Tag Archives: outdoor lighting perspectives

Turn your lights on when you need them

I’m an early riser. No matter how tired I am, I’m up early. During the week, I’m up by 5:15am most days. With a dog that requires a walk every morning, I usually am outside within 15 minutes of waking up. It’s hard not to notice how dark my neighborhood is at this time.

low voltage outdoor lightingWhile we normally talk about having your outdoor and landscape lighting on at night, it’s important to note, that they can be timed to be on any time that need them, mornings included.

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we offer a service called Lighting Control Automation. Just as it sounds, it’s a unique system designed to control your lighting (it can actually handle both indoor and outdoor lighting and outlets).

To get the most of your landscape lighting investment, the system should be designed to fit your needs and schedule and that’s what the LCA system does at its core. Each and every system can be designed and programmed especially for you, making each and every system different.

For example, if you are like me, you may want your landscape lights on to come on in the morning at 5am and stay on until the sun comes up, ensure that as you go about your property, you don’t trip and fall on anything. Additionally, I’d like my lights to come on at night when the sun starts to go down until about 10pm, allowing me to utilize my outdoor living spaces and highlight the front of my home. A system like LCA could handle these tasks easily.

Lighting Control Automation makes your lights a “set it and forget it” thing, however it can be updated and changed as needed.

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we pride ourselves on providing beautiful outdoor lighting using the newest and best technologies. From highest quality LED and outdoor string lights to robust control systems, we’re confident we can create just what you need. Please reach out to your local OLP location if you have any questions.

Lighting Outdoor Common Spaces Increases Use

I recently visited a beautiful hotel in Maine. It had several walkways that led to different outdoor living spaces throughout the property. A few friends of mine had gathered in one of these spaces, but when it was time to leave, we noticed that we could no longer see the walkway that got us to the space in the first place. It seemed like all the other guests moved indoors as the sun went down.

lighting-an-outdoor-pathThis hotel property made an unfortunately common mistake; they created beautiful outdoor living spaces but forgot to add lighting. Without lighting, the spaces get less use as guests are forced inside when it gets dark.

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we design and install commercial lighting systems to increase the safety and security of properties and allow the entire spaced to be used all the time. As we evaluate a property there are four key components we pay particular attention to:

commercial-outdoor-lightingEntrances. Oftentimes commercial properties have beautiful entranceways with retaining walls and expensive signs. It’s their way to welcome clients and guests. When creating a lighting system, this is one of the first things we look at. If an entranceway is dark, it could be passed by without ever being noticed. By adding a few spotlights, it can clearly be seen at night.

Walkways. Walkways guide clients throughout the entire property. When they’re dark, different areas can’t be used as people aren’t sure what is available. Dark paths are also a safety concern for clients and guests. Installing path lights and bollard lights provide enough illumination to make it safe for guests.

outdoor-lightingCommon areas. More and more commercial properties, especially hotels, are creating outdoor living common areas be it a patio, deck, pool area, gazebo, bar or other space. To ensure that they can be appreciated and used night and day, lighting is a must. From down lighting and up lighting to string lights and spot lights, there are so many different outdoor and landscape lighting options for common areas.

Stairs. Stair lighting is an absolute must when lighting a commercial property. Without it, stairs can be very unsafe for guests and clients.

Commercial outdoor lighting increases the use of your outdoor spaces, but it also makes the entire space more beautiful and welcoming. If you have questions on outdoor lighting, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

Warranty, Service and Maintenance – Must Haves for Outdoor Lighting

Let’s face it, stuff happens. Over time, even the best electronic equipment can wear out, malfunction, or just need some routine TLC. That’s why we at Outdoor Lighting Perspectives offer the best warranty in the industry and will happily service and maintain any landscape lighting system.

When something goes wrong with an OLP lighting system, our clients know they have no-nonsense warranty coverage to fix or replace the parts that are causing issues. Our outdoor lighting warranty includes:

  • Lifetime warranty on brass and copper fixtures and OLP transformers
  • 3 year warranty on all LED bulbs and electronics
  • 2 year warranty on the Lighting Control Automation technology
  • 1 year warranty on halogen bulbs, commercial fixtures and digital timers

outdoor-lights-richmondWhile an outdoor lighting warranty will make you feel more comfortable with the investment in outdoor lighting, for a system to work its best all the time, it will require routine service and maintenance. For Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, that starts right after the installation with what we call a nighttime adjustment. After your lights have been installed, our designers will drive by your home at night and make sure everything looks just right and make adjustments as needed.

