How Far From a Door Should a Porch Light Be

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There are many ways one can use the porch area in front of their homes. Having fun with the family or even small gatherings can be held here. It adds to the charm of your home if you have the right environment.

You want your front door to be welcoming and inviting. Lighting is essential for atmosphere and function that you’ll want to know the right place to put it.

Place lights 8-10′ apart, 1-2′ from the door. Keep it just above eye level. When in doubt, go bigger. From the street, lighting appears smaller.

Finding the right spot for your porch lights may be easier than you think. Below we’ll go into detail about each variable and explain why they affect our results so significantly.

What you need to know when choosing lights


Before purchasing any type of lighting fixture for your home, one thing you’ll want to consider is which style of light bulb you plan on installing into them. You may find yourself wanting to install more than just one kind of light fixture.

Many factors go into porch lighting. These range from the type of bulb to the type of cast, and they all play a role.


Your porch lights are an important part of any home’s exterior décor.

Wattage and base bulbs can vary, but LED bulbs are useful if they’re available for use.

They’re cheaper and last longer than traditional lightbulbs, so they’ll save you money and energy over time. In addition, they come in different colors—including red, blue, green, yellow, white, and orange.

– Incandescent bulbs are great for ambient lighting, but LEDs offer better value.

– Variable color options make them ideal for outdoor lighting.

– You can use them indoors or outdoors.

What makes up your fixture

Dusk to Dawn Outdoor Wall Light Fixtures Wall Mount, Sensor Porch Lights, Exterior Wall Sconce Lighting, Anti-Rust Wall Lamp, Waterproof Wall Lantern, Outside Lights for Garage, Doorway

Porch lights are available here on Amazon!

Your choice of fixture materials will affect where you can put them. You want to avoid using any material that might stain or corrode over time.

You’ll want to check if your fixtures’ materials are compatible with the weather conditions where they’re used. If not, you may have some issues down the road.

Among the most durable materials are resin, copper, and brass. They’re not just great looking, but they’ll last forever too!

You’ll want to keep an eye out for signs of wear and tear after installation since they’re prone to corrosion.

Damp vs. Wet rated fixtures

All outdoor lighting must meet certain safety standards before it may be installed outdoors. If they don’t, then they cannot be sold for use outdoors.

Damp-rated fixtures 

A damp-rated fixture is ideal for use in covered areas where there isn’t any risk of water damage.  Make sure it’s installed correctly before using it.

Wet-rated fixtures

Wet-rated fixtures must not be subjected to any direct sources of moisture such as rainwater or sprinkler systems. They are designed specifically to resist corrosion from water

Hopefully, this has given you a few things to think about when selecting your next porch light. 

What’s the best place for porch lights?

Porch lights generally come in pairs as they need to spread the light out and down to provide even coverage.

Make sure the light is placed high enough to illuminate the area well. It doesn’t matter how much light you throw at the ground. If it’s not illuminating anything, then it’s wasted.

Consider the hanging light fixture if your porch has a ceiling.

Looking for Outdoor Lighting Ideas?

Outdoor lighting should complement the rest of your home’s exterior design. It can really make a difference in how welcoming your home feels.

It’s best to use a low voltage light fixture and make sure it has an outdoor-rated bulb. 

Common Mistakes in Outdoor Lighting

Traditional signs of a welcoming home include keeping the porch light on. Properly positioned exterior lights can improve both security and aesthetics. There are several factors determining where fixtures are placed to achieve the best results.

Larger and brighter aren’t necessarily the answers for outdoor lighting issues. In order for your house exterior to be as inviting as your interior, you’ll need to combine multiple approaches.

– Lighting fixtures should be placed at least 18 inches above the floor to avoid glare.

– Use sconces or other low-profile fixtures to illuminate walkways, steps, and driveways.

– Place lights over doorways to create an inviting entrance.

– Avoid placing lights directly under windows to avoid shadows.

Porch Lights

Front and rear porch lights should be placed no lower than 67 inches from the ground or porch floor.

They can be placed anywhere from three quarters (3/4) to seven eighth (7/8)of the height of the door and let people enter or knock on the door without being affected by glare.

Lights must be bright enough to light up an area within several feet of your front entrance.

Most interior design professionals recommend using at least two light fixtures on either side of a doorway (one on the left and one on the right) and one overhead lighting fixture for an entry hall or hallway.

Alternative Porch Light Placements

Lights may need to be placed high if you have tall doors. You could consider putting lights at different heights depending on how big each door is.

If the fixtures are larger rather than taller, it produces a more harmonious and better-lit effect.

For taller-than-average doors, an overhead or pendant light works best.

With all high-mounted fixtures, your main concern is glare. If there is any chance of glare, you should try to position the lights away from the glass. It can also cause issues with using keys or seeing steps.

Footlights and Step Lights

Post or lantern-style lights are great for illuminating walkways and staircases. They can really make a difference in making your home feel safe and secure.

Your lighting should be spaced evenly along a pathway to avoid creating shadows, as this can make a space appear darker and less appealing. You want an even light throughout your garden, so there are no dark spots. Lighten up with some high-quality LED bulbs.

Security Light Fixtures

Install security lights between 8 and 9 feet high. This keeps them out of easy reach while still providing adequate illumination.

You might want to chat with neighbors first before installing floodlights instead of using spotlights, as this can light up a bigger area.

You want to be a good neighbor, so when placing highly-placed exterior fixtures, you need to make sure you have no light pollution onto their property. 

You might need to check if light fixtures need to comply with city ordinances regarding their size and positioning, and safety reasons.

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