A major pre-requisite of electric outdoor chandeliers for outdoor use, is that they must be rugged to withstand the vagaries of the environment, such as harsh sunlight, rains and thundershowers or gale force winds, etc. Apart from this, the regulatory requirement insists that all outdoor light fixtures must be UL approved for moist environment. These designs are resistant to dampness and moisture entering their circuitry and causing mishaps. For this, generally, they use sealed circuitry. Even the exposed accessories such as switches are protected with rubber insulation, sealed glass shades, chords and plugs with grounding.
A sufficiently robust outdoor light fixture with adequate protection provided for in its design can be used even in rough weather. Some of the other factors to be taken into consideration while selecting outdoor light fixtures are as follows:
(i.) Energy Star tests and approves the energy efficiency of consumer products which use electrical energy. Products with sufficiently sound energy efficiency are fixed with their logo. The electric outdoor chandelier which is proposed to be used must be approved and rated by Energy Star. In fact, this is a pre-requisite for all electric fixtures.
(ii.) Only electricians with a valid license must be allowed to install or otherwise adjust any electric outdoor chandelier.
(iii.) In case the electric outdoor chandelier consists of lamp shades, the material and specifications of the shades deserve attention.
While shades made of fabrics give a translucent glimmer to the light emitted, it is preferable that these be made of vinyl or an alternative water resistant fabric material to avoid damage due to rain or mildew, etc. Dark shades prevent too much light from penetrating outside. Therefore, areas which need to be well-lighted should be lit up with outdoor light fixtures having lighter colored shades, such as white, cream or off-white. Similarly, biege or tan colored shades offer a soft tone of light. On the other hand, any shades darker than these will allow much lesser light to shine.
Another factor to be considered is whether you want the shades to be turned up or turned down? Usually, turned up shades emit more light but there are also chances of collecting dirt, dust, debris, insects and bugs in them. Hence, for outdoor light fixtures, it is preferable that the shades are turned down so that the fixtures are protected from unwanted external rubbish.
Lastly, sealed glass shades is most favorable for outdoor light fixtures, since they protect the susceptible elements inside the lamp from moisture, dust, insects, debris and other unwanted elements.
(iv.) The area where the outdoor light fixture is to be hung should be decided in advance. In case the fixture is being provided purely for creating an atmosphere, it should cast a suffused light upwards. Alternately, if it has to be hung over an activity area, then you may want the light to be cast downwards. Somewhere in between come the outdoor spotlights, which need to be sufficiently flexible so that they can focus on the exact spot where they are needed.
(v.) The size of the area which has to be lighted up should also be taken into consideration. Sometimes, you may find it better to have two or more smaller outdoor light fixtures in an area, instead of a single one hung centrally.
(vi.) Dimmers are nowadays being extensively used, especially for outdoor light fixtures. Apart from handing over control over the magnitude of light you desire, they also help save electricity by reducing the quantum of light and thereby the quantum of electricity consumption.
Electric outdoor chandeliers are available in an extensive range of varieties to meet an array of tastes and preferences. Selecting the right design and size involves considering all available options before making the decision to buy one. Electric outdoor lighting has functional as well as aesthetic use. It allows tasks to be performed outdoors and also augments gratification of the lawns, walkways, patios, sundecks, gazebos, swimming pools, etc., which you may have outside the house, especially during relaxed evenings. Deciding the position and the functions of your outdoor light fixture before buying it will help you maximize its usage and lifespan.