Looking for the best Solar Lights? With increased cost of life, it is important that we save money in any possible way without having to compromise our standards of the living. One of the major expenses of any household is energy consumption. More and more people have been looking for alternative ways of consuming less energy and thus spending less money. One of the best hassle-free alternatives is solar lights. You’ll be surprised to learn that solar lighting have been in existence for a very long while, even though, their popularity has just gained momentum.
For a long while, now not many people have been interested in solar powered lights in the past because they weren’t so reliable. Many would emit a very dim light and would only last for a couple of hours. However, with the continued advancement in technology, using solar panels for home are now the best alternative to conventional electrical lights that you can choose when you want to light up your premises.
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What are Solar Lights?
A solar light is made up of a lamp, a photovoltaic solar panel, and a rechargeable battery. For an outdoor solar light, the three components will be integrated into one stand-alone unit. The solar panel is used to charge the battery using direct natural light from the sun. The solar panel automatically detects the sun and starts charging the battery and when it gets dark, charging stops. The photovoltaic photocell then detects the absence of the sun and activates the battery which then switches on the light bulb. This entire process is devoid of any human interaction. All you have to do when you purchase your solar kits, solar panel kits, and solar panels is install them where you want to use them and they will do the rest on their own.
It is important to note that solar lights come with different types of lights. Some are fitted with incandescent bulbs, others with fluorescent bulbs, while others have Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) lamps. Before purchasing a solar light confirm which type of lamp it comes with. Incandescent bulbs are not the best choice as they consume a higher level of energy. Solar LED lights are the best bet if you are looking to save energy as they consume way less energy as compared to incandescent bulbs. LED provides provide a bright full spectrum light without consuming so much energy and thus saving up on a charge. Compared to the other types of bulbs, LED bulbs produce less heat, therefore, increasing their lifespan.
Common Uses of Solar Lights That Meets Your Needs
Solar lighting can be used in several ways depending on what your needs are. Before you purchase this kind of products, such as solar yard lights, solar panels, solar kits, it is important that you understand the type of lights available and how they are used. This way you can buy the lights that fit in with your needs to avoid wasting money. Here are the three most common uses of solar lights:
1. Indoor Lights
Using solar powered in your house is a very smart way to cut down on costs and help in conserving the environment. Conventional electric lights emit a lot of heat and are thus detrimental to the environment. On the other hand, however, solar powered lights especially the LED lights emit very little heat, use less energy and are less helpful to the environment. If you live in areas where the sun is out almost all the time such as Palm Springs then you sure should try using solar-powered indoor lights to light up your house and save up on electricity. In areas where the sun intensity is high, it is very easy to fully rely on solar lights for your indoor lighting needs and just have electric lighting as a backup.
For indoor solar lights, the solar panel is informed of a reflective doom that is strategically placed on the roof where it is in direct contact with the sun without any blocking materials.
Hand Made Solar Plastic Bottle Light Bulb
The solar panel captures natural light charges the battery and then transfers the light to the light bulb to light up a dark room. Indoor lights will need some wiring that can easily be done by a professional. You can pick any decorative lamps and bulbs that you desire and place them anywhere in your house.
The most common use of solar lights is to light up the outdoors. Outdoor lights, unlike indoor lights, do not need any wiring. They are very easy to install and you can do all the work on your own. You can use outdoor lights for security purposes, to light up your deck or simply to illuminate your outdoor space when you need to walk outside.
The solar outdoor light battery charges using the sun’s light energy during the day and lights up at night when it gets dark. You can choose to buy outdoor hanging lights, wall mounted outdoor lamps or low post lamps and place them wherever you want to use them. When installing the lights ensure that they are in a place where they are in direct contact with the sun for better charging.
Cheap Outdoor Solar Powered Light Set Up
Where to use solar garden lights: Decks, staircases, outdoor walls, patios, entrance ways etc.
Do you have a large garden with beautiful plants that you want to stay illuminated even at night? Or are you planning to have an evening garden party and your garden is too plain? Glam it up with garden lights. Solar garden lights are wireless and easy to install. It doesn’t matter if you want to use them every evening or just some evenings, you can install and uninstall them as much as you desire.
The best thing about garden lights is that they now come in very interesting decorative designs and some even mimic real plants and animals. Some come in a form of flowers, birds, fruit trees etc. so you can have your own artificial flower garden made up of lights! You can also choose to have clears lights or boldly colored ones to add to the fun. Just make sure the lights complement your garden. You can also use garden lights to mark spots in your garden that one may trip over or hit themselves on such as rocks, gazebos, ponds, walls etc.
Solar Garden Light Installation Diagram
How to build a monster bright LED garden solar light
Where to use solar garden lights: pool area, fence, railing, gazebos, perimeter walls etc.
