Solar lighting is a great option for many outdoor spaces, not least because they are environmentally friendly. However, before you go out and buy a selection of solar lights for your yard, there are a few things to consider. To ensure you are making an informed decision, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of this type of lighting.
The biggest pro in favour of using solar outdoor lighting is that there is no energy consumption or cost. Solar lights are charged using solar power during the day, which is then stored and used to power the lamps at night.
Second, there is no need for wiring as there is no electricity required. That allows for easy, straightforward installation. Not only that, they can easily be placed anywhere in the yard that gets adequate sunlight. This makes them an ideal choice for placing in remote areas of your yard that may be more difficult to light with wired lighting. The wire-free makeup of solar lights also make them versatile and portable, allowing you to move them around to try a new configuration as your needs and tastes change.
As with anything, there are some drawbacks to using solar lights in your yard. At first, they can be a little more expensive than traditional lights to purchase, especially those that are high quality. However, the savings are realized long-term, when you consider there are no energy costs or maintenance costs to be concerned about.
On a practical level, many people find that solar lights don’t shine as brightly and aren’t as long-lasting as electric lights. Also, solar batteries will only charge on sunny days, and the lights can’t be used in areas that receive little to know direct sunlight.
There are several types of solar lights. These are:
Accent lights: These are used primarily for decorative purposes. These solar lights offer a soft glow and are often in the shapes of botanical elements such as plants or animals. In some cases, a water feature such as a fountain may be incorporated into the solar light fixture.
Path lights: Path lights are designed to light pathways, walkways, and sidewalks. They are typically low to the ground (to avoid tripping) and shine more brightly than other types of solar lights. In some cases,, these lights can be incorporated into the existing path.
Lamp posts: Whereas path lights are designed to lie low to the ground to light the footpaths in a yard, lamp posts are tall, making them perfect for lighting a bigger space more brightly, such as a driveway. These come in many design styles, from ultra-modern to more classic Victorian design.
Floating lights: If you have a pool or pond in your yard, floating solar lights can give a beautiful, soft glow that reflects off the water and offers a beautiful effect.
String lights: String lights are like traditional Christmas lights. They are on a string or strand, making them easy to wrap around things like tree trunks, along structures like sheds, etc.
When choosing where to place your lights, be sure you choose a location and position that will allow the lights to get as much direct sunlight as possible. Solar lights need the solar energy for at least 8 hours per day when available, to be able to power the lights effectively during the evening/nighttime hours. You may need to position your lights in several different places and, through trial and error, determine the best place to position your lights.
Solar outdoor lights are a wonderful option for lighting your outdoor spaces. Whether for design, ambiance, safety or a combination of these reasons, outdoor solar lighting is an environmentally friendly, affordable, and convenient way to add a glow to your outdoor space. Choosing your lighting doesn’t have to be difficult, but it should be done with a measure of diligence to ensure you are not only buying the right kind of lights for your needs, but also that you are taking the time to install and position them properly for optimal effectiveness.