Best Outdoor Solar Lights

Sep 20, 2022 02:25 PM ET

Outdoor solar lights are a practical and sustainable lighting system. They are budget-friendly and simple to install, with no requirements for plug-in power. Although choosing the best outdoor solar lights is not a hard task, it can be overwhelming due to the wide range of products on the market. Expert advice may be needed but should not cost you a penny. Our review of the best outdoor solar ground lights offers insights on the factors to look at and gives options to choose from at the start.

What are solar powered outdoor lights?

Solar powered outdoor lights are devices that tap into the sun energy to produce electricity. Some outdoor use for solar lighting systems includes wall-mounted lamps, freestanding lamps, or pathway lights. They also find a way in security lighting.

How do outdoor solar lights function?

The functioning of outdoor solar lights is not complicated. The lights depend on solar cells for sunlight conversion into an electric form of energy. Batteries are then used to store the energy for use at night. Some units of solar lights are self-contained systems. Users must put the units in an area exposed to sunlight to get adequate energy. Other units have separate solar cells and lights. The panels are placed in the sun to tap energy which is then used to power the devices. 

How to charge outdoor solar lights without the sun?

While sunlight is always needed to charge outdoor solar lights, an individual can also charge them when solar energy is lacking. Follow these alternative, easy, and effective steps to charge your outdoor led solar lights:

Maximize any little potential light on a cloudy day

Well, even in cloudy weather, you can get a little beam of sunlight. Due to the advancing technology, solar powered outdoor lights can tap into the meanest of sunlight. This is enabled by the PV cell receptors, which quickly tap, store, and produce electric power. During chilly weather, the electrons in the solar panels have little movement, which allows more energy output.

Utilize an LED light source

Yes, outdoor solar lights can be charged by relying on LED lamps. LED lights produce visible light, ultraviolet, and long infrared waves, which also come from the sun. The only difference is that LED light sources produce fewer ultraviolet rays. As a result, the little LED energy tapped can be useful in powering the devices. 

Use incandescent light bulbs.

Incandescent light powers emit light waves that resemble that of the sun. The light waves make solar cells tap and produce the needed energy.  

To use the incandescent bulbs effectively, place the solar-powered flashlight approximately 20 inches from the bulb for some hours. The time you will use it depends on how long it takes to charge your flashlight.. The rule of thumb is that incandescent lights can charge at an efficiency of about 80% compared to the sun. Also, bear in mind that most incandescent bulbs generate 40-100 light watts. The more watts of your bulb, the faster the charging rate. 

Where to place outdoor solar lights?

The devices will absorb the solar energy more if they are at a direct angle with the source. Taking this into consideration, the following will guide you on the placement of the solar lights:

  • Visibility is the first factor to be put into consideration. You won’t want to accidentally bump into your solar powered lights outdoor equipment, which can cause injuries and lead to their breakages. Thus, you should draw a plan beforehand on where to place them. 
  • Secondly, consider whether your placement will be an obstacle to future maintenance. For example, if the lights make it difficult to mow your lawn, you should consider placing them elsewhere. Besides, you should check the placement of all cables. For underground installed cables, you should have them deep enough, such as six inches. That protects them while making it also possible to retrieve for maintenance.
  • What function are the lights intended for? Outdoor solar lights for a walkway should be placed relatively close to each other to light the path well. If the outdoor solar lights are for garden use, you should consider putting them at a distance that keeps enough space without affecting the illumination. That, of course, will depend on the device you use. 

How many hours do outdoor solar lights work?

When fully charged, outdoor solar lights will work for 8 hours. They can even stay longer when they have optimal sunlight and perform at their best level. 

How to choose solar lights?

Shopping for the best outdoor solar lights? We went to lengths and researched what you need to put in mind to help you choose the best device possible:  

Purpose

Outdoor solar lights are meant for diverse applications. Devices that emit colorful lights could be suited for that night date. You could purchase the brightest outdoor solar lights if you need to keep your compound secure. Outdoor solar lights for the walkway must also be sized well to fit the small available space. In other words, the lights should allow you to match the type of occasion and purpose. 

Brightness

Outdoor solar lights’ brightness is evaluated by lumens. Here are the general guidelines when selecting solar lights based on their brightness:

  • Step lights: brightness range of 12-100 lumens.
  • Landscape solar lights: 50-130 lumens
  • Path solar lights: 100-200 lumens. 
  • The pool solar lights: 200-400 lumens 
  • Motion sensor solar lights: 300-900 lumens. 
  • Solar flood lights outdoors emit a high 700-1300 lumens.

