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How To Plan and Hang Patio Lights
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How To Plan and Hang Patio Lights

A recent study shows that people are starting to spend time in their backgrounds, grilling, dining, exercising, and playing. However, the same study states that about 88% of Americans aren’t satisfied with their outdoor space and plan to improve it in the future.

Your outdoor patio should be a place where you can go to enjoy the fresh air and gather with your friends, family, and neighbors. However, if you don’t like your patio or worse, if you’re embarrassed by it, the area will be wasted space.

One way to improve your space is by adding patio lights. If you don’t know much about hanging lights or decor, don’t worry, you aren’t alone. There are many people who want to make their outdoor space more comfortable, but don’t know how.

This guide is going to tell you everything you need to know about hanging patio lights or outdoor Christmas lights and how they will make your space better than ever.

Read on to learn more!

Selecting the Right Amount

The first step when it comes to learning how to hang string lights is getting the right amount. It’ll be frustrating if you order the wrong amount of patio lights and have to wait for another shipment to come in before completing your project.

You’ll need to measure how many feet of outdoor string lights you’ll need to create the design or look you want. You’ll need to decide what shape and color you want. They come in numerous different styles, so you’ll have many options to choose from.

Before placing your order, you must know where you’re going to hang them. Where you hang them will be determined by the size and shape of your yard and patio. It’s important that you decide the location of each strand before purchasing them so you know much more to order.

You have several options when it comes to design. However, the easier and most simple is to hang the lights around the perimeter of the yard or patio.

Measure and Install Hooks

Once you know how many feet of patio lights you need, placed your order, and received them, you’ll need to measure where you want your hooks. If you have them too far apart, the lights will droop and hang in your way.

If you put them too close together, the lights may not hang how you envisioned. This step is much easier if you have a second person to help you. Once you have made all the marks, you’ll install the hooks. Depending on what material you’re placing the hooks in, you may need to drill pilot holes or install anchors.

Hang Them and Enjoy

Once the hooks are in place, you’ll place the string on them. This process will be much easier if you screw in the bulbs after you have the strand in place.

There will be a greater risk of one of the bulbs breaking if you do it before. Be sure to start at the end closest to the outlet and give enough room for the cord to reach out.

However, you don’t want it to be plugged in while your twisting the bulbs on. For safety reasons, it’s best to have someone else present to hold the ladder while you’re stringing them.

Bonus Option

If you have a wood railing around your patio, you can also hang the string of lights there. You don’t have to install hooks; you can simply use a heavy-duty staple gun.


There are numerous benefits that come with adding a string of patio lights to your backyard. By hanging string lights, you’ll increase the safety and security around your home.

If you have a pet or have to step outside once the sun has gone down, you’ll be able to see better. You won’t have to worry about tripping down the patio stairs or on a toy or ball that got left out in the yard.

The lights will also deter unwanted visitors. The lights will let people know you’re home and burglars and thieves will be less likely to approach. If someone does come to your home, the string lights will allow you to see them more easily.

Curb Appeal

Another benefit is curb appeal. When you hang string lights, you’re improving the look of your home. Even if you aren’t selling your property, you want your house to look the best it can.

Spending extra time, money, and energy on your back patio decor will increase the value of your property. As we stated before, more and more people want homes with backyards and many people are willing to pay more for them. As a homeowner, you want your property value to be as high as possible.

Improve Comfort

Not only will a string of lights make your home look better, but it will also make your home more welcoming and comfortable. You and your guests will want to spend more time on your back patio than ever before.

Patio Lights Guide

Don’t wait to hang patio lights in your backyard. It’s an easy process and there are many benefits.

Once you’ve completed the project, you’ll wonder why you didn’t hang them sooner. We have a lot of string lights for you to choose from that will help you take your patio space to the next level.

Check out our store and contact us if you have any questions. Our team of lighting experts is ready and available to help you get started on your back patio project today!

Patio Light Type String Lights LED Deck Lights Wall-mounted Lights Post Lights
Installation Hang or drape Recessed or surface-mounted Wall-mounted Installed on posts
Lighting Effect Ambient lighting Task lighting Ambient or accent lighting Ambient or accent lighting
Best For Outdoor dining areas, pergolas Stairways, deck railings Exterior walls, doorways Driveways, walkways

The Differences Between Patio Lights

Patio lights come in various forms and styles to suit different lighting needs and preferences. Understanding the differences between string lights, LED deck lights, wall-mounted lights, and post lights can help you choose the best option for your patio.

