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22 Deck Lighting Ideas to Illuminate Your Backyard This Summer

Backyard outdoor kitchen and living area at dusk



Incorporating lighting into your backyard deck adds an extra layer of safety and security while also enhancing its overall appeal. Backyard get-togethers, barbecues with the family, relaxing nights spent with a book, or romantic evenings with your significant other outside on your deck can be made all the more appealing if the right lighting is included in your design.


Make your outdoor space more inviting by including lighting that increases the functionality of your deck and fits your personal style. Check out the suggestions below!



1. Stair Lights

Practical and attractive, stair lights can help avoid unnecessary accidents in a commonly high-traffic area of your deck.


No one wants to trip going up and down the stairs in the dark, and stair lights are an effective way to give your outdoor space an added layer of safety.



2. Umbrella Lighting

A common protector from the sun for backyard decks are umbrellas–which can surprisingly be used to your advantage during summer evenings as well.


Festoon string lights inside your umbrella and voila! You have a functional deck device that can transition seamlessly from day to night.



3. In-Floor Lighting

Installing in-floor lighting is a subtle yet classy way to illuminate your deck space.


This style of lighting makes a big impact with the added benefit of easy cleaning and maintenance.



4. Lanterns

Outdoor lanterns can fit almost any backyard space and can be customized to suit your preferences–from modern to rustic.


Some lanterns now offer remote control access, which removes the need to get out of your comfortable deck chair and adjust the lighting.



5. String Lights

This ever-popular backyard lighting staple is well-loved for a reason.


String lights come in an endless variety of styles, and they’re a simple, yet incredibly effective way to illuminate your deck with little effort or cost. Transform your basic deck into a fairytale with strands of twinkling lights that are sure to elevate your space.



6. Pendant Lights

Battery and solar-powered pendant lights are an excellent option to light up your deck.



Pendant lighting in backyard


Not only are they available in countless styles, but you can also adjust them to fit your deck’s specific space and lighting needs.



7. Overhead Lighting

An overhead ceiling light above your deck–if you have the backyard set up to accommodate it–is a great way to illuminate your space with a central source.


To add an extra layer of ease and customizability, some overhead lighting can be operated by remote controls, with options to adjust brightness and others even have setting timers as well.



8. Pergola Lights

The adaptable design of many pergolas offers a long list of options for potential lighting additions.


From string lights wound around the structure beams, to fairy lights strung across the overhead rafters, pergolas can be beautifully enhanced with a variety of lighting potentials.



9. Ceiling Fan with Light

Take your overhead lighting one step further and incorporate a ceiling fan into it as well.


Decks can not only become quite dark at night but also warm, especially in the summertime. So why not combine two functional pieces and install a stylish ceiling fan light? Make your deck cool and illuminated. A win-win for backyard gatherings during hot summer nights.



10. Caged Wall Lights

If you have a smaller deck and need to make the most out of the limited space you have, consider introducing wall lights into your backyard.


Wall lights are not only functional and practical by saving you space, but they can also be stylishly integrated into your decorated deck. Caged lights, for example, blend seamlessly into an industrially-styled outdoor area, and they offer just the right amount of light when needed.



11. Integrated Firepit

If you love backyard fires, consider integrating a firepit into your deck space.



Firepit in backyard living area


Not only will your deck be basked in an ambient, relaxing glow, but firepits also offer much-needed warmth during chilly nights when you don’t want to go back inside. Look into the different styles of firepits that would work best for your style preferences and space specifications.

For a more modern and space-saving look, there are sleek, minimalistic firepits, or classic options if you prefer the commonly-loved firepit style. Regardless of the one you pick, it’s sure to be a family favourite and a crowd-pleaser at your next backyard gathering.



12. Candlelight

Candles create a classically romantic and intimate atmosphere with their unobtrusive glow and delicate warmth.


Arrange candles in the center of an outdoor dining table, or strategically place candlelit lanterns around your deck space for subtle, yet cozy lighting. Increase the functionality of your candles by choosing citrus and citronella options to repel outdoor pests like mosquitos.



13. Balanced Variety

Don’t feel the need to settle on only one source of light for your deck. Creating a balance between different lighting options can effectively enhance the functionality and overall style of your outdoor space.


Different light sources also provide depth and dimension to an otherwise flat layout. Arranging pillar candles that differ in height along your deck’s stairs, hanging up overhead string lights, and grouping lanterns in corners that lead to a focalized, central fire pit, for example, can transform your deck space into a cozy backyard getaway.



14. Solar Lights

Sometimes, solar lights are the only lighting you need.


At little cost and minimal effort, solar lights can be placed along deck posts, planter boxes, stairs, and walkways, with no wiring to worry about installing.



15. Focalized Lighting

Be strategic with your deck’s lighting placement and focus on the most-used areas of your space.


Every inch of your deck doesn’t necessarily need to be lit up at all times. Instead, place your attention on where you and your family spend the most time.

Situate lights around your outdoor dining area if you frequently eat outside and host backyard barbeques. Or place solar lights that automatically turn off when the sun rises around a designated coffee nook.

Sometimes less is more, and it can make a huge difference for your space if you install your lighting in the most practical spots.



16. Under-Deck Lighting

If you have a raised deck that also serves as a balcony, consider adding lights underneath and creating a separate area off it.



17. Deck Post Cap Lights

Deck post cap lights are simple, yet efficient in lighting up your outdoor space.


Available in LED and solar power varieties, cap lights are easy to install and hassle-free. They’re a great way to add some more light with little effort to an otherwise dark deck.



18. Counter Lighting

If you have an outdoor kitchen or cooking area on your deck, you’re likely in need of some proper lighting for grilling and preparing meals.



Outdoor kitchen lighting


Installing under-counter lighting is the perfect option if you’re looking to add some more light to your food prep station in a subtle, yet classy way.



19. Tiki Torches

Few things say jungle oasis more than tiki torches do. Countless varieties of tiki torches can be found and purchased for your backyard deck.


From small torches that clip to deck ledges, to larger mounted options, you can add a lot of character and charm to your space. As well, tiki torches keep annoying pests at bay with their smoke as they burn, so you don’t have to worry about swatting away flies and mosquitos while you spend time outside.



20. Floating Tea Lights

Although they’re a smaller decorative touch, floating tea lights can add a cozy pop of light and intimacy to your deck.


Place a large glass bowl (or multiple smaller bowls) of water on a dining/coffee table with lit tea lights floating on top. Elegant and classy, this subtle detail is sure to make an impact.



21. Spa Deck

Make the most out of your deck by installing an outdoor spa with a whirlpool hot tub. This sectioned-off area of your deck can be intimately styled with creative lighting that adds to the relaxing atmosphere.


Expertly strung string lights draped across the surrounding walls, and smartly placed handheld lanterns that lead a path to the hot tub will help heighten the at-home spa experience in your own backyard. Take it one step even further and look into the lighting options that are available for hot tubs–like customizable LED lights.



22. Reading Nook

If you want to escape to your deck in the evenings and curl up with a good book, add a well-lit reading nook into your space.


Position a comfortable lounge chair or outdoor sofa in a corner of your deck with tasteful cushions and a comfortable blanket for chilly nights. 

Hang up some string lights overhead and place lanterns around the base of your seating area, and enjoy the coziness your new addition brings you.




There are so many different ways that you can add lighting to your backyard deck that can help increase its practicality and style. No one likes dining and socializing in the dark, so introduce some of these suggestions into your deck’s design this summer!




Steve Livock at 9:00 AM
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