10 Great Outdoor Lighting Ideas for Your Backyard

Are you looking for ways to improve your outdoor space? Outdoor lighting can be a great way to make your backyard more inviting and enjoyable.

When the sun goes down, your backyard should come to life. These 10 great outdoor lighting ideas will help you make the most of your backyard after dark.

From string lights to security lights, there’s something for everyone here. Our team of lighting specialists have reviewed the best lighting ideas for any outdoor space, from a small balcony or backyard to a large patio or deck.

outdoor lighting ideas

Assessing your Yard's Needs

One of the easiest ways to improve your home’s curb appeal is to install outdoor lighting. Not only will it make your home more attractive, but it can also increase security and add a touch of luxury.

However, before you purchase any outside lights, it’s important to assess your yard’s needs.

Here are a few things to consider:

1. What type of lighting do you need?

There are a variety of outdoor lights available, including floodlights, spotlights, and porch lights. Decide which type of lighting will work best for your needs.

  • Why do you need outdoor lights?
  • Is it for entertainment, decoration or security?
  • Do you need to illuminate a specific space like a patio or deck?

Answering these questions will help you to determine the most appropriate type of lighting for your garden.

2. How much light do you need?

Outdoor lights should provide enough light so that you can safely walk around your property after dark. Be sure to take into account the size and layout of your yard when choosing lighting fixtures.

  • How large is your outdoor space?
  • How many lights do you need to cover the whole area?
  • Do you need high amounts of brightness?

Consider whether you need ambiance lighting or security lighting.

Ambiance lighting is optimal for entertaining and it usually doesn't require high brightness levels. Battery lights such as sting lights are great for adding ambiance to your outdoor space.

Security lighting requires high levels of brightness to illuminate efficiently your outdoor space. You need to check the number of lumens before you purchase your lights to find fixtures that emit a high amount of brightness.

3. Where should the lights be installed?

Not all yards require the same amount of light. You'll also want to take into account the size of your yard, as well as any obstacles or features that might block the light.

  • If you're installing solar lights, you should avoid corners or shade areas. These lights need to be installed in open spaces for optimal exposure to the sun.
  • Plug-in (mains-powered) lights are usually installed on walls, fences, or decks. The reason for this is that these lights require wiring, which is facilitated by these features.
  • Battery-powered lights can however be installed anywhere in your yard since they don't require electrical power or sun exposure.

Now that you have assessed your backyard's needs, here are the 10 best outdoor lighting ideas for your backyard. Each idea meets the different lighting goals and requirements that you may have.

10 Best Outdoor Lighting Ideas

1. Security Lights

security lights


Outdoor security lights are a great way to deter criminals and keep your home safe.

These lights can be placed around the perimeter of your property, and they will turn on automatically when someone approaches, making it easier for you to see what is going on and identify any potential threats.

There are many benefits of having security lights in your backyard. They can deter burglars and other criminals from breaking into your home, and they can also help you find your way around in the dark.

Security lights can also be a great way to add ambiance to your outdoor space.

Our Pick for Security Lights: Our lighting experts recommend the solar security light with a motion sensor. Powered by a potent solar panel, this light comes with a motion sensor that automatically turns the light on when movement is detected. These lights also produce a high brightness of 1000 lumens and have a long battery life of 8 hours, daily.

2. Path Lighting

path lighting

Outdoor path lighting is mostly used to add safety to your home. Path lights are typically placed along walkways, driveways, or other areas where people may be walking.

They provide a bright source of light that can help people see where they are going. This can be especially helpful at night or in low-light conditions.

Path lighting can also help to accentuate your backyard’s features and create a more inviting space to entertain guests.

Our Pick for Path Lights: The anti-bug solar light has been voted as the best solar path light in 2023. This light comes with one LED light and one anti-bug purple light. The purple light emits 325mn wavelengths that attract flies, mosquitoes, and insects. This system traps the bugs to keep them out of your outdoor space. The white light is a bright light source to illuminate your space at night.

3. Outdoor String Lights

outdoor string lights

Outdoor string lights are perfect for adding light and ambiance to your outdoor space.

These lights can be used for entertaining, or simply to enjoy your outdoor space after dark. Outdoor string lights are available in a variety of styles and colors, so you can find the perfect look for your space.

The biggest advantage of using string lights is that you can add light to your backyard without having to install permanent fixtures. They are also relatively inexpensive and easy to set up.

If your goal is to create a warm, inviting atmosphere for entertaining or simply relaxing outdoors, then these lights are the best choice.

Our Pick for String Lights: Our experts recommend the warm white solar fairy lights to add a warm and cozy ambiance to your backyard. Each string comes with 200 LEDs in a 20-meter cable, which can cover a large space. In addition, these lights have an IP65 rating so you can leave them outside all year round without having to worry about the rain or the wind. Due to their solar power system, these string lights require little maintenance and they are 100% free to run.

4. Outdoor Wall Lighting

outdoor wall lights

Outdoor wall lighting is mostly used to add security to your home. However, you can also use wall lights to create a unique atmosphere in your outdoor living space.

