Gone are the days of incandescent bulbs which are known for their excessive power consumption. Some places still use fluorescent tubes and sodium vapor lamps, and mercury vapor lamps are required for extremely high-intensity light.
However, generally speaking, compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) and light emitting diodes (LEDs) have become very popular with home security lights due to their long life and extremely low power consumption.
The level of heat generated by CFL and LED bulbs is also lower than their predecessors, so these two types of bulbs have become very popular. With the introduction of these low-power, high-intensity lights, it has become possible to make solar-powered lighting more of a viable option, which saves on energy bills in the long run.If you decide to use solar-powered LEDs or CFL bulbs, you may still be in a quandary as to how bright your bulbs should be, especially if you are going to use them outdoors.
Recommened Lumens For Solar Lights
Below is a list of different solar lights and each of their recommended lumens. It’s good to know how many lumens you need to get the job done. We have also linked our lighting guides to each types of lights. Click on the images to go to the guides.
Solar Flood Lights
Solar Motion Sensor Lights
Solar Shed Lights
Solar Lamp Posts
Solar Landscape Lights
Solar Path Lights
Factors that Affect Outdoors Lighting
Outdoors lighting needs to be dealt with in a different way from indoors lighting. There are a few factors that affect the way light behaves and dictate the approach you need to take.
If the area is painted in dark shades of black or has dark colored walls, the light tends to get absorbed and you have to use higher-intensity bulbs.
Presence of Objects
If there are likely to be many objects in the area to be lit, then you know that you need to use more bulbs as the objects will cast shadows.
The closer you install a light to the wall, the more light will be wasted. Similarly, if the lighting is installed too close to the ground, light wastage can occur.
The three components of light pollution are light glare, light trespass, and sky glow. These are all undesirable elements produced by a light source. Light glare is the harsh brightness that is sometimes generated. Light trespass is the extra light that illuminates a neighboring property, and sky glow is the amount light that escapes to the night sky. These need to be controlled, as there are laws that prevent excess light pollution.
You need to know where and how you want to direct the light. At entry points, it needs to be bright and focused but on a pathway, for example, it can be moderate and uniformly-spaced.If you take into consideration these factors, you will be able to select appropriate lighting. Here are a few useful tips on lighting for specific purposes:
Outdoor Path Lighting
Track lighting is usually considered decorative, but for people using a walkway, it is desirable for the road to be well-lit. Solar LED lighting is a common choice, but it is recommended that 100 lumens per bulb should be used.
Landscape lighting is a combination of aesthetics and utility. In a private property, appropriate lighting can reduce the potential of crime and keep the property safe at night. Depending on the factors mentioned above, a landscape light can range from 50 to 300 lumens per bulb. 50 lumens per bulb is usually the intensity of light that is required for a garden.
The Advantages of Solar-Powered Outdoor Lighting
Whether it is a walkway, a parking lot, garden or outdoors restaurant, solar-powered outdoor lighting is a good option to consider. The main advantage is that the need for wiring is eliminated. They are also maintenance-free – once they are installed with a light-sensitive switching system, they will switch themselves on and off every evening and morning.If you use LEDs for your solar-powered outdoor lighting, then you will be able to get maximum durability as well. Once installed, solar lighting will incur zero energy bills, so although the installation cost is relatively higher than regular lighting, it is more cost-effective in the long run.
As we have seen here, there are several factors you need to consider while selecting the intensity and type of lighting that you need for outdoors solar-powered lighting.
The main factors are the intensity of the light required (measured in lumens) and the spacing between each light, depending on the length and breadth of the area that needs to be illuminated.Using the table provided in this article, you can now quickly estimate how bright the outdoors lights should be.
It is also imperative to take into consideration the factors that affect the way light behaves outdoors.
With all this in mind, you should not have much of a problem in setting up an efficient solar-powered lighting system, which will keep the area well-lit in the most economical manner.
Related Article: Best Solar Flashlight