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The Bright Ideas Blog

Design inspiration and outdoor lighting tips and advice for homeowners

Solar vs Low Voltage Landscape Lighting Systems - The Pros and Cons

Landscape lighting comes in a whole variety of options. Whether your system comes from a professional or you install it yourself, they all come with pros and cons. 

In this blog we are going to compare the pros and cons of two of landscaping lighting’s most popular choices, solar and low voltage lighting systems.

Solar Landscape Lighting Systems

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An extremely popular option for many DIYers is solar lighting systems. This type of lighting system comes at a lower cost for the lights and supplies needed. It is a very convenient option when it comes to adding landscape lighting because it is readily available, easy to install yourself, and for the most part they are environmentally friendly. 

The pros of a solar lighting systems come with cons however. Like we said before, solar is very convenient and a more affordable option, but this is seen in the quality of the fixtures themselves. They also are nearly impossible to customize to what you need and want from your lighting system. 

Solar lighting systems are dependent on the sun, therefore if you have a cloudy day, the light duration of your solar lights is much shorter. Along with that, the light output of solar lights have a low light output and almost no color control. Although solar lighting is “environmentally friendly,” it still requires batteries, forcing one to have to dispose of those when in need of changing. 

Here is a breakdown of each pro and con we believe come from a solar lighting system:

Pros      

  • Lower Cost 
  • Convenience
  • Environmentally Friendly (sort of)   
Cons 
  • Low Quality & Durability (mostly plastic/composite materials) 
  • Lower Light Output
  • Poor Light Color Control 
  • Cloudy Day = Shorter Light Duration  
  • Wired solar panels are messy with exposed wire and panel 
  • Light source is easily spotted and provides very little effect
  • Battery replacement may need frequent changing 
  • Low customization   
  • No Timing or Zone control options 

Low Voltage Landscape Lighting (Wired) 

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Landscape Lighting Pro offers low voltage landscape lighting systems. This type of system is completely wired and creates a seamless finish. The fixtures are made of high quality material and are incredibly durable. We offer a lifetime warranty on all of our fixtures to ensure they last for as long as you need them to. The downside to these durable lighting fixtures is that they come at a higher cost than those of solar systems. 

A low voltage system will be wired to a transformer with an astronomical timer that automatically controls when your lights turn on and off. You will have the ability to add a wifi zone control to your lighting system that allows you to control all of your landscape lights from your smart phone! Since the lighting output of a low voltage wired system is much higher than that of a solar system, it is a bonus that the wifi zone control allows you to dim a section of your lights while keeping the others at full capacity.

In addition, a low voltage lighting system is widely more versatile and customizable for what you need and want from the lights in your landscape. We are able to manipulate nearly any part of your landscape or property to create the space you are seeking with a lighting system. We are also able to do this with little disruption to your yard. Landscape Lighting Pro has been installing lighting system for nearly 20 years, so we have learned how to create an unbeatable lighting design for our clients while keeping their property looking its absolute best. 

Here is a breakdown of the pros, cons, and myths that come with a low voltage lighting system:

Pros 

  • Durable High-Quality Fixtures 
  • Extended Life - High Output LED Lamp Technology  
  • Expanded Custom Design and Effect (Professional Design) 
  • Reliability - Long Lasting 
  • Timing Control:  Smart App, Astronomical & Zone Customization 

Cons 

  • Higher Cost 
  • Installation ability, Specialty tools 

Myths 

  • Yard will be disrupted with Installation (Minimal Disruption) 
  • Operational Cost (Minimal / Low Consumption)  

Want to learn more about low voltage landscape lighting systems?

If you are looking for a high quality lighting system for your home but don't know where to start, take the first step and request a consultation here! Let our designers create not only a functional property, but one that highlights the beauty of your home even at night. 

At Landscape Lighting Pro, the art of outdoor illumination is a real passion we work to perfect. Designing elegantly bespoke landscape lighting systems is simply all we do. For over 15 years, our award winning team of designers and craftsmen have striven to bring the best outdoor lighting experience possible to people's homes and businesses across the Wasatch Front & beyond. 

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Low Voltage Landscape Lighting | Solar Landscape Lighting