How to Pick the Best Smart Outdoor Lights

Smart outdoor lights: Whatever your reason exterior outdoor lights bring convenience, safety, and some color to your home. Smart lighting has a few ways to brighten the outside of your home.

Picking the best smart outdoor lights starts with what are the reasons to brighten the exterior of your home. Maybe you want to add them to your smart home system and control them remotely. Most people choose to use outdoor lights as a matter of security and safety, and if your budget is very limited you can just use smart plugs and plug in your light into that plug to control them.

There are many reasons for wanting smart lights for the inside of your house, automation, color-changing lights, and LED strip lighting. And now the technology in home automation systems has greatly advanced thanks to voice assistants from Echo and Google being the most popular, now it’s time to use the technology with some smart outdoor lights.

Why Smart Outdoor Home Lights?

Smart lighting has one great advantage and that is it can be automated to go on and off anytime you want and with the use of motion sensors it’s a great way to scare off anyone snooping around outside your home at night.

Last year we went away for about a week and set up our home automation system to turn on the lights in the house and outside the home to give the impression that we were home. And anytime the motion sensor lights came on we received a text from our system. We did ask our neighbors to keep an eye on our place as well, and when we got back He said “I could not tell you were even away”. Thanks, smart outdoor lights!

Are You Using a Smart Home Hub?

If you’re not really looking to make your home a smart home, but just want to improve the lighting outside your home. If that’s the case you don’t need a system hub to have smart outdoor lights. There are many devices and apps that let monitor and control your outdoor lighting and set up schedules right from the convenience of your smartphone.

Decide on Which Lights you Want to be Controlled

When deciding on smart outdoor lights knowing which lights you want to automate and if there are areas you want to add some extra lighting to will make picking the right light easier. Most people want their exterior lighting to provide security to their home, so adding motion sensor lights In a few key areas will certainly increase security and being able to monitor and control these lights brings a layer of security.

Smart Exterior Lighting Using Smart bulbs

The simplest and easiest way to upgrade your exterior lighting is to replace the existing light bulbs with smart ones that are controlled directly from your smartphone.

Depending where the bulb is located outside will depend on which bulb you should use. If the area the light is located isn’t directly in the line of rain or snow you can use just about any smart bulb. If the light is in an area that is exposed to the elements then you’ll need to use an all-weather bulb.

Using Smart Switches to Control Outdoor Lights

Another good option for smart outdoor lights is to just leave your outdoor lights as they are and change the switches that are controlling them. There are lots of options for using smart light switches to control your outdoor lighting. Some switches have dimming capabilities and will work well dimming the lights if the bulbs themselves are dimmable.

These smart switches can be controlled with a smartphone or from your smart home system or voice assistance if you’re using those to run your system. The majority of these smart switches will cost you less than $50. There are options for built-in sensors that can detect motion, and room temperature and can sense the surrounding light level and come on when it reaches a pre-programmed level.

If you’re still not sure if smart switches or just smart bulbs will be your best option, remember that smart bulbs can only be controlled smartly when the light is left on, if you’re in a good habit of turning lights out you may need to re-train to leaving the lights on. With smart switches, it won’t matter if the switch is in the on or off position your smartphone app or smart home system can still control them.

Smart Outdoor Lights for Path Lighting

Another area to use smart outdoor lights is for lighting garden paths and for accent lighting. Going non smart you have many options and the main one is solar-powered lighting. Seeing this article is about smart lighting I will stay with smart lighting options.

Sylvania has some great path-lighting starter kits that will make great aesthetic-pleasing additions to gardens and pathways. I have added a link to Amazon’s search result page for these types of path lighting and see the full lineup available.

Landscape Lighting Ideas

I thought I would go over some landscape lighting ideas to give you as many options of outdoor lighting to choose from. This is a cool way to add some beauty, appeal, and safety to your garden or other areas you want to accent. If you already have some lighting in place you can easily enhance and do some landscaping upgrades as well.

Getting Started Landscaping Outdoor Lights

Prior to going out a buying a bunch of items, you should organize a few things first to avoid making unneeded trips to the garden store or your hardware store. Start first by walking through the area where you’re going to be using the accent lighting in with a pen and paper and draw out your desired vision that way you will know what you’re going to need.

Some Guidelines as You Plan…

– Determine the areas and objects that you want to light up.

– Pick which lighting technique you want to use.

– Decide on the fixtures and any accessories to give you the effect.

– Pick which power supply you want to use. Solar, low voltage, or AC.

– Choose the correct bulbs. [You can use smart outdoor lights].

Landscape Lighting Techniques

There are many landscape lighting techniques to work with and where you can use some smart outdoor lights to create your own masterpiece. Let’s look at them:

Spotlighting or accenting an area or object…This type of lighting uses spotlights to send an intense beam of light to accent an area. This light can be changed in color by changing the bulb color to create the desired effect.

Glazing… This technique is used on textured objects to highlight the texture of the object. The light is placed close to the object to get this effect. Using this technique is only recommended for use with textured objects.

Shadowing… This involves applying light to the object from the front and below positions to create interesting shadows on the background near the object. Adding some different colored bulbs can add to the shadowing effect.

Silhouetting…Try hiding lights behind semitransparent objects and you will get a real incredible effect similar to seeing a silhouette up against the sky.

Water lighting… Having underwater lights makes real dramatic special effects in a pool or fountain especially when there is water movement. Using a dimmer can really enhance the effect. You can use water to act as a mirror by shining a spotlight against the reflective surface of the water.

Down lighting effect… To get this effect install your flood lights high up in trees or on your house, this wide illumination will cover a wide area. Perfect if you do a lot of entertaining in the evenings and it is also great for home security you can use a motion sensor to have these lights come on. To create this effect for pathways or flower beds install the floodlights lower.

Cross lighting… This creates a 3-dimensional special effect if you place your lights to shine on an object from 2 or more angles.

Uplighting… Aiming your lights upwards on the ground and in some cases into the ground a bit creates a unique dramatic effect similar to what you would see in a theater. Works great with trees, a garden statue, or ruff wall areas. Leaves falling or snow blowing gives a spectacular show. Aim the lights at the items that you want to create this effect with.

Diffused lighting… If you want to make some circular light illumination on some features like flower beds or some ground cover use spread lights to create a low-level light area over the ground to create the effect. Some of these lights can provide a soft diffused effect to accent an area or to use on your deck.

Moonlighting… Similar to down lighting, however, use a softer light source and keep it up high in a tree and it will give the effect of the moonlight shining through the tree branches giving unique patterns of light.

Play Bulb Smart Light

I found this really cool light bulb that you can change its colors and play your favorite music from anywhere you can use a regular light bulb. What a great gift idea and would amaze your friends at your next get-together. It fits in with outdoor smart lights that you control from your smartphone.


– Full LED light bulb with changing colors.

– Built-in speaker.

– Works with Bluetooth.

– Has own app.

– Can control bulbs in groups.

– Indoor/outdoor usage.

– Has special effect features.

The Play Bulb app has a centralized control panel, just open the app start customizing the light effects, and play your favorite music at the same time. Works with iPhone and Android phones. Play music right from your mobile library.