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Shining a Light on the Advantages of Solar Outdoor Lighting

SEPCO 6/19/23 6:30 AM
Shining a Light on the Advantages of Solar Outdoor Lighting

In recent years, there has been a significant shift towards environmentally friendly and sustainable solutions in various industries. One area that has seen a surge in popularity is solar outdoor lighting.

 

Solar lighting has become increasingly popular in residential and commercial settings and for good reason. Not only does it provide a cost-effective solution for outdoor lighting, but it also boasts a range of benefits that make it a worthwhile investment.

 

In this article, we will explore the advantages of using solar outdoor lighting, from its energy efficiency and low maintenance to its eco-friendliness and ease of installation. Join us as we shine a light on solar and discover why it's a smart choice for your outdoor lighting needs.

 

Benefits of Using Solar Outdoor Lighting

Solar outdoor lighting is a smart choice for anyone who wants to save money on their electricity bills and reduce their carbon footprint. Here are some of the benefits of using solar outdoor lighting:

 

Energy Efficiency

Solar outdoor lighting is powered by the sun, which means it doesn't require electricity from the grid to function. This makes it an incredibly energy-efficient option, as it harnesses the power of the sun to provide lighting at night. The solar panels on the lighting fixtures absorb sunlight during the day and convert it into electricity, which is stored in rechargeable batteries. This energy is then used to power the lights at night, making it a sustainable and eco-friendly solution.

 

Low Maintenance

Solar outdoor lighting requires very little maintenance, which is another advantage over traditional lighting. Since it doesn't require a power source, there are no wires to install or maintain. Additionally, the LED bulbs used in solar outdoor lighting have a longer lifespan than traditional bulbs, which means they don't need to be replaced as often. This reduces the need for maintenance and replacement costs, making it a cost-effective option in the long run.

 

Eco-Friendliness

Solar outdoor lighting is a sustainable and environmentally friendly option for outdoor lighting needs. It reduces the need for electricity from the grid, which reduces carbon emissions and helps to combat climate change. Additionally, the rechargeable batteries used in solar outdoor lighting can be recycled, which further reduces the environmental impact.

 

Comparison Between Solar and Traditional Lighting

When considering outdoor lighting options, it's important to compare solar lighting with traditional lighting options. Here are some of the differences between the two:

 

Cost

The initial cost of solar outdoor lighting is higher than traditional lighting, as it requires solar panels and rechargeable batteries. However, over time, the cost savings of solar outdoor lighting become apparent, as there are no electricity bills to pay and the maintenance costs are lower.

 

Installation

Solar outdoor lighting is easier to install than traditional lighting, as it doesn't require wiring or electrical connections to the main power grid. This makes it a great option for people who want to install lighting themselves without the need for a professional electrician. You should always consult your local building department to check for permit requirements.

 

Functionality

Solar outdoor lighting is designed to function at night, and it relies on the sun to charge its batteries during the day. Advancements in solar technology have led to brighter and more efficient solar outdoor lighting options. As LED technology, as well as solar and battery technologies, continue to improve, so will the solar lighting industry as a whole.

 

How Solar Outdoor Lighting Works

Solar outdoor lighting works by harnessing the power of the sun to charge its batteries during the day, and then using that stored energy to power the lights at night. Here's how it works:

  1. Solar panels on the lighting fixture absorb sunlight during the day
  2. The solar panels convert the sunlight into electricity, which is stored in rechargeable batteries
  3. At night, the batteries power the LED lights, providing illumination without the need for electricity from the grid

 

See how simple – the next day the process starts all over.

 

The remaining power in the batteries is for autonomy. In systems from big box retailers, you will typically find a day or two at most for backup. However, in a commercial solar outdoor light system you should never have less than three to five days backup, depending on the battery technology used.

Types of Solar Outdoor Lighting

There are several types of solar outdoor lighting options available, including:

 

Solar Street Lights

Solar street lights are designed to illuminate large areas such as streets, roadways, even highways. These lights are specifically designed to ensure small 2 lane residential or rural streets have proper illumination, to illuminate large highways to ensure travelers have good visibility.

