FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT OUTDOOR ELECTRICAL SERVICES
1. HOW DO YOU LAYOUT LANDSCAPE LIGHTS?
- First, make a sketch of the yard or outdoor area you will be lighting. Start by drawing the outside perimeter of the area you will lighting, buildings, and walkways. Creating a sketch with an aerial view allows you to include all of the plants, water features, benches, and walkways. Take into account any additional plants and landscaping you will be adding.
- Decide what type of lights you will be using. Some types of outdoor lighting include: accent, flood, path, area, in-ground, wall wash, submersible, step indicators, and other indicator lights.
- Place your lights on your map so that they highlight the landscape and architectural features that you want to stand out. Keep safety in mind as you choose how to light walkways and building entrances.
- Create a product list from your sketch, including all the lights you have listed. For a low voltage display, you will likely be able to connect the system to one outlet using a transformer. For a high voltage system, you will need to have a new wiring system laid to support your outdoor lighting display.
2. HOW MANY LUMENS DO YOU NEED TO LIGHT A BACKYARD?
The lumens needed for a back yard depends on the type of lighting used and the size of the yard. Lumens refers to the brightness and amount of light that a lighting fixture gives off. One 50 watt LED flood light of 5,500 lumens could be enough to illuminate a backyard, for example, but of course it depends on the size.
3. HOW MANY LUMENS DO I NEED FOR A PARKING LOT?
The lighting generally recommended for parking lots is one 20,000 lumen LED light placed about every 15 feet and mounted at a height of 20 feet. However, depending on the type of light is possible to safely illuminate a parking lot using LED lights of 6,000 lumens each.
4. HOW DO YOU RUN ELECTRICAL OUTSIDE?
An extension cord is a short term solution for supplying power outside, but a longterm solution will require running wire underground and installing a GFCI outlet. A GFCI outlet or Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter should be installed anywhere an outlet will be exposed to moisture to protect the user from electrical shock. Electrical wire installed underground must be encased in a metal sheathing or duct that is welded to ensure a continuous run, meaning there are no gaps or leaks. Metal boxes and fittings are installed to connect the wiring to the appliances or buildings it will power.
5. HOW DEEP DOES ARMOURED CABLE HAVE TO BE BURIED?
Electrical cable should be buried at least 18 inches below patios or paths, or 30 inches below lawns. All electrical cable needs to be enclosed in a conduit or duct, steel-wire armoured, or metal sheathed before it is buried.