LED Fortification: A Guide to Keeping Your Outdoor Lights Shining Brightly

LED Fortification: A Guide to Keeping Your Outdoor Lights Shining Brightly

Outdoor lighting has many uses including improving the aesthetics of your property and maintaining safety and security during the night. Additionally it can also efficiently illuminate pathways, light up the space for outdoor parties effortlessly, or simply enhance the architecture.

In recent years, LED lights have become a popular choice for outdoor illumination because of their energy efficiency, sustainability, and durability. In this blog, you will understand the benefits of LED lights over fluorescent bulbs, learn how LED lifespan is measured, discuss the necessity of maintaining your LED fixtures, address common outdoor LED light problems, and provide tips for LED light maintenance to ensure your outdoor spaces remain brilliantly lit for years to come.

Distinction Between LED Lights and Fluorescent Light Bulbs

It is essential to understand the difference between LED lights and fluorescent bulbs before LED light maintenance. A filament inside a fluorescent fixture is heated until it glows, generating light. But this process also produces a lot of heat, which makes fluorescent light bulbs very inefficient. On the contrary, LED or light emitting diode lights produce low heat and maximum energy efficiency by using an electrical current to pass through a semiconductor material.

When compared to fluorescent fixtures, LED lights offer several benefits including:

  • Energy Efficiency: LED lights consume significantly less energy than fluorescent bulbs, enabling lower utility bills and reduced environmental impact.
  • Longevity: LED lights have a much longer lifespan compared to fluorescent bulbs which have a lifespan of around 10,000 hours. However, LED fixtures can last up to 50,000 hours or more, making them a cost-effective long-term lighting solution.
  • Durability: LED lights are more effective and long-lasting than fluorescent bulbs, as they are not as fragile and are less prone to breakage from shocks or vibrations.
  • Instantaneous Illumination: Unlike CFLs, LED lights reach full brightness immediately without any warm-up period.
  • Color Options: LED lights are flexible for lighting design as it has a wide range of color options, including cool white, warm white, and various colored LEDs.

After looking into the different advantages, we understand that LED lights are better alternative lighting solutions.

Lifespan of LEDs

LED luminaires are renowned for their exceptional longevity, unlike fluorescent lights. Most LED lights are made to last tens of thousands of hours under normal operating conditions. However, the actual lifespan of the fixture can vary depending on the usage, operating conditions, and manufacturing quality.

A good LED light should survive at least 30,000 to 50,000 hours on average before achieving a L70 rating. Indicating that it has achieved around 70% of its initial brightness, making it compatible for several years of continuous operation. That is why LED lights are a reliable and cost-effective lighting solution for outdoor environments.

Even though they last a very long time, LEDs may however depreciate with time. Factors such as humidity, heat, and electrical stress will cause the performance to steadily degrade. For your LED lights to continue shining brilliantly in the following days, adequate maintenance is also important.

How is LED Lifespan Measured?

The lifespan of LED lights is measured in a different way from other traditional bulbs. The simple "rated life" of fluorescent lamps is an average of the number of hours they are expected to operate before failing, while the LED lifespan is more complex and can be affected by different factors.

The lifetime of an LED is specified as the moment light output dims to a certain percentage of initial brightness. This is usually referred to as the "L70" or "Lumen Maintenance" rating, where "L70" means that the LED has achieved 70% of its original brightness. This rating is determined by manufacturers who put the LED bulb through rigorous tests under controlled conditions to estimate how long it will retain sufficient brightness for practical usefulness.

Factors that can affect LED lifespan include:

  1. Operating Conditions: Extreme heat or high humidity might cause LEDs to deteriorate more quickly.
  2. Driving Current: LEDs with higher currents may become hotter, which might limit their lifespan.
  3. Heat Management: The health and performance of LEDs depend on proper heat dissipation. Inadequately cooled LEDs deteriorate more quickly.
  4. Product Quality: The lifespan of LED chips may be significantly impacted by the quality of the LED chip, packaging, and other components. The more advanced the temperature management and stress resistance of LEDs against external factors, the higher their quality.

Understanding how LED long-term is determined can help you make wise choices about the purchase and maintenance of outdoor lighting devices.

Common Outdoor LED Light Problems

Outdoor LED lights which are long-lasting and sturdy can still malfunction over time. By learning these frequent failures, you may recognize and deal with the problems before they get severe, leaving your outdoor lighting as stable and effective as possible.

Here are some common problems with outdoor LED lights:

  1. Dimming or Flickering: The flickering or dimming can be a sign of loose connections, damage to wiring or there is an issue with an LED driver. Checking and tightening connections as well as testing the LED driver will resolve these problems.
  2. Water Intrusion: The outdoor LED lights are exposed to the weather and may suffer from moisture penetration which can cause corrosion, short circuits, and other electrical problems. Keeping fixtures well-sealed and waterproofed can reduce the risk of water damage.
  3. Insect Infestation: Insects like ants and spiders can nest inside the outdoor lighting fixtures and it can block the light output and also cause electrical issues. Constant cleaning and inspection reduces insect invasions and allows to keep a high level of light performance.
  4. Physical Damage: Outdoor LED lights may sustain physical damages caused by weather conditions, debris, vandalism, or accidental collisions. Routine checks can reveal any evidence of damage prompting any necessary repairs or replacements.
  5. Color Shift: Color shift could be experienced over time by the outdoor LED lights, which involves the changing or becoming inconsistent of the color temperature of the light. This may result from the effect of heat, UV exposure, or phosphor coating deteriorating. Choosing high-quality LEDs and good heat management measures will substantially reduce the color shift issue over the lifetime of the LED.

