Do-It-Yourself Outdoor Lighting Installation

Whether you’re lighting a walkway, illuminating your home facade, or adding accent lights to a garden, a do-it-yourself installation can be completed in just an hour or two. However, working with electricity is dangerous and this type of project is best left to homeowners with some experience or a licensed electrician. Learn more by clicking here at

outdoor lighting

Design Ideas

Imagine an open landscape that is framed by purposefully planted trees, shrubs, and flowers, with ornamental accents, a pathway or two, a retaining wall, a fireplace, a dining area, and a pergola for a spot to relax. It is beautiful in the daylight, but a well-designed lighting system can make it even more so at night.

A popular form of low-voltage lighting, outdoor wall lights can enhance a house’s exterior architecture, draw the eye toward architectural features, and highlight garden areas, paths, and stairs. They are especially useful around stairways and sunken seating areas where shadows lurk. Typically, these lights are recessed, which makes them more discreet.

Hardscape lighting: A growing number of homeowners are adding outdoor structures like retaining walls, staircases, and fire pits to their yards. These are ideal locations for lighting because they have a sturdy structure to hold fixtures and provide an anchor point for the light source. If you are building a new hardscaping, the best option is to incorporate these lights into the design at the time of construction, but low-voltage and solar options can also be installed as retrofits.

Landscape lighting: In-ground lights at the base of trees provide a subtle underflow. These lights come in a variety of wattages, from 20 to 40-watt LED bulbs. The choice of wattage is important because you don’t want to over-light an area, but you do want enough light to safely navigate a pathway or read a book in a hammock.

Candle-style sconces or torches add a classic, romantic look to an outdoor dining area and create a soft glow in the garden at night. Choosing candles with a translucent instead of a clear glass covering will eliminate the glare and keep mosquitoes away.

Other Lighting Ideas:

If your yard is in a dark sky zone, which means you live where light pollution is limited, a professional can help you choose lighting that doesn’t interfere with the beauty of the night sky. In addition, a lighting designer can help you plan and install smart lights that are controlled by your phone or other device.


Outdoor lighting is the final touch that makes a home shine after dark. It enhances landscaping and adds security. It can also improve curb appeal and make a home more inviting for guests. Homeowners with basic DIY skills can install their systems, but hiring a landscape lighting specialist with familiarity with the various fixtures and ways to arrange them is the best way to get stunning effects.

The first step is to decide what you want to light up. Look around with a flashlight to see how the lighting will affect your property after dark. You can spotlight focal points, create a warm glow from trees or shrubs, and shed light on walkways to highlight a front door or a porch.

Next, figure out how many lights and where they will be located. If you plan to illuminate a pathway, be sure the path is wide enough for people to pass and that the path doesn’t block views of your house or driveway. Consider using low-voltage lights for pathways to save on electricity costs and avoid glare on neighbors’ properties.

You’ll need some basic tools to install your new lights. A six to ten-piece screwdriver set with nonslip handles is useful as different types of lights require different screw terminals. Also, a wire stripper and wrench set are important for connecting lights to your low-voltage power wires.

A drill with bits for different surfaces is useful for digging holes for light stakes or large light fixtures. Landscape staples are an inexpensive way to secure low-voltage cable under mulch or gravel. Dielectric grease is a silicone-based substance that helps prevent moisture and dirt from damaging electrical connections.

If you’re planning to dig for a light cable, you should call your area’s one-number locator service (usually 811), a toll-free telephone number that will connect you with your local utility company so they can send someone to mark the underground location of any cables or pipes that could be affected by your work.

Once the ground is marked, dig trenches for the wiring, using a shovel or spade. Use a tape measure and measuring wheel to estimate cable lengths so you can purchase the right amount. When trenching, you should leave about 12 inches of slack for the wiring.


If you’re installing a new light fixture or replacing an existing one, start by turning off the power at the circuit breaker. Use a multimeter or voltage detector tool to double-check that there is no electricity running at the location where you’ll be working. Next, dig a 6″ trench along the path where you want to lay the wire. It’s a good idea to buy more outdoor wire than you think you’ll need so that you can add lights later as your landscape (and imagination) expands.

