Best Outdoor Solar Lights

With weather-resistant design, these are the best outdoor solar lights on the market as reviewed by our experts.
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Written by John Ho. Last updated on November 5, 2020

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Best Outdoor Solar Lights 2020

As the sunlight starts to fade away after a great sunny day, you start realizing that your yard needs some light to highlight the garden's features. You can also use them for security reasons. Outdoor solar lights are the perfect match for your yard, giving you a sense of security and provides decoration to the landscape. They help you find your way in the dark and highlight the features of the yard.

Solar lights offer an affordable solution compared to the standard lights, which put an extra expense on your electricity bill. Also, they do not need any electrical wiring, saving you the cost of installation. There are many choices available for outdoor solar lights in the market.

Outdoor solar lights were not a viable solution in the past due to their low backup time. The solar lights were failing the night when their batteries get discharged. In this modern era, they are powerful and efficient, with plenty of models available in the market. You will get LED bulbs instead of old incandescent, which consumes significantly less power, increasing the batteries' backup time. As they charge their batteries from the sunlight through solar panels installed in them, you do not need any electrical wiring in the garden.

Outdoor solar lights come in many shapes and sizes based on their purpose of usage. I will explain some of the main types of outdoor solar lights and their use in the house and travel.

Solar Post Lights

Solar post lights also come in a variety of styles. They are mostly used for safety purposes, to light up the whole area around the house. They are comparatively longer in height to light up a larger space. You get a brighter lamp with a longer backup time for the reliability of the system. They have beautiful designs available to improve the aesthetics of the landscape.

Solar Spot Lights

Solar spotlights focus the light on a defined area to elevate the features of the ornaments associated with the garden. They have a solar panel with flexible angle adjustment for better sunlight capture to charge the battery. The solar spotlight angle is also adjustable to highlight a feature of the landscape.

Solar Deck Lights

Solar deck lights are one of the outdoor solar lights installed on the ground, stairs, or railings. Also known as patio lights, they provide the perfect ambiance to the stairs and patio, creating a vibrant light effect. They are mostly used for decoration purposes, highlighting the features of stairs, deck, walls, and sidings.

Solar Flood Lights

Solar flood lights are larger solar lights, having a separate solar panel to charge a large battery. They have high brightness LEDs to cover up a large area. They are used for security purposes and lighting up a place for party decorations or formal gatherings.

Solar Fence Lights

You can use these solar fence lights on the fences around the boundary walls of your house. They are designed in such lovely styles that fit on the fence's pillars and become a part of them. These garden fence lights create an excellent environment visible from both sides of the fence.

Solar Wall Lights

Solar wall lights are preferred for outdoor lighting because they do not require any wires from inside the house. Like other outdoor solar lights, they have a solar panel for charging the battery to use it at night. When looking for these lights, you should look for the brightest options because they are available in many sizes with different specifications.

Solar Path Lights

People use these solar path lights at the sides of the driveway or walkways in the garden or backyard. They are available in different heights based on their usage. Using these solar lights makes sure that the walkway is getting enough light to walk on the walkway at night. With so many options available in the market, it is tough to decide the perfect match for your needs.

Solar Street Lights

These are on the primary domain of the solar outdoor lights. They are mostly available in larger sizes with heights more than 6 feet. With larger solar panels installed on the pole, they are self-sufficient to light up the street for the whole night. They are expensive due to the massive structures and higher technical specifications. Their different variants are used in the streets and on the roads depending on the size and shape.

Solar Traffic Lights

Solar traffic lights are shifting on solar energy for traffic signals and signs situated at the road intersections. In the daylight, the solar panel directly feeds the traffic lights via the controller. It also charges the battery for backup at night. Many cities have embraced this technology due to their reliability and automatic control without any electricity charges.

I will provide you with a detailed review of the best outdoor solar lights. Before that, I want to explain some of the features to keep in mind when choosing the best outdoor solar lights for your needs.

Selecting the Best Outdoor Solar Light

As discussed earlier, you will find a wide range of outdoor solar lights in the market. They are available in different shapes, sizes, features, and materials. You might have a wrong impression if you selected a solar light that is not suitable for your needs.

Find the Reason for Purchase

It would help if you had clarity of mind while selecting an outdoor solar light for your garden or house. Many solar lights are multipurpose, and you can use them for many purposes. For example, you can use a solar path light as a lawn light and vice versa. Due to this reason, you should read the specifications of the solar light and find whether they are suitable for your needs.

Some of the uses of outdoor solar lights are to use them for highlighting the garden features, illumination, or the security and safety of the house at night. From a security point of view, you should select a solar light with higher specifications and high brightness. These lights also have a motion-sensing feature to track any movement in the range of solar light. They are automatically turn on if someone comes in the scope of the sensor of solar light.

Outdoor solar lights are available in many configurations. They are available in omnidirectional, unidirectional, spot illumination, or color-changing features. These solar lights are smaller in size, and one solar light does not cover the whole garden. The area covered by solar light depends on the brightness of the outdoor solar light.

