Looking for the best solar path lights? Nothing creates a beautifully lit pathway and solves the problem of low-visibility better than elegant and easy-to-install LED lights. All you have to do is stick them in the ground, and they do the rest.
Being solar-powered, they charge themselves during the day and come on at dusk, making them the the best solar walkway light.
The Best Solar Pathway Lights: 8 Picks
How Do the Best Solar Walkway Lights Work?
These devices work the same as battery-powered models. You place one in side of the piece to provide the energy source. Many use traditional types like one-time use alkaline or rechargeable ones with nickel–metal hydride, nickel–cadmium, or lithium-ion.
Most have some kind of sensor that detects changes in the ambient light as a trigger to turn on and illuminate the surrounding area. You’ll see products that are directly wired and bypass the recharging.
The best outdoor solar path lights put convenience first by eliminating the need to swap out spent batteries.
Sunlight provides the energy rather than DC or AC power. It brings recharging to the table to make them an ideal option that is hands-off—literally. It took over 100 years to find its way to the mainstream marketplace, but the results are nothing short of amazing.
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Features of the Best Solar Pathway Lights
If you’ve read any solar walkway lights reviews, you know that prices are across the board with numerous options for finish, style, and luminescence.
The first two are aesthetic considerations that belong more in the dealbreaker category if you’re choosing between a few choices.
Let’s focus on what matters. These features include:
- Type of light bulb
- Color temperature
- Other considerations
We’ll discuss each one in detail.
Type of Light Bulb
The best solar path light has evolved from incandescent to halogen to fluorescent which coincided with the power source and changing technology.
Today’s products strike a balance with expenditure, longevity, and practicality. All of these things put LEDs on the map.
They optimize energy use with a minimal amount of heat dissipation. That last factor is crucial since it means that most of power goes to illumination instead of dispersing into the immediate area with no return.
In other words, you get the biggest bang for the buck.
Lumens are one of several specs you’ll find on the label of the top rated solar path lights. It’s a more useful figure than wattage because it tells you what you can expect for brightness which is what you need to know with LED lights.
The higher the number, the greater the illumination. However, it’s not always a clear cut matter of more is better.
You also have to consider the placement of the lights. Bright ones are an excellent choice if they’re not too close to your home. Remember that most will stay on during the night hours—when you’re asleep.
A reasonable range for the best LED solar pathway lights is about 20 lumens. Typically, these products come in multi-pack of eight or more. And if you have a long walkway, you’re probably going to buy an extra set or two.
The combined total will give you a soft glow that gets the job done without being intrusive or glaring.
All of these factors relate back to the ultimate purpose of path lights. Their function is to illuminate the places where you need to walk and add to the aesthetics of your yard. A security or floodlight is a different type of use.
Color temperature became an essential feature when the federal government made the move from incandescent to CFLs and LEDs bulbs.
Initially, the latter came in only cool or blue light temperatures which created a light that replicates sunlight but disrupts normal circadian rhythms and thus, sleep.
It was the proverbial double-edged sword. The stark lights proved an inappropriate choice for indoor lighting, especially in homes and other relaxed settings.
On the positive side, they provided an excellent light source where a bright source was a benefit such as offices and retail stores.
However, the same objections reared their ugly head with outdoor lighting. Warm lights offer a preferable option that adds to the hominess of your yard.
You can make a wise choice by checking out the temperature in Kelvin of the solar pathway lights reviews. The warm side of the spectrum is under 3000 degrees K. It’s an excellent option for lights you’ll use for outdoor lighting around your patio or deck.
If safety is your primary concern, you’ll do better with products on the daylight end with temps approaching 5000 degrees K. The light is brighter and more noticeable to get the job done.
Design of the Best Solar Lights for Pathways
There are a lot of subjective aspects that come into the question of the construction of the best rated solar path lights. However, there are other things to look for that can affect the product’s performance and your overall satisfaction.
Examine the light to find out the location and number of solar panels. Given its likely placement, you’ll see that most have them on the top. It’s an essential trait to note.
