Tips For Safely Installing Temporary Outdoor Lighting

11 Safety Tips For Installing Temporary Outdoor Lighting

When it comes to the outdoor lighting in and around our properties, most of us have some lights that they control, such as the security and porch lights. The other options are under public lighting. But some of the outdoor lights will serve as a decorative installation such as what we see on houses during Christmas and Halloween holidays.

Safety is a huge concern for every homeowner. We want our family, pets, and guests to feel safe whether their stay is short or long. As such, the availability of ample power cords, bulbs, and controls to ensure that you can manage the outdoor lighting becomes a significant investment for our gardens.

Many people have little to no regard for the importance of observing safety when installing outdoor lighting, especially if it is a temporary setup. They will not struggle to ensure everything is put up correctly and is up to code since they are not going for permanent installations. However, electricity and power connections are not a simple matter that you can handle as a triviality; they are always a danger. It is for this reason that the National Electrical Code has requirements for temporary electrical installations that are in line with the standard guidelines.

As such, safety comes first when you think of installing outdoor lighting in your yard. Therefore, you need to implement the following tips:

1. Install Outdoor-Rated Fixtures

Any lighting fixture you want to set up in your outdoor spaces should be built and designed for such a location and purpose. For instance, the porch lights are installed under the roof thus are never meant to get wet, but if you need to pick the type that designed for outdoor applications since it is bound to get damp and face fluctuation of hot and cold conditions.

Another example is the wall lighting fixture that will go next to the door. It may not have a protective cover and as such should sustain high impacts up to a certain degree and have high weather resistance, especially if it will be used on the exterior walls.

2. Use Outdoor-Rated Light Bulbs

Use the wrong type of bulb for exposed lighting fixtures such as the floodlights can you will be replacing it regularly. What works for the porch lighting will not suffice for the exposed installations. You should think about the life of the bulb even as you check its outdoor usage rating. Read the product description of some of the products, it the bulb can survive extremes such as the heat in an oven or the cold of a freezer, then it probably will work for outdoor purposes.

3. Avoid Using Metallic Binding Materials

When installing any lighting ornaments and wires, you should avoid damage the wires or using materials that are metallic for binding. Metal is an excellent electricity conductor. You should opt for materials such as plastic ties which are inexpensive, safe, and a popular choice for such jobs.

4. Use Outdoor-Rated Extension Cords

Extension cords will help pull the electric up to specific points where you want to install the lighting. However, you should only use the extensions cords that are made for outdoor applications. The indoor variety tends to be light and very flexible thus less robust for any outdoor use. You should use outdoor-rated extension cords only, even if you are putting up temporary lighting set up in your yard.

5. Avoid Over-lamping” A Fixture

Most lighting fixtures have a label or sticker that states the maximum wattage. Some will read 45W, 60W, and others 100W. Always abide by what the labels say so that you do not install the wrong bulb that will overheat the fixture’s wiring damaging the insulation of the wires. The indication on the stickers denotes the wattage you need to check for the bulbs you installed. For instance, if you opt for a CFL bulb in a 60W fixture, then you choose one the uses up any amount of power that is less than or equal to 60 watts and is amount to generate a higher illumination (light) than a 100W; 200W incandescent bulb.

6. Use Decorative Lights Made For Outdoor Use

If you need lighting for decorate purposes such as to light up skulls and pumpkins during Halloween or make the home showcase the festive mood of Christmas, then you should check the labeling to ensure you are using the right kind of lights. They should not be for indoor purposes. Pick the type that reads it is for an outdoor or multipurpose (outdoor/indoor) application.

7. Fit Weather-Resistant Receptacles

Ensure that you have outdoor receptacles installed for your power source options, even if you are working with temporary loads. It is a safer and a more presentable means of getting the power you need from one point to the outdoors instead of running a cord through the window or the doorway that can even cause someone to trip and fall over. You may benefit from especially covers for the wire; you also set the same for the receptacles. But with the receptacles, they should be able to handle hot, cold, and damp condition, meaning they should have a high weather-resistance rating.

8. Invest In GFCI Protection

The use of a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter, or GFCI in short, is a protection measure. You should install GFCI power outlets in any section of your home where you might need to plug something in and still have a grounded electricity delivery. GFCI should be installed in the basements, kitchens, garages, bathrooms, attics, crawl space, and the porch for when you need to pull some electricity to your garden.

If the power feeds for your outdoor receptacles have GFCI protect that can be from a GFC device upstream or the circuit breaker, then you can work with a regular weather-resistant receptacle. But if that is not the case, then you should install a weather-resistant GFCI receptacle.

