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8 best solar-powered lights for outdoors

These eco-friendly and inexpensive lights will have your home or garden illuminated in no time 

Laura Brickman
Wednesday 01 August 2018 21:31 BST

Just a few years ago home solar may have seemed a remote possibility for consumers… or at least a possibility requiring unwieldy panels covering your roof. If that sums up your attitude towards solar it’s time to think again. Solar lights come in all shapes and sizes, and many of the products on the market today are all-in-one for outdoor use.

Think of solar lights as an investment that will cut your electric bill while expanding the outdoor spaces in your home. Here are our picks for the 8 best solar lights to use outside, whether you’re on your patio or deep in the woods.

1. Flyhoom - LED Lantern Tent Light Bulb (3-pack) : $27.99, Flyhoom

Lightweight, durable, and user-friendly, Flyhoom’s LED solar bulbs are perfect for camping or to use in your home as a backup in case of power outages. The Polypropylene body is durable enough to throw into your backpack or tent without worry, and with dual-option lids, you can either hang or keep the bulb on a flat surface.

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2. Touch of Eco - Niteshine: $19.99, Touch of Eco

Made using a mason jar, these are cute enough for your Etsy page. With a lid that doubles as a solar panel and a fillable interior, Niteshine packs both nostalgia and innovation in an elegant design. It’s perfect for outdoor parties or everyday lighting for your home or yard, with extra points for getting crafty and filling the jar with items of your own design.

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3. Maxsa Innovations - Dual Head Solar LED Security Light: $38.99, Living Social

Designed with a motion detection sensor, this solar security light from Maxsa Innovations is meant to be installed at your home’s entrance. It packs enough light to illuminate a yard or driveway, and is also customizable - it will stay lit from 10 seconds to 4 minutes after motion stops with an activation range from 10 to 40 feet.

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4. Hampton Bay - LED Landscape Pathway Lights (6-pack): $12.00, Home Depot

At $12.00 for a set of 6, Hampton Bay’s Pathway Lights are a bargain, and with no wiring necessary and LED bulbs, these lights are easily installed and are practically maintenance free. And with elegant ribbed lenses for a beautiful lighting effect, they’re a perfect way to enhance your home's landscape.

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5. Westinghouse - Solar Fence Light: $9.99, Westinghouse

This compact solar fence light from Westinghouse is also an easy, low-maintenance tool to illuminate a yard, steps, or pathway. It’s durable plastic construction and solar rechargeable battery that illuminates automatically in the dark means you can install this light and let it do the work to improve your home.

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6. Hayneedle - Smart Globe Solar Light: $26.99, Hayneedle

Another great piece for parties, the Smart Globe Solar Light from Hayneedle includes red, green, and blue LEDs that can cycle through the colors or display a single color of your choice. The round light is made from durable weatherproof and waterproof plastic with a modern black color and can be attached to a stake for elevated lighting or floated in a fountain, pond, or pool.

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7. Ohuhu - Garden Path Lights (6-pack): $19.99, Amazon

With a similar design to Hampton Bay’s Pathway Lights, these staked solar lights can also be stuck in the ground with minimal installation. Made with glass lens and stainless steel and resistant to rain, snow, frost, or sleet these are the perfect lights for your home and outdoor space all year round.

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8. Gigalumi - Garden Outdoor Lights (2-pack): $22.99, Crov

Gigalum’s Garden Outdoor Lights are another staked solar light with a slightly different design. The main difference on these is the powder-coated and large window-shaped lampshade that grant a more classic look than the garden lights from Ohuhu and Hampton Bay. Simply plant the light under direct sunlight and unscrew the bottom part of the lamp to turn the switch on, and the lights will turn on automatically and remain illuminated. No battery or wiring needed.

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The Verdict: Solar Lights

If you’re looking for a light for emergencies or use where there otherwise isn’t access to electricity, we highly recommend the Tent Light Bulbs from Flyhoom. They’re inexpensive, durable, and lightweight, and a perfect replacement to a flashlight or headlamp, no batteries needed.

For lights to illuminate outdoor spaces in your home, it’s hard to beat Hampton Bay’s Pathway Lights for both functionality and cost. On the other hand, if you’re planning an event and have a bit of extra cash, NiteShine’s Touch of Eco is well-designed, versatile, and social-media ready.

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