Lighting Ideas for Swimming PoolsFive professional tips for creatively lighting a new swimming pool
Tip 1: Don’t under-light your pool
“Many companies simply install one light in the deep end,” says Pat Henry, owner of Prestige Pools in St. Paul, Minnesota, “but there’s actually so much more you can do.” Henry prefers to use two or more fixtures depending on the size of the pool and the desired effect. This pool features four Pentair IntelliBrite fixtures, one on either end and two along the left wall.
Tip 2: Aim pool lights away from seating areas.
Prestige Pools uses LED lights from Pentair because they produce the brightest light. Henry explains that just like any other type of lighting, you don’t want it to shine directly in people’s eyes. For this pool, five Pentair GloBrite fixtures were installed along one side of the pool pointing away from the seating area.
Tip 3: Use two lights facing each other for a flawless look.
“A singular light creates shadows that make imperfections in the bottom surface of the pool noticeable,” Henry says. The best way to avoid this is to place a light at either end of the pool so that there will be illumination coming from both directions. This technique eliminates shadows and makes the bottom appear smooth and flawless.
Tip 4: Consider how the pool liner or finish color will impact the lighting effects.
Henry’s general rule of thumb is that lighter colors reflect light and darker colors absorb light. Most of his clients select light colored pool liners; however, recently he has installed a few pools with black liners. “The pools with light liners are bright and exciting at night, while those with dark liners are more subdued,” he says.
Tip 5: Invest in quality pool lighting upfront.
Prestige Pools specializes in creating swimming pools that function well during the day and look great at night when they aren’t in use. “Many people cut corners when it comes to pool lighting because of costs,” explains Henry. “However, I advise my clients to consider spending the extra money so that they will also be able to enjoy their new investment at night. A well-lit pool can provide visual entertainment when viewed from within your home, while one with insufficient lighting will look dark and out-of-place."