9. Cover Receptacles In Damp Locations Under A Roof

If you have the outdoor receptacles installed in an area that is protected from direct weather elements, you can cover them with a trap door that stays shut when nothing is plugged into that point. Make sure that you use covers that are rated ideal for damp locations and conditions.

10. Install A Cover For Exposed, Wet Locations

If the outdoor receptacles are installed in locations that have them exposed to the elements, then you should cover with an “in-use” cover. It will keep the receptacles and any attached plugs dry and shielded from the rain.

11. Watch Out for Flammable Materials

Avoid installing the lights next to materials catch fire quickly, especially if you are using lighting materials that produce heat. For instance, the decorative lights you need for the manager can see you use an accent light and still create the desired effect. Take some time to consider your decorative materials and plans so that you can planning for the lights accordingly.

If you would like to discover more tips and tricks from Robert Huff Illuminationsvisit our blog. Call or contact us today for more information!

How Many Lumens Is Too Many Lumens?

Outdoor Lighting: How Many Lumens Do I Need?

Lumens are a measure of the intensity of light. As such, the higher a lamp’s lumen rating, the brighter it will appear. The number of lumens you require for outdoor lighting will, therefore, depend on the kind of light you want.

Now that we’ve learned what lumens are, here is our professional lumens recommendation for a variety of outdoor lights.

  • Path lighting – 100 to 200 lumens
  • Step lights – 12 to 100 lumens
  • Floodlights – 700 to 1300 lumens
  • Pond and pool lights – 200 to 400 lumens
  • Motion sensor lights – 300 to 700 lumens
  • Landscape lights – 50 to 300 lumens (50 lumens is excellent for small shrubbery or gardens)
  • Hardscape lighting (on walls) – 50 to 185 lumens

When thinking about outdoor lighting, seriously consider going for LED.

Homeowners typically have two types of outdoor lightbulbs when purchasing outdoor lighting. These are CFLs and LEDs.

As outdoor lighting experts, we recommend that you go with LED lights. In this article, we will explain the difference between CFLs and LEDs and why you should consider working with LED lighting.

Outdoor lighting: CFLs or LEDs

How Each Works:

Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs) use electrical currents to heat filaments inside the bulb. When fully heated up, the filaments become white-hot, producing heat and light. Because these filaments are very sensitive, the lifespan of CFL bulbs is relatively short, especially when left in extremely cold or hot ambient temperatures, such Texas’s summer temperatures. Furthermore, CFLs take quite a while to light up fully.

Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs), on the other hand, do not rely on fragile filaments to light up an area. Nevertheless, they use electrical currents to illuminate tiny diodes found inside the bulbs. Light emitting diodes do not put much heat; which means that they stay cool to the touch. These lights fare quite well in all outdoor temperatures and fully light up as soon as they are activated.

Operational Costs:

Light emitting diodes cost lesser to operate compared to CFL. They use 50 percent less energy to produce the same amount of light CFLs produce. That means that LEDs, of all light bulb options, produce higher amounts of lumens per wattage consumed.

Lifespan:

Light emitting diodes last up to five times longer than compact fluorescent lights.

Price:

At the moment, CFLs cost much cheaper than LEDs. Fortunately, though, LED bulb prices have been dropping in the last couple of years, making some LED options much more affordable than their CFL counterparts.

Other things to Consider

1. Lux

Lux measures a lights luminous flux per unit area. In essence, it gives users an idea of how far or field size a bulb/light can illuminate. Lux plays a crucial role in telling you how many lights you will need to cover an area or space.

To help you understand it better, please note that one lux is equal to the amount of illumination a single candle can provide from approx. 3 feet away.

2. Wattage

Wattage is used to quantify a bulb’s energy transfer rate – in essence; it is the measure of how much electricity a bulb consumes. For instance, a 75-watt light bulb consumes 75 watts of power each second it’s on. The higher a light’s wattage, the more electricity it consumes and the higher the electric bill will be.

If your outdoor lighting project requires the installation of lots of outdoor lights, your wattage demand will be higher, and you might need to have a professional electrician install a new circuit for you.

If you would like to discover more tips and tricks from Robert Huff Illuminationsvisit our blog. Call or contact us today for more information!

How To Prepare Your Residential Outdoor Lighting For Halloween

Do’s And Don’ts For Residential Outdoor Halloween Lighting

Robert Huff Illuminations wishes you a Happy And Spooky Halloween! Halloween is almost here and everybody must be thinking about what to do to make their house a treat. Well, with proper lighting in your backyard, you can make sure that everybody including ninjas, zombies, superheroes, princesses and everyone else dressed up has a good Halloween. It’s a good way to keep everyone around the area safe to prevent injuries. Also, they will have a good idea of where to get the best goodies. You need to take time deciding the best lighting for your home this Halloween.