After the nighttime demonstration, we’ll come out to visit your property every year for annual maintenance where we complete a system check. With the Annual Maintenance plan we’ll:

  • Replace halogen bulbs if you have them,
  • Check the voltage levels at each fixture,
  • Straighten and secure fixtures,
  • Re-bury any wire that has become exposed,
  • Trim any plants (with your permission) that have grown into the light path,
  • And check timers and control systems.

While we visit any client with an annual maintenance plan each year, we’re happy to service any landscape lighting system (even ones we didn’t install) whenever you need. If you have an older system, at the time of service is a good time to discuss retrofitting your system to new technologies like LED landscape lighting and expanding your system if necessary.

If you have questions on our outdoor lighting warranties or service plans, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

Planning for Halloween? It’s never too early

Just last week, I was talking to my nephew when he told me all about what he wanted to be for Halloween. It’s his favorite holiday (due to the candy) and he was looking at all of the catalogs that had recently been delivered to his house full of costume ideas. While August may seem early to start planning for Halloween, it really isn’t. Fall can be a busy season for a lot of homeowners, so any advance planning will help come October.

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we provide full service outdoor holiday lighting and installation and it’s not just for Christmas. Outdoor Halloween lighting has been growing in popularity over the last few years and they can be as simple or as intricate as you’d like. Some of the most popular options are string lights and yard displays.

The dark purple and orange of these lights give the spooky Halloween feeling that is great this time of year

The dark purple and orange of these lights give the spooky Halloween feeling that is great this time of year

Holiday strings lights are very popular around Christmas. You’ll see them in the trees and bushes, around railings and columns and lining rooflines. Well, the same type of installations can be done for Halloween, just a little differently! Instead of white string lights, Halloween calls for orange, purple and green outdoor lights. They can be installed in the same spots you would install your lights for Christmas, but will have that darker, eerie look that makes Halloween so fun.

If you are considering hanging Halloween lights along your roof, we do suggest hiring a holiday lighting installer. They’re training to do it safely and well and no one wants to go trick or treating on crutches!

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives offers traditional and unique Halloween lighting

Boo!

Yard displays are also a popular form of Halloween lighting. When it comes to picking a display for your front yard, think about your favorite icons of the season. Do you like Jack-O-Lanterns? Or are you more of a ghost and witches person? Whatever you like, there is an option for you to have it on your property for Halloween. If you aren’t sure where to have it installed, we suggest making sure it is easily noticed by trick or treaters as they come ring your doorbell.

If you have questions or would like to discuss your Halloween lighting options, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

Stair Lighting – Options to Keep you Safe

In the outdoor lighting category, one of the goals is to make the property safer at night. When areas aren’t properly illuminated, it can be easier for people to trip and fall. Stairs are incredibly important when designing an outdoor lighting system. When properties include stairs, we also include step lighting in the design.

While step lighting is important, there are still numerous options to choose from. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we work with each of our clients to decide on step lighting that fits the space and the overall landscape lighting system.

A common outdoor lighting technique is installing step lighting into the vertical part of a stair. The light output it both effective and subtle. Because the fixture itself is set inside the step, it is barely noticeable in the light of day. Even at night, visitors will notice the steps before the fixture themselves. Depending on the numbers of steps that you have on a stairwell, the property may only need a few step lights with one fixture illuminating more than one step.

photo 2Step lights aren’t always possible or best for stair lighting. Depending on the material of the step, it may not be an option to have the fixture installed in the step itself. In those cases, we often use a deck lights along the railing posts. Deck lights shoot light downward onto the steps below. They can be installed on the rail posts throughout the stairwell, just like this installation from Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Austin.

Screen Shot 2014-06-27 at 1.18.30 PMIf something more fun and festive is your style, there is stair lighting that will fit your style. In our video series, Transformation Augusta, we highlight a step lighting installation that used outdoor string lights. String lights, we are synonymous with holiday lighting, have come long way. They can now be used as a permanent outdoor lighting fixture. For step lighting, they can be wrapped around railings to light the stairs below.

If you have steps on your property that may be causing a safety concern, please reach out to your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office. Our trained lighting designers and installers will help you pick a step lighting option that works for your property.

