01 Jun Fences, Railings, and Balconies Rope Lighting Series
There are so many creative projects that can be accomplished with the help of rope light. Bringing light to the great outdoors, to softening the edges of your indoor rooms, rope lighting can be a great addition to several spaces. For this piece we are going to focus on using rope light to enhance your fence line, outdoor stair railings, and balconies.
When it comes to outlining your fence line, rope light can be used for strategic task lighting or for decorative application. Luckily, the flexibility of rope light offers an unlimited amount of options when it comes to mounting strategies. On a wood fence, we’d recommend lining the rails at the top of the fence line, or tracing behind the areas that display hydroponics or decorative floral pots. Rope light is also a great addition to the base of the fence, if you have foliage that surrounds the exterior fence line. To avoid unnecessary heat that may impact the growth of your flowers, use LED rope light. LED does not generate noticeable heat so it allows for the tube to cross over itself without the fear of the tube melting or burning that incandescent would cause. For the installation there are two main options, mounting channels or mounting clips. Mounting channels enable you to prevent sagging in the line to allow for the most pristine application, and they also provide greater protection from weather elements. If you’d prefer to make a more decorative piece, and need curves or scroll work, use mounting clips to accomplish the task. Most 150 foot rope light packages will provide enough mounting clips to use one clip per foot. This is sufficient for creative applications, but you will favor mounting channels for a straight line installation. If your fence is chain link, instead of wood, you’ll favor zip ties or tie wraps to mount your rope light. The chain link lends itself to scroll work or unique designs, and since the mounting is as simple as applying a few zip ties, you have even more freedom.
Decks & Railings
When it comes to patios, decks, and railings rope light is outstanding for subtle highlighting. We don’t recommend rope light be your only source of light if you’re trying to create an outdoor room, but rope light is definitely used well in these areas for decorative options. Use rope light beneath the railing of your deck, or weave it through the posts for soft outlining. It is also best used on the underside of a stair riser to illuminate the tread. This will reduce unwanted tripping and hide the fixture itself, allowing you to enjoy the glow without viewing the tubing. For most deck or railing application the designer installation method is to mount the channel underneath the railing to prevent sagging of the rope light and to downline the deck or stairs nicely. This style of lighting creates an inviting ambiance and creates safety for yours guests. Another application that is desirable is when homeowners use rope light to backlight a wall mounted sculpture or vintage art piece. If your deck has an outdoor bar or fun rustic signs, use rope light to backlight these interesting features.
Balconies & Overhang
Last, but not least if you have balconies, canopies, or overhangs you can easily use rope light to highlight these elements, and to create a welcome environment in the evenings. By lining the exterior frames of these features you remove unwanted shadowing with a soft glow, and create strategic ambiance lighting. If the awning is made of aluminum or canvas, only line the edges of these pieces to create an intentional outdoor living space.
There is nothing nicer than maximizing the living space your home has to offer. When the sun goes down you don’t have to lose those calming evenings out on the porch. This summer, use some rope light to extend your enjoyable outdoor living space.