It means that you’ll get the best use if you place them in open areas where they can receive the most direct sunlight to recharge the batteries.
Some more expensive models can capture sunlight from all around the top. It ensures a reliable recharge in a variety of conditions.
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You get what you pay for, as the old adage goes. The same thing applies to the best solar path light. Consider both the materials of the light enclosure and the fixture.
You’ll find products with tempered glass or plexiglass. There are ones with textures or patterns which can add to the interest factor and make them more of a feature for your yard. Clean is preferable to opaque if brightness is a vital consideration.
Other ones have stainless steel or other metals as the main component. Stronger materials are vital for placing them, especially if your yard has denser clay soils.
Other Considerations for Solar LED Walkway Lights
Other elements will also affect your satisfaction of your purchase with some in your control and others, not so much.
Where you put your light is imperative no matter what the brightest solar path lights reviews say otherwise. It’s the main source of customer complaints.
The fact remains that these products must get several hours of direct sunlight every day if you expect them to work.
It’s not the fault of the seller or manufacturer. It’s the nature of the beast. Many merchants try to avoid issues by stating this info clearly in the product description. Follow their recommendations to the letter. It’s the single best way to get the most out of your purchase.
Bear in mind that winter temperatures will affect the battery life of your solar path lights. It’s more of an issue if you live in a northern clime. After all, it’s a struggle during this time of year just to get enough sunlight exposure to meet your body’s need for vitamin D let alone do anything else.
Guarantees and Warranties
We prefer products that come with some kind of guarantee and preferably, a warranty. The existence of these terms speaks volumes about the manufacturer’s confidence in their wares.
To use, it’s a no-brainer.
Most retailers will give you a 30-day money back guarantee for defects of workmanship. It should work out-of the-box. Period.
Many sellers put no-questions-asked or satisfaction-guarantee title on these offerings which we like to see. We prefer items that have extended time lengths so that we can properly evaluate its performance.
Warranties are the creme of the crop. It’s an attractive selling point. However, make sure to read the terms. And don’t forget to hold onto your original receipt. Pay attention to the fine print and whether you need to make a claim with the seller or manufacturer.
Beware of sellers that attach a lot of conditions and extra fees with returns. You’re setting yourself up for frustration with a merchant that puts so many hurdles to recouping your cost for defective products.
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Getting the Most Out of Your Purchase
With all of these factors in mind, you need to keep some other things in mind to get the most out of your purchase.
Check the radius along with the lumens and temperature of the individual lights to help guide your placement of the individual pieces. You’ll see this figure typically expressed as a radius. That means you’ll need to space them this distance apart for a continuous path of light.
We’d equate this task for things like spacing plants or buying curtains. You’ll need more than you think. And believe us. It’s not overkill. It’s the best way to use them.
And if in doubt, follow the advice of carpenters everywhere and measure twice, cut once.
Don’t hesitate to move individual ones to find the best place for each one. Your goal is to optimize light on the path and sunlight exposure.
Keep Spares on Hand
If it’s your first time using the best solar path light, do yourself a favor and keep extra batteries on hand to gauge how the charging will work with your setup.
It’s far better to be prepared than to be stuck in the dark, especially if it’s a safety issue.
10 Crucial Tips: Best Solar Path Lights
There are several other things you can do to make the information of the solar path lights reviews work for you.
First, ensure lights get three days of direct sunlight to charge batteries completely before use. You’ll likely find that they are on the edge when it comes to power when you first receive them. Give them a chance.
Second, don’t make this newbie mistake. Take the protective plastic screen off of the solar panel before use and charging. Its purpose is to protect the fixture during shipping. Once it has arrived, it has served its function.
Third, only apply the least amount of force on the base as necessary to insert into the ground. The light fixture can break, especially if is made of lesser quality materials. Soften the soil with water if needed.
Fourth, not all products have the same level of customer service. Double check before purchasing if you are satisfied with the return and warranty policies. This extra step before laying out the cash can save you a lot of hassle in the long run.
