Solar-powered lighting has undoubtedly taken the market by storm. With its easy installation, attractive prices, and eco-friendliness, who wouldn’t choose solar garden lighting over electrical lighting? It certainly adds a whimsical touch to your garden or front yard with bright outdoor illumination.
Still, from solar fairy lights and porch lights to solar deck lights and solar string lights, it can be hard to choose one type, so we’re going to help you find the best outdoor solar lights.
The Best Outdoor Solar Lights Right Now
Regardless of your budget or preferred type, this list has something for everyone. Without further ado, let us guide you through the best outdoor solar lights, what we like about them, and what we dislike about them, so you can make an informed decision and find your ideal LED solar light.
1. Best Overall: Ever Brite Outdoor LED Area Light
The Ever Brite Outdoor LED Area Light is understandably our favorite with its motion activation, panoramic solar lighting, bright light, and more.
The Ever Brite’s motion sensor detects movements 10 to 15 feet away, deterring unwanted visitors and lighting up the way as you approach. The lithium-ion batteries and 24 LEDs provide lighting and brightness for more than 12 hours, covering 120 degrees. And you can peel and stick the device to install it on any surface.
Unfortunately, the sunlight battery is irreplaceable, but it lasts 2 to 3 years. And there’s no off switch; however, you can turn off the motion sensor to dim the lightness.
24 ultra-bright LEDs
Panoramic solar lighting
Brightness lasts for 12 hours
Peel and stick installation
No off switch
2. Best On a Budget: Maggift Pathway Solar Lights
The Maggift Pathway Solar Lights provide instant illumination to your home’s exterior for a very affordable price, making it a steal with impressive durability and unique features.
These solar-powered outdoor lights uses sturdy plastic that stands up to all weather conditions and boasts a rust-free guarantee. Furthermore, its dusk-to-dawn feature is for shutting off during the day and lighting up at night, which saves battery.
Besides, they’re easy to install, as they are mounted on a stake, which you can insert in dirt or grass. The only catch is that the brightness isn’t the best, but that’s understandable considering the price.
Durable all-weather plastic
Easy to install
Could be a little brighter, but it’s not a deal breaker
3. Best Spotlight: URPower Solar Lights for Outdoors
As expected of high-quality spotlights, URPower Solar Lights for Outdoors are impressively bright, long-lasting, and durable.
They come in a pack of four fixtures containing 32 lights. With 24 LEDs and 270 degrees of illumination, you can illuminate 800 square feet, and the solar lighting is incredible. Moreover, the lighting lives up to 50000 hours. And you have three distinct modes: medium, dim, and high brightness.
Also, these lamps can withstand rain, snow, heat, and all extreme weather conditions. However, they’re a tad too sensitive to motion, lighting up for moving cars on the street.
Extreme brightness for up 800 square feet
Long lifespan of 50000 hours
Three lighting modes
IP64 waterproof and heatproof
A bit too motion sensitive which can be tricky at times.
4. Best Motion Sensor Lights: Aootek 182 LED Solar Outdoor Motion Sensor Lights
These little beauties certainly doesn’t disappoint. Whether it’s the easy installation, various modes, motion sensor, this outdoor solar light has everything you need in a solar garden light.
Regarding its options, you can switch it off or operate it on full-on mode, reduced-light mode, or motion-sensor-only mode. And the pathway light can work for a good eight to ten hours in steady mode on a single charge.
Also, the motion sensor can detect motion 26 feet away. As for the installation, you can practically set up the pathway light anywhere with direct sunlight. Our only regret is that the lithium-ion battery isn’t included.
Can be turned off
Three available modes
Works for eight to ten hours on one charge
The motion sensor detects motion 26 feet away
Sometimes an overly sensitive light sensor, so can turn on even if something small whizzes past
5. Best Step Lights: JACKYLED Solar Step Lights
We all know and despise the pain and embarrassment of tripping over steps, and JACKYLED Solar Step Lights provide the perfect lighting solution so that you never have to worry about that with the enhanced night vision.
You can install this solar light by mounting it to the steps. Upon absorbing sunlight for 6 to 8 hours, it’ll illuminate your stairs for up to 10 hours. Additionally, you can put it on automatic mode so that it’d turn on at night and turn off at day.
Finally, this lighting technology is weatherproof. But, its performance isn’t the best in temperatures under 14 degrees Fahrenheit.
Enhanced brightness for 8 to 10 hours on a single charge
Automatic mode available
Weatherproof, which is perfect for all weathers
Not great in temperatures under 14 degrees
How to Choose Outdoor Solar Lights
Before deciding on the right solar powered light, it’s important to understand the difference types, characteristics and models that are available.
A light accent aims to mark a place or landscape hazard. For instance, a landscape light can illuminate rocks or steps.
Solar light can also be used as solar garden features for decorative purposes and can have attractive designs. You’ll find accent lighting that switches colors, blinks, or flickers for a candle effect.
It uses multi-crystalline solar cells, which enable it to charge on even cloudy days and in partial shade. Moreover, this solar LED light might use amber LEDs for a softer ambiance than the standard white LED lights. It also consumes less electricity than white LEDs.
