28 Jun Can I enjoy my low voltage landscape lighting system Year Round?
By Mike Gambino
Such was the question a prospective client asked me recently and so I figured that being I’d not broached this subject directly here on this blog, as well as the fact that even though summer is upon us, now was the perfect time to address the idea of year-round landscape lighting enjoyment.
In southern California where I live and operate my business it usually goes without saying that most people operate their lighting year round. However those who turn it off or who are considering turning it off for financial reasons please read on.
Like everything in life, there are pros and cons of leaving your lighting operational during the winter. So to simplify this little article, I’m just going to list the good and the bad that comes with such a decision.
1. Landscape lighting is beautiful: The necessity for Safety, security and beauty do not end whether it’s 98 degrees in June or 32 degrees in January. Effective lighting is great to view and enjoy. Even though in my own climate in Los Angeles it is very rare, but I’m told this is especially true with snow on the ground.
2. Continuity: Landscape lighting on a regular timed schedule gives your home that lived in look. Seasonally turning off the lighting potentially sends a signal to neighbors and or burglars that the house is empty.
3-Lower cost for electricity in the colder months: This depends upon a few factors, how you are billed by your utility company and how much allotment for use you are given. But in general during the winter your cost of electricity per kilowatt hour should be lower because you are not using your major energy hogs like air conditioning system and your pool pump doesn’t need to run for as many hours. This can drop your base rate lower in effect dropping your cost per hour of use for electricity.
1. Longer hours of operation: This could be good or bad depending how it is subjectively viewed. Since it gets darker earlier in the evening your lighting system will come on earlier in the evening and need to remain on longer hours if the normal off time is not reduced.
2.Electricity: Although most Gambino landscape lighting system owners now have LED options (e-mail us to inquire about this) for their systems, an extra 2-4 months of usage does cost at least a few hundred dollars in most cases. See #3 under Good.
3. Loss of enjoyment: In the case that one doesn’t operate their lighting system during the colder seasons or times they don’t spend much time out of door s they are missing out on the benefits. Yet, the cost of the initial investment is still there albeit the cost of replacing lamps due to use wear and tear is less it is negligible compared to the loss of the enjoyment of this amenity.
This landscape lighting blog is published by Mike Gambino of Gambino landscape lighting inc. all rights reserved. Mike is a professional landscape lighting system designer/ builder and has been designing, installing and maintaining landscape lighting systems for more than 20 years. Mike resides in the Los Angeles area with his wife and 2 sons. To visit his website go to www.gambinolighting.com . To inquire about hiring Mike please click here .
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