Solar lights are the best option to beautify the outdoor aesthetics at night due to their energy-free nature. You will have a one-time investment in buying these solar lights and some battery replacement charges after 2 or 3 years.

Annual Sunlight Availability in Your Area

One of the most critical factors is the sunlight availability at your location. If you live in the same place for years, you can better understand the weather pattern around the year. You will need details about sunlight hour per day around the year and annual sunlight hours for large projects.

You should install the outdoor solar light at a location where it can get enough direct sunlight to charge the battery for a better backup time at night. If it is getting tree shadow or the building shadow, the battery will not charge, reducing the battery backup. For areas with cloudy weather, the solar intensity remains low throughout the day. I will suggest you not to use these solar lights in such a site. It may be a waste of money for sunless cities to invest in solar lights.

Look for the Better Battery Size

Another consideration is the battery backup while selecting an outdoor solar light. Buying a solar light for security purposes requires a reliable battery with sufficient backup to light up the solar lamp the whole night. Compromise on the battery life is impossible because your house will be in the darkness if the battery discharges early in the night. For decoration light, you can compromise on the battery backup due to their price.

For solar security lights having a motion-sensing feature, you can select a smaller battery size solar lamp. These solar lights have a function of turning off or dimming the solar light if there is no motion around them for a defined time. The solar light will turn on again if someone comes to the sensing range of the motion sensor.

Daylight duration also affects the duration of battery backup. The daytime duration is shorter in winter that reduces the backup time because the solar panel cannot charge the battery. Modern solar lights have a feature of turning off the LED lights during the day to save energy.

Choose the Design According to Your Taste

Outdoor solar lights are available in a wide variety of styles and designs based on their use. There are traditional, classic, or modern design concepts available in the market. You can choose a style as per your taste. Another criterion of selection may be the garden design, where a specific type of product looks better than others.

Best Outdoor Solar Lights Reviews

I have discussed the features required in outdoor solar lights in the last section. In this section, I will give you my honest reviews about the best available outdoor solar lights. I will cover their features, built quality, specifications, and pros and cons to help you select the best solar for your needs.

Aootek Outdoor Solar Light (Best Overall)

Led Solar Lights By Aootek

Key Features

  • Comes in three modes of operation
  • Motion-sensing and auto-dim features

Key Specifications

  • 450 lumens high brightness LED light
  • Motion-sensor for motion detection
  • 182 LED solar light with wide-angle illumination

A new upgraded 182 LED Aootek solar light has LED placed in such a way to cover a wider angle compared to the previous version of the solar light. The main feature which distinguishes this solar light from others is its three modes of operation. The first mode is permanent on all night, like all other solar lights. The light senses the darkness in the evening and turns on all night. The second mode of operation is security light mode; it remains off until the motion sensor detects any movement around the light. When someone comes in its range, the solar light turns on with full brightness. The third mode of operation is the smart brightness control mode, the dim light until there is no motion. The solar light switches to the full-brightness mode when the motion sensor detects any movement in the range.

These three modes of operation make this light a flexible solution according to the different situations. They also help to improve efficiency and battery backup, using less energy for a longer backup time.

It has a large solar panel located at the top to charge the battery during the day. It will help if you decide to install the solar light at the wall where sunlight is available for the whole day. Otherwise, the backup time may decrease due to insufficient battery charging.

The light fixture is wall mount type, which comes with the screws for installation on the wall. One pack of these solar lights has two solar lights, which are enough for a medium-sized area around a house. The charging time is around 6 to 8 hours, with a backup time of about 8 hours.

The only problem associated with the solar light is that the selection switch for different modes of operation is at the back of solar light. You need to unscrew the light to change the way of operation.

LowVoltz Stainless Steel Solar Light

Lowvoltz Stainless Steel Solar Light 2

Key Features

  • A unique premium design
  • A sophisticated design of the plastic lens
  • Stainless steel and rigid plastic body

Key Specifications

  • IP65 waterproof
  • Backup time of 10 hours
  • Charging time of 8 hours

These modern design LowVoltz outdoor solar lights are unique in shape, giving a premium look to your garden. The primary material used is stainless steel and rigid plastic, giving it more durability and strength. The stainless steel is coated for UV protection, making it a long life. The solar panel works in semi-shaded areas like near or under the trees or buildings. The warm white 3 lumen light provides you with a backup of 10 hours after charging for 8 hours.

The solar light has an auto turn on/off feature to detect day and night time. It comes in a pack of 6 solar lights. Each of them has a plastic stake to install it into the ground. Unfortunately, you cannot install this solar light on the concrete floor due to its construction designed for the soil.

LowVoltz solar light is waterproof at the IP65 standard. The stainless steel is free from any kind of rust, making it last longer. The shape of the glass used for the lamp of the solar light is sophisticated. The translucent plastic lens adds a fantastic flavor to the exterior of the house. The ironclad has a warranty of 2 years for any kind of defects. The warranty feature of the outdoor solar light increases satisfaction for the manufacturer.

