How Do You Install Commercial Landscape Lighting?

How Do You Install Commercial Landscape Lighting?

Ever wondered how to install commercial-grade landscaping? Landscape lighting is a great do-it-yourself project for any homeowner. Installing low voltage (12V) lighting is much safer and easier to install than hiring a licensed electrician to install line voltage (120V) lighting.  Low voltage landscape lighting carries little risk of electrical shock, and the wires can be buried in shallow trenches. But if you’re looking for a commercial lighting design company, Chris James Landscaping can help!

How To Install Commercial Landscape Lighting

Before doing any commercial lighting design installation, you should ensure that you are adhering to local electrical codes.  You should also ensure you have all the tools needed for the job such as wire strippers and a shovel for digging trenches. Below we discuss 9 steps for installing your own commercial landscape lighting.  

1. Identify Existing Cable or Irrigation System Lines

In order to avoid damaging any existing cabling or lines, you want to go ahead and physically mark their location with orange spray paint.

2. Unpack and Assemble the Lighting Fixtures

Remove all of your lights from their boxes, install the bulbs, and assemble the light fixtures and mounts.  Mounting fixtures vary, but the most common types are:

  • Stake mounting. Stakes are attached to the fixtures and pushed into the ground.
  • Surface mounting. This requires a power drill to attach the fixtures to a solid contact surface.
  • In-ground mounting. The fixtures are mounted into the earth into holes that are dug out with a shovel or post-hole digger.  

3. Make a Path

Clear the area where you plan to run your lighting design wires and fixtures. Be sure there are no plants that are going to grow and potentially damage your wiring. Roots can sometimes grow out of control and damage the hard work you invest into the care of your yard. 

4. Install Your Low Voltage Transformer

Make sure you pick the best location for your transformer.  It should have at least one foot of clearance in all directions and should be at least 30 feet away from any water features. Likewise, your transformer should be far away from clients, staff, and business functions, for safety reasons. Also, make sure the surface you’re mounting it to is able to withstand the high heat coming off the transformer. 

5. Start Trenches

This is where you start to dig up their pre-cleared area for your wire runs.  Use your shovel or spade to dig up the necessary depth as determined by local area codes and business guidelines. Typically, six inches is the required depth for low voltage cables.  After you’ve dug your trenches, place the wires in and cover with the dirt you dug up.  Give yourself at least five feet of unburied wire at both ends in order to give you space for any necessary adjustments later.

6. Connect the System

Now it is time to start connecting your commercial lighting solution system.  A clamp transformer offers an easier connection process because it has levers rather than screws where connections are made. Begin with the main run connections to the transformer. This is accomplished by putting one strand of wire in the com terminal and the other in the 12 volts (for shorter runs) terminal.  Lengthier runs require more power wills a 15-volt tap.  Any wire going from the terminal to the ground will need to be covered with a conduit. As a local business, operating costs are important to consider for projects like this. If you need professional commercial lighting services, don’t hesitate to call!

7. Connect the Fixtures

Next, you will want to connect your light fixtures to the main runs. Twist-on-style connections are the most common method for doing so.  What you will need to do is strip half an inch of wire at each end and then twist them together.  You can secure these connections with a connection cap.  

Clamp connections are another way of attaching mounts to the main run. Clamp connections work by placing the stripped wire ends into their terminals and then closing the lever to secure them in place.  This method is great for shielding against moisture and corrosion.  

8. Test Your System

After you’ve completed your light connections, it is time to test the system. Turn the transformer on and verify all the fixtures you’ve connected are properly illuminated. If you find that one is not lit, you will need to make sure you don’t have a bad connection. As your local commercial lighting company, we can help if you want professional services to test your system.

9. Make Adjustments to Your Preference

Once you have verified that all of your fixtures are operating correctly, you should make the necessary adjustments.  This is best done at night time and walk around and verify all of your lights are pointed in the direction you’d like them to be and adjust lights to eliminate any potential glare.  

Call Us Today

If you need help installing commercial lighting please don’t hesitate to give us a call. Here at Chris James Landscaping, we have a team of professionals who are qualified and highly experienced in business landscape design. We serve all of Allendale, NJ, and surrounding areas. Let us be your commercial lighting company.