The best solar lights use modern rechargeable batteries to deliver a bright illumination for a useful amount of time after dark. Solar offers such an opportunity to run lighting for free and with little to no installation costs apart from the purchase of the product.
However, even today the market is still filled with solar lighting that disappoints with only a trickle of light for short periods of time. So as lighting experts, let us guide you to the best ones with full reviews so you can choose with some confidence.
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Auto on robust set of rechargeable LED bistro string lights, built to last and bring in the perfect mood to your deck and patio areas.
Solar lighting is such an incredible invention, harvesting the free energy of the sun during daylight hours ready to dispense that power as light through efficient LEDs at night. It’s no wonder that they have been adopted widely as such a clever way of providing exterior light without the need for electricity through cabling by a qualified installer. This technology has been applied to every applicable location around the outside of your home but can it really provide what you really need for each type? Solar has a history of disappointing results, so is it time to to invest in new ones?
Inevitably there is a compromise with the limitations of solar, but you still need to ensure each design delivers for its intended purpose. By comparing its specification with what we may suggest if it were an electrified light, so you can see how they measure up.
The LED light sources are super efficient and allow the finite amount of battery charge from each day to go a long way. Manufacturers will state the fully-charged run time and a key question is how long does a full charge take?
White light from LED sources can be tailored to popular hues, so you must opt for the right type for your intended use. Manufacturers sometimes specify a color temperature, 2700K as an extra warm white through to 4000K cold white.
The brightness of light is measured in lumens, the higher the level the brighter the light, and with solar power the quicker the battery will deplete and the lights go out. We guide you to a useful lumen level for each purpose and see if the choice will suit.
The design of each product will often directly reveal the LED source as it needs to deliver as much of the light as possible, compromising on increased glare which is acceptable for utility styled fixtures but less so for more decorative solutions. A wide variety of styles are available to suit most tastes. Modern solar lights can even connect to your Wi-fi network and detect movement and they should all have a dawn to dusk sensor.
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This may not be the best looking wall light but wins our category for impressive functionality and compact design. This solar security light offers 3 modes of lighting: 1. Full brightness day or night. 2. Constant low dim until motion detected then full power for 30 seconds. 3. Motion detected dawn to dusk lighting.
A floodlight needs to provide effective functional lighting and this solar solution meets that demand with a 800lm brightness with a 6500K daylight color of white light. You can equate this brightness to approximately 2 qty LED bulbs, not as bright as an electrically connected flood but great for solar.
This landscape and driveway light cleverly combines the solar panel and rechargeable battery into the top of the product, so each spotlight is free to be positioned at will in the ground or wall mounted. 12 bright LEDs per spotlight provide an impressive option for either a 12 hr lasting ambient light or a high powered mode lasting 6 hours.
The descriptive category of ‘dawn to dusk lighting‘ encompasses almost all solar lighting as the finite power from the rechargeable batteries needs preservation. Generally a useful level of light is required to turn on automatically at night, stay on until at least past the normal waking hours and not come on again until the pattern repeats. We love the neat form of this model, perfect to discretely illuminate almost any area, porch, garden patios, side alleyways etc
We love this surprisingly well made hugely popular string of 50 LED Bees that gather their solar power in the day to give a warm white glow at night. Every garden needs a swarm of these little night time bees to introduce some fun into the darkness.
This 27′ Italian bistro vintage style set of 12 waterproof outdoor LED bulbs have a soft white 3000K color and will run for 5-6 hours on a full charge of 6 hours direct sunlight, less on a cloudy day.
Post lights are installed to be both useful and decorative and this choice suits both well. The light from a post should spread generally and bring some life to adjacent planting and walkways. The lovely filigree patterning of this model distances itself from the black usual choices on the market and compliment any area with a warm white light.
Upgrade your steps with this budget conscious effective surface mounted method of illuminating outdoor steps. A discrete stainless steel design that has to array the LED chips on the surface for maximum output but directs them downwards to wash the step, reducing glare.
Choose lush, warm string lights for an outdoor event or elegant solar-powered light illusions indoors with L.A.NOVA’s Festoon String Lights! This solar powered product emits a soft glow of custom accent lighting anywhere you choose to set them up. The durable and waterproof strings are perfect for displaying on patios or decorating trees outside during the holidays.
The choices of renewable energy lighting are only growing and become serious contenders to their electrically installed rivals. There are compromises to be made of course, they are not like for like yet, but as lighting designers we are impressed with the above choices and are confident they benefit your home. Now is the time to buy solar lighting.
, the owner of Orange Lighting qualified and worked as an interior designer in 1993 before specialising in lighting working on high profile projects based in London. Since starting Orange Lighting Ltd in 2003 he has been sharing his knowledge and unique teaching style mostly to his designer clients, offering practical real life advice born from running a busy consultancy and lighting supply business. Launching in 2020, his blog has evolved into Quick & Easy Lighting, curating some 25 years design experience into making the lighting choice and design process achievable and easy to understand for all.
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