De-bugging Your Ottawa Landscape Lighting System

So, you've just had your Ottawa landscape lighting system installed and you're ready to start enjoying your night time oasis. After the guests arrive, you linger over an outdoor meal and relax in the glow. And then you notice more guests arrive – the unwanted kind. While bugs are an important part of your outdoor environment, their attraction to your lighting system can make it tough to enjoy the harmony of your new outdoor setting.

There are a number of tips and tricks that can reduce or eliminate this pest problem, while allowing you to appreciate your evening living space without an abundance of blue bug-zappers and sizzling insects.

Pay Attention to Placement
If possible, keep direct light sources away from the areas where people gather. Low-profile spot-lighting in the surrounding area or moon-lighting installed above and away the living space will keep the bugs out of your way. Try to avoid bright lights over eating areas or doorways, because that's where bugs will congregate. Our design services can help you find the optimal placement for your fixtures.

Use Shielded Fixtures
Our Ottawa landscape lighting systems utilize fixtures that shield the bulb to prevent glare and to properly direct the beam. This also helps prevent the bugs from seeing the light source.

Tiki Lamps are Not Just a Style Choice
If you're the kind of person that finds the smell of citronella candles a little overwhelming, a few tiki lamps in your lighting design will help make the pests bug-off. Lighting them just before dusk and before the other lights come on works best.

Go Low-Wattage
In addition to saving energy and reducing your utility cost, a low-wattage Ottawa landscape lighting system will also help the bug problem. Most flying pests prefer high-powered, brighter lights. People don't respond well to glare, but bugs love it.

Add Some Colour
Bugs can see only a limited range of the colour spectrum. The wavelength of bright white light is the most attractive, while switching your bulbs to emit a yellow tint is much less likely to be visible to the pests. Besides, a bit of colour can add more warmth to your outdoor setting.

Related to this, there is some evidence that painting or draping the ceiling of covered areas in light blue helps to repel many types of flying insects, though not scientifically proven. It's common in the U.S. south to see windows and porches painted light blue just for this purpose.

Time it Right
If you've ever spent time in cottage country, you know that many types of flying pests, including mosquitoes and black flies tend to peak around dusk and taper off after sunset. If possible, avoid turning on the lighting system until about an hour after sunset. This will prevent the intruders from sticking around longer than they normally would. To light the night in the meantime, this is a good time to use your tiki lamps.

Don't Over-Light
As far as bugs are concerned: the brighter, the better. Subtlety is the key to a good landscape lighting design, and bugs don't do subtle. Also, consider the use of one or more motion sensors so that areas that don't require constant lighting are less likely to allow bugs to gather.

Keep the Air Moving
Bugs seem to love those hot, sultry nights as much as we do. If you have a covered seating area, consider installing a hanging fan to keep the air – and the bugs – moving.

If you think your Ottawa landscape lighting system is inviting unwanted guests, contact us for more advice on de-bugging your outdoor spaces.

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