Outdoor and indoor lighting should be more than functional. It can make your home more attractive and set a mood. But it can also work to your disadvantage if turning on a few lights makes your house look a prison during a jailbreak. Here are some tips to keep your lights doing their jobs without affecting the entire neighborhood.
Use dimmers indoors and out. They let you set the level you want, and smart dimmers can even remember settings based on the time of day. They’re not often used on porch and other outdoor lights, but why not? Consider them here, too.
Aim them where they’re needed. Exterior lights, including security lights, work better for you when they’re aimed at the area you’re using, rather than directly at your neighbor’s living room window.
If you’re using floodlights, consider sitting them in a short section of 4″ ABS; this directs the light where you want it while shielding the sides to avoid distracting brightness.
A brief power outage will turn many security lights on constantly; if you’re away when this occurs, your lights will be blazing for days. Look for those that reset come dawn.
Consider motion-sensitive lights rather than leaving lights on for hours at a time when they’re not needed. Security lights are available in traditional coach lamp styles, or you can adapt existing exterior lights with an add-on motion detector.
While the default or “recommended” bulbs might be high wattage, consider using lower wattage bulbs.
Timers inside and out allow you to run lights at the times of your choosing without wasting energy as they burn on and on or having to turn them off.