Deck lights add glow and beauty to an outdoor space, especially after the sun goes down. They highlight features, illuminate steps, walkways, and help you relax. When it comes to installing deck lights, it’s relatively easy to do it yourself. However, there are times when it’s best to call an electrician to install the deck lighting for you.
Types of Deck Lighting
It’s best to use low-voltage systems for your deck. They are safe and easy to work with. The transformer that powers the lights just needs to be plugged in. There are low-voltage deck lighting kits available, or you can do it yourself.
How to Install Deck Lights
The first order of business is to craft a lighting plan. Draw a rough draft of your deck and jot down special features like stairs, sitting areas, and places where people congregate. Take note of the nearby receptacles where you can plug in a transformer.
Take your deck plan to a lighting showroom and pick out what light fixtures you want and where. Ask a salesperson for help. There are several types of low-voltage fixtures designed for specific purposes.
Next, connect to a power source. Waterproof wire connectors are ideal for low-voltage wiring. Try to place wires out of sight, such as under the decking. If a cable is visible, use insulated staples to fasten it to a corner or surface that’s out of the way.
Deck Lighting Options
There are many ways to light up your deck. Lights on deck stairs softly illuminate the space so people can see. Hang string lights to create a festive atmosphere. Add lighting underneath workspaces, like the grill area. Recessed lights work well in covered places protected from the elements. Deck post lights can be LED or solar-powered and are available at most home improvement stores. You can also put lights on the floor, near steps, and in dark corners. Lanterns are a quick and inexpensive way to add illumination to a deck. Solar lights are also cost effective, and no wiring is required to install them.
When to Call for Help
There are circumstances when it’s best to have an electrician do the job for you. Here are some of them.
Electrical Work is Necessary
Outdoor lighting can be challenging and potentially dangerous. A certified electrician will make sure the work is done safely and is up to code. A professional should be called if your home needs new wiring or electrical changes need to be made.
Large Projects & Complex Installations
It’s best to call a professional If you have a large property or complex outdoor lighting needs. Same is true if you’re putting lights in a hard-to-reach area such as a high roof or tall trees.
Underwater pool lighting or high-end landscape lighting will likely need to be installed by a skilled electrician. They are experienced and can ensure the lights are put in properly.
A deck lighting project can be fun and rewarding. If you are a skilled DIYer, there are some tasks you may be comfortable completing. However, if you have any doubts, call a licensed electrician for help.
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