Hidden Dangers of Big Box Store Landscape Lighting Products

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Big box stores,  local home stores and online Internet companies sell many landscape lighting products and systems. But their quality, lifespan, and customer service fail big-time in comparison to what you receive from professional installations.

While the low cost of these products and the apparent ease of installation advertised may be persuasive, after a few years customers are left feeling less than thrilled with their purchase.

Here are the main reasons you should avoid this type of lighting:

1. Low-grade material. Primary materials used in these cheap fixtures are flimsy, non-UV resistant plastic or a thin, low-grade “pot metal”. Pot metal is simply a combination of whatever scrap metal is lying in the next pile to be melted at the Chinese foundry where these fixtures are made, so there is never any consistency in the balance of metal types used. This can leave these fixtures prone to pitting, brittleness, and corrosion.

2. Painted finishes. These fixtures are often covered with a thin painted finish to cover the cheap pot metal below it. After a few years under the harsh UV of the sun, the paint begins to break down and flake off, leaving the pot metal below visible and open to the corrosive work of the elements. The only type of acceptable finish for long-term use outside is a hard-baked, applied powder coating.

4. Unsafe power sources. The small plastic “power boxes” sold by home stores don’t come close to  professional lighting standards. So they can be quite dangerous. The transformers typically sold are equipped with only a single voltage tap (12v) and also have improper and/or inadequate secondary fusing. This leaves the power center vulnerable to overheating and could potentially lead to the power center combusting.

5. Low-quality optics and LED light sources. The quality of the light source is equally as important as laying the design out correctly. The cheap, low-quality LED chipsets that are included in these retail lights will never produce a professional looking effect. Don’t expect the deep color rendering of light that can only be produced with a high quality LED that has a high color rendering index or (CRI).

6. Improper wire connection points. The number one reason these systems fall apart so quickly is due to improper wire connections. A proper wire connection will be 100% waterproof and untouched by soil minerals in the ground. It will also be tight and secure with no way the wire connection could ever come loose, begin to arc and heat up.

The connection in box store systems  is something called a “pierce-point” connector. It consists of rectangular or round plastic housing that you open up to reveal 2 wire tracks and a few sets of sharply-pointed, metal blades.  It is a simple way to connect wires, but it does nothing to protect them from the elements.

Custom Lighting of America uses only the best materials for the job.  That means LED lighting systems  that are meant to last a lifetime. Our consumer buyer protection plan will warranty the light fixtures and transformer, essentially the entire system for life!  This one of a kind lifetime warranty protects homeowners not only against rust and corrosion of the fixtures, but also the sockets, all related hardware, wire connections and the solid brass construction.

Accept no substitutes when it comes to the safety and beauty of your property. Invest in a Custom Lighting of America system and enjoy the peace of mind knowing that you have purchased the highest quality, safest and most thoughtfully designed lighting system on the market today.

Call owner Harold Salkin for details at 561.204.3000.

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