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Choosing the best outdoor lighting ideas isn’t difficult. There are just a few things that you need to know to get it right. This article will teach them to you. In the easiest, quickest way possible. So read on, if you need to make some outdoor lighting decision for your home, business or any outdoor space in the near future such as exterior wall lights, garage lights, etc.
Colour Temperature Matters
We’ve spoken about colour temperature on this blog again and again, but there’s a good reason for that. It’s arguably the single most important consideration when it comes to choosing outdoor lighting.
All light sits on a spectrum between orange-white and blue-white. You might have heard people throwing numbers around like 3000 kelvin or 7000 kelvin. Kelvin is a measure of temperature. At different temperatures light is different colours.
Here’s the short and sweet of what you need to know. If you need to look at the light often or it’s in an area you want to sit down and spend a lot of time in, choose an orange-white light.
Blue white lights are those extra bright BMW and Range Rover SUV headlights. You know the ones that pierce your retina and leave you wondering how they are still legal. Great for seeing, but you feel like you’re on the surgeon’s table.
If you’re hanging out the washing in the dark, get blue-white lights. If you’re trying to set a mood for your outdoor entertainment area, then orange-white lights are the way to go.
You Should Consider Solar Lights
Solar lights have come a long way recently. They’ve gone from novel garden feature to a serious garden illuminating workhorse in less than a decade. There’s a diversity to solar lights you might not have known existed. You can get solar spotlights, security lights, beautiful lanterns for your outdoor entertainment areas, and they come in a range of colours, shapes and styles.
Of course, the most enticing reason to choose solar lights for your outdoor area is that they are super easy to install. You don’t need to get an electrician in to wire your backyard, heck! You don’t even need a switch. Solar lights can be as simple as pushing a peg into the ground, or you can use a powerful adhesive or a hook for something a little more permanent.
You won’t need to replace them anytime soon either because LED lights last longer and modern lithium batteries can withstand thousands of cycles and have the capacity to power the bulb all night.
It’s not just their performance that’s improved either; modern solar lights can come with remote controls, colour settings, waterproofing, rotation settings, fire effects and more.
Commercial and Industrial Solar Lighting Outdoor
Industrial and commercial grade solar lights have applications beyond the backyard.
You’ve likely noticed this yourself but solar lights are now used for lighting minor roads and intersections as well as bike paths, footpaths, alleys, terraces and walkways.
They are commonly used to light playgrounds and parks and provide path lighting, especially in newer housing estates. Skate parks and outdoor gyms are another common use case for a high-powered solar spotlight.
There are also situations where running electrical cables is difficult, like at a marina or jetty.
Local councils especially love solar lights. For a fraction of the price and in half the time, it’s easy to light public transport hubs, council assets such as public toilets and amenity buildings or give the foreshore or esplanade a face-lift.
A solar sensor offers safety improvements over a timed light because solar lights can realise when visibility is low and light up. At the entrance to a public toilet on a dark and rainy day, it’s important to have solar lights to prevent slips and falls. Timed lights, will only switch on at night and requires additional components and timers to do this.
Another setting where solar lights are beneficial is outside of commercial buildings such as a 7-eleven, Mc Donald, KFC, and any other shops in a suburban shopping strip. There’s practically no operational cost and the environmentally friendly aspects are great for customer perception.
LED Strips Can Provide a Nice Touch
There’s nothing more aesthetically pleasing than a well placed LED strip. Under a table for a sexy neon glow or along the pool fence for an ethereal glow. If you’re looking to make a statement with your outdoor lights, LED strips are a great way to do that.
Get an App To Work Out How Much Light You Need
Before you head to the store, work out how many lights you need or more specifically how many lux you need to reach the desired level of light in your area. For outdoor entertaining areas, you need way less light than you’d think. To build a close intimate space you want an area that’s no brighter than a campfire.
One lux is equal to one lumen per square meter (lux = lumens/m2) simple right? Unfortunately no. The further the light needs to travel, and the angle that the light is coming from can both affect the number of lumens you need.
Luckily, there’s an app for that. Jump over the Apple or Play Store and download an app that helps you with your lighting calculations / does them for you.
It’s Easier to Add Light Than it is to Take it Away
Sometimes you want an area to be bright. I’m talking about security lights and lights over your door to help you find the keyhole. These shouldn’t be blinding, because then you can’t see, but they should be powerful.
For any other application, you likely need less light than you think you do. Don’t underestimate the power of modern light fixtures. Remember, if you don’t have enough light, you can add more later. If you have too much, then you’re filling holes in your roof and wasting money.
Let’s Wrap This Up
Apply the information in this article and you’ll make better outdoor lighting choices. If you need help or advice, you can always contact us. We are Sydney’s local expert in solar lighting, and we’d love to help you get that outdoor area lit.