For the sake of this article let’s assume you have done your research or read our blog post on the benefits of hiring an outdoor lighting professional. Now you have decided it is time to find that professional. Where do you start? The first step is to establish why you want outdoor lighting. This does not have to be in great detail but having a rough idea will help give you and the companies you call a great starting point. The next step is the search. Most people do an internet search which is both very helpful and very confusing. Two things we recommend to help provide some clarity. One is to ask someone. Ask you friends, family, co-workers, boss, realtor or home designer. It sounds simple but you would be amazed by how many people don’t do this. The second is to check with the Association of Outdoor Lighting Professionals. Most of your professional outdoor lighting companies will be a part of this industry leading association. Now you are ready to start making phone calls and scheduling initial consultations. For your convenience we have put together a Consumer Comparison Checklist to help you determine which company is right for you.
Consumer Comparison Checklist
All outdoor lighting companies are not created equal. When you compare price make sure you also compare the quality of components, installation, and service.
- Is the company licensed, bonded and insured? Check Here
- Is the company covered by workman’s compensation? Can they provide you with proof? If not you could be sued if they are injured on your property.
- Does the company have references? 3 has always been the standard but we recommend more.
- Does the company offer a Nighttime Demonstration? After making sure the company is legal and has actually done work (references) this the single most important pre installation service a company should offer. This one is not negotiable. Every professional outdoor lighting company has the ability to do this. You have a right to see what you getting before you make a purchase decision.
- Will my designer be my project manager? One contact point makes communication much easier.
- Do they use integrated LED fixtures or LED bulbs? Why? Intergraded fixtures will have better performance and longer warranties.
- Are the fixtures made of quality materials? Commercial grade solid, copper or 100% aircraft aluminum.
- Is the transformer specifically designed for LED lights? Some transformer will cause LED lights to fail.
- Is the transformer stainless steel?
- What are your timer and control options?
- Is the system designed for growth and expansion?
- Are the connections 100% waterproof? Make sure to see an example of the connections process.
- What does the manufacturer’s warranty cover? Are the warranties dependent on a service plan? Be sure the warranty covers the LED chip and LED driver.
- Is the installation itself warranted? What does it cover and for how long?
- Is the system designed and installed by factory trained professionals?
- Does the company provide a service plan? What is provided and for what price? All lighting systems need to some level of maintenance.
The last thing you should consider is what type of experience does this company offer me and do I like my designer? Having a custom outdoor lighting designed for your property can be a very personal experience. You have worked very hard for your home and landscape. Having a great relationship and experience with your lighting company and designer will only enhance the end results. Your hard work brought to life.
For more information or for answer to the questions above please feel to contact Oregon Outdoor Lighting at 503-313-8580. Also feel free to email at Kyle@OregonOutdoorLighting.com or simply use the contact form on our website.