The Best Outdoor Solar Lights for Your Garden, Yard, Pathway, Driveway, and Home – Reviews and Ratings of the Top-Rated Solar Lighting Options for Outside

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I love my backyard. The deck, patio, and clear lawn surrounded by water features and gorgeous flowers offer something that nowhere else in the world can: complete peace.

But I, like so many of you, have had issues with finding the right lights for keeping things safe for the critters and crawlers, and, well, for myself.

Poor lighting has led to too many incidents of tripping on toys and furniture I was sure were placed elsewhere.

So, I decided to look into finding the absolute best solar walkway lights to keep my family and guests safe and happy in the glorious glow of eco-friendly lighting.

Quick-Find Best Outdoor Solar Lights Table

Image Product
  • 3 lighting modes
  • 24 bright LEDs per light
  • Weather resistant
  • 3 lighting modes
  • 24 bright LEDs per light
  • Weather resistant
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  • 270 degree wide angle focus
  • Very bright, up to 1500 lumens
  • Motion sensor
  • 270 degree wide angle focus
  • Very bright, up to 1500 lumens
  • Motion sensor
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  • Can install in-ground or wall-mounted
  • 200 lumens each
  • 6 to 10 hours of light
  • Can install in-ground or wall-mounted
  • 200 lumens each
  • 6 to 10 hours of light
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  • Cozy, low-light lantern
  • Awesome vintage design
  • Great warranty
  • Cozy, low-light lantern
  • Awesome vintage design
  • Great warranty
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  • 6 feet of string with 200 LEDs
  • 8 different lighting modes
  • Lights for up to 8 hours
  • 6 feet of string with 200 LEDs
  • 8 different lighting modes
  • Lights for up to 8 hours
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  • Unique Victorian style
  • 200 lumens each bulb
  • Multiple light modes for battery saving
  • Unique Victorian style
  • 200 lumens each bulb
  • Multiple light modes for battery saving
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  • Easy to install stakes
  • Long lasting battery
  • Super bright
  • Easy to install stakes
  • Long lasting battery
  • Super bright
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  • 6 to 12 hours of light
  • Very bright, great for large flags
  • Versatile, can use with umbrellas
  • 6 to 12 hours of light
  • Very bright, great for large flags
  • Versatile, can use with umbrellas
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How Do Solar Outdoor Lights Work?

Every solar-powered light has a series of photovoltaic cells that are the solar panel. This panel collects energy from sunlight and converts it into useable power for the light to run off.

Most of the best solar landscape lights have an automatic system that turns the lights on when the sun goes down.

This means that the solar cells collect energy all day – charging the batteries in the solar light – and then uses that energy to power the lights at night.

What Benefits do Solar Lights Give?

Outdoor solar lights are great for a number of functions and reasons. From everything from eco-friendly power saving to adding romantic ambiance, they’re versatile, beneficial, and low maintenance.

Low Maintenance

First off, solar lights are low maintenance. Once you install them, you can pretty much ignore them other than to occasionally clean off the solar cells.

This means that they’re really great for people with busy schedules and kids.

Eco-Friendly

Solar lights are also eco-friendly.

They use the naturally available UV light put out by the sun to create energy to power a variety of lighting options. And they don’t electricity from electrical power plants.

Budget-Friendly

High lumen solar path lights, garage lights, or deck lamps don’t require much of an investment upfront or long-term. In fact, they usually cost about the same as a standard outdoor light – most of which are well under $50 – so there’s little upfront cost.

And since they’re simple to install, they don’t require you to hire an expensive electrician to install them, either.

But they’re also great for the pocketbook over time as well since they don’t require any hookups that drain power from the energy grid – i.e. power is free.

Easy to Install

The final benefit I want to mention is that solar-powered outdoor lights are extremely easy to install.

In fact, I wouldn’t even say that “install” is the proper word for it. For most top-rated solar lights, you simply unpackage them and place them where you’d like them to reside. This could be hanging from a shepherd’s hook in the backyard, staked along the driveway, or mounted to the garage wall.

