Q: Our front yard is really dark and we just have a few solar way too dim lights leading up to the house, so I want to light up the area around my front door.
How high a wattage can I use in the lanterns that are on either side of my door?
A: Well,…. Ahem, how do I put it: There are actually a few things wrong with this picture.
Let’s start with two general outdoor lighting principles:
a – You really don’t want to create too sharp contrasts between light and shadow.
b – A little light goes a long way outdoors.
So, instead of compensating for the inadequate lighting leading up to your house by adding wattage (or lumens output) to the sconces, it would be a lot better to use only 25W (or equivalent in LED) in each of the sconces and add to the landscape lighting.
This solution is not only much more harmonious and inviting, but also safer, since severe contrasts almost act like trip hazards.