If you plan to add outdoor lighting to your landscape in Winter Park, or elsewhere in Central Florida, make sure you get a warranty from your contractor. Depending on the size of your property, and the scope of your design, landscape lighting can be a big investment on your part. Having a guarantee that your lighting fixtures, transformers and LED chips will last, or at the very least, replaced should they happen to fail, gives you peace of mind.
How long a warranty should you have? It depends on the equipment needed for the landscape lighting installation. For instance, if a transformer has a 20-year warranty, while another has a five-year warranty, then there are issues. It is a piece of electrical equipment and parts, etc. can wear out over time. Therefore, it’s better to choose the longer warranty in terms of parts that can go bad inside of the transformer. At Elegant Custom Images, we use only stainless steel, 10 and 20-year transformers. The cores have been wrapped in silicone to prevent corrosion here in Florida. The products are very good quality and have capacities ranging from 300 watts to 1500 watts.
When it comes to landscape lighting fixtures, warranties run the gamut. Our heavy cast brass, copper or bronze fixtures are all guaranteed for 25 years. Some outdoor lighting companies offer warranties from 2-15 years on their fixtures. Keep in mind that the longer the warranty, the better the equipment.
You should also be wary of any firm that promotes low-cost aluminum lighting fixtures. There’s a big trade-off when it comes to durability, particularly in Florida. Aluminum fixtures may be more inexpensive than brass, but they rust and corrode prematurely in our state’s heat and humidity. Powder coated products tend to fade quickly too. And most take a lesser wattage bulb as a maximum size, compared with other metal fixtures. Aluminum fixtures are also more susceptible to damage from landscapers. These fixtures typically don’t last more than 2-3 years, compared with brass, which lasts for decades. Spending a little more on a brass fixture today, will save you money in the long run.
LEDs are another story. The LED chips that we install for our clients are rated at 30,000 hours. During normal operation, they should last about 5 years. Beware of landscape lighting companies that offer to sell aluminum LED lighting fixtures, where the LED bulb is integrated into the fixture. Since aluminum wears out prematurely in the Florida heat, as we’ve stated, the fixture will wear out before the bulb ever does. But since the bulb is integrated into the fixture, you’ll have to bear the expense of replacing the entire fixture – bulb and all. With brass fixtures, you can replace the LED bulb after 5 years or so, but the fixture itself should still last for another 20 years.
No matter which landscape lighting company you hire to install outdoor lighting, we recommend that the fixtures and other materials they supply are made in the USA. If not, you can run into trouble with warranties if the items are manufactured in China, for example. There is no one to call for technical support or customer service. We try to buy American-made products because of the workmanship, customer and tech service, and inventories.
We at Elegant Custom Images also guarantee our landscape lighting installation for the first year. If a bulb goes out, or a landscaper cuts a line, just call us at (321) 217-7822, and we’ll come out and get your system up and running in no time, at no extra charge. We will also stop by several times a year just to amp the system. If the amps are greater than when the system was put into service, there is likely a cut line somewhere or a bad bulb.
After the first year, we offer customers a maintenance plan that fulfills any need, from light bulbs to LED chips to general service. Our plans include reduced labor rates on trouble-shooting too, if any issue comes up.
When you’re looking for a company that provides exceptional landscape lighting products, backed by a lengthy warranty, and wiring methods that eliminate the effects of voltage drop, contact Elegant Custom Images. We provide superior products and service for our customers in Winter Park and throughout Central Florida, so they can enjoy outdoor lighting for years to come.
image courtesy: freedigitalphotos.net / nirots