Ultimate Garage Lighting, A Buyers Guide with Infographic

The Ultimate Guide to Garage Lighting [with Infographic]

A great garage lighting strategy requires a great garage layout. So how exactly do you achieve that? Whether your garage is your lair, your storage room, a place to park your car, or all three, we have some ideas that will help you define the space, along with lighting product suggestions for each one.

Expert organizers recommend that you think of your garage in terms of zones:

Experts suggest that you divide the garage into zones for optimal organization.
6 Garage Organization Zones (source: EasyClosets.com)
  1. Transition Zone
  2. Need it Now
  3. Long, Tall and Thin Storage
  4. Large Item Storage
  5. Frequently Used Items
  6. Workspace

The Best Lighting for the Garage

Once you’ve determined your zones, it’s time to start brightening the space up. Each area of the garage will have different lighting needs, and different products that fit them the best. Let’s take a look at each zone and your best lighting options for each one:

  • The Transition Zone (Zone 1) is located right outside the door leading into and out of your house from the garage. It may have a few steps up, with or without a handrail. For this area we recommend battery operated, motion activated lights around the entry door and steps with auto on/off features, so you aren’t fumbling for keys or tripping up the stairs while carrying in a load of groceries.
  • Need it Now (Zone 2) usually consists of cabinets or shelving and is where things are stored that you want easy access to on a daily basis – like dog food, or canned goods and paper products overflow. For garage cabinet and shelf lighting we recommend microfluorescent strip lights, especially when located inside deep garage cabinets, where items can easily get shoved far back into dark corners. Wireless motion sensor in-cabinet lights with adhesive backing can stick anywhere and don’t require an electrical outlet.

Clamp on adjustable work light with flexible neck and 24 bright LEDs
Flexible clamp-on work light with 24 bright LEDs
  • General overhead light fixtures will supply plenty of light for the next three areas: Long, tall and thin storage along the walls, bulky item storage and frequently used items (Zones 3,4,5) that are easy to grab on the way out the door. Fluorescent light fixtures are the standard recommendation for overhead garage lighting, primarily because they are bright, affordable and long-lasting. The 4-ft Weatherproof Fluorescent T8 is an example of an energy-star rated fixture that is quiet, bright and durable.
  • The most crucial lighting need in the garage is usually over a workbench or hobby area (Zone 6). If you are performing detailed work (especially with sharp objects and power tools!) you definitely want a good task light. Thankfully you’ve got a lot of choices for garage workbench lighting – here are a few of our faves:

One More Zone to Consider…

One final area that I want to touch on isn’t actually even in your garage, but directly outside of your garage.

According to security experts, criminals are looking for easy targets. where they can get in and out quickly and undetected. A dark doorway leading to a garage full of expensive tools & toys is an easy target for a burglar. Alarm systems and reinforced doors will keep them out but exterior security lighting may keep them from getting close enough to try.

Victorian Solar LED wall mount lamp with motion sensor
Victorian Solar LED Lamp with Motion Sensor (wall mount option shown)

One of our company favorites for garage door security lighting, the Netbright battery operated spotlights network together so that when one light is activated, they all turn on! You could turn your house into a virtual Fort Knox by connecting up to 50 spotlights around the perimeter of your home. (Our product manager, Jacob Swiger recently installed these lights and was kind enough to share his experience with us.)

Fortunately, you don’t have to forgo fashion for function. Garage security lighting is available in decorative models like the Victorian solar lamp (pictured to the right) that can be mounted to the wall outside your garage. Since it’s wireless, you can even opt to buy the post lamp version and place it anywhere in your yard.

Ultimate Garage Lighting Buyers Guide Infographic
(click to view larger)

That’s a lot of information to digest, so I’m including an infographic that you can save for easy reference or Pin to your Project Board to use when you’re ready. Click the image to view it larger.

Additional resources to help you plan your garage lighting layout:

Renee Carlson

Renee specializes in digital marketing & content development for Pegasus Lighting. When she's not blogging about all-things-light, you’ll find her nestled in the ‘burbs of Raleigh with her husband & three active boys, getting lost in her Kindle, tackling a long list of home improvement projects, or cheering on the Carolina Panthers.