Fifth, clean solar panels and adjust placement as needed if they appear to be losing brightness over time. Give them the best chance to provide you with the best light.
Sixth, if you live where the winter gets snow, consider storing lights away from the cold to ensure they continue to last multiple summers. You’ll get the longest lifespan with your purchase and the biggest return on your investment.
Seventh, remember that If the lights are receiving different amounts of direct sunlight, they will not all illuminate at the same brightness. You’ll likely have a limited amount of control over this factor. Keep it on the radar if you notice inconsistencies of performance.
Eighth, some lights will allow quick access to the batteries. Replacing batteries can prolong the longevity of the lights.
Ninth, understand that the sun will change its angle throughout the change of the seasons which in turn, affects, the light output and brightness. The performance will likely vary during the year.
Tenth and finally, take a second to understand lumens and their range to match your lighting needs.
What Makes the Brightest Solar Path Light?
We all have different lighting needs and different uses for our prospective solar path lights. That’s why our team kept that in mind when weighing the above options against each other in search of the best solar path light.
If brightness is your first and foremost priority, then we recommend either the Moonrays or the Solar Glow, generating 30 and 15 lumens respectively, outdoing by far the alternatives. That also ups the safety factor if that’s essential.
These two options, particularly the Moonrays, are sure to light the way and illuminate the path for yourself or your guests with the best brightness to make them worth a look.
The Enchanted Spaces option, meanwhile, can compete when it comes to illuminating a path with its 4-square-foot radius, surpassing much of the competition and thereby earning an honorable mention in the category of brightness.
Best Solar Path Lights: Moonrays LED Metal Path Light
The best solar path lighting can be found with Moonrays LED Metal Path Light. These solar powered path lights are bright and durable. These lights are perfect for brightening your paths around your home.
Quality in the best solar-powered path lights is hard to come by. How often have you been mowing your grass just to run over the light, the flimsy plastic pole snapping in two?! That is simply infuriating and can be avoided by a sturdy, durable lighting option.
There’s an easy fix for all of this; a series of best solar pathway lights that actually illuminate something, and why not look good at the same time!
We’ve put together below a list of best solar path lights that each has a claim to the title of “best.” Some offer value for money, some are exceptionally bright (some of the brightest solar path lights), and some just look good. We go over their strengths and weaknesses in search of the best solar path light.
Solar Path Light Reviews
Solar Path Light
With a bronze body and glass lens, the durability and sturdiness of this light immediately jump out. Moonrays’ option offer illumination that is “25 times brighter than standard path lights, ” with 30 lumens produced by these ultra-bright LEDs
The height of these lights at 18.5 inches is taller than any of our other picks, improving stability and visibility, both of which make it our best solar path light as well as offering the brightest solar path light of the options we’ve compiled.
These are by far the brightest lights on this list and surpass the vast majority of solar-powered LED products in general, at 30 lumens.
These lights represent the best option for those looking for optimal illumination from their path lights with a height of 18.5 inches and an illumination radius of up to 4 feet, both also surpassing the competition.
The downfalls to these lights are the shortness of the illumination time, limited warranty, and flimsiness of some internal parts. All of them are potential deal breakers in our book.
All in all, with a metal and glass exterior, the brightest bulbs available, and optimum illumination radius, these are perfect for those of you who have a habit of stumbling and tripping searching for the path late at night. It’ll provide reliable light when you need it most.
“These lights are great if you’re looking for a very bright’ path light
‘They have a good light but the post attachment to the fixture…break in no time.”
As the #1 best seller in the ‘Outdoor In-Ground Lights’ category on Amazon, this option was a natural choice for our consideration.
Though weather resistant, the ABS plastic construction is a definite concern in terms of durability.
Solar Glow’s bright path lights were always going to hold their own against the rest of the competition with a classic design and available in multiple colors. These lights will certainly perform, offering the “longest lasting life of any LED lights on the market” and a bright, 15 lumens illumination..
Though we initially considered this product solely due to its high ratings and status as a top-selling item, it quickly became apparent that it represented value and quality worth considering. It has the second-brightest bulbs among our options, as well as offering the ‘longest-lasting’ LEDs on the market at 15 lumens.
