Outdoor security lighting protects your house from possible intruders and lets you feel safer at night. Do you know which kind of LED lighting fixtures you should install around your home?
The best security lighting is a mixture of LED flood lights, path lighting and accent lighting for doorways and garden ornaments.
These lighting fixtures should also include motion sensor lights, timers, dimmers, and solar-powered lighting.
Here is a simple guide to choosing the best outdoor LED security lighting and where to place them around the house.
Why and Where to Use Floodlights
Floodlights are good security elements for two reasons; they illuminate a large area and they have the element of surprise when combined with a motion-detector system.
We definitely recommend installing all flood lights with motion sensors. This not only saves on the electricity bills but also avoids light pollution.
Flood lights need a lot of energy to produce such bright light for a large space so leaving them on continuously is not friendly to your wallet.
Also, the brightness of flood lights is an eyesore. Choose flood lights with an appropriate cutoff degree to avoid glare and complaining neighbors.
Another way to save on monthly bills is to opt for solar powered flood lights. If the flood light position gets plenty of sunlight each day then a photocell LED flood light gets rid of your running costs.
Place flood lights strategically around the house at the most likely entry points and large open spaces. Smart places to install a flood light is above the garage door, blind spots like an alleyway and large lawns or porches.
Why and Where to Use Path Lighting
Combine path lighting with a motion-detector or dimmer for better security. This adds to the uncertainty of being able to reach the house undetected.
Like with flood lights, using solar-powered path lights is an energy efficient way to cut down electricity costs. LED path lights already are quite energy efficient so they don’t require a large photocell panel.
Another benefit of using solar powered path lighting is that you don’t need to deal with any wiring, a welcome feature when you have a large backyard. All you need to do is secure the path light and wait for the sun to do its thing.
Brightness is not the main concern for path lights. Instead, find path lights with a full cutoff so that only where you are walking is illuminated enough for you not to fall.
Place path lights along the most frequented walkways around your house. This is probably from the street to your front door and along the paths in your backyard.
Why and Where to Use Accent Lighting for Security
Accent lighting is used to illuminate specific spots around the garden and house. Common spots for accent lighting is by doors, under large trees or bushes, and on porches or terraces. Accent lighting if done tastefully, can cover both your outdoor security needs as well as add a touch of modern outdoor lighting to your garden.
Accent lighting near the house should provide enough light to see what is happening outside without the light spreading inside. For security reasons, you want minimal visibility into your house so that passersby cannot see any of your valuables.
Though you don’t want accent lighting to spread inside the house, you do want visibility from the street. In case there is a stranger on your lawn or porch, you want your neighbors to be able to see them.
Another thing to remember about accent lighting is whether they let you perform tasks safely. For example, the light by your door should make you feel comfortable looking for your keys at night.
Mount lighting fixtures on the wall next to doors so you can see who is standing there from a nearby window. Place a spotlight on the ground by shrubs and trees so they cannot be used as places to hide.
Accent lighting is easy to forget so it is better for your own security to install a timer for all accent lights. Let them turn on at dusk and automatically switch off at dawn.
Why You Should Use LED Security Lighting
The best LED security lighting for identifying unwanted visitors has two qualities; a high color rendering value (CRi) and a strong spectral power distribution or SPD.
Color rendering is how accurate colors appear under the light source. A light source with a CRi of 80 or above shows colors most accurately.
SPD has to do with the wavelengths of the light source and how this reflects on colors. Certain light sources enhance specific colors while other colors appear flatter.
The reason why we recommend LEDs for security lighting is because of its high CRi value and good SPD. Aside from fluorescent lighting, LEDs are the only type of light bulb that doesn’t fade any color but still intensifies all colors.
Whether you use security cameras or not, getting a clear and accurate view of what is happening around your house is important for identifying any possible intruders.
Pro Tips for Installing Security Lighting
Before purchasing your security lights, walk around your house at night to check where the blind spots are and which kind of lighting you need in each spot. Then, also walk around at different times during the day to decide whether you can use solar powered lighting in specific spots.
Consider how the type of lighting affects the surrounding area. Does it affect the lighting from the street or neighbors and how much of your interior is visible with the lighting placements?
Where possible, cover your lighting fixtures with caging that prevents vandalism. Remove items like tools from your yard that can be used to break lights.
Make a quick sketch of your house and outdoor space. Plot where you need which kind of lighting before making your purchase online.