An objective is to select the level of brightness that matches the needs

Material

Solar outdoor hanging lights are placed outside. That increases the likelihood that bad climate/weather occurrences will destroy them. To avoid the likely susceptibilities, you should buy IP55-certified solar lights. IP55 certification indicates that solar lights consist of strong materials such as stainless steel, ABS plastic, or cast aluminum. That gives the devices waterproof properties.

Design

Solar lights design comes in various formats. For high-tech lighting systems, motion-activated devices are great options. The conventional designs may include Victorian vibes and classic craftsman designs, among others. Also, check the design to ensure that outdoor solar lights will fit in the area you need to place them.

Battery

There are diverse battery types that power outdoor solar lights. Lithium-ion, NiCad, lead acid, and NiMH are the most popular types. Lithium-ion options are considered since they are long-lasting, can work longer, and have a high capacity. They also have up to 2000 cycles lifespan but come at an added cost.

Wattage

Wattage represents the amount of solar energy panels can generate under ideal conditions. The measure can change as conditions in the immediate environment also vary. The wattage can also be affected by the efficiency of the solar panels and the build material. It goes without saying that the higher the wattage, the better. Also, you have to match the solar panel wattage with the bulb's luminosity. 

Bulb type

Bulbs are another component to consider when searching for outdoor solar lights. They are the devices that illuminate your area. Selecting the right bulbs ensures the right illumination to suit the needs. 

Solar bulb options range from the high-density discharge types such as HID, halogen, LEDs, and CFLs. LED lights are considered the best in the range. They are also very durable, with a lifespan of around 50,000 hours. 

Recharge time

Recharge denotes the length of time the solar lights get a maximum charge. While charge time can vary based on unique factors, the aim is to go for devices that attain the full charge within the shortest time possible.

Lifespan

The lifespan of solar light is another factor to consider as it affects the length of use. Outdoor solar lights may serve from 7 years to 15 years. PV-made cells may serve up to 20 years. For the batteries, they last a shorter duration of around 2 years. 

Price

Evaluate your budget and buy the outdoor solar lights that fit in. Check the quality and match it with the price. The idea is to select solar lights which are budget friendly but do not sacrifice their quality features.

Warranty

Not every time you buy an outdoor solar light, it turns out as desired. A warranty provision allows you to return the faulty equipment to the retailer for repairs or replacement. Warranties can be a single to multiple years. 

Best outdoor solar lights

BRIGHTRIGHT Solar Outdoor Lights

BRIGHTRIGHT Solar Outdoor Lights

Specifications:

  • Measurements: 5 x 5 x 5 inches
  • Material: plastic, stainless steel
  • Colour: black, silver
  • Usage: outdoor
  • Installation: ground
  • Light fixture form: path
  • Specific uses: yard
  • Control method: touch
  • Light source: LED
  • Voltage: 1.2V
  • Light color: white
  • Number of light sources: 4
  • Shape: conical
  • Battery; 600mAh NiMh

Reasons to buy:

  • Very efficient, with automatic on and off switching
  • Super easy to install
  • It can work well in very wet environments due to its waterproof properties

Reasons to avoid:

  • 6-8 hours of charging time 

Features

  • It is solar powered which makes the panel eco-friendly and also allows saving on electricity bills.
  • The solar light device is waterproof , given its IP65 rating.
  • 8 bright LED lights that guarantees sufficient illumination for use in different areas..
  • Dusk to dawn settings allow an automatic switching on in the dark and off in the light.
  • A relatively short charging time of between 6-8 hours and longer working time of 8-10 hours.

Check price BRIGHTRIGHT Solar Outdoor Lights

Brightech Ambience Pro Solar Powered Outdoor String Lights

Brightech Ambience Pro Solar Powered Outdoor String Lights

Specifications:

  • Product dimensions: 576 x 2 x12 inches
  • Material: plastic
  • Weight: 2.68 pounds
  • Colour: warm white
  • Light source: LED, incandescent
  • Usage: outdoor
  • Number of light sources: 12
  • Voltage: 12V
  • Occasion: wedding
  • Special feature: corded

Reasons to buy:

  • It can be used for different types of outdoor occasions
  • Highly durable, eliminating potential costs of replacement
  • It can be used in conditions with extreme weather conditions
  • No worries about excessive heat or water

Reasons to avoid:

  • Not the best for those who need dimmer lights

Features

  • The solar panel has a 1,000-charge lifespan, while the LED bulbs can last 20,000 hours.
  • The solar lights use vintage Edison bulbs, which are very bright outdoor lights. Its 2700K warm white lights offer the right ambiance making the outdoor space exciting and relaxing.
  • Brightech comes with colorful bistro lights that can be used in a range of outdoor events. These can include weddings, birthdays, dinners, or café roofs. The patio lights also do not require an outlet, making them very easy to install.
  • Its hanging string lights withstand up to 50MPH of snow and rain. The bulbs come with shatterproof properties, making them withstand up to 122 degrees Fahrenheit of heat.