 

Solar Parking Lot Lights

Solar parking lot lights are very similar in design and build as to their street light counterparts but are designed in a way that allows for more light spread. This is by using different distributions and lighting requirements and provide safety and security to people moving about to and from their vehicles.

 

Solar Sign Lights

Solar sign lights use smaller flood lights or LED modules to illuminate a sign. These systems are typically much smaller than larger overhead lights, but use the same setup and technology. There are various options with signs, and a combination of setups can be use for a single sign installation.

 

Solar Pathway Lights

Solar pathway lights are perfect for small walkways, driveways, or large paths through a park or business facility. These use lower-level lights than streets and parking lots, but don’t short change you on visibility and reliability.

 

All these different types of solar outdoor lighting systems have their specific usage. They are easy to install and come in a range of styles and designs.

 

Factors to Consider When Choosing Solar Outdoor Lighting

When choosing solar outdoor lighting, there are several factors to consider, including:

 

Location

Consider where the lights will be installed and how much sunlight the area receives. For optimum performance, solar outdoor lighting needs to receive direct sunlight for at least 6 hours per day. The solar must also face directly south and have no large obstructions to the east, south. or west either.

 

Brightness

Consider the brightness level of the lights and whether they will provide enough illumination for the intended purpose. Some applications located in low ambient light areas will require much less light than areas located in high ambient light areas.

 

Operation Requirement

Some lights need to be on all night. Others do not. Depending on the application, make sure you have the correct operation requirement selected. If your lights can shut off after a set period of time, say 6-8 hours, than this will reduce the solar and battery requirements, making the system smaller and much more affordable.

 

Battery Capacity

Consider the battery capacity of the lights, as this will determine how long they will last at night. Look for lights with a high battery capacity to ensure they stay illuminated throughout the night. Reliability is key to lowering maintenance and having a better ROI.

 

Installation and Maintenance of Solar Outdoor Lighting

Solar outdoor lighting is easy to install and requires very little maintenance. Here are some tips for installation and maintenance:

 

Installation

  1. Choose a location that receives direct sunlight for at least 6 hours per day
  2. Install the lights according to the manufacturer's instructions
  3. Allow the batteries to fully charge before turning on the lights

Maintenance

  1. Replace the rechargeable batteries once every 5-10 years, depending on the system design
  2. Clean the solar panels, inspect all connections, and check for system operation

 

Cost Comparison of Solar vs Traditional Outdoor Lighting

While the initial cost of solar outdoor lighting is higher than traditional lighting, over time, the cost savings become apparent. Here's a breakdown of the costs associated with each type of lighting:

 

Solar Outdoor Lighting

- Higher initial cost

- No electricity bills

- Lower maintenance costs

- Longer lifespan

Traditional Outdoor Lighting

- Lower initial cost

- Electricity bills

- Higher maintenance costs

- Shorter lifespan

 

Real-Life Examples of Successful Solar Outdoor Lighting Installations

Solar outdoor lighting has been successfully installed in a range of settings, from residential properties to commercial buildings. Here are some examples:

 

Residential Properties

- Solar pathway lights lining a driveway

- Solar flood lights illuminating a large garden

- Solar spotlights highlighting trees and architectural features

Commercial Buildings

- Solar pathway lights providing illumination for a public park

- Overhead solar lights lighting up a large parking lot or roadways

- Solar spotlights highlighting a company logo on a building facade

 

Conclusion and Future of Solar Outdoor Lighting

Solar outdoor lighting is a cost-effective, energy-efficient, and eco-friendly option for outdoor lighting needs. It requires very little maintenance and is easy to install, making it a great choice for anyone who wants to reduce their carbon footprint and save money on their electricity bills.

 

As technology continues to advance, we can expect to see even more efficient and powerful solar outdoor lighting options in the future. So why not make the switch to solar and start enjoying the benefits of sustainable outdoor lighting today?