Landscape Lighting Ideas for Your Backyard Swimming Pool

April 8th, 2021 by

A pool is obviously the place to be when the sun is out and the temperatures are hot. By employing unique pool lighting ideas around your pool in the evening, however, you can turn your pool into a nighttime oasis as well. Pool lighting can create a dramatic mood around your outdoor living space, and is one of the things to take in to consideration when building a pool.

Outdoor Pool Lighting Ideas

For a long time, incandescent in-pool lighting was really the only option, and with that came several limitations. But lighting technology has undergone a revolution in recent years. Now there are cool LED pool lighting options that can give your in-pool lighting an added flair. For example, did you know that some color-changing options are now WiFi-enabled, allowing you to set the perfect colors (and the right mood) with just the touch of an app on your smartphone? 

LED lights are very popular, and it’s easy to see why. They come in a wide array of colors, plus, as we just described, even color-changing options. LED lights are energy efficient as well, giving you even more reason to choose them when building a pool.

athens-pearl-white-G3-fiberglass-nighttime-diving-board.jpgFiberglass | Monaco in Pearl White G3 by Brooks Malone


Pool Lighting Options: Steps

Don’t forget to think about illumination for your swimming pool steps when considering outdoor lighting. After all, you wouldn’t want to use a dark stairway in any other environment — so why have one in your pool or leading up to your deck, either? 

Whether incorporated directly into your pool steps or deck steps, or the hardscaping of your swimming pool area, step lighting provides both a visual upgrade and doubles as a safety precaution. That way, you can feel confident you’re getting the maximum bang for your buck — and can keep the party rolling even after the sun goes down. Keep reading to learn about more backyard pool lighting ideas for any climate.

Latham Vinyl Liner Pools inground pool
Vinyl Liner Pools

Pool Lighting Options: Water Features

Your pool looks dazzling and impressive during the day — but at night, some of those gorgeous details don’t quite “pop” with the same level of detail. That’s where a combination of outdoor lighting and elegant water features can come to the rescue. Some of our favorite backyard pool lighting ideas include illuminated pool fountains, lit-up waterfalls, and soothing pool bubblers that give off a gentle glow. Whether you’re looking for big, bold, Las Vegas-style luxury — or, maybe something a little more understated — illuminated water features provide a perfect add-on.

Pool Lighting Options: Seating Areas

Pool seating often has subtle curves that might not be easy to spot at night — and besides, who wants to sit around in the dark? Beautiful lighting makes pool benches and swim-up seating areas more conspicuous, more inviting, and most importantly, more safe. Seating area lights can be placed outside of and/or directly within the pool, depending on the overall look and intensity of the illumination you’re going for. You can even use lighting to make a seating area the focal point, creating a swim-up bar that’s ready for evening entertainment! 

Discover more inground pool lighting ideas by browsing our wide variety of fiberglass pool features and designs.

Latham Fiberglass Astoria | Crystite Classic Ocean Blue inground pool
Fiberglass | Astoria in Crystite Classic Ocean Blue

Pool Deck Lighting Ideas

While in-pool lighting can have a dramatic effect for those in the water, lighting around your pool can also help set a mood. It can also help make the area around your pool safer. Strategically placing them around walkways, pool decks and other landscaping elements like pools decks can help light a path for people. It can also help keep light-attracted bugs away from the water.

Need a few more suggestions to help you visualize your perfect pool deck? Here are five bonus ideas to consider for your backyard and pool area: 

  • Under-cap hardscape lighting, which has a soft glow reminiscent of recessed lighting in a home kitchen 
  • WiFi-controlled deck lights for wireless, effortless control 
  • Low-voltage lighting 
  • Waterproof rope lights (sometimes called “fairy lights”) for a festive effect with a modern look 
  • Eco-friendly, energy-efficient solar powered lighting

What Pool Lighting Option is Right for You?

Lighting not only makes your pool more attractive — it also reduces the risk of a slip-and-fall, a stubbed toe or another type of accident. (It also makes it easier to see your cocktail when relaxing at night.)

Of course, to achieve the best results, you should have an idea for a lighting concept before you start building or designing a pool. As your pool takes shape, you can make changes to account for the effect your the lighting ideas will have on the surfaces around your pool, like the pool deck, pool liner and landscaping.

As the plan comes together, remember that an increased number of light sources with more diffused light is more advantageous than a few sources emitting bright, harsh light.

Latham Vinyl Liner Pools inground pool
Vinyl Liner Pools


One of the bigger choices you’ll make is among incandescent lighting, LED lighting or fiber-optic lighting. While it’s cheaper initially, incandescent doesn’t touch LED when it comes to energy efficiency and longevity. Fiber-optic is typically more expensive than both incandescent and LED, but it also offers you more flexibility in color and hue. With the increased expense over LED also comes less effort to maintain.

No matter what sort of system or set-up you choose, there are numerous benefits to lighting your pool and/or deck — from a safety, aesthetic and practical perspective. For instance, lighting allows you to enjoy the pool all evening, giving you more time to make the most of your investment (while getting in great family bonding time, too)! After all, what could be more refreshing than a quick, cooling dip on a hot summer’s evening when the A/C just isn’t cutting it?

Here are a few other ways that outdoor pool lighting can deliver even more enjoyment: 

  • Perfect for hosting pool parties, BBQs or having cocktails with your neighbors and friends
  • Creates a safer environment for your children and loved ones 
  • Sets a romantic mood for date nights
  • More security from the additional lighting on your property 
  • Shows off your beautiful new pool 
  • Helps to keep away curious critters like raccoons, bats or possums 

With the proper lighting scheme, you can create an outdoor living space you want to spend time in day or night. To learn more or get started, contact the expert team at Latham online today!


Editor’s note: Originally posted July 2017. Updated for relevance and clarity. 

Meet Our Expert

Written by

Jeremy is the Director of Digital Marketing for Latham. He loves working within a company that has a strong culture built on camaraderie and revolutionizing the industry.

Join the discussion

    • Glad you liked the post, Peter! Subscribe in the pink box below to stay updated on the latest and greatest from Latham.

  • Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Browse by Category