What Kinds of Brightest Solar Landscape Lights Are There?

There are a ton of different solar light options that you can incorporate into your landscaping and housing. Some are decorative and add some beauty to the landscape elements of your lawn and patio, while others serve a more functional purpose.

The various types of solar lighting include:

  • Pathway lights – Usually small lights that line the pathway with low light to add an element of safety
  • Lanterns – These may be either bright lights for lighting a deck and patio or might be low lights for adding mood lights
  • Security Lights – These are mounted on walls at the house or garage for safety
  • Driveway Lights – These are similar to the mounted security lights and may have some crossover functions
  • Garden spotlights – These lights are decorative and may be bright for adding spots of brilliance, or they might be low lights for romantic ambiance
  • Flagpole lights – These are designed to light up a flagpole but may be used on other posts and poles

The Benefits of Using Solar Lights in Your Landscaping

I’d like to comment on a few of the aesthetics of using the best solar-powered outdoor lights in your landscaping as well.

No Wires

First off, and potentially most important for safety, is that there are no ungainly wires necessary for most solar lights.

There are some that require a cable from the solar panel to the light itself, but otherwise, solar lights are cable free.

This makes solar lights safer, easier to install, and way more attractive.

The Wide Variety

Another thing to note is that because solar lights are so popular currently that you can find just about anything in a solar light.

There are lanterns, lamps, street lamps, bulb lights, string lights, and even uniquely designed novelty lights that are great for kid-friendly yards or elegant garden parties.

Ease of Arrangement

Another thing I love about the best solar outdoor lights is that they are very easy to move.

If you discover your placement isn’t just right – or if you’re like me and just get bored easily – you can move the lights, lamps, lanterns, or even security lights with little effort and time.

solar floodlight in outdoor carport on wood for web

What to Look for in Solar Lights for Outdoor Settings

There are a few key things to look for in solar lights as you shop.

Battery Charge Time

Most solar lights require about six to eight full hours of sunlight for a complete recharge. This isn’t usually an issue for someone who lives in a moderate to very sunny climate.

However, if you live someplace like Alaska or Seattle, where you just don’t get loads of sunlight year-round, you’ll want to make sure that you get lights that have higher solar power wattage.

This wattage is based on the wattage abilities of the solar cells in the solar panel portion of the light.

Many casual lights – like most of the best solar lights for garden – will be fairly low wattage, so just keep an eye out for this.

Hours Lit

Another aspect affected by wattage is the output of the lights. How bright, yes, but how long they’ll remain lit.

The wattage of the solar cells controls this output time of the solar lights as well.

Some discharge much faster than others, so also be on the lookout for how many hours of light you’ll get from the given solar pathway lights you choose.

Brightness/Lumens Put Out

The third aspect of the wattage partners with the light bulbs used in the lamp or lantern you’re placing in the backyard. The lumens of light determine how visually bright the light is.

However, bright lights aren’t always what you want in the yard. Think about your goals as you look into the brightness of the lights.

For example, someone who wants to read on the deck will need much brighter lights than someone looking for romantic mood lighting for a cozy cuddle spot with the spouse. Make sure you’re getting the right brightness for your needs.

Note: The higher the lumens, the brighter the light.

solar pathway light in garden for web

Automatic On/Off Switch

Most high-quality solar landscape lighting options come with automatic on/off settings.

This means they sense the light around them and turn on when the sun goes down.

There are some occasions when you might want a manual switch but having the option for both is the best.

Sadly, this function is rare, so if you find something with both, and the solar lighting reviews are great, you’ve probably found a winner.

Brightness Modes

Some outdoor solar lights have varying brightness modes. These are great lights for someone who plans to use the lights for multiple settings.

If, for example, you plan to have a lot of outdoor parties, you might want lights that can have different brightness levels.