LITOM Outdoor Spot Light (Editor's Choice)

Litom Spotlights Best Overall

Key Features

  • Cold white light
  • Two brightness modes
  • Two installation modes
  • Adjustable lighting and solar panel angles

Key Specifications

  • IP67 waterproof
  • 12 bright LEDs
  • Lithium rechargeable battery

LITOM outdoor spotlights are energy efficient and one of the bright solar lights available in the market. The lighting angle is adjustable up to 120 degrees, while you can also adjust the solar angle in the range of 90 degrees. These angle adjustments increase the flexibility of the solar light. Moreover, they have two brightness modes with auto ambient light detection to change between the brightness.

The low brightness mode doubles the backup time of this outdoor solar light. The solar panel situated at the top charges the battery during the day while the LEDs remain off. At night, a light sensor monitors the light intensity around the solar light. If some light is available, this solar light remains in low brightness mode. If the darkness prevails, the solar light will switch to full brightness mode.

This solar spotlight has two installation modes; it can be mounted on the wall with screws or stick in the ground with plastic stakes.

Gama Sonic Baytown Outdoor Solar Light

Gama Sonic Baytown Outdoor Solar Light

Key Features

  • Bright white LEDs
  • Pole pier and wall mount kits
  • Three mounting options

Key Specifications

  • 130 lumens bright white light
  • Backup time of about 10 hours
  • Four solar panels for more power generation

Gama Sonic Baytown II outdoor solar lights are a suitable replacement of electrical wiring and an energy-saving option for your outdoor lighting. The cone reflector's unique design helps to reflect the light efficiently and works as a light enhancer. The solar light comes in three installation modes; you can mount it directly on the wall, on the pier, or use it as a lamp post. It gives you the flexibility to use it the way you want.

The construction material is the rugged ABS plastic, making it durable and robust enough to withstand impacts. The solar light is waterproof and rustproof due to the material used. It has four solar panels situated on each side of the top globe. The automatic dusk to dawn light sensor controls the LED lamp and saves energy during the daytime.

The replaceable battery life is about 1000 charging cycles, which is roughly about three years. The battery backup time is about 10 hours, which is a good record for this bright LED light. You can buy this solar light in two options; you can buy only a lamp with wall mounts, or you can buy it with a lamp post to install it in the garden on the ground. The unit includes one battery in it, and you can install another 1500 mAh battery in an optional battery port for increasing the backup time.

Solpex Outdoor https://www.amazon.com/Solpex-Pathway-Finished-Installation-Waterproof/dp/B07B46F4XX/Solar Light (Best Budget)

Solpex Outdoor Solar Light 3

Key Features

  • High brightness warm white LEDs
  • Weatherproof with warranty
  • Beautiful antique and traditional style

Key Specifications

  • 10 lumens output LED lamp
  • Backup time of about 8 hours
  • Four small solar panels for more light capture

Solpex designed this outdoor solar light in a traditional and antique style. The four solar panels mounted on the top help capture more sunlight, giving more power to the solar light. You do not have to turn it off every morning because it has an automatic on/off feature to conserve the battery during the daytime.

The unique design of this solar lantern fits it neatly in any mood and background. This solar light is one of the best choices if you are looking for a high brightness solar light as it has two LEDs in one lamp. It has a real glass lens that reflects maximum light outside and makes it brighter. As previously discussed, the four small solar panels compensate for the power required for this high brightness solar lantern.

You can use this multipurpose solar light for lawn decoration, garden lighting, or light up your walkways or pathway. The plastic body of the lantern makes it durable, impact-resistant, and rust-free. They are offered in a pack of 6 solar lights with plastic stakes to mount them in the soil.

Frequently Asked Questions

Many questions come to mind while searching for outdoor solar lights. I am giving you answers to some of the most asked questions about outdoor solar lights' function.

Conclusion

Outdoor solar lights are becoming a necessary component of your outdoor lighting in this modern era. You do not need to pay the electricity bill for these solar lights. They also save your installation cost for electrical wiring. Solar panels become dirty and may require you to clean them at regular intervals. Otherwise, the battery will not charge, resulting in a drop in the backup time. Hence, regular cleaning is required once a week or when you see them dirty. To clean the solar panels situated on the top of the solar light, you have to take a soft wet cloth and clean the solar panel.

Battery size is one of the vital concerns while selecting an outdoor solar light. A high brightness solar light will need a bigger battery size to feed throughout the night. Due to this reason, you should keep an eye on the battery size as well. Some outdoor lights have an optional port to install an additional battery for better backup time.

The solar panel should get direct sunlight to charge the battery. Due to the building shadings or trees, it may not get direct sunlight, reducing the solar panel's efficiency. You need to make sure the solar light will get enough sunlight.

They do not require any maintenance except regular cleaning of solar panels. If solar light is not giving you the backup as expected, I will suggest you change its location where direct sunlight is available for the whole day. If the problem persists, you should change the batteries. The expected life of their batteries is in the range of 2 to 3 years.

There are many options available in stores as well as online resources. You should decide as per your needs, your favorite lighting patterns, and other features.

Article written by John Ho

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