These lights all in all represent value and quality for what they do offer, although the plastic construction and apparent electrical problems are certainly worth considering.
‘…the overall construction is better than others we’ve had. They are just a little thicker and sturdier. They are also brighter than lights we’ve had before’
‘They did look nice but didn’t work properly. Didn’t stay lit very long and had a wire problem…If you don’t mind using that lifetime guarantee a lot then go for it’
Solar Path Path
This product is a particularly attractive set of path lights, both in aesthetics and price. With a pack of 12 being in a similar price category to our first options, it is by far the cheapest of our first few options and among the most affordable we considered overall.
EcoCity’s lights are durable and made out of stainless steel, yielding a notable weather resistance with its sleek, attractive design. With eight hours of illumination time, these lights compete with any other on the list.
In all, these lights would seem to be a best option for someone looking for both practicality and value.
These lights, though not the tallest, brightest, or longest-lasting, provide a unique aesthetic effect with the combination of stainless steel, modern design and warm LED lighting. What these lights don’t offer for effective lighting, they make up for in price and ambience.
It is worth noting, though, that we found these lights to be best for a purely aesthetic, decorative effect, with any desires for effective nighttime lighting of your pathways for all but certain to be disappointed by this product.
‘I’m using the lights mainly for the aesthetic effect. The lights are fairly bright, though, that they light up the walkway completely…these lights…are bright enough to be seen from far down the street.’
‘Look nice but do not put out enough light…some of them don’t even work at all.’
There is a 100 percent satisfaction and replacement guarantee with this product, which certainly accounts for the price slightly.
Furthermore, the bronze body is topped with a durable plastic lens, which creates a lightweight yet long-lasting lighting option
With a height of 16 inches, it is among our taller options.
A particularly unique and notable quality of these lights which we thought was a nice touch on top of an otherwise average solar path light is the design of the lens which creates a beautiful effect and adds to the overall aesthetic impact of these lights.
With a relatively high rating on Amazon and a unique effect built into the plastic lens, the innovative illumination style is noteworthy. With a 4-square-foot lighting area, which is partially attributable to it being one of our taller options, the limitations of a softer LED are minimized to a degree.
With a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee and replacement policy, these sturdy, attractive path lights are certainly worth considering for a combination of aesthetic and effective lighting within a sturdy, tall product.
‘Great product. I was pleasantly surprised at the excellent quality for the price. I would highly recommend this item if you are in the market for outdoor lighting.’
‘Great customer service’
‘The lights were very dim from the start, but they were pretty, so I decided to keep them…Now, they don’t even light up anymore…this is pretty disappointing considering I’ve had them outside less than 2 months.’
Somewhat less expensive than our previous option, these lights are “concise and elegant” and made of “high-quality brushed nickel stainless steel.”
This design aids in water and weather resistance and, with an added simple plastic lens, these lights are perfect for those seeking reliable illumination, rather than just aesthetics.
This efficiency, however, is unfortunately not realized in the lighting time itself, with an eight-hour lasting time average among the group we’ve compiled. It is once again an attractive choice if you have primarily aesthetic concerns and are looking for a modern, stainless steel design.
The width of this metal body contributes to its sturdiness, with the potential weakness coming with the plastic lens. Further, unlike some primarily aesthetic options, this taller-than-average light offers 5 lumen LEDs, which is a reasonable brightness for these products while still creating a fairly soft, intimate setting.
Ultimately, these lights represent a balance between effective, sturdy lighting and attractive, modern decorative accents, making it suitable for an array of situations.
‘I love this solar pathway light set. The set up was so easy and it made my garden look amazing. Best of all…the pole…[is] large and not cheaply made’
‘These just don’t have the power/brightness – these are a sad, low (yellowish) light with very short running time’
With a 12-pack priced similarly to many six-packs or less, this lighting option first and foremost is among the better deals on our list.
With a durable, weatherproof stainless steel construction incorporated into a modern design Oak Leaf’s intentions with this light are clear.
