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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

how to install low voltage landscape lights 1
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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

5 common mistakes made while installing outdoor lighting. They can be easily avoided, and shouldn’t be taken lightly – because any one of these mistakes can cause future problems. 1. Not Using A Voltmeter – While the introduction of LED landscape lighting has diminished the need for a voltmeter (because of the wider range of acceptable voltage), having this tool on hand is essential for systems of greater than 10 lights or for systems with wire runs longer than 100 ft. And, is a must-have tool for troubleshooting a system. 2. Not Using A Waterproof Direct Burial Splice – Since landscape lighting cables are buried underground, implementing the correct splice is important. Quality direct burial connectors will prevent corroding and electrical resistance. 3. Excessive Voltage Drop – Unlike a 120v current, 12v currents lose voltage over long wire runs and when the wire is loaded with many lights. A rule of thumb – the 100/100 rule – use a maximum length of 100′ of 12 gauge cable per 100 watts of light. And, of course, use a voltmeter to check the voltage at the fixture. 4. Installing Lights In The Wrong Place – Lawn maintenance will prove difficult when landscape lighting fixtures are installed throughout your grass. Fertilizer, lawn mowers, and weed whackers can all damage the fixtures. Install the landscape lights in beds, and use in-ground well lights for the yard. Also, when choosing where to put your fixtures, make sure they are hidden. Outdoor lighting looks more appealing when the source is unseen. 5. Using Poor Quality Fixtures – Purchase moisture-sealed fixtures that will provide long-lasting light in outdoor elements. Always install pro-quality fixtures to ensure a professional quality result. Shop for Landscape Lighting Fixtures Back to Landscape Lighting Learning Center
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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

1. Not Using A Voltmeter – While the introduction of LED landscape lighting has diminished the need for a voltmeter (because of the wider range of acceptable voltage), having this tool on hand is essential for systems of greater than 10 lights or for systems with wire runs longer than 100 ft. And, is a must-have tool for troubleshooting a system. 2. Not Using A Waterproof Direct Burial Splice – Since landscape lighting cables are buried underground, implementing the correct splice is important. Quality direct burial connectors will prevent corroding and electrical resistance. 3. Excessive Voltage Drop – Unlike a 120v current, 12v currents lose voltage over long wire runs and when the wire is loaded with many lights. A rule of thumb – the 100/100 rule – use a maximum length of 100′ of 12 gauge cable per 100 watts of light. And, of course, use a voltmeter to check the voltage at the fixture. 4. Installing Lights In The Wrong Place – Lawn maintenance will prove difficult when landscape lighting fixtures are installed throughout your grass. Fertilizer, lawn mowers, and weed whackers can all damage the fixtures. Install the landscape lights in beds, and use in-ground well lights for the yard. Also, when choosing where to put your fixtures, make sure they are hidden. Outdoor lighting looks more appealing when the source is unseen. 5. Using Poor Quality Fixtures – Purchase moisture-sealed fixtures that will provide long-lasting light in outdoor elements. Always install pro-quality fixtures to ensure a professional quality result.
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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