Or someone who’s got kids and needs bright lights for their safety may not want the lights screaming in their windows after bedtime. These light settings can come in handy for a variety of reasons.

Durability

Of course, we need durable products, especially when they’re functioning in the outdoors.

All the more this durability is needed for anyone who has pets or kids who might be a little rough on the lights.

Look for thick plastic, sturdy metal, or other solid casing materials.

Warranty

Finally, look for a good warranty on your solar lights.

The ones I’m recommending below are all high-quality options, but even they could come with a dud in the set. Manufacturers are not perfect and some of the lemons squeeze their way through on occasion.

Having a decent warranty means you can get your money back or an easy exchange if something’s wrong with a solar light.

Reviews of the Best Outdoor Solar Lights

All right, now let’s get down to this whole solar landscape lighting review thing. You’re here because you want to know the best options available in the categories below.

We broke this down into the best of each category, to give you options for all of your lighting needs.

Let me tell you, first, how I figured out the best options, and then we’re off the review.

How We Chose the Best Solar Garden Lights

So, because solar lights are wildly popular these days, there are literally thousands of options out there.

Some of them are absolutely phenomenal, while others are utter rubbish. Some have hundreds or thousands of great reviews from real users, while others just make it to someone’s top ten list because of an affiliate partnership.

I wanted to give a list of the best of the best, though, so I dug around for hours looking for the best reviews from other reviewers and real-life consumers. I compiled a list of about 100 options to chop down from.

I then hacked away at that list, knocking out any that didn’t meet the standards I’d listed above. Then, I dropped off any that didn’t have a higher than average overall rating and stuck to those that had at least four out of five stars.

From that list of about fifty options, I looked through the details of the lumens, the aesthetics, the comments of users, and the other criteria I use to choose anything solar powered. This brought this list down to about five in each category.

At this point, I had to knock out any that weren’t just the absolute best of the best, which was hard to do as these top five in each grouping were truly the best that I could find after all the research and personal review.

But I knocked them down to a smaller list in each grouping and am left with this list of the absolute best solar yard lights.

The Best Driveway Lights

One of the most important places in any yard is the driveway. Safety can be a huge issue here, especially at night when it’s easy to miss that bicycle sitting there or puppy pouncing on toys.

Because this is such a huge issue for so many of us, I spent special care evaluating these lights to make sure I’d only recommend the best solar driveway lights to keep your family safe.

#1. The URPower Solar Lights for Outdoors

URPOWER Solar Lights Outdoor review

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The URPower Solar lights for outdoors are powerful, three-sided lights that offer the best light coverage for your driveway.

They also have three working modes, which make for an even easier to manage, safer home. You can use the medium light mode, dim light mode, or set the light to motion sensor to make sure you’ve got all your need met.

The lights come in a four pack of cool white lights that can be mounted on your garage or house wall with ease. There are 24 led lights per light, with a built-in rechargeable battery that lights up for four to six hours when fully charged. They charge for about seven to eight hours for a full charge.

The URPower solar lights are weather resistant and heatproof, able to withstand rain, snow, and other extreme conditions. They come with a one-year warranty.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

The Best Security Wall Lights

Security lights are an important part of keeping your family and home safe. I found the best option in this category in a strong, wide angle light with super high lumens.

#1. The Litom Enhanced Super Bright Security Light

LITOM Enhanced 102 LED Super Bright Solar Lights Outdoor review.jpg

Overall Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars

The Litom Enhanced Super Bright security light is the best solar security light on the market. It has 102 LED light beads in the light, offering up to 1500 lumens – which is crazy bright. This is the perfect option for covering a wide area with its 270-degree wide angle focus.

The light has a motion sensor, so you don’t have to worry about the power running out on it, even in winter with the shorter days for charging. The light can sense movement up to 26 feet away in 120 degrees, which is fairly significant and a much wider range than most.