At 14-inches tall and with average LED bulbs, however, this option is not the greatest for the utilitarians among us. Aesthetically, we liked these lights, and they certainly have their benefits with a fairly typical lasting charge and low price. But they will not be the brightest or most evident lights in the world.
The quality and durability of this light are a huge plus and reason to consider this option. But with a 30-day money-back guarantee, it is a weak option for a return if the effectiveness of these lights let you down a bit.
These stainless steel, modern-designed solar path lights offer a familiar, attractive appearance with a warm white light. The LEDs in this option is not the brightest, so the common conundrum of practicality versus aesthetics has once again popped up, unfortunately.
However, at 12 for the price of six of most of its competitors and offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, this Oak Leaf solar path light might just be worth a try as long as an ultra-bright light is not your priority.
‘-For the price, I’m happy with the product but they do also have their flaws…[including] inconsistent build quality’
‘Nice but very low light even on the darkest nights. I had hoped something a little brighter and with these you really cannot see the walkway…’
Solar Path Light
Costing about twice what the Oak Leaf option did for 12, these lights certainly asked us to find out why it is better.
Indeed, with durable and high-quality construction including stainless steel and a glass lens, these lights are among the more resilient and weather-resistant of our options. With a 12-inch lighting radius, the 12 are adequate to do the job.
At 2.4 lumens, you could ask for a little more. But, with lasting eight hours on a charge, these lights are surprisingly average in their efficiency and effectiveness. Quality and durability are undoubtedly advantages in this case. These are likely to survive the war zone that is a yard longer than other cheaper options.
The unique copper appearance of this stainless-steel body combined with a glass lens and an above-average 15-inch height makes this a particularly appealing choice for a classic, attractive path light option.
We found two major downsides to these lights> However, the price is almost twice the price of some of our other options, making it among the more-costly options.
It wouldn’t be that noteworthy of a problem if not for the second issue, being the below-average, 2.4 lumens, brightness of this light’s LED, producing only a 12-inch illumination radius.
‘Love these lights…They provide enough light to illuminate a pathway in my yard and the light is a soft white…and stay lit for an amazing amount of time (9-10 hours).’
‘These work as expected. They really do need direct sunlight for at least 6 hours to light up at night.’
‘Looks nice but hardly throw any light.’
This is another of our more expensive options, so we really hoped that it would prove worthy of the price.
It did not.
These lights offer 4 lumens. They aren’t the brightest but certainly above average in this category.
At a height of 13 inches, however, they don’t benefit by the design, yielding a light that is efficient, but not effective.
The construction, on the other hand, offers a quality and durability which certainly tops some of its competition, which is a worthy concern with these products.
LampLust’s option is a bit of a mixed bag of both good and bad.
While the stainless steel, waterproof construction is both “beautiful and heavy duty,” the price surpasses our other choices. And for that extra cost, the 4 lumens on offer are not the best value.
With a charge time of up to eight hours, these equal many of their competitors, while the 13” height is noticeably shorter than several of our other choices.
These are attractive, somewhat effective lights, but perhaps not quite worth the price for a light whose competition is at least as good as it.
‘These lights are beautiful and heavy duty but…they have a huge white label that covers most of the post and is impossible to get off without destroying the finish.’
‘I am very impressed by the quality of these lights’
‘As beautiful as these are, they don’t charge in cold weather, or without a LOT of sun on them throughout the day.’
Ultimately, our choice came down to price. And for the money, the Moonray is our all-round best option for a solar path light.
Its unique design offers stability and security, while its bright LEDs and understated style provide both illumination and attractive aesthetic quality.
Though the Enchanted Spaces and the SolarGlow were very close in the running due primarily to their superior performance in certain categories, we think that for value and quality there is very little topping these stable, elegant, and effective Moonrays solar path lights.
Overall, solar path lights offer an affordable way to illuminate dark areas in your yard for safety and improved aesthetics. Our lineup of products give you some excellent choices for making the most of your space and the benefits that the best solar light can provide.
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