How To Safely Install Outdoor Lights For Your Home

There are many reasons why you might want the outside of your home to have lighting. You might be concerned about the security of the outside of your home. You might also want to be abo to enjoy the outdoors even when it is dark outside. However, your home will need outdoor lighting that will be durable enough to survive the outside elements.

Plan Your Outdoor Lighting with an Electrical Contractor

A residential electrical contractor will help you plan your outdoor lighting. The first step is to explain to them what you would like to accomplish. For example, you'll want to explain the areas of your home you would like to illuminate, whether aesthetics are an important consideration, and the security concerns of your home. 

For example, you might want to install several bright security lights that are motion-activated. You might also need a spotlight for an area of your home that you're especially concerned about such as a door that is not easily visible at night. If your home doesn't have the wiring necessary to generate the electrical power needed to provide this level of illumination, consult with an electrician.

Find Lighting Meant for Outdoor Use

The lighting will need to be considered suitable for outdoor use. Outdoor lighting might be tested by the Electrical Testing Laboratories or the Underwriter Laboratories. Look for the EL or UL mark to confirm that the lighting will be safe to use. If there is no label, you should assume that the light is meant only for dry areas and cannot be used outdoors.

Install the Necessary Wiring for Your Outdoor Lights

Even with lighting that is meant for outdoor use, it's still important to carefully plan out how you will install your electrical lighting so that it can all be installed safely. For example, you will need to know the maximum load needed.

There are various wiring methods that can be used to add outdoor lighting to your home. For example, your home might need:

  • PVC electrical pipes
  • Cable buried under soil or concrete
  • Running the cable overhead
  • Buried with a rigid or flexible metal

Each of these options is suitable under the right circumstances. A residential electrical contractor such as Electricraft will be able to help you determine which option is the right one for you and will install the wires for you. Burying an underground feeder cable is a very common option and also affordable.