Last updated: 2022-05-01

Low Voltage Outdoor Fixtures And Lights

Table of Contents

Fixture Types And Styles

  • Spot lights

    Spot style fixture is meant to produce a narrow beam angle as opposed to flood style fixture. MR16 LED Bulb rating also is available in narrow and wide angles. MR16 is a common retrofit bulb type available in LED for replacing halogen.
    Up light a tree will require 1 or more spot lights. Spot lights can be a well light fixture (in ground level) or staked fixture (a few to several inches above ground). Tall trees should have a narrow beam angle for light to reach higher before spreading to much.

    What 7 watt daylight LED in spot and flood fixtures can do.

    image for light in kelvins Up Lighting Buildings and trees throws a lot of collateral light around that can be good too.
    Lights on stakes work best in the landscape where ground cover and shrubs are planted.
    Well lights have their purpose, but are easily covered with mulch and grass clippings.

    Up Lighting - A column of light

    Up Lights outdoor building lighting Up Light the side of a building hitting the roof over hang will use the same fixture and bulb as tree up lighting. Usually the narrowest beam angle, brightness is relative.
  • Path Lights

    Bala Down light / path light Fixture style affects light output. Some are designed to let light spread out a good distance, other fixtures are more like markers of light.
  • Flood Lights

    wide angle flood light Flood style is associated with a wider beam angle producing greater light spread.

Retrofit LED Bulbs

Update existing non LED fixtures to LED

Fixtures that come with halogens can be fitted with LED bulbs. For a professional job, you use an appropriate fixture and bulb of adequate brightness, with a beam angle that best fits the result you are looking for. All the different fixtures that come with halogen bulbs, can be upgraded with LED bulbs. The bottom line is; 7 - 7 watt LED bulbs = 49 watts. 7 - 50 watt halogens = 350 watts. Most 7 watt LED Bulbs outperform a 50 watt halogen. And the LEDs are available in a wider selection of light.
Retrofit LED replacements come in warm white (about 3000 Kelvins), cool white ( about 4000 Kelvins), and daylight (5000 kelvins and greater). A 7 watt MR16 LED is as bright or brighter than the 50 watt halogen equivalent.
Replacing your existing incandescent or halogen bulbs with durable LED bulbs offers numerous benefits. You enjoy an even better light performance and benefit from very low energy consumption. LEDs are available in all hues of white light. Warm white to daylight. Fixtures that come with halogens, I recommend buying LED replacements from the beginning. We just throw the halogens away.
Many fixtures come with LED built in. These are generally not replaceable, watts, light color, and beam angle should be considered.

LED Advantage

  • Less Power Requirement
  • Smaller transformer
  • Smaller wire size
  • Less power used = Less power loss
  • Improved performance
  • More reliable system
Color Temperature - Warm White through Day Light

Color Temperature. Warm or cool light?

image for light in kelvins Color temperature in lighting describes how the color of the light appears from a lamp, measured in kelvins (K).
Imagine a scale from 1000K (very red) to 10,000K (very blue) (actual scale is wider). The higher up the scale you go, the closer the light resembles blue daylight.
Color temperature does not describe the actual temperature of the lamp itself but the color it produces. The higher the color temperature the “cooler” a lamp will look.
A light bulb’s (lamp’s) color temperature lets us know what the look and feel of the light produced will be.
Color temperature is a way to describe the light appearance provided by a light bulb. It is measured in degrees of Kelvin (K) on a scale from 1,000 to 10,000. Typically, Kelvin temperatures for commercial and residential lighting applications fall somewhere on a scale from 2000K to 6500K.

image of color temperature scale in kelvins

What is a Lumen?
A Lumen (lm) is the International Standard unit for the total amount of visible light emitted from a source. Like Watts, Lumens are a standard measurement within the lighting industry and can be found on the box of most light bulbs.
To illustrate the relationship between Watts and Lumens across different lighting technologies, consider the following. The information below shows the typical Lumen levels expected from traditional incandescent bulbs.
  • For Warm White Color, Day Light is much brighter
  • 40w incandescent = 380 – 460 Lumens
  • 60w incandescent = 750 – 850 Lumens
  • 75w incandescent = 1100 – 1300 Lumens
  • 100w incandescent = 1700 – 1800 Lumens
  • Direct sunlight = 100,000 Lumens
The information below shows the typical Lumen levels expected from LEDs.
  • For Warm White, Day Light is MUCH brighter
  • 5w LED 400 Lumens
  • 7w LED A19 = 600 Lumens
  • 12w LED PAR30 = 850 Lumens

Beam Angle

Fixtures and Bulbs Determine Beam Angle

Beam angle is how quickly light spreads as it leaves the fixture.Quality bulbs have a beam angle rating and color temperature rating, along with wattage. Beam angle determines how quickly the light output spreads wider as it leaves the fixture. Smaller values (narrow beam angle) for distant targets. Wide beam angles for close in wide light saturation.
Beam angle of bulb makes a big difference. A 20 degree beam angle focuses light output with a narrow beam angle. The spot light will use a narrow beam angle. A flood light, or wall wash light will use a wider beam angle.
image for beam angles of light

Up Light / Spot Light Fixtures

Bala Down light / path light

Path Light Fixture

Bala Down light / path light Upgrade Path Light with LED

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