Are Solar Lights a Practical Option for Gardens

A garden is a thing of beauty. For some individuals, it truly is their own little piece of paradise. It is your space where you can relax in solitude, or you can entertain friends there.

Family gatherings, barbecues, parties, or a quiet drink with your partner on a summer's evening. A garden can be magical.

To make it even more beautiful, or just practical for nighttime use, many people add lighting. You can add color, and ambiance, with good outdoor lighting. These days there is even smart lighting for the outdoors.

What type should you use though? Solar power is one of the more clean energy sources, but is it practical for lighting up a garden?

1. Why would solar power be bad for garden lights?

Garden Solar Lights
The obvious thing about solar-powered lights is that they need the sun to power them. So, being outdoors makes perfect sense.

However, this also leaves them at the mercy of the elements. Wind, rain, snow, ice. There is also the question of sunlight. What if you live in an area that has short summers, or less daylight than others get? Would solar lights receive enough energy to be useful?

Inside Climate News reports that LED lights use just 10% of the energy that incandescent lighting does. So, couldn't you just switch to that instead? 10% isn't that much, so you could carry on using electric lights in the garden knowing that your energy bill won't be bad, but you will always have light.

If you take time to look at the positives though, things change. There may be very good reasons to use solar power with garden lighting.

2. Why use solar lights outdoors?

Why use solar lights outdoors
Looking quite a few years back, the only solar garden lights you could buy were these small ones on spikes that were pushed into the soil. They worked, but they were quite weak. The light emitted from them was more of a low glow than proper lighting.

However, things have moved on dramatically. Now, solar garden lights come in a variety of forms and are far more powerful.

Solar lighting can store enough energy to light a garden up for the entire night. Obviously, not all products are created equal, but most modern solar garden lights are perfectly capable of doing this.

Then there are the elements to think about. Solar garden lights are designed to withstand the elements. They are purpose-built to be placed outdoors, some of them directly in, or under, water.

Solar lights are also a safer option. They don't have any electrical wiring, so in fact, being exposed to the elements isn't a concern in this regard. Ecology Survey

3. Are they a truly eco-friendly option?

Well, you have just read that you could use LED lights at a fraction of the cost of regular incandescent ones, so is it worth switching over?

If you throw out your existing lighting for solar power lights you may be just adding to the landfills. In the UK, the average individual throws away around 400KG of waste a year.

If though, you actually need to replace lighting or add more in different areas of the garden, then solar power becomes a better option.

Solar lighting will only use energy from the sun, although other light sources work too. Therefore, there are no fossil fuels involved, and your energy bills will decrease.

There will be less waste too. LED lighting lasts longer than traditional bulbs so you won't be replacing them as you would with other lighting. There are some concerns though.

4. What are the concerns about solar power?

Why use solar lights outdoors
Some people harbour concerns that solar power isn't as green as it could be. This is due to the way that the panels are made, and the minerals needed to manufacture them.

Mining is involved, and inherently, this is rarely, if ever, eco-friendly. Many manufacturers of solar panels are now addressing this area though.

A little research into manufacturers of solar panels will show that there are great strides being made to make sure the manufacturing process is greener than before.

Regardless of any faults in the way solar panels can be made, solar lighting is still far more environmentally friendly than electrical lighting. Once the lifetime use of the product is taken into account, the benefits of solar lighting will far outstrip any concerns with the manufacturing process. Especially when compared to standard electrical lighting.

5. In what ways can solar lights be used in a garden?

Now you have seen that solar lighting is a truly viable, and green option for the garden, what is the potential for it? Where can you put solar garden lights, and what type are there?

Well, you may be surprised at what solar lighting could do for your home and garden.

Pool lights
Solar pool lights can be fitted around the edge of a pool, or you can choose floating options. There are embedded pool lights that illuminate the edge, or color options that float in the water. Lighting a pool at night adds ambiance, but also increases safety.

Pond lights
Similar to pool lights. These can go on the surface, or be placed on the bottom of the pond. Obviously, they are water-proofed, and they can add beauty to a pond.

Decking lights
Adding decking to a garden actually increases the value of a home. It is a great investment and one that can be enjoyed day and night. One of the best garden ideas on a budget you can use for your home is to add lighting to this decking. And they require no maintenance.

This means the decking can be used to entertain guests in the evening and will light up any steps, and help create an atmosphere.

Pathway and driveway lights
If you are looking for house staging tips then adding lighting to a pathway or driveway will improve your curb appeal. The front garden and the facade are what your potential buyers will see first.

If these buyers drive by at night and see an illuminated driveway it will potentially add a lot of appeal. It also means the home is more secure.

Hanging lights and net lights
Solar lights don't just come in options for the ground, you can hang them too. Hanging solar lights can illuminate paths or be placed on porches.

Net lights are ideal to add a unique touch to a wall or around a patio.

Security lights
One other area of garden lighting is for security. Although these are not technically garden lights. Outdoor solar lights can add extra security to a home. Burglars don't like lights.

Using garden lights will help on their own, but for extra safety, you can also buy solar-powered security lights.
Why use solar lights outdoors

6. Summary

Solar power is a clean and green way to light up a garden. Considering that gardens are generally based around nature, it would make sense to use an eco-friendly lighting option.

They are completely practical to use outside and can be removed if extreme weather comes in. There is no electricity to worry about, so they are safer than wired lighting.

Solar-powered garden lights won't add to your energy bill, and they will also produce less waste. LED lights simply last longer than other types, but the waste savings also stretch to how electricity is made. Solar lights don't produce emissions or other waste by-products.

All solar lighting will do, is to provide ambiance, color if you wish, and illumination to your garden.

Additionally, it's worth mentioning that solar installers play a crucial role in making these sustainable solutions possible. If you wish to make a positive contribution to this field, consider checking solar installer jobs on Jooble.

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