These common issues can be tackled by regular maintenance and timely repair to ensure that your outdoor LED lighting stays efficient and dependable.

LED Light Maintenance

Maintaining your outdoor LED lighting is a multi-step process that enhances its performance and lifespan. Through a preventive maintenance plan, you can have your lights shining for years and more. Here are some essential maintenance tips:

1. Clean them regularly:

Over time, outdoor LED fixtures can accumulate dust, dirt, pollen, and other debris which results in reduced light output and poor performance. Frequent cleaning can take off these contaminants, and so, you can have lights that are bright and clear. To clean LED fixtures:

  • Turn off the power at the circuit breaker first when cleaning LED fixtures to avoid the electric shock risk.
  • You can use a soft brush or a cloth to carefully remove any dirt or debris from the surface of the fixture. Be careful and do not use abrasive materials or strong chemicals, because they can damage the finish or lens of the light.
  • If the lenses of your LED lights are dirty or foggy, use a mild soap solution and a soft cloth to delicately clean them. Use soft cleaners and avoid hard materials to reduce the chance of scratching the lenses.
  • Look for leaks around the entire fixture, inside and out, by looking at the gaskets and seals to make sure they are intact and in good shape. Replace faulty seals so that water cannot get into the fixture and the internal components are protected.
2. Trim the Nearby Shrubs and Plants

Too much natural vegetation in areas where you have placed LED lights outside can affect light output and create shadows making your lighting ineffective. Proper trimming of bushes, shrubs, and trees around your fixtures regularly will help you maintain clear illumination and enhance the look of the outdoor spaces.

3. Perform Inspections Often

Regular inspections of your outdoor LED lighting are a must to spot any possible issues or problems in time. While inspecting, search for indications of damage, corrosion, water intrusion, or insect infestation. Pay attention to connections, wiring, and seals at close, and deal with the existing problems right away to stop the damages from spreading.

4. Waterproofing

Adequate waterproofing is very important as it prevents moisture and water from ruining the outdoor LED fixtures. Check that all the seals, gaskets, and joints are correctly installed and in one piece. Take extra measures by employing waterproofing compounds or sealants to increase the waterproofing ability of your fixtures, especially in damp areas.

Maintenance in Different Weather

Diverse weather conditions can impact the efficiency and service life of outdoor LED lighting. Implementing maintenance specific to different weather conditions can help ensure that the lighting will perform properly throughout the year.


In the winter, the outdoor LED fixtures can be subjected to freezing temperatures, snow, and ice. To maintain optimal performance during winter:

  • Clear Snow and Ice: Remove accumulated snow and ice from outdoor lighting fixtures to avoid blockages and allow optimum output of light.
  • Check Connections: Low temperature can induce contraction and expansion of materials, which may gradually disconnect connections if not taken care of. Regularly, ensure that connections are secure and properly tightened to avoid electrical problems.


With heavy rain and moisture, the chance of water coming inside coupled with corrosion in outdoor LED fixtures gets high. To maintain your lights during rainy weather:

  • Inspect Seals: Check seals and gaskets regularly for any signs of wear or damage. Replace all damaged seals to ensure that the water does not enter the room.
  • Clean Fixtures: After a rainstorm, clean outdoor LEDs to remove dirt, debris, and water buildup. Make sure that fixtures are totally dry before switching power on to avoid electrical problems.


Falling leaves, twigs, and other trimmings can collect around LED fixtures in the outdoor environment during the fall season, this may be the reason for light output obstruction. To maintain your lights during the fall:

  • Clear Debris: Remove leaves, twigs, and debris, that have fallen around outdoor fixtures to prevent blockages of light. This will make clear illumination.
  • Inspect for Damage: Inspect fixtures for any signs of damage or deterioration caused by falling debris or rough weather. Resolve any unexpected issues as soon as possible to avoid more damage.


The season brings its own set of summer outdoor LED lighting issues such as heat, humidity, and more insects. To maintain your lights during the summer months:

  • Clean Fixtures: The summer is dry, ensure fixtures are cleaned on a regular basis by removing all dirt, dust, and debris for maximum light output. Use a soft silicone brush or cloth to gently remove any build-up on the fixture.
  • Inspect for Insect Activity: Inspect outdoor light fixtures for proof of insect presence, such as nests or webs. Remove any nests made by insects to keep the luminaires cleared and get the optimum light output.
  • Check Wiring and Connections: Excessive heat leads to the expansion and contraction of components. As a result, connectors may become loose or wires can get damaged. Inspecting wiring and connections regularly for signs of tear and damage and fixing is recommended.
  • Ensure Adequate Ventilation: Proper ventilation is very important for maintaining the efficiency and lifespan of the outdoor LED lights, particularly in hot summer conditions. Ensure that fixtures are not obstructed and airflow around the fixture is not restricted by plants or other objects.
  • Monitor Heat Levels: Extreme heat can influence the performance and longevity of LED lights. Keep an eye on the temperature of outdoor light fixtures on hot summer days and consider installing heat sinks or shading them from direct sunlight to avoid heating up.

Through the adoption of these maintenance practices tailored to different weather conditions, you can ensure that your outdoor LED lighting will work dependably all year round.

Outdoor LED lighting is a great option with many benefits like energy efficiency, long life, and durability. However, regular maintenance is mandatory for good performance and durability. Through regular cleaning of the fixtures, trimming the surrounding vegetation, checks, waterproofing, and different maintenance practices for varying weather conditions, your outdoor LED lights might last for a few years. Proactive maintenance provides the benefits of stunning lighting, security, and safety offered by lighted outdoor areas, helping to improve the ambiance of the building and its environment.

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