With the summer now at an end, the dark nights are beginning to creep in. The clocks go back on Sunday October 30th, so UK homeowners will soon be returning from work after the sun has gone down.
By installing security lighting outside your home, you can enhance your safety and assurance in the winter months. Join hosted security solutions specialist UMIX as they guide you through how to install the technology around your property:
Why install outdoor security lighting?
Before we discuss how to set up outdoor security lighting, why should you install it in the first place?
Once activated, security lights illuminate your home and garden, making it easier to spot potential intruders and unwanted visitors.
Security lighting also acts as a deterrence for any would-be intruders, as it removes the cloak of darkness.
Which security lights are best for my home?
If you have decided to install outdoor security lights around your home, the next step is to decide which will be best for your requirements. Fortunately, you have plenty of choice.
Here’s a look at the types available:
* Bulkhead lights — These wall-mounted lights are often enclosed within polycarbonate or glass covers. They are usually the go-to choice when you’re after a porch light or a means of illuminating outbuildings.
* Halogen flood lights — A very common form of outdoor security lighting. Halogen flood lights contain halogen bulbs which emit a strong white light, making them great for brightly illuminating the outside of a home.
* LED flood lights — One of two energy-saving options detailed in this list. As LEDs are a low-voltage light source, they will feed very efficiently from a solar-charged battery. They require little power to function.
* Solar flood lights — The other energy-saving option, solar flood lights charge their batteries during the day, with the lights switching on once it’s dark.
* Motion-activated lights — A key selling point about these lights is that they will only activate when movement is made close to where they have been positioned. They are particularly useful when placed above doors and gates.
How should I set up my security lighting?
Once you’ve found the security lighting that is perfect for your requirements, there are some tips to be aware of to ensure they are installed correctly.
First and foremost, consider your neighbours by ensuring the glare of the lights won’t shine into their property. You should also avoid letting the light creep across the road outside your home, as the dazzling effect could distract a driver and cause accidents.
Be aware that you will need to inform your local council if the setup of your security lighting requires new circuits or electrical equipment to be installed outside of your house.
Once approved and ready to install, be sure to switch off your home’s power supply from the fuse box so that any electrical work can be completed safely. It’s up to you how you proceed with this step…
* Option 1: You switch off the miniature circuit breaker for the circuit where you’ll be carrying work around and then place insulating tape over it so that someone else in your house doesn’t accidently switch it back on.
* Option 2: You switch off the main switch and remove the circuit fuse for the area of the property where you’ll be carrying work around. That way, you can turn the main switch back on and have power operational in the rest of your home while installing your security lights.
When it comes to installing your security lighting, ensure they are mounted high enough to prove effective. It is recommended that flood lights are placed at least two metres off the ground to achieve maximum effectiveness.
By installing your lights high off the ground, it will also lower the risk of them being deliberately damaged by intruders. Another way to protect them is to place a sheet of mesh or screen around the bulb. Don’t forget to protect the wiring from being cut too — do this by either using a conduit or burying the wiring underground.
Take into account that only setting up one security light can create very dark shadows if the illumination is bouncing off large equipment around your outdoor space. Counter this by installing another light which works to eliminate these shadows.
To receive added peace of mind that the setup is completely safe, it is advised that you employ a qualified electrician to cover the tasks of installing, connecting and commissioning all of your security lights.
All new and modified installations must comply with the latest IEE Wiring Regulations and, if installed externally, be checked by an approved electrical contractor or the local authority.