How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Rich Your Own Question

Rich
Rich, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 1801
Experience:  Over 35 years residential, commercial, industrial wiring, install, troubleshoot, service, maintain
Type Your Electrical Question Here...
Rich is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Fairy Garden Lighting

Resolved Question:

I'm building a fairy garden. I have a 15 foot "river" that I carved out of the dirt and lined with heavy aluminum foil. It is about 5 inches deep and has holes for the water to escape if it rains, but we have clay soil and it drains slowly.  I have the river filled with tumbled colored glass to simulate water, and I need to light the glass at night. I don't know what would be the best lighting for this application. I'm fairly ignorant of lighting and electrical issues.  Also, I have 2 smaller similar areas to light that hold different colors of the tumbled glass.  I do have a low voltage cable running across the garden. I thought of rope and/or strip lighting. The glass manufacturer suggested rope lighting.  However, I don't know what to order on-line (i.e. do I ask for low voltage?  linkable?  waterproof?  etc.)  Solar lights are not possible, as the garden is completely shaded under 2 large trees.  I do have a man helping me with the electrical in the garden, but he told me to buy my own lights and I'm confused about what to order.  I have to have this completed by 7/20 because I'm having a huge party so everyone can see the garden, which has taken 3 full summers to build.  I'm so frustrated at this point.  Help!

Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Electrical
Expert:  Rich replied 1 year ago.

Rich :

Hello .Rich here lets chat about this a bit this morning

Customer:

That would be great.

Customer:

Rich, are you available to chat now?

Rich :

Yes I was thinking that the rope would be the best idea .. like others have told you .. it is readily available at hardware stores. weather proof and easy to install

Rich :

I was thinking that if it were mine I would consider putting a rope under the glass .. the foil would reflect the light thru the glass .. maybe set the rope up on a layer of glass so it would not be sitting in water if it rained

Rich :

the only part of the rope that would be subject to trouble if submerged would be the connections ,, so get it long enough to do a good portion of the "river"

Rich :

I think you might be able to find rope in RGB . colored LED 's that can change color ... that would give you infinite possibilities for effects

Customer:

So, if I got the rope lighting, I would most likely get the white color, so the color of the glass would give the color to the visual effect. I like your suggestion of putting it between a layer of glass and not flat against the foil, as I had originally anticipated.

Rich :

you can find the rope light online very easily .. try searching on ebay there are a lot of possibilities .. I see it up to 300 feet in length

Rich :

check to see if any of them is dimmable .. might want just a little light at different times

Customer:

Now, the question I have is what rope lighting to order. I'm confused by the low voltage cable line that is running through my garden. If so, do I get low voltage rope lighting, so that it could attach to the cable? Then, do I have to get a connectors for the low voltage cable? What kind of connectors? Do I get waterproof rope lighting to guard against problems if it rained? Do I get the rope lighting that is on a reel and have the guy installing it cut the desired length? If so, do I have to get more than 1 connector? As you can see, I'm confused about what exactly to order.

Rich :

if you want to have light above ... consider some LED in a reflector so all the light would be directed down on the glass .. maybe it could be set an ground level on the edge of the bank

Customer:

I was told by the glass guy that lighting from underneath the glass is the best bet. That's why I thought rope lighting would be the best idea.

Rich :

I would not assume that the low voltage supply you have will be compatable with the new rope lights .. probably was set up for more traditional garden lighting

Customer:

Do I have to have another power line/cable installed for this type of rope lighting?

Rich :

most of the ropes available have a power connector that plugs into a regular outlet .. this lighting is something that you could actually install yourself and hire someone to supply the electric for the power plug in

Rich :

I would have an electrician install a 110 volt power outlet for this lighting

Customer:

The guy helping me already has installed a regular plug-in power outlet for the lighting, but it only has 3 inputs and I'm already using 2 inputs for external lighting. Do you think I could use the 1 input left to plug in 3 different rope lighting locations?

Rich :

this is very low power use ,, 80 watts for the 150 foot run .. so all your rope lights could be plugged into one single receptacle

Rich :

that is like having one 100 watt incandescent light bulb on the outlet ,, very little usage

Customer:

In that case, which rope lighting would I need to order that could be suitable for that application. Would the one you suggested on E-bay be appropriate?

