Liven up your deck with stylish, modern lighting. How decking should be lit varies. So many variables exist – type of deck material, size, immediate surroundings, and proximity to your property. What’s sure is every deck needs lighting. As those evening hours hit, you don’t want to be searching for candles and struggling to keep the place lit. Nor do you want to be forced indoors from inadequate lighting.

Here are the 13 best deck lighting ideas known to be environmentally friendly:

Idea #1: Solar Lights

Solar lights is a deck lighting idea that always recommended for eco-friendly decks. All they need is a little sun and they get some every day. Solar lights come in various arrangements. They can be string lights, tabletop lights, and/or stake lights among other types.

A great way to use solar lights is to stake them into the ground around your deck – an ideal opportunity to help guests follow a pathway, get around a backyard, or make it to and from a deck.

Idea #2: String Lights

String lights are a deck lighting favourite by most. Although it can be expensive to light a large deck with string lights, for smaller designs or small areas, they work exceptionally well. LED string lights can also be wrapped through small gardens, greenery, patio umbrellas, or in similar arrangements.

Idea #3: Post-Caps

Post-caps are a very common deck lighting idea, yet it is somewhat underrated. The great thing about post-caps is that they take up virtually no space and require very little setup. They give a surprising amount of light and some are even solar.

Idea #4: In-Floor Lights

If you’re building a new deck, you can include in-floor lights. By having lights blended into the hardwood design, you save space. In-floor lights are most common along stairways and at the edges of a deck. By having in-floor lights installed, your guests can easily see the perimeter of the deck.

Idea #5: Under-Rail Deck Lighting

Look at your deck for possible opportunities to blend light in with what’s already there. Lighting under rails castle a warm downward glow that can help illuminate the ground. Under-rail deck lighting isn’t overly distracting – a common complaint by some who have tried using large light bulbs.

Idea #6: Clothesline-Style Lights

If you want to light the entirety of a deck, a great way to do that with warm lights is by stringing bulbs from side to side overhead. Think of it like having a series of clotheslines. You can choose whichever bulb or type of lighting suits you best. The result of a clothesline-style deck lighting design is gentle lighting that isn’t overpowering and which looks very, very welcoming.

Idea #7: Hanging Lightbulbs Along the Edges

While clothesline-style lights cover the entirety of the deck line-by-line and side-to-side, an alternative approach is to hang lightbulbs along the borders of your deck. You will want to get the bulbs as high as you can. You can either drape them or tighten them straight.

Idea #8: Rustic Lanterns, Hanging or Tabletop

There are trendier and modern deck lighting ideas on this list but there’s something classic in lanterns. They give a garden-esque, rustic feel. You can either hang them hanging or set on a tabletop. For a romantic evening outside, this is the exact kind of lighting you want.

Idea #9: Activity Areas v. Relaxing Areas

On some decks, you may barbecue and make drinks. On other decks, they’re meant to be inviting, warm, and even romantic. Some decks combine the two. For areas of activity, bright white lights are often best.

For the parts of the deck where you expect to relax or converse, a more gentle lighting is best. These aren’t hard rules though. Every deck is different.

Idea #10: Blue Lights for a Different Look

Most homeowners go for white lights or yellow lights for decks and fencing. Blue lights are a little different. Blue isn’t overly bright. They’re a little dark but they add an atmosphere that can be attractive to some. Blue lights can illuminate a deck in a very romantic and private way. Alternative color choices – green, red, purple, orange, pink – don’t tend to work as well.

Idea #11: Spotlights to Illuminate Gathering Areas

By spotlights, we don’t mean bright stage lights. Deck spotlights should be gentle and barely noticeable. They are simply to highlight gathering areas, such as seats or tables. You don’t want to overwhelm yourself with this deck lighting idea so it may take some experiment to get the intensity of the spotlight just right.

Idea #12: Address Areas in Need of Safety Lighting

Some parts of your deck may be unsafe without proper lighting. The most common of these is stairs. Lighting should be incorporated into your deck design to ensure guests know how to successfully make it up and down without tripping.

Idea #13: Accentuate Your Deck’s Best Decorative Features

Make a list of your deck’s best features. This could be design shapes, gathering areas, or centerpieces. Strategically placed lighting in these areas can highlight your deck in the most impressive ways. This is a great approach if you have nice patio furniture, a fire pit, or water fountain.

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