10 Best Outdoor Solar String Lights in 2020 (Review)
To decorate your backyard, garden, or even your business, you will have many choices available. You can get as creative as you like to. One of the best options is to light up using string lights.
String lights are great for decoration, but outdoors, you may not be able to reach an outlet for your string lights. You would need to run long and ugly extension cables throughout your yard to power them. Moreover, traditional-style string lights will consume power, forever adding numbers to your electricity bills each year.
To save money and have a more elegant and comfortable installation, the best option is to purchase the best outdoor solar string lights in 2020. These solar powered technologies last for many years as they are combined with LEDs. Their source of power is the solar panel, and that is easier to transport and place in multiple locations without the need to use an AC wire extension.
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The Best Outdoor Solar String Lights
1. Brightech Ambience Pro Outdoor Solar String Lights
The Brightech Ambience Pro solar string lights are the perfect solar lights for when you host a party or a casual get together.
Despite that the product may look like an incandescent bulb, it is actually based in white LED technology. These LED bulbs are an energy efficient source of light that does not consume as much power as an incandescent bulb, making it profitable to receive power from solar panels.
Just like an incandescent bulb, these LEDs provide a warm white light of 3000°K and they can work up to 20,000 hours in a reliable way.
Moreover, each strand of string lights is 27 feet long and includes up to 12 LED bulbs that are spaced 20 inches apart. The solar panel is placed 6 feet apart from the first bulb, which gives you a good range to place the module in the best position for solar energy conversion.
Brightech string lights are weatherproof to resist rain, damp climates, and winds up to 50MPH. Plastic shells avoid breakage and the plastic bulbs can resist up to 122°F without damage (the bulbs will stay cool).
2. Amir SL0 Outdoor Solar String Lights
Looking just like Christmas lights, the Amir SL0 solar string lights offer one of the most beautiful options to light up indoor and outdoor locations in your house.
These solar fairy lights are perfectly suitable for interior decorating (like the kid’s room or even inside the living room). However, they are also great as decorative outdoor solar string lights that work for a home garden, a wedding party, a commercial café, or a beautiful outdoor restaurant.
Up to 100 super bright LEDs are included in the package. That’s nearly 33 feet of high-quality thin and flexible copper wire with a 360° steady mode of lighting that constantly illuminates every direction.
Moreover, you do not need to worry about rain or water because they have an IP65 waterproof rating. Finally, keep in mind that the battery that gets charged by solar power is not replaceable.
3. Goal Zero Light-a-Life 350 String Light
The Italian style Tofu Bistro Pergola Lights provide a warm source of light, perfect to create a cozy and relaxed ambience.
These have a long shape ABS plastic material that contains inside a copper line with LED beads. The solar powered rope lights also integrate a hook that can be used for hanging the lights on a wire between trees or posts.
Each string has up to 24.6 feet long and contains up to 10 LED light bulbs with a separation of 1.6 feet between them. Moreover, they use a solar panel to power a battery that charges within 6 hours of sunlight and can last up to 12 hours when fully charged.
The LED solar powered string lights turn on automatically at dusk and they work under steady and flashing modes.
4. Goal Zero Light-a-Life Mini LED Light
The Xingpold Star Lights outdoor solar star string lights are the perfect type of string lights for those who have kids at home.
This star-shaped LED model is designed with up to 8 light modes: sequential, slow glow, in wave, chasing/flash, combination, slow fade, twinkle/flash, and steady mode. All of these lighting modalities will add a vibrant and fun ambience to your garden.
The solar string lights are covered with an IP67 waterproof rating, the highest in this list. This guarantees maximum protection against harsh weather conditions. The charging period of this product is located between 6 and 8 hours by using solar power and can provide up to 12 hours of light.
Keep in mind that the solar-powered star lights feature a bulb life that reaches up to 100,000 hours of operation, meaning that you will have a long time performance by purchasing these solar lights.
5. Joomer LED 8 Modes Outdoor Solar String Lights
The Joomer LED 8 Modes solar powered outdoor string lights are perfect for you if you love decorating for Christmas. These string lights are the perfect choice to light up outdoor Christmas decorations in your yard, home garden, or patio.
Based on solar power, they integrate light sensor controls that activate the solar lights automatically at dusk. They also include an ON/OFF switch for manual activation.
An interesting fact about these solar powered string lights is that they count with 8 different working modes that will satisfy diverse needs. Moreover, the fairy lights feature an IP65 waterproof rating protection that guarantees performance under heavy rain and snow.