Once the trench is dug, bury the cable, making sure that you leave a few inches of slack at each end of the run to allow you to make connections in the future. Then use a utility knife to strip the sheathing from each cable end, exposing its three individual conductors. Each wire is then connected to its corresponding terminal in a junction box, e.g., brown live to the other brown lives, blue neutrals to the other blue neutrals, and ground to the other earth. Then the body of the junction box is screwed to a joist and the cover is placed over it.

Before connecting a fixture, trim any grass or other vegetation that might interfere with the mounting of the fixture. Also, be sure to splice the cable with waterproof connectors if it’s going to sit outdoors for an extended period (typically a year or more). These connectors look like metal caps that are threaded and have a blob of silicone inside that makes them weatherproof.

When the connectors are firmly in place, connect the incoming and outgoing cables by twisting them together. Black wires connect white wires, and the grounding wire extending from the wall is wrapped around the green bolt on the new fixture twice. Then top the connections with a wire connector and tighten it if necessary. Finally, splice the ends of the grounding wire with more silicone and cover them with a cap to prevent water from leaking into the connections.


There are a variety of outdoor lighting fixtures that add beauty and functionality to a property. Choose the fixtures that suit your home’s style and fit into your budget. Remember that the light fixture is only part of the overall picture; the rest of your landscape should be well-planned to highlight the features you love. Consult with a landscaping professional or electrician if you’re not comfortable working with electricity.

Start by sketching the area you’re going to illuminate with your lights. You’ll want to walk the installation site at night to see how your lighting ideas will work. Sketch in the location of outlets, trees, shrubbery, and walkways along with your deck or patio. Make sure you include areas that need to be lit for safety.

The type of outdoor lighting you choose will depend on the technique you’re attempting to achieve, such as silhouettes, shadowing, uplighting, wall washing, and downlighting. Also, consider the size and placement of the light fixtures. You don’t want the light to overwhelm the landscape.

After purchasing your light fixtures, a good idea is to construct and bury a footer that will shore up the top-heavy fixtures. Then use gel-filled wire connectors made specifically for outdoor electrical wiring to connect the fixtures to the cable.

When installing the lighting system, be sure to follow all the manufacturer’s instructions. Be aware that the wires will be exposed to the elements, so you’ll need to protect them from moisture and corrosion. The best materials for these types of outdoor lighting include galvanized steel and bronze, which are less prone to corrosion than stainless steel.

After all the lights are in place, turn on the transformer and test each one for proper operation. This is a good time to check the lights for glare, which can be corrected by changing the angle of light or adjusting its glare guard. When everything is in working order, your backyard will be transformed by the warm glow of your carefully planned lighting. And don’t forget to enjoy the view in the daytime as well!


How To Get The Most Out Of Your Engagement Photography Session

Whether you are getting married soon or are just getting engaged, your engagement photography session is the perfect way to capture your love story. There are many things to consider when it comes to engagement photos, but the most important thing is to make sure your session is as unique as possible. Let your photographer know what your vision is for the engagement photos. Your engagement shoot should be fun and exciting, but not overdone.

engagement and wedding photographyDuring the ceremony, be sure to capture everyone walking down the aisle, especially the bride’s maids, and the reactions of the audience. If possible, bring along a colleague or assistant so you can work together. First-look photos are important and should be captured for your wedding album. Photograph the groom’s face when he first sees his bride, as well as hers. The final processional phase should be photographed as well. Make sure to get shots of the bridesmaids holding the bouquets.

Another common style is documentary-style photography. These photos are a mix of traditional and documentary-style photography. The former is similar to those you might see in your parents’ wedding photos, and it is often posed and eye-level. While the latter is a popular choice for weddings, it isn’t the only style to choose. Many photographers have embraced the photojournalistic style, which records the day as it unfolds.

When selecting a photographer, make sure they keep their equipment updated and maintained. You can check the availability of wedding photography venues on various websites by sending them photos. This way, you can narrow down the field of choice and find the most suitable photographer for your wedding. It is important to make the right choice of a wedding photographer so you can enjoy the experience. FYI, it is important to make sure the photographer you choose has good communication skills, too.

The wedding day itself is special. A good photographer will capture candid moments as well as posed formal portraits. The photographer should also allow time for portraits of the bride and groom alone. Consider capturing the bride reading a letter, or putting on her jewelry. These moments are sure to be priceless and will remain treasured forever. You will never regret hiring a wedding photographer. If you are planning a wedding, don’t let the photography process overwhelm you.