4. Landscape/Pathway Lights
Just as suggested by the name, these are small solar lights that are used to light up pathways at night. They do not necessarily need to be as bright as other outdoor lights such as the security lights. You will need several lamps depending on how long your pathway is. Most of the pathway lights come in a set of several lamps and are made of die case metal which is weatherproof for durability. You, therefore, don’t have to worry if it is raining or snowing, your lights will remain functional throughout the year. If your pathways are long going for lamppost landscape lights. These can be as tall as you want them to be and will provide a bright light that will illuminate your entire landscape not only making it beautiful but providing your desired level of light and not forgetting in a green manner safe for your environment.
When installing your landscape/pathway lights consider the geography of your home. Remember that for the lights to work at full brightness they have to be well charged during the day so ensure that the light’s solar panel is not being obscured by the sun so that it can absorb maximum amount of sunlight otherwise the lights will be very dim and not last all night. If your area is full of trees and surrounding buildings, solar powered pathway lights may not be the best option for you.
Solar Powered Landscape Lighting Ideas
Where to use solar pathway lights: walkways, driveways, the main gate etc.
Pros and Cons of Solar Lights
- While everything has an advantage and a disadvantage, solar energy are more beneficial than they are detrimental compared to the conventional electricity lighting sources. The only major disadvantage of solar generator is that since they are dependent on natural light energy, their success in functioning is fully dependent on how well they are charged. This may be a problem for people who live in areas where the sun doesn’t shine as bright.
- Another disadvantage of solar lights is that they rely on fully charged batteries. The everyday charging of the battery increases its wear and tear. This means that you will need to change batteries every now and then.
- They are hassle free: Solar indoor/outdoor lighting are very easy to install and apart from the indoor lights that require a bit of wiring the other types of solar panels do not. It is, therefore, quite easy for you to install them yourself anywhere, anytime.
- You will always have light: Since the solar panels get their light from the sun which is a renewable energy you will always have reliable light any day any time, just ensure that your solar panel is always charged.
- No digging up trenches: When lighting up you’re outdoors you do not need to dig up trenches to put up cables because as mentioned led outdoor lighting do not any wiring to function.
- They are safe: Since no cables are necessary for the outdoor lights you can comfortably install them near ponds or swimming pools. You know what you can even have floating lamps in your swimming pool without any fear of electrocution!
So why Choose Solar Lights?
As already seen the major reason, why you should choose solar lights as an alternative to electrical lights, is due its ease of installation and use. But what other reasons should make you choose these technology lights?
Solar lights are both decorative and functional. Implementing then in your home, both indoors and outdoors, will exponentially save you a large amount of money in power bills. Solar lighting energy is practically free. All, you have to buy, are the solar panels for home and from then on you will have no other cost.
They are environmentally friendly. Solar lights do not emit a lot of heat and therefore do not release harmful components into the air. If you are looking to go green with your lighting then you should definitely choose LED solar lighting technology.
They are available anywhere. Since the sun is available anywhere in the world, well save for Antarctica, you can install these lights anywhere you want and use them whenever you want.
They are durable. Well, this will truly depend on the manufacturer but if you go for the genuine ones you will get lights that are weatherproof and therefore durable despite the weather type.
Battery backup. Solar lights come with battery backup for those days when the sun is not shining bright enough to charge the solar panel. Mostly the backup battery should run for about two to three days. Just make sure that when the sun is back up you charge all your batteries including the backup, we always forget to charge the backup!
How To Install Solar Lights System At Home?
How do I Take Care of my Solar Lighting?
Just because there is little to no human interaction required it does not mean that you should totally forget that your solar lights exist. Every once in a while you should do some simple maintenance to ensure that the lights continue working as desired.
First and foremost always check if the lights are well placed for optimal absorption of sunlight. Never forget that they need the sun to function. So if you have overgrown trees that are casting a shadow on the solar panels, trim them.
Secondly it is important to clean your lights periodically especially the outdoor lights. If you leave your outdoor lights unclean for long periods dust and mud will accumulate lowering the light’s ability to store energy. This will in turn make the lamp shine less bright. To clean your lights use a non-erosive soap, a soft sponge, and some water.
If you are not using your outdoor lights all the times, let say you only need them occasionally when you are hosting a party, store them indoors when you are not using them. This will increase their durability. For the deck or entrance way lights that may not be exposed to harsh weather and may not necessarily require to be stored inside, switch them off when they are not in use. For indoor lights ensure you switch them off during the day to save power.
Also, every now and then check if the lighting systems are working fine. Check for any broken pieces and make any necessary repairs. If you have pets they may chew on wires or break a lamp so ensure you go round checking your lights and replace what needs to be replaced.
Do not forget the battery. If you have used your battery for long periods of time say between three to five years you may want to consider changing it. As mentioned earlier the battery does get old with time and therefore becomes less powerful. To continue having bright shining lights, change your battery whenever necessary. Lastly don’t forget the brightest light, choose solar LED lights using LED technology.
The advantages are so many simply giving you no reason not to adopt Solar Energy. For whatever home lighting problem you have, you can rest assured that solar lights will solve it for you in a green, safe, beautiful and affordable way!