Check price Brightech Solar Lights

WELALO Solar Spot Lights Outdoor

WELALO Solar Spot Lights Outdoor

Specifications:

  • Product dimensions: 12.2 x 4.13 x 3.94 inches
  • Material: acrylonitrile butadiene styrene
  • Light source: LED
  • Voltage: 5.5V
  • Weights: 2.9 pounds
  • Colour: cool white
  • Usage: outdoor

Reasons to buy:

  • Prolonged lighting of up to 15 hours
  • Energy-saver and highly effective after charging for 6-8 hours
  • Good for multiple uses, including a walkway, lawn, driveway, yard, ground, pool, patio, and sidewalk
  • Low costs and easy to install
  • Good when looking for ambiance in the lighting area

Reasons to avoid:

  • Only for use in bright lighting

Features

  • WELALO has a day-night sensor with low light, medium-light, and strong-light modes and will switch automatically.
  • IP 65 certification guarantees strength in harsh weather conditions. 
  • No wiring since you only use provided stakes and screws to install the solar light.
  • 52 LED spotlights that come in cool white color illuminating your area in a welcoming and bright way.

Check price WELALO Solar Spot Lights Outdoor

SEZAC Solar Outdoor Lights

SEZAC Solar Outdoor Lights

Specifications:

  • Measurements: 4 x 2 x 4.4 inches
  • Material: ‎Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene
  • Colour: 118led-10pack
  • Light source: LED
  • Number of light sources: 118
  • Weight: 3.12 pounds
  • Usage: outdoor
  • Installation type: wall mount

Reasons to buy:

  • Easy to mount since you need limited skills due to the lack of wiring
  • Highly convenient due to its motion sensors reducing the need for human operation
  • Works best where a lot of brightness is needed
  • Works for a longer duration due to its battery capacity

Reasons to avoid:

  • Not good for dim lighting

Features

  • 2 sensors, CDS Night Sensor and PIR Sensor, help detect a car, pet, or human movement. Lights are automatically activated and then turned off after 15 seconds.
  • You can easily mount the equipment with 3M tape or screws since there is no wiring in installation.
  • 3 intelligent working modes of dim, intense light, and motion sensor. 
  • A 2200mAh rechargeable storage battery makes them achieve high brightness for longer.
  • High-impact ABS material and outdoor solar motion make SEZAC strong against hostile weather. 

Check price SEZAC Solar Lights

Tuffenough Solar Outdoor Lights

Tuffenough Solar Outdoor Lights

Specifications:

  • Measurements: 8.5 x 4.7x 4.3 inches
  • Material: ‎acrylonitrile butadiene styrene
  • Colour: black
  • Light type: LED
  • Number of light sources: 210
  • Light color: cold white
  • Usage: outdoor
  • Power source: solar, battery
  • Installation: flush mount
  • Control method: remote

Reasons to buy:

  • It can be used where high brightness is needed, including a swimming pool, garage, and courtyard
  • Different light modes allow you to select the one that suits the circumstances
  • Highly flexible in use
  • It can be fixed easily with screws since its wireless

Reasons to avoid:

  • Somewhat bulky

Features

  • 3 Lighting mode with a remote control where users can select the strong light sensor, dim light sensor,  and strong long light modes. Every sensor light has a wireless remote control. 
  • 210 very bright LEDs, which can generate about 2500lm 6500K brightness.
  • Up to 2000mAh inbuilt and a rechargeable battery that works with a highly effective solar panel.
  • Tuffenough comes with 3 adjustable heads. That allows a wide illumination, either horizontally, upwards, or downwards. Up to 270 degrees lighting angle and about 26ft sensing distance.
  • The equipment comes with durable material and IP65 certification. That means it can work well in harsh weather, including heavy rainfalls. It is wireless, and no need for costly adapters and wires.

Check price Tuffenough Solar Lights

Summary

The best outdoor solar powered lights are those that serve the intended purpose. Whether for security, decoration, or simple lighting, outdoor solar lights for house are proving to be everyday use equipment. From the explanation, solar lights differ in their specifications and features. These features include the battery type, brightness, and control. Thus, it it is good to pick the led solar lights outdoor that will get the work done. The reviews above focused on the lights that are the best in the market for diverse uses. You can select any based on the needed use. For any selection you make, you are getting quality and eco-friendly devices.



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