For many homeowners, landscape lighting’s value is primarily in aesthetics. Properly set up lighting goes a long way toward beautifying a property after all. However, implementing landscape lighting isn’t just good for improving a house’s aesthetics, it’s also good for improving security as well.

Outdoor lighting systems also offer great benefits for security, including:

  • Illuminating potential entry points into a house
  • Eliminating dark areas and possible hiding spots around the property
  • Creating the impression the house is occupied

When selecting lights for security purposes, some types of lights to keep in mind include:

  • Flood lights – These are powerful, wide-angled fixtures designed to illuminate wide areas with single fixtures. When it comes to illuminating as wide an area as possible, these are your best bet.
  • Path lights – When your lights need to light up a path and eliminate dark spots that might encourage intruders, 360-degree are ideal. These lights shine a light in a wide area that allows you to see your path clearly while also keeping the area around them bright and eliminating potential hiding places.
  • Downlights – Downlights are typically intended to provide light from a high area, but they have their uses in a security-related context. Downlights can be set around entry points like side doors and garage doors to provide illumination around those sensitive areas.

While these are some basic outdoor lighting safety insights, it also helps to have some concrete tips to help you use them properly. Some landscape lighting tips that can help you bolster your home security include:

Eliminate dark areas outside the house to deny trespassers cover

  • Eliminating all dark areas

A good rule of thumb when it comes to illuminating your landscape is leaving no dark areas. Dark areas are potential hiding places intruders may use to stealthily gain access to the house, so the fewer blind spots, the better. Many homeowners find motion-activated lights useful for safety, however that is inadvisable. The truth is that this approach leaves large swathes of landscape dark until the lights activate, which is less effective deterrence than leaving those areas lit. Instead, install soft lighting throughout your landscape to gently illuminate those large areas and establish visual control over the property.

Have overlapping layers of light to create layers of security

  • Extending visual reach

When it comes to lighting your exterior spaces, it’s not enough to light up the house and call it a day. It’s also a good idea to illuminate the surrounding area and encompass the entire property. This additional lighting creates more layers of security by creating more lights further away from your house that eliminates opportunities for intruders to even approach your home. Path lights and downlights work to light up walkways and patios, while up lights and floodlights provide additional visual control over your surroundings. With all this light, it’s much easier to look out across your property and see conditions for yourself, allowing you to identify any issues right away.

  • Illuminating garages and side doors

Focusing your lighting efforts on entry points is an obvious place to start, but you can also take steps to beef up your security on this front. Entrances are obvious vulnerabilities, but side doors and garages are particularly at-risk, being less-obvious entrances that are more likely to be overlooked. For example, consider illuminating the pillars between the side door to frame and accentuate it. This approach allows you to see what is happening on either side of the door easily, eliminating a weak point that can provide inadvertent entry inside. Besides, the effect can help draw attention to the door and add some spice to that part of the house.

  • Leaving lights on from dawn to dusk

Many homeowners elect to turn off all the lights when it’s time to turn in. However, for security reasons, it might be a good idea to keep them on until sunrise. Keeping the lights on allows you to keep the property lit fully all night long. Keep in mind, crime doesn’t have a curfew, and a trespasser can enter at any time. Maintaining your lighting through the night makes clear that your house is not vulnerable, and that trying to gain entry is more trouble than it’s worth. As an aside, you can also invest in smart timers for your lighting to ensure they turn off once the sun rises so you’re only covered when it’s dark.

  • Choosing indirect lighting

When it comes to landscape lighting, less is usually more. Rather than use bright, harsh lighting or motion-activated lights that activate when the wind blows, use an indirect lighting system to avoid any inconvenience. Indeed, so irritating is excess light, places in Canada are considering legislation preventing such lights. These lights are less harsh, lighting the property in a less obvious and obtrusive manner. Typically, you want to see the lights themselves, but not the source. This allows you to enjoy the benefits of lighting without drawing attention to the lights. Instead, you can focus your attention on the area and features around them. Not only does it maintain security without annoying the neighbours, it’s also a great way to ensure your external space remains highlighted.

Landscape lighting can be a powerful addition to your home security, if you know what you’re doing. Keep this guide in mind when building your outdoor lighting system to ensure you’re kept safe, and you’re doing it as efficiently as you can.

Looking for professional help setting up your external lighting. Augusta Green Sprinklers is here to help. We’ve got the tools and the training to meet all your needs and set up your lights so your home pops. Give us a call now at (416) 227-1666 to get started.