When Should you Plan your Outdoor Holiday Lighting

It’s July, which means we’re over half way through the year and just a few short months away from the holiday season. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we LOVE the holidays! It’s fun, festive and there is tons of lighting. We’re often asked about outdoor holiday lighting and when the best time to plan for the season is. When it comes to holiday lights, the old saying “the early bird gets the worm” is definitely fitting.

Holiday partySome of our holiday lighting clients include towns that want their main streets lit and commercial properties like malls, restaurants and office buildings. Many times, they have a clear idea of what they’d like: lighted Christmas trees, c9 string lights, etc. Because of the specificity and quantity they may require, it’s suggested to reach out to your holiday lighting company as early as possible, often times in the summer months. That way they can order early and make sure your outdoor holiday décor comes in before Thanksgiving for installation.

While residential homeowners may not need to call regarding their holiday lights in July, early is still better. Meeting with your holiday lighting provider in September or October will give them time to get your lights and get you on the installation schedule so your lights are ready to be turned on right after Thanksgiving.

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we have a full service approach to outdoor holiday lighting with four steps.

C9 lights are a popular way to highlight a home's roofline.

C9 lights are a popular way to highlight a home’s roofline.

1. The first step in the OLP holiday lighting service is design. From classically beautiful outdoor string lighting to bright and festive candy cane and stocking lights, there is something for everyone when it comes to Christmas lights. We’ll create an outdoor lighting display that you are sure to love.

2. The second step is what every homeowner dreads: installation. Instead of you going up that tall ladder, our trained lighting installers do. We’ll check each light and make sure everything is ready to go for your holiday season.

3. When the season is over, you don’t have to worry about taking down your holiday lighting, we’ve got you covered. Our team will come to your home and take down all of your lights.

4. The last step is storage. We store all of our client’s outdoor lighting for them until the next season. Not only does this free up some space in your garage, basement or attic, but it also allows us to check each bulb before installing them again next year.

If you would like to discuss you outdoor holiday lighting needs, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

Bring Hawaii to your Backyard with New Tiki Torches

Whether you have a deck, porch, patio or other outdoor living space, we hope you are able to enjoy  time with friends and family outside. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we design, install and maintain custom landscape lighting systems that extend the time our clients can spend outdoors. If traditional outdoor lighting isn’t your taste, there are other options for your to consider like outdoor string lighting, LED strip lighting and one of our newest outdoor lighting fixtures: the tiki path light.

Tiki torches remind me of exotic Hawaiian resorts and other tropical locations. Their fun and festive, but they aren’t that practical. The small torch at the top rarely provides enough light to truly illuminate a space. Our new tiki path light, however, is both functional from a lighting perspective and festive!

Screen Shot 2014-07-02 at 2.36.28 PM

The shape and flame are reminiscent of the typical tiki torch, but under the flame is also a path light that shoots light downward, providing light for patios, decks, walkways and more.

The brass fixture has an easy to access housing basin to hold kerosene or citronella (you have to keep those bugs away when company is over). The fixture itself includes a durable braided wick and an attached snuffing cap when it’s time to put the flame out and go inside.

Underneath the housing basin is where the path light portion of the tiki path light begins. While the fixture (available in halogen or LED) can easily illuminate the surrounding area, it doesn’t take away from the festive look of the torch. Unlike traditional path lights, these are set higher off the ground like a typical tiki torch is. The height allows for a larger spread of light below.

The Cabo Tiki Lights as we call them carry a lifetime warranty and can be added on to existing landscape lighting systems.

This is just one example of creative and unique outdoor lighting choices. At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, our trained lighting designers will work with you to lay out a system that creates the outdoor ambiance you’ve always wanted in your yard and property. Please reach out to your local OLP office if you have any questions.

Add Party String Lighting to your Backyard Space

Your backyard is your space to sit back and enjoy time with friends and family. In previous posts, we’ve discussed how adding outdoor lighting allows you to spend more time outside, but there is more than one way to achieve the same end result. If traditional landscape lighting isn’t for you, outdoor string lights may be the perfect solution.

String lights are most commonly linked to holiday lighting, adding festive cheer to the inside and outside of homes around Christmastime. They are classically beautiful, but did you know some string lights are made to be a permanent fixture in your outdoor living space?

 

Screen Shot 2014-06-27 at 1.17.24 PM

This backyard that we feature in our video series Transformation Augusta has a beautiful outdoor kitchen and living area that guests tend to gather at night. Instead of path lights and floodlights, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives installed outdoor string lighting throughout the space.

