☀ Best Outdoor Solar Lights for the Yard, Landscape & Lawns (2019 Update)

How to Choose the Best Outdoor Solar Lights for the Yard, Landscape & Lawns

Solar garden lights

Over the last decade, the use of sun-powered lighting has skyrocketed. As a result, there are more choices in solar lights styles, functionalities and capabilities than before. While this is a good thing, it makes it a challenge for consumers to make the best choice when shopping. Solar yard lights for your outdoor living space create a warm ambience highlighting your home’s beautiful features while still enhancing security.

This guide was created after hours of research to help you pick the best solar landscape lights to meet your lighting and decorative needs.

These are bright solar lights designed to enhance security on your yard. They are fitted with intelligent features to offer different lighting modes and last longer.

Aootek Solar lights are also designed for illumination and yard security. Like the URPower lights, they have intelligent features for better functionality. However, they are relatively pricier.

If you want to light your whole yard with string lights, these Brightech solar lights are a good option. They are not fitted with high tech features. They are ideal for lighting your yard for an evening party or for when you need to enjoy your evening outdoors.

Picking the Right Solar Lawn Lights

If you intend to buy solar lights for your outdoor living space, consider the following factors:

Choose either Li-Ion or Nickel-Metal Hydride, NiMH, Batteries

Lithium ion batteries are long lasting and are resistant to elements such as extreme temperatures. However, you might have to pay a little more for these batteries. NiMH batteries, on the other hand, are long lasting and are offered at a relatively lower price. Again, NiMH batteries are designed in a variety of styles.

There are many more battery types but these two will give you value for your money.

Choose LED Bulbs

Most solar lights run on LED bulbs but you have to be sure before you buy seeing that some are fitted with incandescent bulbs. LED bulbs will last for years without burning out. They are also more energy efficient meaning they can last throughout the night with a few hours charge.

While a normal incandescent bulb will last for up to 2000 hours, an LED bulb can last for up to 50,000 hours. Though LED lights are not as bright as incandescent bulbs, they are still bright enough to illuminate your yard.

Choose aluminum Casing over Lightweight Plastic

Most solar lights are made of either an aluminum alloy housing or a strengthened plastic. Yet, some are made of weak plastic casings. When the summer gets very hot or when your yard is covered in snow, the weak plastic housing will not survive. While the aluminum alloy and strengthened plastic are more expensive, they will give you value for money in the long run.

Check the product details to ensure that it has a strong powder coat finish to ensure that it is moisture and rust resistant.

Buy Mono-Crystalline Solar Panels

Mono-crystalline solar panels are made from a single piece of silicon while poly-crystalline panels are made from little pieces of silicon. A single piece is able to absorb more sunlight and convert that sunlight into power. On most panels, the information will be listed. If it happens not to be listed, you can assume it is poly-crystalline.

Choose the Right Angle

If you choose lights with free standing solar panels, you can always adjust the angle to capture maximum sunlight. Because the angle of the sun keeps changing, you need a solar panel that can be adjusted.

Outdoor Solar Lighting Options for Your Yard

Decorative Solar Accent Lights

Not all parts of your yard need security. You might want to have security lights near the garage or near your house but other parts need to be decorated. Accent lights add an inviting glow to your landscape and are also used to mark landscape hazards such as stone carvings and water pools. Because these lights have a low output, they generally stay for longer than other lights. With a few hours of charge, the lights can last a whole night.

These lights come in different tints to add ambience to your outdoor living space. Some of them use Amber LEDs to create a soft ambient look. Amber LEDs are less power intensive allowing them to last longer.

Path Solar Landscape Lighting

Path lights are ideal for lighting pathways, driveways and other parts of your yard that need maximum illumination. Path lights are designed with ground stakes to enhance installation. Some models are created with brightness control functionality with others having an accent to add to the beauty of your paths.

These bright lights are sometimes fitted with motion sensors s they go on when someone or something passes by them.

Solar Task LED Yard Lights

If you need to highlight a specific feature on your yard, such as a water fountain, these are the lights to go for. They are designed in such a way that the light can be concentrated on a single point on your garden. Some models have the solar panel and the LED lights separate and connected by a wire. In such models, you can move your solar panel to a place that has maximum sunlight.

Extra Features on Solar Lights

Today, most solar lights are engineered with intelligent features to make them more functional. Motion sensors, automatic on/off, and brightness regulation are some of the great features found on modern lights. These features will increase the price of the lights but they make them operate better.

Consider Your Landscape Theme

Your lighting should match the theme of landscape. Decorative accent lights are designed to match any style you might want from country style lanterns to Japanese soji lanterns. Take your time and pick what meets your lighting and decorative needs.

Installing Your Lights: Look for a Reflective Surface

When you place your solar panels near a reflective surface such as a water pool or a white surface, the extra light from the surface will increase the energy output from your panel. If yours is a free-standing solar panel, you can place it near a mirror or place a mirror next to it to maximize energy output.

For path solar lights, the distance between one light and the next should be the radius of the glow. In most cases, the radius is 6 feet. If you need a soft glow on your garden, place the lights 8 feet apart and for more illumination, place the lights 4 feet apart.

