Codes for string / bistro lights around pool patio?


Well-known member
Jul 18, 2015
Zeeland MI
I cant seem to find any solid information on electrical code for hanging lights around the pool. I see some references to 10 or 12 feet of clearance if hanging above pool but what about around the pool? Is there a certain distance requirement from the waters edge if the lights are under 10 feet?? I hung some yesterday and it is on GFCI but it is close to the walk out steps right now. Also, Is it different when dealing with low voltage lights vs 120v?
I realize local codes might be different but I am assuming there is some national standard for this.


Gold Supporter
TFP Guide
Jul 21, 2013
Northern NJ
Are you asking about being safe or being legal?

All outdoor outlets should be GFCI. Test your GFCI outlet periodically to confirm proper operation. Electricity and water never mix well so the farther you keep them separate the better.