String Lights

String lights are a classic choice for outdoor lighting. They can be hung or draped from trees, pergolas, or other structures, creating an ambient and festive atmosphere. String lights can be incandescent or LED, and LED options are more energy-efficient. String lights are best for outdoor dining areas and pergolas.

LED Deck Lights

LED deck lights are a great option for task lighting on a patio. They can be recessed or surface-mounted into deck railings or stairs, providing safety and functionality. LED lights are energy-efficient and long-lasting, making them an ideal choice for outdoor lighting. LED deck lights are best for stairways and deck railings.

Wall-mounted Lights

Wall-mounted lights are a versatile option for outdoor lighting, providing both ambient and accent lighting. They can be LED or incandescent, and LED options are more energy-efficient. Wall-mounted lights are best for exterior walls and doorways.

Post Lights

Post lights are a classic choice for outdoor lighting, providing ambient and accent lighting for driveways, walkways, and other areas. They can be LED or incandescent, and LED options are more energy-efficient. Post lights are best for driveways and walkways.

Patio Lights Planning

Where to Find Patio Lights

LightingandSupplies.com is a leading online retailer of lighting products, including patio lights. They offer a wide selection of string lights, LED deck lights, wall-mounted lights, and post lights, so you can find the perfect option for your patio. Contact LightingandSupplies.com at 888-325-4448 or visit their contact page for more information.

LightingandSupplies.com also offers a blog, blog.lightingandsupplies.com, with expert advice and information on lighting and related topics. Whether you’re a homeowner, contractor, or business owner, you can find information and guidance on lighting for your specific needs on their blog.

For commercial lighting applications, LightingandSupplies.com has years of experience and expertise to help you find the right solution. Visit their commercial lighting applications page to learn more.

How to Hang Patio Lights FAQ

What size pole / post should I use?

2×2 or 2×4 wood is not recommended. A 4×4 post securely placed in the ground is typically sufficient for most backyard patio light applications. If your lighting display is more complex and you have many string light runs being supported from a single post, a 6×6 post can be used. It is larger, provides even more stability, and gives you more surface area to attach your strings, if needed.

How far should I sink the post?

If using concrete, most display applications that are 8′ to 10′ off ground benefit from posts sunk about 24″ to 36″. This is approximately 1/4 to 1/3 of the post’s height being sunk underground and secured with concrete. For taller applications in the 10′ to 15′ height range we recommend sinking the post 1/3 of the way in the ground.

How far apart should poles be spaced?

Pole spacing is based on personal preference and the needs unique to the space you are trying to decorate. For example, more complex patio string light patterns may require the use of additional poles.

When should a guy wire be used?

We recommend the use of guy or guide wire on longer light runs and projects where large, heavy patio bulbs are being used. When you stretch light wires between two points, there is constant lateral tension. It’s kind of like a perpetual tug of war on your light strings, which isn’t ideal. By using guy wire between two anchor points instead of the light string, you’re removing the tug of war completely which means the lights you worked so hard to install are less likely to fall or sag over time.

How high should lights be hung off the ground?

Patio light display scenarios can vary widely and it’s not uncommon to see lights hung at very different heights even from one end to another. Generally, though, it’s good to have lights 8-10′ off the ground at a minimum just so there’s walking clearance. If you are using larger bulbs, you may want to consider raising the height of your display further, based on personal preference.

What hardware should be used to attach lights to a post?

Hanging hardware like cable clamps are typically sufficient for most applications. Use the appropriate screw or bolt for your hanging surface and ensure the cable clamp is secure. Additional clamps can be used to secure the ends if needed.

How can lights be attached to a tree?

Because trees have varying bark types, traditional cable clamps can work but may require longer screws to ensure the clamp is secured to the tree. Alternative hardware includes things like C hooks (sometimes called bicycle hooks) that can be inserted into a tree and then the string light can be attached to the C hook hardware.

Wholesale Patio Lights Supplier – Lighting and Supplies

As one of the best wholesale lighting distributors in the United States, Lighting and Supplies provides a wide variety of indoor and outdoor patio lights to accommodate all commercial and residential lighting and electrical component project needs. For home owners, electricians, contractors, lighting engineers, project managers and more, we can help source the lights you need by providing a lighting quote or creating a proposal for the right lights in your lighting specification process or next lighting design project.

Click here for more information about Lighting and Supplies.

Need help? Contact us today at 888-325-4448 or email us at [email protected]!

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