"Understanding Your Home" by Building Inspector Mark Visser
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Solar post cap lights
Solar powered fence post caps are designed for 4x4 inch (10x10 cm) wood posts. If you just finished building your deck don't panic if the lights don't seem to fit over the posts. In most cases they are too tight because the wood has not had time to shrink. Give it some time and in a few weeks they will fit perfectly. They are secured to the deck posts by screws. Solar powered deck post lights are usually sold in sets of four. The built-in photocell sensor turns the light on automatically at dusk. Just make sure that there is enough sunlight during the day to recharge the Ni-MH rechargeable battery. The battery may last a few seasons and the LED bulb up to 100,000 hours.

Solar post cap lights
are easy to install

Deck Lighting

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Solar powered lights and low voltage deck and step lighting systems are safe, energy efficient, functional and can enhance your backyard landscaping.
LED lights have several advantages over Halogen lights. Initially they may be more expensive than other lights but in the long run they will save you a bundle, especially if you are planning to have the lights on a lot. LED light bulbs can last up to 10 years and maybe even longer if LED transformers are used. In contrast to earlier blueish glow LED bulbs, they are available in several shades of white.
Solar powered deck and step lights are a good alternative if you do not want to install wiring, transformers and transformers. The top picture shows how a nice multi-level deck and steps can be complimented by carefully located deck and step lights. The owners decided on using three different types of lights.

Half moon shaped "flood" lights
The incandescent bulbs of these lights provide light for the patio area and the landing at the top of the stairs. The landing, between the top deck and lower patio, is big enough to provide a sitting area for two while leaving enough room for foot traffic. This 12 Volt lighting system (six lights, mounting hardware, wires and transformer) was bought as a complete kit. The lights are surface mounted.
Recessed step lights
The tiny LED lights are real powerful and supply ample light to light up the steps. This low voltage system and transformer is easy to install. The lights are not fixed to the power supply lines. Just run the wires and the lights can be clipped on wherever you want them.

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