For instance, if your home has a modern look, you'll want to search for fixtures with clean, minimalist designs. For a country-style home, you may want a fixture made from natural materials, like wood, and perhaps with a more intricate design. If you shop for fixtures online, most companies will allow you to search by style. So, for instance, you can enter "Spanish Revival" and then focus your search only on the fixture choices that come up for that style.
Consider the Climate
Decide where you plan on placing the outdoor light. Then, consider the climate challenges in that particular location to ensure you choose a fixture that will stand up to them. For instance, if you'll be mounting the light on a post on your uncovered patio, it should be "wet area" rated since it will be directly exposed to rain. On the other hand, outdoor lighting fixtures for covered porches can be "damp area" rated since they won't get as wet.
Keep Efficiency in Mind
If you'll be putting your outdoor lights on a motion sensor, you won't have as much control as to when they turn on and off. So, you want them to be as efficient as possible. Look for fixtures that accommodate LED bulbs, as these emit plenty of light without causing your energy bills to skyrocket.
Check the Mounting Apparatus
Make sure the outdoor lighting fixture will mount to the surface where you want to install it. For instance, a wall-mounted lamp with a four-inch back panel won't work if the post you want to mount it on is only three inches wide. Measure your surfaces before you shop to avoid mistakes.
With the tips above, you'll have no trouble finding outdoor lights you love. If you're also looking for interior fixtures, check out our post "How To Choose Light Fixtures That Make a Statement."