The only thing better than a pergola is a pergola you can enjoy well into the night, without tripping into your guacamole dip. And that means the right lighting.
Quick refresher: a pergola is an outdoor structure made of vertical posts or pillars that support crossbeams and a sturdy open lattice. They provide a beautiful, romantic feel to your outdoor space. Especially at night.
Of course, everybody’s interested in the bottom line: How much does pergola lighting cost?
We’re experts at lighting pergolas, and even we can’t give you an exact price. The answer is, it depends. Each structure is different in size and shape, and each pergola owner might want different lighting features.
But read on for some pergola price ranges, and the features that can plump up the cost.
How Much Does Pergola Lighting Cost?
Lighting a standard 10x10 foot pergola starts at about $1,400. This will get you nice basic area lighting — including several copper and brass overhead fixtures, mounted overhead in the pergola beams and shine down from above to light your sitting area — so you’re not sipping your favorite beverage in the dark.
The bigger the pergola, the higher the cost for this standard lighting. A pergola that’s 10x15 feet or 12x12 feet will cost about $2,100 for basic lighting. Bump up in size to 10x20 or 12x16 feet, and the price increases to about $2,800. And for a pergola that spans 12x20 feet, expect to pay about $3,500 for this basic lighting.
Add Intriguing Features
But there are plenty of other lighting features for your pergola that go beyond basic. You might want accent lighting to add character and highlight the appealing architecture of your pergola (check out our gallery for some ideas!). Uplights can be attached to the bottom of pergola posts or installed in the flooring. These will add a few hundred dollars to the cost. Some decorative fixtures might be nice, maybe pierced with tiny holes to create a pretty starlight effect. Expect to pay a few hundred dollars more for these.
Bistro lighting is perfect for pergolas. These festive string lights create an instant party atmosphere. They’ll cost between $400. and $1,000. Add a dimmer system or even a smart phone controlled dimmer system to control the lighting level — and the mood — for another $100 to $500.
The Sky Is The Limit
Like any lighting project, you can keep adding features, which will add to the cost. If your pergola includes stairs or steps, step lights tucked into the risers light the steps for safety.
If your pergola includes an outdoor kitchen, specialized lighting to illuminate key areas will add to the cost. You might add task lighting to illuminate your grill, or lighting over or underneath counter tops. Each of these will add a few hundred dollars to the cost.
Cost Covers More Than Fixtures
It’s rare to have a pergola that sits on nice, easy grass. Chances are, your pergola will perch on pavers or poured concrete. That means we’ll have to tunnel under that hard service to run conduit and wiring. To nicely hide wires, we might drill out a wooden post.
We’ll install a transformer that converts your 120-volt electrical system to the 12-volt needed to power your pergola lighting. Then we’ll run wiring from that power source out to your pergola fixtures.
The cost includes not just the lovely lighting, but the labor to put it there.
Haven’t built your pergola yet? Contact your landscape lighting contractor early on in the process; it’s easier to execute the lighting before the construction is complete.
Keep in mind you’re also paying for skill and artistry. Our lighting technicians are craftsmen. A professional isn’t going to simply bolt and staple fixtures and wiring to your pergola beams. They’ll skillfully hide the wiring so you don’t even know it’s there. They won’t stick a 100-watt bulb at the top of your pergola and call it good. A number of low-wattage, energy-efficient LED lights will cast a more subtle, artistic glow.
Sure, you can buy strings of twinkling white lights or a few packages of rope lights to dress up your pergola. But they won’t have commercial-grade cords and LED bulbs that will last 10 years. And those awkward, dangling extension cords don’t exactly say “luxurious evening retreat.”
As you can see, pergola lighting cost varies depending on the features you choose: You can light up your pergola for about $1,400 or go whole hog and spend thousands more.
We’re happy to visit your home to provide a free written estimate, so you’ll know exactly how much it will cost to provide the perfect lighting for your one-of-a-kind pergola.
For most of Landscape Lighting Pro of Utah’s customers, adding pergola lighting is a small part of a comprehensive plan for complete landscape lighting that adds a luxurious, resort-style feel to their outdoor living space.
If you decide your pergola needs artistic, professional lighting, we’d love to hear from you. Give us a call at (801) 440-7647 to schedule a free consultation, or fill out our simple contact form.