How to choose outdoor lighting for your home

Outdoor lighting is a great way to showcase the best features of your home and garden, as well as make it easy to find your front door in the dark. Darren from Mercator talks us through the different types of exterior light, with some simple tips to help brighten up your outdoor areas.

Lighting up outside

Designed to withstand the elements, outdoor lighting often has a strong, robust look that you can use as a design feature. 

Constructed from aluminium and glass, they come in a range of styles that can complement your home’s exterior with black and silver finishes or off-white colours.

Some outdoor lights have minimal waterproofing and require a bit of shelter, while others are happy right out in the open—rain, hail or shine!

Darren’s advice is to pay close attention to the position of your exterior lights and how much weather they’ll be exposed to. “Always check the light’s IP rating on the packaging. That will give you an idea of what they're capable of withstanding.”

Front door lighting

Coach lights give you a more traditional, black framed light to have at your front door with plenty of classic styles available. There are also modern coach lights with a more industrial look that work well with decorative globes.

As an alternative, Darren suggests a ceiling light for a more discreet option. “Choose a decorative ceiling light and place it under the eaves so you don’t blind visitors as they are coming in.”

Garage outdoor lights

Darren recommends choosing a light that you can place above the garage door or to the side. Up down lights create a modern look that can work well on the sides of garage doors or on pillars.

Above the garage door, consider a bunker light rather than a flood light to create a design statement. A bunker will also create plenty of diffuse light that won’t shine directly in your eyes when you are driving into the garage.

Floodlights work best up high at the corner of the house, so you can direct the light across the yard.

outdoor lighting

Highlights for your home

To create a glowing display-home look with your exterior lighting, Darren says some discretely placed strip lighting will highlight your home’s best features.

“Outdoor rated strip-lighting can give you that display home look when you run it along the garden line, windows or eaves.”

Light dimmers work outside too

For multi-purpose outdoor lights, install a dimmer switch. Then you can choose the brightest bulb and adjust the brightness when you turn on the light.

Darren says dimmers on outdoor lights are an increasingly popular choice for outdoor entertaining. “A lot of people are using the dimmable option on exterior lights, so you can have the light set to where you like it.”

Most exterior lights can be fitted with energy efficient, dimmable globes to give you complete control of your outdoor ambience.

Light up your outdoors

Discover the wide range of outdoor lights available at your local Bunnings Warehouse.

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Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.
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