When it comes to outdoor lighting, it is really not an easy task for most people. The installation seems complicated. Besides the cost of the lights you will purchase, you cannot avoid hiring a licensed professional electrician to install these lights. The whole process is also time-consuming. The trenching and laying wires in your garden are very complicated and they may destroy your garden as well. Therefore, if you plan to install low-voltage outdoor lighting, you should consider the cost and the difficulties carefully.
Solar-powered outdoor lights are a great alternative to solve these problems. Nowadays, they become more and more popular. This is because most of them are easy to install, replace, relocate and the initial cost is very cheap. What’s more, once you have installed them, you don’t need to pay extra electric bill for them. They are totally self-sufficient.
In the past, most solar garden lights only provided a dim light and couldn’t last for long, making them less convincible and reliable. But now, this problem has been solved due to the use of super-efficient and super bright LED bulbs which has taken the place of conventional filament bulbs. Compared with their predecessors, LEDs only emit lighting without creating extra heat. Therefore, the electro-optical efficiency is very high, making LEDs become much brighter than conventional bulbs, require less electricity to power and last for a long time. Now, they become reliable and they become more and more popular.
Another core part is the solar panel which has been improved in the past few years. Solar panels are made up of more efficient photovoltaic cells, so they can change more solar energy into electricity. The batteries have also been improved. They have a longer lifetime and have a larger capacity, allowing them storing more electricity. Now, they are weatherproof and they can emit lighting even in cold winter with short days. The overall performance is only a little decline owing to short days.
If you plan to add some solar garden lights to your garden, choosing the right type which can satisfy your requirements is very important. There are many different types of solar lights, such as solar accents, path lights, spot lights, string lights, deck lights, post lights etc. Now, let’s discuss some of them.
Solar Garden Accents
If you only need lighting to mark a place in your garden and add a charming glow to the landscape, solar accent lights are perfect, because their low level of lighting is enough to create a romantic atmosphere. Low level of lighting means they can last longer than other types of solar outdoor lights. They can work for you for a whole night. Many lights can offer an accent light for several nights even if they are only charged on a single day.
The solar panels of accent lights are made up of multi-crystalline solar cells which are more efficient and can charge the batterieseven in partially shaded areas or on cloudy days. Most of them use amber LED bulbs which can emit softer lighting. Compared with white LEDs, they use less electricity, making them offer longer runtimes at night.
You can use them to make a large rock, a swimming pool, a fountain, as well other landscape hazards. This can help people know where these landscape hazards are in the dark and the soft lighting is also very fascinating. In a word, accent lights are the most affordable because of their lowest light output.
Solar Path Lights
If you need lights to illuminate your driveways, pathways, walkways or other small areas in your garden or around your house, solar path lights are the best choice. You even can use several of them to guide the way a long your dark walk or stairs. They typically come in ground stakes, hanging hooks, or flange mounts, which can offer you a wide range of choices. For example, if you need hanging lights, the ones with hang hooks are good. Most of them have stakes that allow you to plugin into the ground. Therefore, the installation is pretty easy. To illuminate the ground, most of them can focus the lighting downward. Similar to other types of solar lighting, they are also equipped with automatic on-off switches. Some even allow you to turn them off to store more energy for a long time holiday use. There are many different models on the market, different from power, colored lens, finishes, or timers. They are very popular in our garden.
Solar spotlights are able to provide the brightest lighting, so they are prone to be more expensive than other types of solar lighting. They can deliver a focus, bright beam of lighting on entryways, plants, rocks, or statuary. A good quality spotlight with good LED bulbs can offer a focus bright beam of light which is equal to a 40W incandescent spot light. Mostly, this is bright enough, although it seems it cannot compete with a standard 100W floodlight. Nonetheless, the light is clean and free.
Some models have its solar panel on the top, while other models allow you to install the solar panel separately. This depends on your needs. For example, if you have a large tree and want to illuminate its bottom, you can place the solar panel in a sunny place and install the lights under the tree.