Whether you want romantic candlelight or bright accent lighting, these lights can help you achieve the perfect look for your home.

All things considered, there are many benefits to outdoor wall lights. They can provide safety and security by lighting up dark areas around your home. Plus, these lights can be used to accentuate your home’s architecture and landscaping.

Our Pick for Wall Lights: This LED Garden Wall Light is a high-tech lighting solution that runs on 90 to 265 Volts. Made from aluminum, it covers a lighting area of up to 5 square meters. This solution is not only weatherproof but is also certified by CE, CCC, and CQC.

5. Garden Lanterns

garden lanterns

Garden lanterns are decorative lights that are used to add a touch of ambiance to a garden, patio, or deck.

They come in a variety of styles and can be made from different materials, such as metal, glass, or even paper. Garden lanterns can be hung from trees, posts, or placed on the ground.

Garden lanterns are also perfect to light up dark areas, help to illuminate pathways and add a decorative touch to your backyard. Some people also use these lights to deter pests, such as raccoons, mosquitoes, and other insects.

Our Pick for Garden Lanterns: This candle light lantern comes in stainless steel and is perfect to add a relaxing atmosphere to your yard. Our team of lighting experts has picked this garden light due to its modern design, and the functional handle and fittings, which are made from polished stainless steel. Additionally, this light is suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.

6. Deck Lighting

deck lighting

Deck lights are a type of outdoor lighting that is typically installed on decks and patios. Deck lights can provide both functional and aesthetic lighting for your outdoor space.

Functional lighting can help you see while you are using your deck at night, while aesthetic lighting can create a beautiful atmosphere for entertaining or relaxing.

There are many different types of deck lights available in the market. Some of the most popular deck lights include solar deck lights, LED deck lights, and rope lights.

Solar deck lights are a great option if you want to save on energy costs, while mains-powered LED deck lights are more durable and provide a more powerful lighting source. Rope lights are a versatile option that can be used to create different lighting effects on your deck.

Our Picks for Deck Lights: Our experts recommend wireless solar deck lights for their easy installation and use. If you're looking for lights that don't require wiring or drilling, then this is the ideal solution. These lights are wireless and weatherproof, and they're designed to work all year round.

Read more: The best deck lights for your outdoor space

7. Porch Lights

porch lighting

Porch lights are a type of light fixture that is typically installed on the front porch of a home. These outdoor lights provide a welcoming atmosphere for guests and act as a deterrent for criminals.

They also make it easier for guests to find the front door, especially during the night, and they can show the way to the front door to guests who are visually impaired.

When most people think of porch lights, they think of the small, yellowish light that hangs above their front door. While this is certainly a type of porch light, there are many other types that you can buy.

Porch lights can come in any shape or size and can be used for any purpose. One popular type of porch light is the motion-sensor light. These lights are activated when someone walks near them, providing extra safety and security.

There are also solar-powered porch lights, which are perfect for people who want to cut electricity costs. And finally, there are decorative porch lights, which can add a touch of elegance to any home.

Our Pick for Porch Lights: The Bucharest Wall Light with Bracket is a great fixture to add a more traditional look to your home. This European-style light runs on 230V and is designed to take light bulbs with parameters E27. What makes this fixture unique is its beautiful design, which will embellish your porch at night. This light is also weatherproof.

8. Patio Lighting

patio lighting

Patio lighting is perfect to embellish your patio and surrounding areas. Patio lights can be hung from the ceiling, mounted on the wall, or placed on the ground. 

Patio lights are a great way to add some extra light to your patio area. They are often used to accentuate garden features, such as plants or sculptures. They can also be used to create a festive feel for special occasions.

There are many benefits to using patio lights. One of the most obvious benefits is that they help to illuminate your patio area, making it safer and more usable at night.

Additionally, they can help create a festive atmosphere for special occasions, such as birthday parties, family events, or holidays. By adding some cheerful or festive lights, you can create an inviting atmosphere that will encourage you and your guests to relax and stay awhile.

Our Pick for Patio Lights: Our lighting experts recommend these flower stake lights to illuminate your patio at night. Delicately designed with soft iridescent coloring, these lights will add a touch of elegance to your outdoor space. They can be placed around the perimeter of your patio, or next to flowers and bushes. The LED lights, which will turn on automatically when the sun goes down, are available in a range of colors, including white, blue, pink, yellow, and red.

9. Outdoor Spotlights

outdoor spotlights

Outdoor spotlights are a powerful lighting solution to illuminate your yard. They can be used to highlight features, illuminate walkways, and provide security.

Spotlights are available in both electric and solar models, so they can be used anywhere there is an outlet or where the sun is available.

Solar spotlights are great to reduce your carbon footprint while also saving on energy costs. They can also add some extra security to your property by lighting up dark areas at night.

Electric spotlights typically have a long cord so that they can be plugged into an outlet. They also have a switch on the handle that allows the user to turn the light on and off. Some electric spotlights come with a stand, while others can be attached to a wall or other surface.

