If you want to keep your driveway lit at night, you need the best solar-powered driveway lights. The best lights out there will be easy to install, lightweight, and affordable. It will hold their charge long enough to light a driveway of any length all night long.
We will talk about some of the most important features of solar powered driveway lights. We will also show you three of the top products on the market right now.
Our Best Pick Overall
A versatile and affordable set of driveway lights in a 2 pack or 4 pack. Can be mount in the ground and is durable for long term outdoor use.
Before looking at different driveway lights or solar parking lot lights on the market, let’s talk about the features you must consider. The best lights for you will depend on your individual needs and priorities. These are a few important features that you will want to look out for.
One of the most crucial features of any outdoor light is how bright it is. The brightness of outdoor lights is measured in lumens. It is a count of visible light particles. The higher the number of lumens a light has, the brighter it will be. As a reference point, the average lightbulb for a kitchen or bathroom will have around 800 lumens. Most outdoor lights range from as low as 200 lumens to as high as 5,000 lumens.
For driveway lights or solar street lights, do not look for the same brightness as with an outdoor floodlight or security light. Driveway lights are generally meant to guide you through your driveway, not to light your way. For lights that are just going to serve as solar-powered driveway markers, a lower brightness of 200-300 lumens will be great. A lower lumen count also means that the light will be able to hold its charge for longer.
That said, if you want a brighter light with a farther reach, you should look for lights with a higher lumen count. Just keep in mind that they may not hold their charge as long.
You can’t just place any old lightbulb outside to line your driveway. The best solar driveway lights will be able to withstand any weather conditions outdoors, and last for a long time without needing replacement.
For the best weatherproofing, you should look for LED driveway lighting with a high IP rating. IP, or Ingress Protection, ratings are used to define how well-sealed a container is. An IP rating over 65 will mean that the casing around the light is not just waterproof, but dustproof as well. Anything higher than that will be secure even when submerged in deep water. The higher the IP rating of your lights, the longer they will be able to withstand rainy or stormy weather conditions.
On top of that, you should look for lights that are made with a tough, corrosion-resistant metal. Rust can kill an outdoor light faster than anything – make sure your lights either have a corrosion resistant coating or are made out of a metal like aluminum or stainless steel that prevents rust naturally.
There are a few different ways to mount outdoor lights. Many floodlights or motion sensor lights, for security purposes, are designed to be mounted on the side of a building. For most driveways, the best light placement will be lights with stakes that can be stuck into the ground lining your driveway.
However, for clearer, brighter lighting, it might help to have lights mounted higher up. Some solar powered LED street lights are made to be mounted on high poles or fences, like parking lot pole lighting. If you have a fence lining your driveway, you may want to go with the higher light placement, to give your driveway a brighter illumination and a clearer view for the driver.
One of the most important features of solar powered driveway lighting is how long the lights can hold their charge. Solar powered lights will charge themselves during the day – they usually need around 7 hours of direct sunlight to get a full charge.
To get the best use out of your solar driveway lights, make sure you choose a model that will shine for 8 hours or longer on a full charge. This can be tricky with brighter lights – some lights have a motion sensor to turn their brightness up when a person or car goes by, allowing them to conserve energy the rest of the time.
For driveway lights, we recommend valuing a long runtime over brightness. It is more important that your lights will stay on all night, then that they are extra bright.
The range of your solar lights determines how much space one light will be able to illuminate. Most lower-powered LED driveway lights have a range of 2-3 feet. Brighter lights will have a range of up to 10 feet.
For a longer driveway, you will probably want to look for lights with a bigger range, so that they can be placed further apart and cover a greater distance. For a shorter driveway, you should have no problem with a 2 foot light range or even smaller. Remember that the brightness of your lights might affect their runtime, as well as the cost. Lights with a longer range and long runtime will be pricier than those with a shorter range.
The simplest LED outdoor lights out there will function just like any regular light – able to be turned on and off with the press of a button, usually by a remote control. There are some special features of outdoor lights, though, that can make them more effective.
Motion sensors can be really helpful for lighting your way when you are walking or driving by at night. Lights with motion sensors will generally revert to a dimmer setting, or just turn off completely, until motion triggers the sensor, and then they will shine a bright spotlight over a certain area. These lights can be helpful if you often have to walk up and down your driveway while it is dark out.
Another great feature that you might want to look out for is dusk-to-dawn lighting. Lights equipped with dusk-to-dawn sensors will automatically turn themselves on or off when the light outside changes. They will turn on when the sun goes down, and off again when it comes up. That way, you don’t have to worry about remembering to switch the driveway lights on and off manually every day. This can be a great feature for a parking lot light fixture.
Quick Take: OUR RECOMMENDATIONS FOR Solar Powered Driveway Lights
If you have a super large pool or simply a pool that experiences a lot of shade in certain areas, solar sun rings might be the perfect product for heating your pool and preventing evaporation. These SSR rings have anchors so you can keep them in place in the sunny areas without them floating whimsically around the pool.
All three of these products are great solar powered driveway lights, but in our opinion, there is one clear winner. The Nekteck 2 pack or 4 pack of outdoor spotlights is the best choice for lighting up your whole driveway at a low energy cost. These lights will automatically turn themselves on and off, and they will last for years, through any kind of weather options.
If you are looking for a little more brightness, a motion sensor or different mounting options, you might want to try one of the other products on our list.
We hope this review has been helpful in getting you to pick the very best solar powered driveway lights for you!