A second photographer can also help the photographer capture the couple and the venue. In this way, she or he can concentrate on the two of you and your wedding day. Your second photographer can then take pictures of the guests and family members. Another option for you is to find an amateur photographer and get their help. If you can’t afford a professional, you can also consider enlisting the help of friends or community members. They may be willing to lend a hand to capture your special day.

After choosing a photographer, go through the finished albums to get a feel for their style. A wedding photographer should have a passion for the industry and enjoy capturing beautiful weddings. If possible, try to find someone who matches your style. A personable personality is very important for a successful wedding. Choosing a photographer who is professional and personable will make the entire process much smoother. If your wedding photographer doesn’t match these qualities, you’ll likely regret it.

As for candid shots, wedding photographers should focus on the couple and their wedding party. The bride and groom should be the focus of their shots, but remember to capture all the fun and spontaneous moments that will make your wedding day memorable. Make sure the photographer captures individual portraits of the groom with each of his groomsmen, not just the group shot. The groom can take a standard pose or even a funny one! You can even find specific posing cues for the grooms to be photographed.

While wedding photographers are largely responsible for capturing moments and emotions, weddings can be stressful. A wedding day is notorious for unpredictable challenges, including difficult lighting conditions, bad weather, and unruly clients. Make sure to wear comfortable shoes because you will be moving from location to location very quickly. A great wedding photographer should be able to predict candid outpourings and avoid letting the stress get the best of them. They should also be aware of the timeline, which is usually unrealistic.


Hiring a Professional Garage Door Installer

Hiring a professional to install your new garage door is a great idea. This will ensure that the door is installed properly and operates smoothly for years to come. A professional will ensure that all safety accessories for the door are correctly installed. You will receive a quote for the installation based on the size and complexity of the garage. Read on for more information. You can also use online reviews to help you find the right installer.

It is important to note that there are several steps involved in professional garage door installation. You need to have the right tools and equipment for the job. A wrongly installed garage door can cause damage to your home and your family. You should also avoid installing your own opener if you are not sure what you are doing. There are many mistakes that can be made with an improperly installed garage gate. A professional is aware of these details and will ensure that they are done correctly.
You should check with your local building department to determine whether they require a permit. This will help you know the local regulations regarding garage doors in your area. Moreover, you should ask the installers how they prepare the site before installation. They will make sure that the tracks are properly installed and the door is properly ordered. This way, you will know that they have done a good job. Finally, you should always contact a professional garage door installer to avoid any hassles in the future.
The best thing you can do is hire a professional company for your garage door installation. This way, you will know who is doing the work. Otherwise, you’ll have to hire a general handyman or an independent contractor to do the job. You may have to call them again if you have problems after the installation. Besides, you don’t want your new door to break down or cause you to have to pay for the repair yourself.
The process of installing a new garage door starts with proper measurements. The process will differ slightly if you’re installing a carriage or wooden door. You should make sure that the company you hire is competent and professional. In addition, the costs of professional garage door installation depend on the company you hire. Some companies charge a flat rate while others charge by the hour. The price will vary depending on the type of door you’re buying and the specialized hardware.
When hiring a professional garage door installation company, you will know who’s doing the work. If you’re hiring an independent contractor, you won’t know who is doing the work. A general handyman or an independent contractor may not be able to provide you with the required tools. You won’t be able to trust them with the installation process if they have never installed a garage before. A professional will be able to handle this for you and make sure it’s installed properly.
In addition to offering warranty coverage for their services, a professional garage door installation company should be able to offer a satisfaction guarantee. It’s a good idea to ask about their guarantee as a courtesy since a good company will do everything they can to ensure your satisfaction. This way, you can feel confident that your new garage door installation will meet all your needs. And you can be sure that a professional will install your new garage door correctly the first time.
Using a professional company for garage door installation is the best option. This will ensure that you have a high-quality system installed with minimum disruption to your daily routine. Using a professional company will ensure that the new system will be safe and functional. It’s also beneficial to have peace of mind that your new garage door is installed correctly, which will ensure that it will last for a long time. In addition, you’ll be sure to get a warranty for your new garage door.
You can choose to have a professional install a new garage door for you. A professional installer will take care of the installation process from start to finish. Once the installer completes the installation, you can sit back and relax for the next two weeks. Your new garage door will be installed by a professional during the installation. You won’t need to know anything about the process, and the installer will be able to guide you through it step-by-step.