As you can see in video and in the picture, the string lights provide enough illumination to enjoy the outdoor living spaces below. Unlike traditional outdoor and landscape lighting features, however, they become a festive focal point of the space.

These string lights are not the same as the lights you buy at your local home improvement or grocery store during the holidays. They are commercial grade with larger bulbs and heavier wire. Each string is made to withstand the elements and can used for both commercial and residential applications.

Screen Shot 2014-06-27 at 1.18.30 PMOutdoor string lights, or festoon lighting as they are often called, don’t have to be installed above and outdoor living space. Here you can see that the lights were wrapped around the railing of a staircase. The bulbs still provide enough light to provide sure footing, but look fun and romantic.

Adding festive string lighting to your outdoor living spaces will create the perfect ambiance for your friends and family to enjoy. If you have questions on this product, or other outdoor lighting applications, please contact your local Outdoor Lighting Perspectives office.

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives Learns What’s New in Lighting at LightFair

As America’s most trusted outdoor lighting company, we at Outdoor Lighting Perspectives have to stay abreast of what’s new in the lighting industry. From having conversations with manufacturers and distributors to attending trade shows, we are always making sure we’re providing the very best to our clients. Just last week two members of our team went to Lightfair, the largest industry trade show to explore what’s new in outdoor lighting.

Held in Las Vegas, the 2014 Lightfair was the largest and best attended the show has ever been.

For landscape lighting, this year was all about the LED lamp market exploding. From many new manufacturers to different color options, color changing technology, and numerous new types and styles of LED lamp, the LED bulb is becoming more and more flexible in its lighting approach.  Options are now plentiful in terms of controlling brightness and beam spread, giving the landscape lighting professional ultimate control and flexibility in their design plan.  Quality and performance are becoming more impressive and consistent on an almost daily basis, as the technology that powers the LED light output is evolving and becoming more sophisticated, more durable, and more reliable.

The improving LED bulb is great news for our Outdoor Lighting Perspectives’ clients. As the technology and options continue to improve, we as designers will be able to do more with LED instead of having to rely on traditional halogen at times.

On the fixture side of things, there is a trend towards more sophisticated, modern, sleek fixture design options, as well as an increased offering in product material.  No longer is just brass, copper, and aluminum the norm.  Stainless steel, bronze, nickel plating, and high-tech ceramic are now being offered as finish alternatives.  Also, unconventional form hospitality lighting is getting a huge influx of new options all because of the LED technology boom.  You cannot overstate how much LED has changed the lighting world in terms of energy consumption, design and product flexibility, and installation practices.  LED is truly life altering technology.

When it comes to fixtures, OLP only installs lights with a performance we can trust. We were happy to see the design options become more vast as each client has a different home and different tastes.

Stay tuned…

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives Launches Online Video Series

At Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, we pride ourselves on being the experts in outdoor and landscape lighting. With over 20 years and 100,000 projects under our belts, we are America’s most trusted resource for outdoor lights. To illustrate our process and passion for the business, we are THRILLED to announce the release of Transformation Augusta, our new video series.

The entire series can be watched and enjoyed at OutdoorLights.com/Transformation.

outdoor lighting video

Transformation Augusta was filmed this past spring in historic Augusta, Georgia with OLP client Pam Doumar, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Augusta franchisee Pat Otis and host and OLP marketing manager, Jody Wetherill. Pat Otis has been designing and installing custom outdoor lighting systems for the past 14 years and is very familiar with lighting homes and properties in the area.

The four-part video series walks viewers through the process from the initial consultation and nighttime demonstration to the installation and reveal.

The Doumars have a historic home just outside of Augusta that is nearly 100 years old. When deciding on where to film Transformation Augusta, we were drawn to the beauty of both the home and the property. It allowed Pat to employ a number of different lighting techniques to highlight the space in the most beautiful ways. The final results was both aesthetically appealing and functional as you can see in the fourth episode of the series.

We are excited to finally roll out the video series and hope people enjoy it. As Rich Young, Vice President of Outdoor Lighting Perspectives, explains: “It was important to us that the series have an authentic feel and really connect with people who are considering an outdoor lighting installation. By using real team members, franchisees and clients, we were able to achieve that.”

Please visit OutdoorLights.com/Transformation to view Transformation Augusta in its entirety.