5 Things to Know About Pond Lighting

A lit up waterfall feature.

Installing pond lighting is a great way to enjoy the water after the sun goes down. It can also make your backyard look more desirable by highlighting certain aspects of the pond, like a waterfall. While it may seem intimidating, adding pond lights to your backyard is actually a pretty straightforward process.

From picking out the right types of lighting to placing the lights in appropriate spots, here are five things you should know about pond lighting.

1. Getting The Right Lighting

A lit up water fountain.

When picking out lights for a pond, you need to decide the aesthetic you want. If you only want some lights on the surface of the pond, consider getting floating solar lights. These lights last a long time and feature photocells that enable them to turn on and off automatically.

If you want to go a little bigger and illuminate the entire pond, then you might want to go with an underwater variety, like halogen lights. For lighting up accents or waterfalls, mini halogen lights will do the trick, but how many you need will depend on the size of the feature.

2. All About Placement

Finding the perfect placement for the lights will make a huge difference in their effectiveness. You should try multiple locations until you find the perfect spot. Some lights can be used under the water or out. Finding the perfect spot really comes down to your goals and what you want to be illuminated.

If you are installing below the water lights, then consider partially draining the pond to place the lights. If the lights are not internally powered, then you will need to run electricity into the water to power the lights. One popular method is to add an outdoor transformer to the pond that provides adequate power without being an eyesore.

3. Bulbs Pros And Cons

A lit up pond feature.

LED bulbs are one of the most common bulbs used in pond lighting. LEDs cannot be replaced like other bulbs, but they have a much longer lifespan. If you are using halogen bulbs, they can be replaced whenever they go out. Using solar LEDs eliminates having to run electrical wires to the bulbs.

You can also find lights that feature internal batteries that cut down on the electrical component. Just make sure the solar or battery powered lights are strong enough to illuminate the features you want. If you have bulbs that can be replaced, tie a power cord around the light so that you can easily pull it up and out of the water whenever it needs to be changed.

4. Bulb Size

Along with placement, the size of the bulb is also an important factor in getting the perfect pond lighting. Pond lights come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and choosing the right kind depends on what you want to be illuminated and the size of the pond itself.

If you have a deep pond, for instance, you will need powerful lights to shine through the pond’s surface. If you want to light up a large feature, then you will need enough lights to encompass it. When looking at lights, pay attention to the wattage, not necessarily the size of the bulb. The higher the wattage, the more coverage, and intensity.

5. Mounting The Lights

A lit up waterfall feature.

How you mount the lights will depend on the type of lights you choose. Floating lights obviously do not need to be mounted, though you might want to keep them in place with an anchor. If the lights do not come equipped with an anchor, you can always tie the lights down with something heavy, like a brick.

Some lights also feature built-in stakes that should keep them in place throughout their lifespan. When mounting the lights, make sure you point them away from the landscape and towards the middle of the pond.