The Litom Super Bright is waterproof, durable, and can handle just about any weather conditions. Plus, the light has three modes.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

The Best Garden Spotlights

Sometimes, you need a spotlight more than you need a pathway or security light.

There happen to be hundreds of these on the market, so it took a while to narrow my list before checking any out for myself.

But this is the best one available for lighting up a particular section of the yard, pathway, or object in the landscaping.

#1. The Nekteck Solar 2-in-1 Spotlights

Nekteck Solar Lights Outdoor review

Overall Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars

The Nekteck solar 2-in-1 spotlights win the place for the best solar lights spotlight category for a number of reasons.

The first is that the lights are 2-in-1, which means they can either be planted in the ground via the attached stake or they can be mounted on a wall. The screws for mounting on the wall come included with the lights.

The Nekteck comes in a two pack for a low price, which is also a big plus for me. I love a good value, as I’m sure you do.

They have an automatic on/off sensing that kicks in at sunset and kicks off at sunrise if they fully charged the day before. And this particular version is the 4th generation, meaning that Nekteck has put these spotlights to the test and continue improving on them year after year.

They put out 200 lumens of light each, via the four LED lightbulbs they both contain, and they’re heatproof and waterproof.

The lights also have a fully adjustable panel and light neck so that anything you’re looking to illuminate will be covered while the panel will pick up the sun from whatever weird angle it might need to in your unique setting.

The lights will stay on for between six and ten hours, depending on how much sun they receive the day before via that panel. Full charge time is only about four to five hours, which means these are great for areas with low sunlight hours.

Finally, the solar panel comes with a protective film that means the panels are even more durable and safe from the weather in pretty much any climate.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

The Best Solar-Powered Garden Lanterns

There’s something intriguing about a lantern. I’m not sure what it is. But that intrigue and nostalgia doesn’t go away just because the lanterns are solar powered.

I had a harder time picking just one for this category, so I narrowed it down to the best modern lantern and the best vintage style lantern for your outdoor areas.

#1. The Solar Big Lantern from Homeimpro – Best Vintage Style Lantern

homeimpro decorative solar lantern review

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

For that peaceful vintage feeling in the backyard, look into this low-light hanging lantern from Homeimpro. This gorgeous stainless steel blue finished lantern gives a twist on the classic vintage charm of an old cast iron lamp, without the rust or open flames.

The lantern is pretty big at 7.9-inches in diameter and 6.8-inches in height.

It’s a low-light lantern that draws in loads of charming ambiance that’s perfect for a cuddly night on the patio with someone special, a quiet moment drinking a glass of your favorite wine, or just adding a hint of light to a quiet dinner party on the deck.

The lantern turns on automatically at sunset and shines for about eight hours after it’s spent a full day charging. The light puts out 7-lumens of light for a low, warm light from the LED bulb. The decorative casing casts unique shadows around for an added romantic effect.

The lantern comes with a 180-day money-back guarantee.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

#2. The Allsop Home and Garden Solar Tea Lantern in Blown Glass

allsop decorative solar lanterns review

Overall Rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars

The Allsop Garden Solar Tea Lantern is a unique twist on a classic idea using a blown glass globe for the lantern rather than a clear glass bowl.

The blown glass comes in the aqua/blue/green family and adds a unique texture to any occasion.

Personally, I think this is a fantastic option for parties and weddings held outdoors.

The lanterns are reasonably priced, solar-powered, of course, and water-resistant. They’re made of high-quality materials and look absolutely stunning for ages.

They easily hang or stand on tables or railings and put out light for about four hours when fully charged. They use LED bulbs.

They come with a one-year manufacturer’s warranty.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

The Best Solar Light Strings for Outdoor Use

One of the most attractive discoveries people have made in the last two decades is using string lights year-round – not just for Christmas. They’re perfect for adding a little ambiance or extra light to a cozy deck or around the firepit.

I personally love string lights most for decorative uses, so I had to include the best strings I could find.