Our Pick for Spotlights: These white LED garden spotlights will add a modern feel to your outdoor area. This product is extremely versatile and gives you directional control over the focus of the beam. With a total of 30 square meters of lighting area, each set comes with 4 spotlights. This is therefore a great product if you're looking to cover a large area or if you're on a budget.

10. Balcony Lights

balcony lights

There’s something about being outdoors on a balcony that just feels special, and with the right lighting, it can be a perfect spot for relaxation or entertainment.

While many people may think of lights as purely functional, there are in fact many advantages to using balcony lighting. Balcony lights are perfect to brighten up your balcony space and create an inviting atmosphere for entertaining.

These outside lights are also ideal for improving the appearance of a building. They can be used to highlight the architectural features of a structure or add some extra curb appeal.

Balcony lights can also be used to create an eye-catching display during special events such as parties or holidays. These lights are easy to install and they're generally an affordable way to improve your home’s security and aesthetics.

Our Pick for Balcony Lights: We recommend multicolor outdoor fairy lights to add a fun and bright feel to your balcony. These lights are great for the environment and are easy to maintain. Each string comes with 200 multicolor LEDs in a 20-meter clear, mouldable copper wire. Whether you're reading, drinking with friends, or just relaxing, these outdoor lights will make your balcony feel like a home away from home.

So, which garden lights are best for you?

When it comes to garden lighting, there are many options to choose from. You can go with solar-powered lights, traditional electric lights, or even battery-operated lights. So, which type of light is best for your yard?

Solar Lights

Solar-powered lights are a great option for people who want to save money on their electric bills. These lights don't require any electricity to operate; they get their power from the sun. Solar-powered lights come in a variety of styles, so you can find the perfect one for your garden.

Mains-powered Electric Lights

Traditional electric lights are a good choice for people who want a lot of light in their garden. These lights typically use more energy than solar-powered or battery lights, but they provide a lot of light.

Traditional electric outdoor lights are available in LED, incandescent, and halogen varieties.

Battery-operated Outdoor Lights

With battery-operated outdoor lights, you can add light to any dark corner of your yard or patio. These lights are easy to install, and many come with stakes that you can use to secure them in the ground. They're also weatherproof, so you don't have to worry about rain or snow damaging them.

FAQs about Outdoor Lighting

outdoor lighting solutions

Do outdoor lights deter crime?

Outdoor lights may help to deter crime because they make it harder for criminals to hide and they can be seen from further away. This can make it more difficult for criminals to commit crimes without being seen.

There is a fair amount of research exploring the relationship between outdoor lighting and crime deterrence.

Some studies suggest that increasing outdoor lighting can lead to a decrease in crime rates, while other studies are not able to find a clear relationship between the two.

The effects of outdoor lighting on crime deterrence may vary depending on factors such as time of day, location, and type of crime.

More research is needed to better understand the relationship between outdoor lighting and crime deterrence.

Do outdoor lights need a junction box?

Outdoor lights need a junction box if they're mains-powered. This is because mains-powered outdoor lights need to be plugged into an outlet, and the outlet is in the junction box.

A junction box is a metal or plastic enclosure that houses the electrical connections for a group of light fixtures.

It is usually installed near electric light fixtures, near the point where the electrical wiring leaves the building. The junction box protects the wiring from the weather and makes it easier to install and service mains-powered light fixtures.

How to waterproof outdoor lights?

You can waterproof outdoor lights by using a sealant that is made for waterproofing. First, you will need to clean the light fixture with a mild detergent. Then, you will need to dry it completely. Next, you will apply the sealant to the light fixture and allow it to dry.

There are different methods to waterproof garden lights. One method is to use a sealant that is specifically designed for outdoor use, such as silicone or polyurethane.

Another option is to use a weatherproof coating, such as paint or spray lacquer. It is also possible to use a watertight sealant, such as silicone caulk or butyl tape.

Do outdoor lights need special bulbs?

No, outdoor lights do not need special bulbs. The type of lightbulb used for outdoor lighting is typically an incandescent or halogen bulb.

While these bulbs produce more heat than CFL or LED bulbs, they are less expensive and can last longer.

However, outdoor lighting fixtures should be weatherproof. You need to check the IP rating of your lights to determine whether they're protected against liquids and solid objects.

Can outdoor lights stay out in winter?

Outdoor lights can stay out in winter if they are weather resistant. This means that the lights have been designed to stay out in the cold and rain.

The lights need to be shielded from the weather, and they must have a rating of IP44 or higher. It is also important that they are properly installed so that they can withstand the cold weather.

Do outdoor lights need to be GFCI protected?

If you are using electric outdoor lights, then you will need to use a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) to protect them. This is a safety device that can stop an electrical current if it starts flowing in the wrong direction.

Outlet boxes that are used outdoors to power light fixtures should be equipped with GFCIs. This can help prevent shocks if someone touches the wire.

outdoor lighting

Wrapping Up

Outdoor lighting is a great way to improve your backyard space and make it more enjoyable. By adding lights to your outdoor space, you can extend the amount of time that you can spend in your backyard.

By using one of the 10 ideas listed here, you can create an inviting and enjoyable environment for your family and friends. So get started today and transform your backyard into your own private oasis.

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