How to Install Pathway Deck Lights How to Install Pathway Deck Lights

What You'll Need
Wire stripper
Transformer
Fixtures (as many as you wish)
Cable
Lamps
Waterproof Connectors (blue)
Standard wire connectors (red)
Drill
Circuit clamps
Cable fasteners

When installing Pathway deck lights, it is recommended that you use 12-volt wiring as opposed to the traditional 120-voltage household wiring system.  Aside from being safer, the procedure is also less exacting.  The steps are in fact moderately easy to implement with instructions for installing provided with your fixtures. Remember to use only outdoor UL-listed lighting transformers, cable and lights.  If you intend to purchase only individual components instead of a kit, check with product’s manufacturer to verify that your components are compatible. In order to buy appropriate length of cable, measure the distance from the transformer to the last line of each circuit and add an extra 20 percent for unforeseen paths that the wire may have to take. You’ll need waterproof wire connectors for the wet areas where the cable will be buried in the soil outside the deck and standard wire connectors for the dry areas inside the panels. Keep in mind that the cable route should be as invisible and as protected as possible.

Step 1 – Transforming the Volts

Plug your transformer into a 120 GFCI exterior receptacle.  If there’s not one near your deck, you’ll need to install one. This will convert the standard 120 volts into the 12 volts needed to run through the outdoor cable in order to light the fixtures.

Step 2 – Sketch Layout

Sketch the layout of your deck including possible furniture, such as chairs and tables. Plot desired location of your lights on your drawing. Keep in mind transitions to deck, corners or niches, and the stairway.  Sometimes you might want to illuminate paths, plants, or other features along the perimeter of the deck.  Experiment with temporary lighting in order to test effect, before choosing definite locations for your fixtures.

Step 3 – Dealing with the Cable

Leave enough excess cable with which to connect to each transformer once you’ve wired the circuit. Using cable clamps, fasten the supply cable out of sight under the deck, by drilling holes and running it using the shortest route possible through the framing.

Step 4 – Fixture Holes

Mark and cut out holes for your fixtures according to your original sketch.  Leaving at least 6 inches of extra cable to work with, run the cable through the holes, using the cable fasteners to clamp as necessary.

Step 5 - Wiring

Strip about ¾ inches of the peak of your wire. Using cable connectors, connect those wire ends to the fixtures. Push the wires into the recess behind each fixture.  Screw the fixtures to the siding. Install the lamps in the fixture sockets and cover with the covering provided. Tip: Using a small cloth or tissue whilst screwing in the lamps can prolong the life of the bulb by preventing the oil on your skin form causing premature lamp failure.

Step 6 – Final Steps and Tips

Running the cable out to the ground outside the deck, join the wire with waterproof connectors, and, threading under the soil, bury the cable and connectors 6 inches deep under the earth. Do not run the cable through concealed areas such as exterior parts of your house.  For that you would need 120-voltage.  When mounting lamps above the staircase, position them approximately 2 feet above stairs, drill them in through the wall, making sure you can pull at the wires.

If you play it safe and follow the rules, you should have little problem with installing your fixtures.  Once achieved, you can walk or lounge in a well-lighted garden and enjoy the effects.

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