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Maintaining Outdoor Lighting in the Winter Months

It is easy to neglect your outdoor lighting system when the conditions are cold outside. You already shovel your driveway, sidewalk, and walkway, and de-ice your car, why would you want to spend anymore time out in the cold? The problem is, winter is when your outdoor lighting system is most vulnerable. The temperature, moisture, and winter activities can cause damage to your outdoor lighting system. And neglecting a little problem will only lead to large problems in the future.


Winter Activities

Winter activities like snow shoveling, roof raking, and even just playing in the snow can inadvertently cause damage to your outdoor lighting. If you aren’t careful with a metal bladed snow shovel you could accidentally strike lights near your driveway or walkways. If you use a snow shoveling service, you should make sure they know where your lights are, or mark your lights with surveying flags, so they don’t accidentally damage them. When raking snow off of your roof, or taking down icicles, you need to be careful of the lights that might be beneath them, or the string lights if you still have them up. Finally, it’s easy to damage lighting fixtures, bulbs, and wires, that are buried in the snow if the kids are outdoors playing. It’s important that you mark or unbury your lights, otherwise a child might accidentally hurt themselves playing in the snow.

The Temperature

Of course one of the main concern of winter is the freezing cold, but have there are more serious problems when that cold temperature fluctuates, especially rapidly.  Indiana’s weather fluctuates more than a teenage girl’s emotions, and it’s not abnormal for temperatures to plummet below freezing then rise above freezing in the middle of the day, only to go down again at night. The freezing, thawing, and refreezing of water can cause your outdoor lighting fixtures to shift their focus, move in their place, or even break. Extreme low temperatures can also negatively affect the lives of some bulbs. This is especially the case when they go from being on and hot, to being cold at night.



Winter is wet; the snow, slush, and ice make the moisture of winter sometimes take over and are not good for your outdoor lighting. Your lighting, wiring, and box should all be watertight, however, with the freezing and thawing and various winter activities may have damaged their waterproofing. It’s important to check to make sure everything’s water tight. Melting can frequently cause your GFCI outlet to trip. If it does, you can push the “reset” button to restart it. If it does not work after pushing the reset button, call Cutting Edge Services to fix the problem.

Need Help with Winter Maintenance for Outdoor Lighting?

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