Best Outdoor Solar Lights for the Yard, Landscape & Lawns Reviews

The URPower Solar Lights are designed specifically for your yard security and to illuminate paths. Each unit comes with two lighting modes; it can go off and then back up bright or go on and then dim on sensing motion. It takes the solar panel between 6 and 8 hours to charge the battery to full charge. This can last the lights a whole night especially with the dimming and motion sensing settings.

URPOWER Solar Lights Wireless Waterproof Motion Sensor Outdoor Light for Patio, Deck, Yard, Garden with Motion Activated Auto On/Off (4-Pack)

The lights have 8 LEDs to shine brighter than most units with four and to stay longer than lights with 12 LEDs.

The lights are housed by a strong plastic case that is weather and heat proof. You can install these lights by screwing them on a wall or a tree trunk. If you decide to use them as path solar lights, you might have to buy separate stakes for installation. You can buy the lights as a two-pack or four-pack based on your needs. The lights illuminate up to an angle of 120 degrees making them cover a wider area.

Pros
  • Super bright for security
  • Designed with an automated switch
  • Comes with a long lasting solar panel; lasts up to 5 years
  • Fitted with modern LEDs chips with a lifespan of 50,000 hours
  • Wide angle design for better illumination
  • Strong motion sensor; detects up to 3 meters away
  • Easy to install and easy to move for maximum exposure to sunlight
Cons
  • Low battery capacity; only 900mAh

The Aootek New Upgraded Solar Lights sport modern LED chips to offer the brightest light ideal for outdoor space security. Its corner LEDs produce more light to enhance the efficiency of the overall light. Besides, it has a wide angle design to further enhance the luminosity.

Each unit comes with a motion sensor that can detect motion from up to 26 feet to keep your yard secure. This is an improvement considering most lights can only detect motion up to 8 feet away. The lights run on a 2200mAh Li-Ion battery that charges to full power in a few hours of full sunlight.

Aootek New Upgraded Solar Lights with Wide Angle Illumination,Outdoor Motion Sensor Waterproof Wall Light Wireless Security Night Light with 3 Modes for Driveway Garden Step Stair Fence Deck 2pack

There are three lighting modes to choose from. The light can go on at dusk and off at dawn, go on when motion is detected and then off after a few seconds or go on when motion is detected and dim after a few seconds. Choose the mode that helps you save energy.

The unit is made of hardened plastic to last longer. This housing makes the lights water and heat proof. Its mono-crystalline silicon solar panel is able to convert up to 21 percent of the sunlight it receives into electricity.

Pros
  • Fitted with super bright LED chips
  • Powerful Li-Ion battery
  • Wide angle design to capture maximum sunlight
  • Can fit different applications including pathways, lawn, porch and patio
  • Comes with high efficient solar panel
  • Motion sensors can detect motion up to 26 feet away
Cons
  • The switch is placed on the back making it a challenge to operate once mounted

Brightech Ambient Pro LED Solar String Lights are designed to add a warm and cozy lighting to your landscape. Each strand has 12 lights spread over a 27 feet long strand. The bulbs are placed 20 inches apart to offer brighter light.

The lights sport an Italian style and are great when you have an outdoor activity such as a birthday. They create a warm or cool ambience allowing you to sit back and enjoy the evening. You can install the lights by clipping them on a pergola roof or any other surface or use a stake on the ground.

Brightech Ambience Pro - Waterproof LED Outdoor Solar String Lights - 1W Vintage Edison Bulbs - 27 Ft Heavy Duty Patio Lights Create Cafe Ambience On Your Porch - Soft White

Each bulb produces 3000K warm white or soft white light that is only bright enough to light a 6 feet radius. The units are designed with WeatherTite Technology making them resistant to weather elements such as rain and wind.

These lights do not have intelligent features to enhance your security but they are designed bright to light up your yard. They are ideal for decorating your landscape, highlighting different features on your yard and for lighting up the yard for an evening event.

Pros
  • There 12 bulbs to illuminate your whole yard
  • Italian style lights look great for your yard
  • They are great for occasions
  • Option of two light colors; soft white and warm white
  • The lights are encased in a layer of silicon for durability
  • The string lights are easy to install since you can hang them anywhere
Cons
  • The lights are not bright enough to offer security
  • They do not have motion detectors

Conclusion

If you are looking for the brightest solar landscape lights, the URPower solar lights and the Aootek Upgraded solar lights will give you the best value for money. The Brightech lights are great when you need lights to beautify your yard or when you need to enjoy your evenings outdoor.

Based on our research and review, the URPower Solar Lights are the best brightest outdoor solar lights. The lights are fitted with bright LED bulbs with two different lighting modes. It is also fitted with a Li-Ion battery that lasts all night. Even better, the price of the solar lights matches the functionality.

The hard plastic casing lasts as long as the solar panel and the bulbs. When well cared for, the lights can last for more than 5 years. Its PIR motion sensor is always on and starts working once dusk sets in keeping your home secured.

Compared to the other solar lights for outside on our list, this unit offers the most perfect balance between features, style and price.