Most homeowners love decorating their yards for the festivities season, whether it’s Halloween, Thanksgiving or Christmas. Soon enough, a lot of guests will be coming to your home for trick or treating. After that, a few people should pass by with Christmas carols and cookies. Therefore, if you want to have the best lighting, this is the time to start assessing your yard. Imagine yourself passing by there in the dark and determine whether you would be able to navigate effortlessly? Are there steps that need to be climbed yet your trees obstruct the light from shining?

If that’s a yes, you need to hire a residential outdoor lighting expert to make sure that your yard is well lit. That way, you can create a welcoming atmosphere for anyone passing through your yard and prevent injuries, a trip to the nearest hospital or liabilities coming from a lawsuit. Although you need your house to have a haunted theme this Halloween, you don’t want people to stay away from it if they are afraid of getting injured. That defeats the whole purpose of the spooky day!

Make sure everyone passing around or near your yard is safe during Halloween. If you don’t have a well-lit path, children or adults might pass through the areas you don’t want them in and it might be dangerous. Use the trees to position the lighting to create a moonlight effect. With the best light fixture, you can shine a light on the walkway without creating a glare. You can either place the lighting on one side of the walkway or put a staggering pattern. Your professional lighting expert should advise you on the best way to install the lights for the best outcome.

Whatever you do, stay away from floodlights because they shine a bright light on people’s eyes thus they would have a hard time seeing anything. Since most houses come with these, they might not be a safe option although they might seem attractive. Remember, people might be wearing masks or other elements that obscure their vision. Therefore, make sure they have a memorable Halloween by lighting their paths properly and not blinding them with a glare.

Good lighting creates a welcoming ambiance to anyone in your yard without it appearing like a creepy and spooky place or a resemblance of an airport runway or a prison. You can achieve this by hiring a certified residential outdoor lighting professional. Since they are trained in designing residential outdoor lighting fixtures and installations, you can always count on quality products. 

 

If you would like to discover more tips and tricks, visit our blog. Call or contact us today for more information!

Maximize Illumination With Houston Lighting Fixtures

Is It Time To Upgrade Your Houston Lighting Fixtures

You can supercharge your Houston lighting fixtures by overhauling your exterior fixtures with LEDs. By doing this, you’ll slash your energy usage and you’ll have more illumination. With that said, when was the last time you noticed your exterior lighting or have done something with it? The chances are it’s been a long time since you’ve upgraded your exterior lighting, and your fixtures might be eating up energy. Besides that, your current lighting might not look good and might not be as safe as they were when you first bought them. Now is the time to consider getting rid of metal luminaries or high-pressure sodium luminaries and replacing them with LEDs. Doing this will improve the exterior of your home or business, as well as reduce operational costs. Robert Huff Outdoor Lighting is the #1 Houston Lighting Fixtures company to provide you with the best services in town.

Attractive Houston Lighting Fixtures

You can easily spot exterior lighting that isn’t attractive, as it features shadows, glare and/or an amber color. When you step foot onto a property with poor lighting, you look all over the place for things that you can trip over or you look over your shoulder. There are many check-boxes that outdoor lighting has to fulfill. For example, exterior lighting should minimize shadows and glare. It should improve both situational awareness, navigation, light up areas to improve footage that surveillance cameras take. It should also enable facial recognition. Balancing those objectives is tricky enough. When you add other things into the mix, things become even trickier. This includes low maintenance costs, energy efficiency, and sustainability. Robert Huff Outdoor Lighting will take care of your lighting needs for your residential and commercial property. We are available to speak with you when you are ready.

Test Out Houston Lighting Fixtures

The good news is you can easily tell if your exterior lighting isn’t that good. Test out how well you can recognize a face at a distance and leave your keys somewhere on the property and see if you can find them. If you find such tasks to be difficult to complete, then it’s time to upgrade your lighting. It’s a good idea to use a light level meter, which can help you determine where shortcomings are. Your residential property will stand out with Houston lighting fixtures.

Houston Lighting Fixtures

Outdoor lighting is more than numbers. You can have all the lighting in the world, but if it’s not functioning the way it’s supposed to be, then it’s not doing any good just sitting there. This is why you should do a quick lighting audit. You want to become familiar with what the IES recommends to illuminate values before doing the audit. When the time comes to upgrade your fixtures, you want to take a look at what control options are available. With the right setup, you can enjoy features such as maintenance alerts, step dimming and color temperature you can tune. LEDs’ lifespans do not become reduced with such controls. LED fixtures can easily be controlled with wireless tech, and this means there’s no need to mess around with additional wiring when the time comes to replace fixtures.

To learn more about Houston lighting fixtures services, check out our website & our blog. For any questions or concerns, give us a  Call today.