As these are outdoor solar string fairy lights, they use a solar panel that is easy to install by using a garden spike on soft or wet soil. The product has 72 feet of string lights summarizing up to 200 LEDs and the distance between each bulb is close to 3.9 inches.
The solar panel can be placed up to 6 feet away from the first LED bulb and has a high conversion efficiency with an adjustable tilt range up to 90°. Also, the module charges a rechargeable battery based in Ni-MH with a capacity of 1200mAh. The module will take nearly 6-8 hours of charging.
There are multiple colors to choose from: blue, green, purple, red, white, yellow, and multicolor.
6. Foxlux Waterproof Pergola Lights
The Foxlux Waterproof Pergola solar powered string lights have a 2200°K warm white LED design based in Edison-type light bulbs suitable for lighting up a patio, garden or backyard of any kind.
These globe string lights are made of super heavy duty UL wire protections that guarantee the best performance against strong winds and rainy days.
The Foxlux backyard solar lights have 48 feet of a durable rubber strand design that includes 15 hanging sockets for each bulb with a distance between them of 3 feet. The expected lifetime working operation is close to 25000 hours (compared to regular tungsten or traditional light bulbs with 1000 hours).
The Foxlux solar powered LED string lights are easy to set up by using clips to hang on any wall or tent. These decorative string lights are powered by a solar panel that is placed 2.5 feet from the first light and that has a current output capacity of 3000mA, allowing to charge a battery in nearly 6 hours. The working operation of the string lights lasts up to 6 hours and they turn on automatically at night. These are one of the best outdoor solar string lights on the market this year.
7. Joomer 2 Pack Globe Lights
The Joomer 2 Pack Globe LED string lights feature multiple light sensor controls that allow an automatic performance of the white globe light bulbs.
This light source is environmentally friendly and extremely energy efficient. Therefore, it reduces energy consumption. This makes the Joomer suitable for solar panels to reduce the electricity bills of any customer.
This package includes PV modules with an output capacity of 100mA to charge a Ni-MH battery with a capacity of 600mAh. The estimated charging time required is 6 hours, while the working time is close to 8-10 hours. Moreover, up to 8 different working modes can be used to illuminate any area.
These feature an IP65 waterproof rating and they can withstand all kind of heavy weather including strong rainy days and strong snowfalls. You can use them as outdoor solar string lights for trees, windows, doors, walls, grass and use them to light up your Christmas decoration as well.
Up to 30 LEDs can be used in this package with 1-inch separation between across a 20 feet cable strand. The product comes with 18 months of warranty, making it a risk-free investment.
8. Semilits Honey Bees Decor
The Semilits Honey Bees Decor string lights are one of the most creative lighting fixtures that we have found. They have up to 20 LEDs that have the perfect shape of a bee that stands in your garden.
These solar powered bee lights operate through a rechargeable battery, requiring no additional cost to your family.
The bees outdoor string lights have received multiple positive product reviews as they have an outstanding performance and kids love them. These bees are made of strong plastic materials that are hard enough to withstand all kinds of weather while standing in the outdoors.
The bees have multiple decorative purposes for your yard or garden, and they are perfect to adorn flowers and trees as well. You will enjoy two working modes (steady and blinking) after the battery is fully charged.
Since these mini outdoor solar string lights are designed to be placed in a garden or yard, the kit includes a garden spike that is used to place and fix the polycrystalline solar panel in a position where it can charge the 600mAh Ni-MH rechargeable battery.
9. Brightown Shatterproof G40
The Brightown Shatterproof G40 cheap outdoor solar string lights are made of a shatterproof plastic material that does not crack even by falling from high above the ground.
The solar lights have an IP44 waterproof rating that withstands regular type climates and rainy days. Moreover, these globe-shaped lights have a warm white LED style design that is powered by the sun.
Besides, this LED solar powered string lights include a lithium-ion battery that needs between 4 and 8 hours of charging coming from the solar panel source. Regarding the arrangement, each bulb is separated 12 inches from the other and the solar panel stands 12 inches from the first solar light.
The great advantage when compared with other outdoor solar LED string lights is that they can provide up to 16 hours of illumination during the night after the battery is fully charged.
The large solar panel is easy to install on a wall or in the ground by using a stake to stick into the soil. The mounting of the PV module can be adjusted with a 120° angle range to maximize direct sunlight exposure and increase energy yields.
The product has 4 lighting modes: quick flash, steady, slow flash, and pulsating light.
10. Toodour 8 Mode LED Lights
The Toodour 8 Mode LED solar powered LED string set of lights is another great choice that you have available based in globe bulbs.
These string lights are perfect to light up a Christmas tree, a garden, a yard, a deck, a patio, and other indoor and outdoor areas of the house. The solar powered string lights will last between 8 and 12 hours after the battery is fully charged.