Therefore, a light accent produces a low output, which gives it a longer runtime than other types. This lighting operates for many nights on a single day’s sunlight charge. Not to mention, it’s the most affordable type.
Path lights are arguably more popular than other lighting types. They’re solar-powered lights, hung on poles or embedded in the ground. They cast strong enough lights to illuminate paths, driveway perimeters, walkways, or other spaces. For that reason, these solar driveway lights tend to be directed downwards. And they’re in the mid-range of prices.
You can find a path solar light with various designs (classic, modern, and more) and placing options, including ground stakes, hanging hooks, and flange mounts. Additionally, most path lights are durable and withstand difficult weather conditions.
What sets path lights apart is their on-off switch feature, enabling you to save their electrical charge for when their illumination is most needed. Other features include high-low power, timers, and colored lenses. Furthermore, they’re unbelievably easy to install. With no wiring, you can merely stake them anywhere.
Quick Pro Tip: Note that a solar path light is dimmer than an electric path light, so you might want to install several ones alongside a set of stairs or a dark path.
Task and Spotlights
Also known as solar security lights and solar flood lights, they offer the most brightness and intense, direct beams on sculpture, plants, and entryways.
More often than not, the solar panel is connected to the light by a wire so that it can be installed away from the light (even up to 8 feet away) where there’s the most sun. And you can adjust the device to shine on the darkest spots.
Moreover, a high-quality solar spotlight with good LEDs produces a beam that equals a 40-watt incandescent bulb. Though impressive, it doesn’t match an outdoor spotlight’s brightness, so it’d be wise to use two or three of them in a spot for direct and bright light.
Besides, the solar spotlight is more durable than other types of solar-powered lights. Its LEDs increase brightness in low temperatures thanks to its rugged construction. So, It’s weatherproof, has UV protection, and surpasses compact fluorescent lighting and low-voltage outdoor lighting in cold conditions.
In addition, where the average incandescent light lifespan is 2,000 to 3,000 hours, an LED’s lifespan is over 100,000 hours. With such brightness, versatility, and lifespan, it’s understandable that a solar spotlight is usually the most expensive type.
A good quality solar lantern will shine on its surroundings even during dark winter nights. Besides, the incorporation of the LED bulb allows it to emit 10x more light than incandescent bulbs.
Quick Pro Tip: It’s worth noting that brighter isn’t necessarily better. Consider if accent lights, bright lights, or lights with both bright and dim modes are what you want, the final option being the most versatile.
Moreover, always check whether the company includes a warranty. This usually signals that the product is durable and will last.
One of the reasons why outdoor solar-powered lights are becoming so popular is their reasonable prices compared to conventional electric lights. Not to mention, you get to save money on electrical costs in the long run, as these lights absorb sunlight in the daytime, store it in rechargeable batteries, and turn it into energy during nighttime.
However, the price of a solar light varies according to multiple factors. We’ve mentioned how prices vary across types, but that isn’t all. The larger the LED bulb and the higher the photovoltaic call’s quality, the more expensive the solar light will be.
Of course, this very lighting tends to shine with more brightness, so you’re getting your money’s worth.
Easy to Install
Another aspect that plays into the commercial success of the solar lamp is how easy and safe it is to install or move.
To illustrate, there’s no required wiring to the electric grid or other wires, and you don’t need to dig ditches, lay wires, and attach them to the junk box. Therefore, you don’t need a licensed electrician to do the job.
Of course, solar outdoor lights aren’t all the same. Based on their types, they’re either hung up, staked, or mounted. It helps to consider which would work best for your intended location when choosing the suitable type.
Cleaning: Don’t forget one of the most important things to consider is choosing a light that’s easy to clean and maintain.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you can’t find an answer to your question below, get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.
Are Outdoor Solar Lights Any Good?
Outdoor solar lights are good in many respects. You get to save a little bit of money on your electricity, and you do so in an environment-friendly way too. And even if you have no prior knowledge or experience with solar energy, you’ll find that they’re very user-friendly.
Should You Turn Solar Lights off at Night?
If you do turn them off, many solar light models will still charge. In fact, by turning them off, you’re allowing them to charge fully over several days of sunlight. So, it’s advisable to do so once in a while when you don’t need the outdoor lights’ night illumination.
How Long Do Outdoor Solar Lights Last?
As a rule, outdoor solar lights last an average of 3 or 4 years before you’re required to replace them. As for the LEDs inside, these can live up to 10 years, if not more.
Can You Use Regular Batteries in Solar Lights?
No, you can’t use regular batteries in solar landscape lights because they can’t be recharged. A Solar-powered light depends on rechargeable batteries to store the solar energy it absorbs during the day, which it uses for illumination at night. Accordingly, if you use regular batteries on solar-powered lights, this might be damaging.
How Do You Charge Solar Lights without the Sun?
If no sunlight is available, you can charge your solar motion light without the sun by placing it close to artificial lighting, an incandescent bulb, or any household light in general. And it should be able to charge fast.
Ultimately, finding the best outdoor solar lights comes down to determining how you intend to use it. Whether that be a pathway, staircase, garage or decking.
If you want our take, the Ever Brite Outdoor LED Area Light has everything you need from panoramic illumination to a 12-hour lifespan and 24 highly bright LEDs.