Walkways and Steps

To guard against falls, even, overlapping pools of light from low-voltage fixtures are best for illuminating the full run of pathways and steps. Here, as on the driveway, staggered rather than parallel fixtures will help avoid a runway look. Popular fixture choices for these locations include ground-hugging bollard lights, mushroom lights and shaded tier lights. All of these low-voltage fixture types are available in a range of styles, from no-frills utility models to hand-crafted works of art. Ground stakes and support "stems" are often sold separately from the fixture, letting you coordinate the height of the lights with the terrain. The light source is concealed within the fixtures and shines light downward in a soft ring, eliminating glare. Lamps ranging from 4 to 20W are appropriate for this application. Fixtures equipped with photocells or dusk sensors are a real convenience, automatically turning the lights on at sunset and off again with the dawn. Another type of path light is fitted with tough plastic lenses that sit flush with the surface of a walkway. This feature can be particularly handy when you're mowing the grass, as you won't have to trim around protruding light fixtures.
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