Including 50 high-quality LEDs across a 23 feet length string, these LED lights are the perfect choice for multiple purposes.
The solar panel has a current output of 100mA and charges a AA Ni-MH battery with a capacity of 600mAh, so the charging time required for the battery is close to 6 hours.
Additionally, there are 8 different operational modes available for these string lights which will allow you to set either a vibrant or calm ambience. The solar powered lights are also protected with an IP65 waterproof rating, suitable to endure during rain and snow conditions.
How to Choose Outdoor Solar Powered String Lights – 3 Features to Look For
This is mainly related to the number of LED bulbs that are part of the product, the distance between bulbs and also the length of each string.
These factors will help you get an idea of how illuminated your area will be and also how much area you will be able to cover with those string lights. At the same time, it will give you an idea of whether or not you will need to purchase one or more strings for your application.
Keep in mind to measure the distances required in your garden between anchoring points for the string lights before purchasing.
Solar Power Specs
The specs of the solar panel and the rechargeable battery are critical. The current output of the PV module is very important, as this will be a reference for how much energy the panel should be able to generate per hour. The technology of the module is also valuable as it will be an indicator of the efficiency of the panel (monocrystalline better than polycrystalline).
Finally, the mounting structure of the module will also be important to decide where you will place it. Available options are generally wall or ground mount. Remember that the panel will be located at a specific distance from the first light, therefore, you must plan ahead of the arrangement of lights considering this fact.
On the other hand, the factors related to the battery itself are also very important. Charging times and battery life operation must be considered at the time to choose. Logically, the product with lower charging time and higher working time will always be preferable.
If you haven’t decided yet, then you might want to consider other factors.
For instance, the modes of lighting (steady, flashing, pulsating, etc.) are especially important for Christmas decoration purposes. Price is also quite relevant in your decision. Current prices should not go above $50.
Other things such as warranty terms and the style of the solar powered LED string lights can also play an important role. Keep in mind that you will find string lights mainly intended for Christmas decoration (Joomer style lights), while others may have other interesting uses for your garden or yard (like the Honey Bee models).
What is the Average Battery Life and Charging Time?
Average charging times for a battery are related to the output of the solar panel and the capacity of the battery. Most solar PV modules for string light applications will have a 100mA output, which if assumed constant over time, translates into 100mAh energy stored inside the battery within a single hour.
Since most batteries in string light applications have a minimum of 600mAh capacity, then they generally take at least 6 hours to get fully charged.
Regarding the battery life or working times, these are related to the energy consumption of the LED string lights. This is harder to determine due to lack of information from manufacturers, but they will generally last between 8 and 12 hours.
Will the Lights be Affected by Bad Weather?
Outdoor string lights are designed to be exposed to multiple weather conditions (rain, dust, snow, windy and heavy heat). Each manufacturer must take these facts into account, and therefore, they must design the string lights with specific waterproof rating protection.
The weatherproof rating provided by the manufacturers is based in IPXY standards. The X is related to the grade of protection that the product has against particles that could enter inside the product. Meanwhile, the Y variable is related to the grade of protection that the product has against water.
Solar powered string lights generally have an IP65 waterproof rating protection which guarantees total protection against dust and protection against water jets. This type of waterproof rating will guarantee that solar string lights will not be affected by bad weather. Moreover, solar string lights are designed with heavy-duty UL wire protections that guarantee protection against strong wind gusts.
Keep in mind that not all solar string lights are intended for the outdoors. You must make sure that the model you choose is suitable for this purpose by checking the waterproof rating.
3 Tips for Optimal Light and Decorative Placement
Go for the Edges
One of the most simple ways to decorate any house if you are using Christmas style solar string lights is to adjust a string of LEDs to the corners of walls and roofs. It is like sketching your own house.
Another option is to use corners as anchoring points of the solar lights and install them across each other from one side to the other.
Highlight Remarkable Objects
One of the purposes of decorative lighting is to highlight all of those ornaments such as fountains, fences, trees, dinner tables or couches that you have in your backyard.
Using string lights or outdoor solar powered lanterns to bring additional attention to a specific object in your garden or backyard is also a wise choice. Selecting single-colored lights for this purpose is usually better.
Properly Select the Colors
Outdoor string lights tend to be used a lot during the Christmas season. The fairy lights style is suitable for this purpose and the selection of colors can go from white, single-colored, or multi-colored features with multiple modes of lighting.
These may be suitable for this purpose and to light up trees, but during the off seasons it would be better to choose warm white light styles like the Foxlux products.