Lights outside of your garage play an important role in the curb appeal of your home during the day and greatly at night. Choosing the right lights for outside your garage is a very important decision. In this article, we’ll go over everything you should take into consideration.


Firstly, let’s discuss the benefits of having outdoor lighting. Some of these benefits are as follows:

  • Enhances the curb appeal.
  • Deters burglars from breaking in due to better lighting
  • Increased visibility for your driveway and yard
  • Improved safety for your family and your guests


When you’re choosing an outdoor light you need to consider what Underwriter Lighting rating you will need. The three ratings for this system are : dry, damp, and wet. Because we’re talking about outdoor lighting we’ll focus on damp, and wet.

Damp-Rated Fixtures

These types of lights are not supposed to be directly exposed to rain or snow. They are ideal for bathrooms, carports, covered patios, and kitchens.

Water-Rated Fixtures

These are designed to withstand ice, snow, and extensive rain, along with salty ocean breezes. They are a great choice for garages, outside decks, verandas, gazebos, and pergolas.

Most of the time, you should have wet rated light fixtures unless they are under a huge overhang.

How Many Lights?

Now, you need to decide how many light you want hanging outside of your garage. This depends on the size and style you choose. It will partly depend on the size of your garage door and how many garage doors you have. One of the best ways to do that is go to the end of your driveway at dusk and it will show you the perfect amount of illumination needed, along with the number of lights that will be aesthetically pleasing. Here are a few suggestions to figure it out:

  • If you have a one car garage, you can install a light that is closest to the walkway of your house. Or you could install one on either side of the door. If you have double doors, you might try installing a light on either side and one in the middle for full coverage lighting. A bright flood light would work well for this.
  • Two and Three-car garage doors should have at least one light on either side. If there is space in between the doors, install a light there too.


Garage door placement plays a huge role in creating a modern, upscale look for your home. The bottom of any side lighting should be at least one foot from the top of the garage door. If the light will be centered above your garage door, take the driver’s width and divide it in half. Keep in mind that centered lights should be large enough to illuminate your whole driveway.


When choosing lights, you need to also consider the styles of lights that you want. There are a few I will mention that are for a specific home style and some are just more universal:

  • Coastal/ Nautical (Bulkhead lights/ Lanterns)
  • Cottage (Barn lights, Lanterns)
  • French Country (Wall-mounted Lanterns)
  • Industrial (Bulkhead Lights, Barn Lights)
  • Modern/Contemporary (Flush or Semi-Flush Sconces, Barn Lights)
  • Rustic/Lodge (Wall-mounted Lanterns)
  • Traditional (Barn Lights, Wall-mounted Lanterns)