What are the different types of landscape lighting and what are they used for?
Landscape lighting is a great way to accentuate your home’s architecture after sunset, and it also provides safety benefits for your family and guests. Whether you simply need to illuminate walking paths or you’re creating a vibrant outdoor living space, there are many different types of landscape lighting options to complete your project. There are four main types of landscape lighting: solar, line voltage, low voltage, and LED.
Solar-powered landscape lights are energy free and the fixtures are relatively inexpensive. You can also place them virtually anywhere, without having to worry about complicated wiring systems, making them a great option for garden lights and lighting pathways. Solar energy is harnessed by a solar panel, which converts sunlight into electricity. The solar cells are then wired to a battery-powered light. Solar landscape lights typically utilize highly-efficient LED bulbs. Solar-powered fixtures may not produce strong light output compared to other choices, but they still remain a desirable and cost-effective option for homeowners who live in areas with abundant sunshine.
If you have a very large landscape area or you need security lighting, line voltage landscape lights might be a better option. Line voltage landscape lights (or high voltage) can use higher wattage bulbs, and they have the ability to use different types of bulbs, including fluorescent, incandescent, sodium, and mercury vapor. Line voltage fixtures are typically more expensive and they have higher operating costs, and you will likely need an electrician to install.
LED (light emitting diode)
Landscape lights that utilize LED bulbs are extremely energy efficient and last for a long time. LED bulbs are also very versatile, and can be used in solar, low voltage, and line voltage lighting systems. LED landscape lights are a great choice if you don’t need to illuminate a very large area. Their efficiency and versatility makes them a popular option for homeowners who are looking to liven up their backyard or create a cozy outdoor patio.
Low voltage landscape lights are energy efficient and easy to install compared with line voltage, which requires trenching. Because they do not require trenching, low voltage landscape lights also offer more flexibility, allowing you to switch them out if you decide to change your outdoor décor. These lights have a surprisingly high amount of light output, giving them the perfect balance of energy efficiency and illumination power. Although sodium bulbs and mercury vapor bulbs cannot be used with low voltage lights, they provide more than enough light for most outdoor spaces.