Tools & Materials Tools Flat-Blade Shovel or Edger Wire Cutters Wire Strippers Screwdriver Work Gloves Materials Lights Power Pack 12-Gauge Cable (if your system is more than 200 watts) 16-Gauge Cable (if your system is less than 200 watts) Wooden Post (optional, for mounting power pack) Product costs, availability and item numbers may vary online or by market. Missing anything? Shop Online Choose Your Lights Landscape lighting can add a high-end look to your home, and makes it safer too. The first step is to choose your lighting. There are many types of lights and fixtures to choose from. Spotlights can highlight specific features, while floodlights can illuminate a wide area. You can decide what type of lights you want in which areas with a flashlight. At night, use a flashlight with the ability to switch between spot and flood mode to see how different lighting styles look in different areas. Types of Lights There are two ways to power your outdoor lighting. Solar-powered lighting is easy to install and has no wiring. Or, the type we are installing today is low-voltage lighting, which plugs into any outdoor GCFI outlet and works great as a decorative touch or to illuminate a path. We are using a lighting kit that comes with all the necessary components, but if you are building your own or adding to an existing kit, remember to choose a finish that matches. Shop Landscape Lighting Place the Lights CautionBefore beginning any excavation, check for underground utilities. Call the North America One Call Referral Service (just dial 811) for a national directory of utility companies. Step 1 Locate the GFCI outlet on the outside of your house. Step 2 Start at the outlet and place the power pack nearby, but don’t plug it in until the lights are all assembled. The power pack can be attached to a post or to the house itself. Step 3 Assemble the light fixtures according to the manufacturer’s instructions, especially regarding the wattage level your power pack can support. Step 4 Place the lights in their final positions according to your plan. Step 5 Lay out the cable. Step 6 Connect each light to the cable with a cable connector – leave 10 feet before connecting a light or splitting off in different directions. Install the Lights Step 1 Use a small trowel to dig a narrow trench (approximately up to three inches deep) along the cable path. Step 2 Add a perpendicular trench where each light will be located to accommodate extra cable. Step 3 Push the cables down into the trench. Step 4 Gently push each light stake partially into the ground. Step 5 Connect the cable to the power pack and plug the power pack into the outlet to test the lights. Step 6 If you like the way it looks, push the lights into the ground and close up the trenches. Step 7 Set your timer to the dusk-to-dawn setting so your lights are only on when you need them.
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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

Step One // How to Put in Landscape Lighting Landscape Lighting Overview Illustration by Gregory Nemec Low-voltage landscape lighting is a simple improvement that can make a huge difference in how your home looks after dusk and in its safety and security as well. Installed along walkways, steps, and driveways, or pointing up at trees, walls, and fences, the typical low-voltage lighting system requires just three components: a transformer, low-voltage electrical cable, and the fixtures. You don’t have to be comfortable with wiring—or even have ever done any—to install this type of system. The transformer steps down the 120-volt house current to just 12 volts. It must be plugged into a GFCI-protected outdoor electrical outlet fitted with a “while-in-use” cover, and oversize plastic box that closes over the power cord. The transformer needs to have enough capacity to support the cumulative wattage of the lights in the system. Between fixtures, the cable is buried in a shallow trench. As long as you have a nearby outlet, you’ll be able to give your home and yard a welcoming glow when the sun goes down. (Click “enlarge this image” to read illustration labels.)
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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

Low-voltage lighting kits are available at many home centers. They typically include a variety of lights, 100′ of low-voltage cable and a transformer, which converts household current into low-voltage current. Strip the ends of the low-voltage power cable, and connect them to the terminals on the transformer.
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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

Introduction Buy Lighting Kit Low-voltage lighting kits are available at many home centers. They typically include a variety of lights, 100′ of low-voltage cable and a transformer, which converts household current into low-voltage current. Strip the ends of the low-voltage power cable, and connect them to the terminals on the transformer.
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How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

Buy Lighting Kit Low-voltage lighting kits are available at many home centers. They typically include a variety of lights, 100′ of low-voltage cable and a transformer, which converts household current into low-voltage current. Strip the ends of the low-voltage power cable, and connect them to the terminals on the transformer.
how to install low voltage landscape lights 7

How To Install Low Voltage Landscape Lights

Low-voltage landscape lighting is a simple improvement that can make a huge difference in how your home looks after dusk and in its safety and security as well. Installed along walkways, steps, and driveways, or pointing up at trees, walls, and fences, the typical low-voltage lighting system requires just three components: a transformer, low-voltage electrical cable, and the fixtures. You don’t have to be comfortable with wiring—or even have ever done any—to install this type of system. The transformer steps down the 120-volt house current to just 12 volts. It must be plugged into a GFCI-protected outdoor electrical outlet fitted with a “while-in-use” cover, and oversize plastic box that closes over the power cord. The transformer needs to have enough capacity to support the cumulative wattage of the lights in the system. Between fixtures, the cable is buried in a shallow trench. As long as you have a nearby outlet, you’ll be able to give your home and yard a welcoming glow when the sun goes down. (Click “enlarge this image” to read illustration labels.)

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