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Outdoor Lighting Tips & Ideas [Video]

June 16, 2020 | Blog

Café lights, patio lights, landscape lighting, area lighting and security lighting, oh my! What should I pick? Where should they go? How will they turn on? How will they turn off? Will it match my house?

NO worries! Arnold Electric has been helping clients answer these questions and identify all of their outdoor lighting needs and wants as long as we have been in business. Read along for some helpful tips when planning your next outdoor lighting project.

Decorative Lighting

Decorative style outdoor lighting is a great way to bring a new energy and look to the outside space you want to illuminate.

For example, a front porch light is standard on most homes and can be changed with a wide variety of different style lights to give you a new look at the front door for coming and going. Coach lights on a garage or a fence post in the front yard are more great examples of decorative outdoor lighting.

Outdoor lighting styles vary from home to home. Some might be an industrial looking light fixture, such as a gooseneck fixture, that you see lighting up signs on commercial buildings. There are homeowner grade gooseneck fixtures that can add a really custom look to your home or outdoor area. Gooseneck fixtures come in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes.

Another option might be “jelly jar” lights – a glass fixture encased by metal rods. The jelly jar lights are a clean industrial look that are super functional and will last a really long time.

Landscape Lighting

Landscape lighting is in a class of its own! It can serve several functions: curb appeal, security lighting, and you can get super decorative with landscape lighting. There is a large variety of landscape lighting that can give you a very high-end, custom feel to any outdoor lighting project.

A popular project is recessed landscape lights in your retaining wall, or in your stairs, leading to your front door or pathway lighting. And let’s not forget how awesome landscape lighting looks when it’s illuminating a large tree in your yard!

Security Lighting

Security, motion, and area lighting are other forms of exterior lighting that are cost effective and functional, yet less attractive in a decorative sense. You want to consider reliability when choosing which fixtures to select for these types of applications.

Home improvement center light fixtures may work out of the box but will not last as long as other options available to you. In this application, you may just want to have your electrical contractor select these fixtures for you from one of their suppliers.

Switching Lighting On/Off

Finally, how will they turn on and off? A regular wall switch will do the job, but if you want more options and control, you can have that too. A “dusk to dawn sensor”, also known as a photocell, will automatically turn your lights on when the sun goes down, and then turn your lights off when the sun comes up.

Maybe you live in a condo building and have many outdoor lights that you need to turn on at the same time. In this case, you’d use a time clock light switch to control a sequence of lights.

Lastly is an Arnold Electric favorite – smart switches that work with an internet connection and a smart phone app. On your smart phone app, you can turn the lights on and off or use the smart switch on the wall.

You can also use the app as a time clock to turn lights on and off at a certain time. Already in bed and don’t want to run downstairs to turn the lights off? Just pull your phone out, open up your smart switch app and press “off”. It’s that easy!

Do you need help walking through your outdoor lighting needs with a licensed electrician? Give Arnold Electric Services a call at 773-647-1120.

Thank you,

– Jack Arnold

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What Our Clients Say

Fantastic Service

I have used Arnold Electric a few times for my business. I wasn’t sure what my options were for lighting in my office. Jack was so nice to bring some samples for me to try before installing! They are wonderful!

Dr. Lauren Shultz

Reliable and Professional

The team over at Arnold Electric has been great to work with. We recently purchased a home and have had Pedro out to do a review of the electrical system, make some minor repairs and present some options to improve the out dated and DIY wiring in our home. The team has done a great job of communicating expectations and explaining everything for us.

Kirk Heavner

Excellent Work

Very easy to work with, excellent work on jobs big (new underground line to a detached garage) and small (changing the interior fixture.

Lauren Harms

Punctual, Courteous and Clean

This company is absolutely the most professional and conscientious electrical contractor I’ve ever had the pleasure of hiring. I’ve used them several times from things like replacing my electrical panel, to wiring issues, to installing a ceiling fan. I will also use them for anything else electrical going forward. They’re always punctual, courteous and clean. I’m very particular, and hard to please. I’m not afraid to call and complain about less than perfect service from anyone I hire. Arnold Electrical Service, thank you for all the jobs well done!

Jesse Mills

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My husband and I highly recommend Arnold Electric. Jack Arnold is the owner and is very detailed and professional. Follow Arnold Electric on Facebook and get some great tips and information along with current job details.

Debbie Neer

Fair Pricing and Excellent Work

Jack’s team came in and did a complete home inspection and repaired a light above my wife’s sink. My marriage has been saved now that the light is fixed. Very fair pricing and excellent work!

Douglas Sheehan

Reasonable Price & Professional

Joe came to my house to fix a dumb thing I did. (DON’T DO YOUR OWN ELECTRICAL WORK!) He was friendly, fast and very helpful, answering all my questions in a polite and tolerant manner.
The charges were very reasonable for the professional quality service I received. They will be coming back to do some new wiring and circuits soon. Highly Recommend!

John Buckley