Outdoor Solar String Light Ideas
Having light outside is important from both a decorative standpoint and a safety one, but lighting your yard the same way you light the inside of your home isn’t always practical and efficient. While indoors lighting cords can hide along baseboards, behind large pieces of furniture, and even sometimes in walls, this is a bit more difficult to accomplish this outdoors. Extension cords can be used, but they often look sloppy, and using more electricity can drive up your utility bill. Using solar lights outdoors offers a great solution because it uses the power of the day time outdoors (the sun) to fuel and light up the night. While there are various ways to use solar lights outdoors, one of the most common is string lights. Many think of string lights as Christmas lights, but outdoor solar string light ideas can go much further than that, and can be used all year round.
Outdoor Solar String Light Ideas
To make the best use of outdoor solar lights, it’s important to have some understanding of how solar lights work. These lights have three components;
1) Solar Panels
3) LED Bulbs.
The solar panels catch the energy of the sun during the day and store it in the batteries, which normally last up to 10 hours per charge on string lights. Most solar lights use LED bulbs in order to enhance their energy efficiency, because these long lasting bulbs rarely need to be replaced. In some cases solar light bases have the battery built in and make them even easier to use. Once the string lights are charged, they can be used in a number of ways.
Decorating the Back Yard for Entertaining
Especially in places with a lot of sun, such as Mesa, Arizona, you need to find a balance between enjoying the warmth and sunlight, and cooling off in the shade. Many people incorporate various awnings and overhangs into their yard decor in order to help achieve that balance. During the day, plenty of light is coming in through pergola ceilings and other shading structures in order to enjoy great outdoor relaxation activities such as grilling, gardening, reading, swimming, or visiting with friends and family. With solar string lights the fun doesn’t have to end when the sun goes down,
Creating a Garden Wall
Even within a single outdoor space, it’d good to have some source of privacy, and there’s nothing like a wall to accomplish this. But it is outside, and it can be fun to make use of the vertical space by setting up shelves where small potted plants can sit, creating a wall garden. It’s a great place for either flowers or herbs that can be added to your outdoor cooking – or even help you relax. Some soft solar lights can help you see your way around the garden, show off its beauty and help you relax.
Subtle Lighting Around Posts and Garden Fences
If you are just looking for a little bit of extra light to be added, you may find it sufficient to use a few string lights draped around your deck posts and on fences around your garden. They also do nicely to light up outdoor benches and porch swings without getting in the way of the light coming from the moon and the stars.
All Out Party Lighting
While some like outdoor lighting to create an ambiance, others are ready to entertain the whole neighborhood. Solar lights can be strung all over pergola ceilings on the deck. Some like to create their own lanterns and wrap lighting strings around them for decorative and bright conversation pieces.
Staying Safe With Solar Lights
While lighting in the back yard is often all about fun and relaxation, lighting in the front yard is about staying safe as well. One of the most common uses of solar lights is along walkways, driveways, and near the house’s entryway, especially near house numbers. Some stake lights have their solar panels built in, but even without them lights can be strung through bushes and trees or around other stakes placed along the sidewalk path leading to the door. Similar lights can be placed on carports to make parking easier if you get home after dark. Many like to keep some near the house numbers to make them easy to see in case of an emergency — or even to help with a late night pizza delivery.
More Efficiency With Motion Lights
Solar lights aren’t completely foolproof. Even in Arizona there might be a string of cloudy days, or a solar panel might be placed in a less than ideal place. This can make the battery not last quite as long, and in some cases in might not last till morning. Using motion detectors on solar lights can help you get the most out of your lights, while still staying safe. In order to be turned on, outside movement needs to activate the sensors. Since the lights aren’t on constantly, they are more likely to last till morning.