Beam Spread and Landscape Lighting

These days there are so many options when it comes to landscape lighting, you may not know where to begin. Fortunately, there are a few specific types of lighting fixtures that can go a long way towards transforming your yard at night. Deciding between these different types of lights depends on a few factors, one of the leading factors being beam spread. If you’re not sure what beam spread is or how to use it effectively in your landscaping, let’s introduce you to this important aspect of lighting.

Beam spread refers to the measurement of how much a light source causes a light to spread. In other words, it can be used to determine how wide or narrow a beam of light is going to be. Different types of reflector lamps offers various beam spreads, making it important to distinguish between floodlights and spotlights in this instance. In general, a spotlight will have a beam that’s less than 45 degrees wide, while a floodlight will have a beam that can spread up to 120 degrees.

How exactly is beam spread determined? You simply take the angle of the beam, multiply it by 0.018, and then further multiply that number by a distance. OK, so maybe that’s not so simple, but it is an easy enough calculation to complete. For instance, if a light has a beam angle of 50 degrees and you want to determine the spread at 20 feet from its source, you would multiply 50 by 0.018 by 20. This gives you a beam spread of 18, meaning the beam of light will be 18 feet wide when its 20 feet away from the source.

There are quite a few ways to incorporate the concept of beam spread into your landscaping. If you want lights to highlight specific objects, like a sign, you may want to use a narrower spotlight that will project a more precise beam. If however you want to illuminate a tree or an even larger area of land, however, you should choose a floodlight, which offers a greater beam spread and can illuminate larger spans. Using different lighting fixtures for different aspects of your property will help you achieve a lighting design that’s ideal for your lawn, home or any other structure.

Beam spread is just one of many factors to think about when installing landscape lighting, but using it effectively can help you achieve the results you’ve always wanted. For more information about outdoor lighting, contact the Illuminations USA team today!