Whether you’re looking for security lighting for your home or business, the safety of your family, visitors, and customers is important to you.
Often, many areas that are in the most of security lights are difficult to access with electricity. If electricity is readily available, the monthly utility bills can become staggering.
An ideal solution: solar spotlights and solar floodlights. With low maintenance costs, solar lights for security make sense and provide you with significant saving on your electric bills.
Today’s solar security lights are reliable, don’t need electricians and mean minimal, if any, landscape disruptions during installation. With a wide range of options for both spotlights and floodlights available today that are certain to meet almost anyone’s needs.
Some of the various options for solar spotlights and floodlights include:
- Floodlights or spotlights that stay on continuously after dark
- Security lights that are motion-activated and light-up when a Passive Infrared Sensor (PIR) detects movement
- For lights that are motion-detected, most have settings that let you determine how long the light will remain on. So, you can select between a few seconds and a couple of minutes; some often even longer on-times.
- Most floodlights have LUX settings that let you determine when the level of darkness (such as dusk to full darkness) at which they will turn on each night.
- While we recommend LED bulbs,solar security lights with halogen bulbs also are widely available.
- Wide range of light strengths to meet individual requirements of various residential, business, commercial, industrial and recreational applications.
The majority of today’s spotlights and floodlights have cords between the solar panel and the solar lighting fixture. This lets you easily place spotlights or floodlights in shaded areas and place the light itself exactly where you need illumination: porches, carports, or even outdoor structures such as sheds or garages.
Differences between Spotlights and Floodlights
Solar floodlights are stronger, light larger areas and can detect motion within greater distances and greater ranges than spotlights.
Solar spotlights are great for doorways, entrances and other areas where a lower level of light is appropriate.
Flood lights generally detect motion within a 180 degree range and at distances of 35 feet or more, while spot lights usually detect motion within a 100 degree range at distances of 25 feet or less.
As noted above, both are available in fixed “on” and motion-activated unit. Motion activated lights can usually be adjusted to stay on between 10 or 30 seconds to several minutes. Some models provide continuous light and stay on for hours or more each night with a full solar charge and will work on stored power for shorter times after periods of clouds or rain.
And, most floodlights and security lights have manual On/Off switches for your convenience or can be allowed to turn on at dusk and stay on as long as there is power stored in the battery.
Newer designs even have smart batteries that know how much power is stored and dim the lights to extend the time that the lights are available.
What Type of Light is Right for Your Needs?
For most residential applications a solar security floodlight with a halogen bulb should have strength of 30 to 50 watts or higher; LED floodlights should have between 50 to 80 LEDs per fixture. Depending on your neighborhood and the layout of your property, you may wish to use significantly higher commercial solar floodlights, discussed below.
Solar spotlights should have 14 to 28 super bright LEDs to light a more limited area, such as a small entrance way. Remember that a remote parking area or large backyard needs stronger light than a doorway to your home.
If you plan to use the fixture as a shed light, you should not use a halogen bulb because of their high heat levels which make them unsafe for small structures, particularly those housing flammable or combustible materials. LEDs, in contrasts, are cool to the touch, CFLs are also safe alternatives.
Commercial/Industrial Strength Solar Floodlights
If you are lighting signage or a remote area such as a building, warehouse, loading dock, parking area, remote walkway, marina, dock areas, etc. (or anywhere that neighbors won’t complain about extremely bright lights), there are “smart” solar floodlights that have between 100 to 156 LEDs.
These are comparable in strength to 150 or 200 Watt incandescent bulbs, but without the cost or need to change light bulbs frequently as LEDs can last up to five years when used every night. (The average lifespan of LED bulbs is between 50,000 to 80,000 with some LED manufacturers projecting up to 100,000 hours of life.)
These solar floodlights not only stay on continuously dusk to dawn, they provides bright and reliable lighting for areas 30-feet wide by 30-feet deep, 30-feet by 50-feet deep, and greater. Applications for which these are ideal include: sign illumination, parking lots, driveways, recreational areas, marinas, docks, warehouses or remote locations.
These solar floodlights fixture turn on automatically at dusk and stays on for up to 10 to 12 hours on a full charge of approximately six hours of sun. It is true that the duration of light will vary on your geographic location, the season of the year and the temperature. For example, an area in southern Florida or Arizona, for example, will of course have stronger light throughout the night than a location in say Wisconsin or Vermont.
That’s why the “smart technology” of these lights is such a great feature. Many newer floodlights have batteries “smart” enough to know how much power is stored, and dim the light slightly after midnight so that there the light lasts until dawn, even in northern climate during the winter.
The battery is protected by an auto-detection circuit in the system to control the brightness of the lamp, allowing the lamp to operate longer as the battery charge declines. This smart auto-detection feature conserves the battery’s solar power and extends the light each night.
So, if you’re looking to get away from high utility bills while maintaining safety or want to reliable light in remote areas that are expensive or difficult to access with electric, think solar security lights. You’ll save dollars and all-in-all, it just makes sense.