Jul 08, 2024

Deck lighting serves multiple purposes. It enhances the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor area, making it an attractive spot for gatherings. Additionally, proper lighting ensures safety by illuminating stairs, edges, and obstacles, preventing accidents. This beginner's guide will walk you through the essentials of outdoor lighting installation for your deck.

Types of Deck Lighting

Before diving into installation, it’s important to understand the different types of deck lighting available.

  • Post Cap Lights: These lights are installed on top of deck posts, providing a downward glow that illuminates the railing and surrounding area.
  • Recessed Deck Lights: Installed flush with the surface, these lights are perfect for stair risers or the edges of the deck, offering subtle yet effective illumination.
  • String Lights: Versatile and easy to install, string lights can be draped across railings, pergolas, or overhead structures, adding a whimsical touch.
  • Under-Rail Lights: These lights are mounted under the deck railing, casting light downwards to highlight the deck's perimeter.
  • Landscape Spotlights: While not directly installed on the deck, these lights can be positioned in the surrounding landscape to highlight architectural features or focal points.

Planning Your Deck Lighting

A successful landscape lighting installation begins with careful planning. Here are the steps to follow.

  • Assess Your Space: Take note of the deck's layout, including stairs, railings, and any features you want to highlight. Consider how you use the space and identify areas that need illumination for safety and aesthetics.
  • Choose the Right Lights: Based on your assessment, select the types of lights that best suit your needs. A combination of different lights often works best to create a layered and balanced lighting scheme.
  • Plan the Layout: Sketch a layout of your deck, marking the locations for each light. Ensure even spacing and consider the light coverage area. This step is crucial for achieving a harmonious look.
  • Power Source: Decide on the power source for your lights. Low-voltage lighting is a popular choice for deck lighting due to its safety and energy efficiency. Solar-powered lights are another option, though they may not provide consistent lighting.

Installation Process

Now that you have a plan, it’s time to start the outdoor lighting installation.

  • Gather Tools and Materials: You’ll need the lights, a transformer (for low-voltage systems), a power drill, screws, wire cutters, connectors, and possibly a shovel if you're burying cables.
  • Install the Transformer: If using low-voltage lights, install the transformer near an outdoor outlet. Follow the manufacturer's instructions to connect it to the power source.
  • Run the Wires: Lay out the wiring according to your plan. Use weatherproof connectors to join wires and secure them to the deck or bury them in the ground if needed.
  • Mount the Lights: Install each light in its designated location. For post cap lights, attach them to the top of the posts. Recessed lights will require drilling holes in the deck surface. String lights can be hung using hooks or ties.
  • Connect and Test: Connect the lights to the wiring, ensuring all connections are secure. Once everything is connected, turn on the power and test the lights. Make any necessary adjustments to ensure all areas are adequately illuminated.

By following this guide by Abulous Lighting, you can confidently embark on your landscape lighting installation project. With careful planning and execution, your deck will become a welcoming oasis for all your outdoor activities.

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Kimberly Buckland

Absolute Lighting installed my outdoor flood lights 2 years ago and they are beautiful! They did such a great job that I used them to setup and take down the Christmas lights for the past 2 years. I would highly recommend them. Frank always responds to questions and automatically puts me on the schedule for set up and take down of the Christmas Lights.

Graham Antin

We love Abulous lighting and have been using them for years  They are very responsive and professional and  will come back no questions asked for any follow up work  Good pricing and highly trustworthy  Frank, the owner, is a true  stand up guy.  I recommend without reservation

Allan Conlan

Frank and the team at Abulous were great to work with. They came out and retro-upgraded some previous lighting that we had done a few years back and made it look as seamless and continuous as possible. They also worked with us on the best (& most economical) way to light up a hard to reach area of our yard. They also followed up with us after we had another group of workers "disturb" some of the lighting wires and came back out and fixed everything back up again. Very friendly, dependable local resource who do great work. Highly recommend.

Mike Thomas

After reviewing multiple companies we contracted with Abilous Lighting to create outside accent lighting for our home, backyard patio, walkways, & fire pit.  Their ideas and design were the best!   It was a pleasure working with Frank Hasty, who did  the design, and his crew of Brandon & Rusty who performed the work.  All were excellent to work with.   We are very happy with Abulous Lighting.