Is It Safe to Have Outside Garage Lights on at Night? (Absolutely!) is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to . The website is also an affiliate of a few other brands.

Should Outdoor Garage Lights Be on All Night?

Outdoor garage lights are an essential element of your home. Not only do they enhance the curb appeal of your home after dark, they also help you park in the garage, late at night. But, is it safe and should outside garage lights be on all night?

Absolutely! Your home becomes more safe, if you have outside garage lights on at night. You can prevent break ins by keeping potential stalkers confused. Use a combination of dimmers, motion sensors, programmed timers, to mimic human activity, even when you are not at home or fast asleep.

It is true that the war against crime is continuous. Burglars & thieves can be ingenious and relentless in their effort to break into your home. Clever use of outdoor lighting including outdoor garage lights can make potential intruders believe that there are people at home.

Is it Safe to keep outside lights on at Night?

Smart door locks, video doorbells, motion detection security cameras are some of the latest developments in home security. New, technology enabled outdoor lights, including garage door & porch lights, can be another weapon in your arsenal against crime. 

You should use as many of the security options as required, depending on the crime rate in your locality.

How to Use Garage Lights for Home Security

You should consider outdoor garage lights as part of an integral home facade lighting system. This would include:

  • Porch lights, front door lights
  • Outdoor garage lights
  • Driveway lights
  • Landscape lighting
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It is not unknown for thieves to lurk in the dark shadows and sneak into the garage as you  park at night. It is also a lot easier for burglars to break into a garage. Check out my earlier blog How To Make Your Home Secure? (Importance of Garage Entry Door Lock!).

Outdoor garage lights, along with strategically placed driveway and landscaping lights will  illuminate the area in front of the garage door. Your garage would be a lot safer! 

I do admit that having bright outdoor garage lights on all night is not aesthetic. Bright exterior lights take away the cozy ambiance of your home. 

Supplement with Bright Motion Sensor Lights

Soft garage door lighting is better, but supplement it with bright motion-sensing lights. Use a motion-sensing floodlight to instantly illuminate the driveway in front of the garage door. 

It will deter the burglars from coming too close to the garage door at night. Even if they do, because they are unaware of the motion-sensing floodlight, they will make a quick getaway when they are startled by the bright light.

You might even want to link a security camera with the motion-sensing floodlight. You might have some great footage for your local law enforcement agency. They may be able to nab some criminals.

There is a downside to motion-sensing technology. It can be quite sensitive and will even pick up movement of small animals such as cats or foxes. 

So do not use the motion sensing technology all the time. It can get quite irritating. Best is to use it only late at night when most people (except burglars) are asleep. 

Use Timed Lighting

Setting up your outdoor lights, including porch, garage and driveway lights with a timer is a good way of keeping your electricity costs down. You do not have to remember to put on or put off the lights.

There are devices that can be set to switch on the light at a specific time, say 7 PM and switch off the lights at another specific time, say 5 AM. While they do save electricity, a stalker can quickly figure out that the lights are being controlled by a timer and not a human being who is home.

Dusk to dawn lights are another popular option. They use a photovoltaic cell to send a signal to the switch. The outdoor lights come on when the sun sets and switch off when the sun rises. Unfortunately, burglars have got this figured out too.

Programmable Smart Lighting Systems

The solution is to use programmable smart lighting systems. You can use your computer or a phone app to set up a random lighting schedule. You can even program the outdoor lights in a manner that different lights come on at different times. Take care to set up the program that mimics normal human activity, especially when you are on a vacation.

This will certainly keep the burglars guessing. Chances are they will not take the risk of breaking into your home.

If crime rates in your area and home security is a serious issue, it is best to use a combination of all available options. Use

  • Motion-sensing flood lights for the driveway and backyard
  • Timed front porch light to keep away crooks & thieves
  • Solar powered lights for walkways, patio and yard fence

DISCLAIMER: What Is the Safest Way to Handle Electrical Wires?

This post is for information only. I strongly recommend that all electrical work should be entrusted to licensed professional electricians. In case you do decide to do some of the work yourself, make sure that:

“Treat all electrical wiring, even “de-energized” ones as if it is live, unless it has been locked out and tagged”

You must follow the basic safety guidelines, as under:

  • Use protective eyewear, especially when drilling or grinding metal
  • Wear insulated rubber gloves when working on any circuit or branch circuit
  • Always use insulated tools while working with electricity
  • De-energize the electrical wires on which you will be working. Tag the circuit breaker to prevent someone from switching it on accidently
  • Electrical wiring in wet or damp locations or underground must be within a PVC conduit
  • Underground wiring conduits should be at least 18 inches below grade as per code
  • All receptacles for equipment that could be in wet or damp locations should be equipped with Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI)
  • Never use old frayed cables, damaged insulation or broken plugs
  • High voltage equipment should be properly grounded to insure electricity flows directly to the ground and not through the person in contact with the live wire 


It is safe to keep the outside garage lights on at night provided you do not have a predictable pattern. Keep the potential burglar confused by using a combination of motion sensing, timed, solar powered lights. 

Do not just depend on keeping the outside lights on at night. Ensure you have proper garage door locks and security cameras too!

Thank you very much for reading the post. I do hope you found it informative and useful.

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