#1. Litom Outdoor String Lights

200 LED Solar String Lights, Litom Outdoor Solar Decor Powered Lights review

Overall Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars

The Litom Outdoor String Lights run completely off solar power – which makes them perfect for awkward to reach outdoor spaces far away from an electrical outlet.

They’re perfect for the patio, pool deck, or beneath an awning or tent for a special occasion like a wedding reception or party.

The Litom string comes with 200 LED lights on 72-feet of cord. This provides you loads of light and plenty of line to work with for creating the perfect effect.

The lights have two switches for easy control, as well as eight different working modes including:

  • Waves
  • Sequential
  • Slo-Glo
  • Chasing/flash
  • Slow fade
  • Twinkle/flash
  • Steady on
  • Combination

The lights work for up to eight hours after a full charge that takes around six to eight hours of direct light. The string of lights also turns on and off automatically as the sun comes out and starts shining on the panel again.

There’s a six-foot cord between the solar panel and the first light, so you can easily maneuver the panel into the right spot that won’t disrupt the light pattern.

Plus, the whole rig is completely weather and waterproof so even if you forget to bring them in after a party, you’re good to go.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

The Best Solar Garden Lamps

Decorative lights are one of the most pleasant elements you can add to the outdoor setting. But going with a really practical, attractive option is even better.

These solar lamps for the garden are a great option to meet both aesthetics and get bright lights.

#1. Gama Sonic Victorian Double Head Lamp – Best Vintage Style Lamp

Gama Sonic GS-94C-D Victorian Bulb-Double Head Lamp Post solar review

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The Gama Sonic double-head lamp post is an attractive, vintage style lamp that will help light up the yard with bright white lights. They’ve got a lithium-ion battery pack that charges via solar power, with the solar panel built-in on top of the lamp.

The lamp post has automatic dusk to dawn lighting, so you don’t have to worry about timers, switches, or any of the usual mess with lamps of this nature.

Plus, since they’re solar-powered, you don’t have any of the installation or wiring issues. Just place them so that the panel will receive as direct sunlight as possible all day, and you’re set.

The lamp stands nearly 8.5 feet tall and is made of rust-resistant cast aluminum, powder-coated black finish metal with beveled glass panes.

The lights are each 200 lumens, meaning you have 400 lumens of bright light shining on your lawn, giving you ten full hours of light after a full charge. It takes about a day to recharge, so the cycle just keeps working. The battery itself is good for about 3-years worth of light before it needs replaced.

Plus, you can switch the lighting mode from bright to low light to save battery life or keep the lamp from keeping the neighbors awake.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

#2. The Pandawill Color Changing Glass Ball LED Garden Lights – Best Color Change Garden Lamps

Pandawill Color Changing Solar Powered Glass Ball Led Garden Lights review

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

The Pandawill Color Changing Glass Ball LED Garden Light is a favorite around here. They’re beautiful and versatile for either parties or just enjoying a warm evening outdoors with soft light.

The lamps can be placed on a table to add some color to a plain party, or just a soft white light for everyday use.

The lamp has an easy to remove top which contains the solar panels and the LED light bulb itself.

After the lamp charges, you can flip the top up and out and turn the switch on, off, or change the light from white to color changing.

When the color changing mode is on, the lights transition softly from one color to the next, shining out through the mosaic “cracked glass” style globe.

The lamp lights up for eight hours after a full charge of most of the day in the sunlight. You can also set the lamp to automatic and it will turn on and off as day transitions to night and back again.

These lamps are highly portable, so they’re perfect for a big yard or patio where you might migrate around to enjoy different aspects of the landscaping in the evening.

The lamp itself is 5.24-inches by 5.24-inches, by 3.9-inches. It’s pretty small but adds a bit hit of colorful light.

The lamp is, of course, waterproof as well so you can leave it outdoors without worry.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

The Best LED Solar Pathway Lights

Another important outdoor solar lights category is the pathway light. Having an attractive yard is great but having a safe pathway from the garage to the house is even more important.

