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Tips To Keep In Mind As You Install Outdoor Lighting

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There are electrical DIY projects that you can safely carry out at home. This article discusses some tips that you should keep in mind as you install an outdoor lighting system on your property.

Call The Utility Company Before You Start Digging

Once you have identified the place where you would like cables to run through, do not start digging until someone (such as an electrician) from the utility company lets you know what lies underneath your chosen site.

This step is very important because it will save you from damaging underground utility lines and then being held liable for their restoration. It can also save you from a fatal accident if your digging equipment cuts into live power lines.

Use The Right Protection For Underground Wires

Any electrician can tell you that the PVC pipes used for protecting underground wires differ from those used for plumbing purposes. As you buy materials for your DIY project, get the grey PVC instead of the white ones. The white ones are weaker and will degenerate very fast if used underground.

Get Appropriate Circuit Interrupters

Any sockets that you wish to install outdoors have to be protected by the use of ground interrupters such as GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupters). These will ensure that should there be a problem with that lighting you have installed, the breakers or circuit interrupters will cut power supply off to that external lighting without affecting the rest of the electrical system in your house. An electrician can help you to select the best breakers for this purpose.

Avoid Overloading A Single Circuit

A common mistake that DIY enthusiasts make is to put all fixtures on a single circuit without considering whether it can handle that load or not. This mistake results in power flickering as all fixtures are in use at the same time. Circuit breakers can also keep tripping each time the load limit is exceeded, and this can be very disruptive if you were using that lighting for an outdoor party.

In order to avoid making this mistake, only put a few lights (say four) on one circuit and then run other circuits for other lights that you would like to install. If one fixture needs a lot of power (such as floodlights), it is better for you to have each on its own circuit. Talk to your electrician in case you need additional clarification on load limits for circuits.

When you keep the tips above in mind, your DIY projects will be successful and you will have no electrical problems to worry about. If you run into any problems, don't hesitate to contact an electrician, such as Michael Johnstone Electrician.