Rich :

Yes that one seems to be pretty much what you were asking for .. not the brightest like those labeled for "party " lights would be ... the poster does use " fairy lights" in his description .. the power connections and all other parts are included .. it is cutable every 3 feet waterproof .. good rqange of working temperature seems the best choice ... BUT please look a bit at others to see if there is a better length or softer light available for your specific application

Rich :

also might ask the seller if the rope is dimmable ..

Customer:

OK, tell me what to look for in the description: waterproof, cutable, power connectors for 3 different cuts, maybe dimmable, right?

Customer:

Also, what specific voltage should I look for?

Rich :

almost all will be waterproof, cuttable have power connections for 110 volts power .. just look for a kit that includes all the connections

Rich :

dimmable seems to add a huge amount to the cost .. still looking though

Customer:

I've been looking on-line for a while. I'm really getting tired and think I need to get some sleep. Need to get up in a few hours. Is it OK if I sent you another message if I have any further questions about this, or got your opinion if I found another rope light set to order? Thanks a bunch! I feel much better.

Customer:

If you happen to find another rope light set for me, I'd appreciate it if you'd send any suggestions my way. Have a great day!

Rich :

Yes .. I will be busy for about the next 8 hours .. but will check in when I can ..

Customer:

Greetings Rich: Thanks for your assistance. As per your suggestion, I looked on-line in several places, but decided to go with the original item you suggested. Take Care!

Rich, Master Electrician
Category: Electrical
Satisfied Customers: 1801
Experience: Over 35 years residential, commercial, industrial wiring, install, troubleshoot, service, maintain
Rich and other Electrical Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • You did one super job of explaining to me everything there is to know about this fridge. I'm looking forward to asking you questions in the future. Jimmy Bagley, IA
< Last | Next >
  • You did one super job of explaining to me everything there is to know about this fridge. I'm looking forward to asking you questions in the future. Jimmy Bagley, IA
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther Woodstock, NY
  • Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know. Robin Elkton, Maryland
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Mike

    Master Electrician

    Satisfied Customers:

    1425
    Licensed Master Electrician - OnQ Certified Data Voice Audio Video Installer
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/mikepettinato/2009-9-4_41145_DSC005132.jpg Mike's Avatar

    Mike

    Master Electrician

    Satisfied Customers:

    1425
    Licensed Master Electrician - OnQ Certified Data Voice Audio Video Installer
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/WI/WireitUp/2012-6-17_18212_Photo00006.64x64.jpg Jason's Avatar

    Jason

    Service Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    3278
    Over 15 years of experience in all types of installations, troubleshooting, and repairs.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MI/MikeG2010/2012-6-7_192640_IMG01612.64x64.jpg Mike G.'s Avatar

    Mike G.

    Master Electrician

    Satisfied Customers:

    5318
    Proven Professional 45 years Experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/AS/AssuredElectrical/2011-9-13_221243_me.64x64.gif AssuredElectrical's Avatar

    AssuredElectrical

    Master Electrician

    Satisfied Customers:

    2149
    Contractor-40 Years in the ElectricalTrade
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/electrifier/2008-12-16_200429_headbob1.jpg electrifier's Avatar

    electrifier

    Master Electrician

    Satisfied Customers:

    1454
    Electrical contractor and electrical inspector for over 24 years with phone and networking expertise
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/rich03dungo/2010-3-17_101556_tshirt2.jpg Rich's Avatar

    Rich

    Master Electrician

    Satisfied Customers:

    1115
    Over 35 years residential, commercial, industrial wiring, install, troubleshoot, service, maintain
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/UR/urelectrician/2012-9-28_223652_JustAnswerPic.64x64.jpg Kevin's Avatar

    Kevin

    Licensed Electrician

    Satisfied Customers:

    993
    27 years as a Licensed Electrical Contractor in Illinois, 5 year college Electrical Instructor, Former Electrical Inspector, Diploma in Digital Electronics, Former Illinois Licensed Home Inspector
 
 
 

Related Electrical Questions