These are the best solar path lights I’d recommend for safety and aesthetics.

#1. The Enchanted Spaces Solar Path Lights – Most Attractive Pathway Lights

Enchanted Spaces Solar Path Light review

Overall Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars

For a high-quality pathway light that’s not just functional but attractive, I can’t recommend the Enchanted Spaces Solar Path Lights enough.

They come in a pack of 6, meaning most yards are covered by the single purchase, and they’re the prettiest pathway lights available.

The lights are staked, so they’re easy to install just about anywhere, and they are made of high-quality metal with real glass lenses.

The metal is rubbed bronze color, and the lights give a vintage look to a modern lighting option that saves the environment and your pocketbook.

Each light has a 600mAh Ni-Mh rechargeable battery that lasts for years. The lights stand 12-inches above the ground with a solid 4-inches of stake for getting them stable.

The lights are super bright LED lights that casts a star-shaped pattern of light around. They come with a warranty for replacement parts if anything happens.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

#2. The SolarGlow Solar Garden Lights – Best Modern Looking Lights

SolarGlow Solar Garden Lights review

Overall Rating: 4.3 out of 5 stars

The SolarGlow Solar garden lights are the perfect pathway lights coming in with a bright 15-lumens of light. They’re a modern style light made with stainless steel – meaning they’re weather and water resistant and attractive, too – and they’re easy to install.

The SolarGlow lights provide a clear, bright light for added safety along a walking path. They stake into the ground for easy installation as well and come in a six-pack.

The lights have an automatic on/off system, so you don’t have to worry about making sure they come on if you forget to turn on the porch light before a long day of work.

These lights from SolarGlow comes with a 100% lifetime replacement guarantee, so if you ever have any issues with them, you’re covered.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

Best Solar Powered Flagpole Light

One part of the yard that sometimes gets overlooked is the flagpole. But rules and regulations regarding this symbol of patriotism tell us that we must keep our flags lit if they are flying all night.

Not everyone needs a flagpole light, but for anyone who has mobility issues or time constraints, you’ll want to consider this great choice of flagpole lights.

#1. The Alpha 180X Solar Flagpole Light for Flag Pole Lighting

ALPHA 180X Solar Flagpole Light review

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The Alpha 180X is my top choice for solar lights for flagpoles because of a couple key factors from my requirements list.

The first of this list is that the light has three different light settings which allow you to have low, medium, or bright light shining on your flagpole. For anyone who lives in an urban area, has the pole near a window, or otherwise has need to control the light brightness, this is a phenomenal feature.

That does mean, however, that this light does not have an auto on/off switch. I actually like this for flagpole lights, however, as this means you don’t always need to have the pole lit up.

The battery is a built-in rechargeable lithium battery that gives off 6 to 12 hours of light from the 3-watt solar panel. It takes about 10 to 12 hours of daylight to charge, which is long enough in most places, at least during the spring, summer, and autumn months.

The light works for flags up to 25-feet and can be mounted on the post for either an upward or downward angle of light. That makes this a much more versatile light as well than a standard flagpole spotlight. I like using this for undersides of umbrellas as well when playing cards on the deck with friends and family.

The light fixture itself is made of cast iron, and the mounting brackets are extremely durable. Win-win-win on this light.

>> Tap Here to Read More Reviews and See Today’s Price on Amazon.com <<

Friends eating and drinking at dinner party on a patio in evening with outdoor solar lights

The Right Solar Lights for Your Garden, Yard, and Deck

There you have it. The list of the best lanterns, lamps, driveway, security, string, and otherwise decorative outdoor solar lights on the market.

They’re easy to find on Amazon, low-cost, easy-to-install, and all highly rated by real-life users and reviewers alike.

If you’re not totally sold on one of the options in the categories, you can check out the other lists I’ve created for flagpole lights, outdoor lanterns, walkway lights, and more.

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