The 5 Varieties of Solar Lights

Here at James Waste, we know a lot about Solar Energy and we know that when buying solar lighting for your home, it is important to do your research. Recent advances in solar lighting technology have improved the quality and efficiency of solar lighting, with solar lights that are able to perform year-round – even through the cold, short days of winter – with slight variation in performance.

Solar lights are ideal for lighting your garden and improving outdoor decoration that will provide warm ambient glows among your flower beds and along your pathways. Solar lighting can be free-standing, hanging or placed securely in the ground. There are a vast variety of solar light choices available on the market today. Read on to find out more about the different varieties of solar lights.

Solar Garden Accents

Accent lights add a pleasant glow to your landscape that improves the aesthetics and feel of your outdoor space. The low level of light output, accent lights usually boast longer runtimes than other types of solar lights. Solar Accent lights typically use efficient multi-crystalline solar cells that allow them to charge even on cloudy days. Compared to other categories of solar lights, accent lights have the lowest light output and are the most affordable of the solar lights.

Solar Path Lights

As the name implies, solar path lights are meant to light pathways. Path lights are generally designed to project their light downwards and illuminate the way to your front door. These solar lights have an additional feature that other solar lights do not offer and that is the on-off switch, a feature that allows the homeowner to ‘store’ the electrical charge for a special event. These solar lights are mid-range in terms of price and light output.

Solar Task lights and Spotlights

Solar task lights and spotlights are the brightest class of solar lights. And, as a result, they are some of the most expensive. Most solar task lights and spotlights are designed so they can be mounted in numerous ways and be adjusted to shine in any direction. Solar task lights and spotlights are extremely durable and can thrive in most garden environments. In fact, as temperatures drop, the LEDs in task and spotlights generate an even brighter light due to their design.

Solar Security Lights

Some solar lights can also double up as motion sensor to dissuade intruders, so they are ideal for front doors, an entranceway. Driveway, the stoop outside your apartment, or anywhere around your home that has dark areas that need illumination. Motion sensing solar lights can either be freestanding or they can be mounted on a wall or roof.

Solar Fairy Lights

Fairy lights are a lovely addition to any garden, especially if they are solar fairy lights. These lights can come in various colours or simply plain and, like all solar lights, they don’t need to be connected to your home’s electrical system. Fairy lights don’t give out a huge amount of light but they can be extremely pleasing, aesthetically, in your garden as a decoration to help liven up your garden for those special events.

How to Choose the Best Solar-Powered Light for Your Home

So, how do you choose the best solar-powered light for your home? Well, your decision should be based on four fundamental factors. Read on to find out more.


The level of brightness from your solar lighting will naturally depend on the type of light you purchase. If you are looking for a low level of brightness to give off an ambient light in your garden, purchase solar lighting that can produce 15 to 20 lumens as this will give a nice glow without blinding your guests.

However, if you require solar lighting to illuminate walkways, the edge of your swimming pool or your driveway it is likely you will require a light with a stronger brightness. A stronger light is especially important if you are looking to use your solar light for security purposes. LEDs are good for brightness. Some lights have multiple LED lights, providing a very strong source of light.

Ultimately, the brightness of your solar lighting depends on the amount of sun it is exposed to, the quality of the photovoltaic cells in the solar panel and the size of the LED bulbs.


To get the most from your solar batteries, we would recommend purchasing solar lighting with lithium-ion batteries, these give you the ability to recharge the batteries when needed. Be sure to recharge your batteries fully before you use them and ensure your solar lighting is exposed to direct sunlight for most of the day.


Solar lighting that has adjustable settings is always a bonus. Most solar lighting will come with a manual on/off switch. But there are others that automatically switch off at dawn and switch on again at dusk. These settings help your lights to store a good amount of energy and work to full effectiveness.

Lighting Range

The lighting range of a solar light can reach up to two feet depending on the design. If security lighting is your goal, we would recommend positioning one or two solar lights close together in strategic positions around your property to allow for complete illumination.


Solar Lighting is an affordable and effective way to light your garden. Easy to install, easily relocated, aesthetically pleasing and good for your electricity bill there are just so many benefits of solar lighting. Technology continues to improve and have come on in leaps and bounds in the last few years alone, with solar lights now used to illuminate streets and even the runway at Southampton airport!

So, what are you waiting for? Purchase your solar lighting today and get saving the environment. Here at James Waste we love solar lighting and how effective it is. If you would like more information, give us a call today to find out more.

Author: Ben Taylor

Eco Warrior! Recycling Buff! Owner of James Waste Management LLP, UK recycling over 90% of waste.

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