Solar gutter lights have been growing in popularity over the past decade. Not only do they look great, but they will help transform your gutter without having to worry about it getting damaged by harsh weather conditions. It seems that all solar gutter lights readily available on the market are waterproof, so you don’t have to worry about leaving them outside in the rain, wind, or snow.
With growing concern about global warming, more and more homeowners want to purchase products that don’t consume electricity. Gutter solar lights consume energy from the sun, making them an environmentally friendly product. Because they don’t need any gas or electricity to function, homeowners can save a lot of cash on utility bills.
- Cost Effective
- They add to Securing your Home
- What should you look out for when Purchasing Solar Gutter Lights?
- How do solar gutter lights work?
- How many types of solar lights are out there?
- What features to check out when buying?
- Maintaining the solar gutter lights—the tips to follow
- Frequently Asked Questions
Although some solar gutter lights might cost a little bit extra in comparison to other gutter lights, you’ll probably find yourself saving money in the long run. Most solar devices are easy to install, so you’ll save money on not having to hire an electrician to connect the wires. You might need a few tools like a drill to connect it to the wall or the gutter, but that’s about it. You won’t have to interfere with dangerous wires and cables to connect it to the mains of your home. All you have to do is make sure that it is installed in direct sunlight. Some devices only need a short amount of time in the sun, while others need longer. You should be able to find out how long it will take to charge by reading the product’s description, but it might be worth your while experimenting with it before you install it into your home.
Most gutter lights require very little maintenance, so you don’t have to worry about getting the device fixed nor changing bulbs on a regular basis. Because they run off solar energy, they won’t cost you a penny extra on your utility bill.
They add to Securing your Home
A lot of folks invest in solar gutter lighting to improve their home’s security. There are plenty available that have an LED motion sensor built-in, so when it sees movement it will automatically turn on. This is a great way of deterring intruders from entering your property. A lot of criminals are afraid of getting caught, so they tend to avoid homes that are well lit up, especially homes that have sensor lights installed. You can install gutter lights all around your yard including:
- Outdoor garden
As long as it is located where it is exposed to sunlight so it can charge. Lots of homeowners like to install these devices near a CCTV camera. Even if the cameras are infrared, a solar light that produces a bright light can help get a better image of the intruder, making it easier to catch the culprit.
You can change the setting on some solar lights that have sensors. Some will stay bright for around 45 seconds after it has detected movement, but you can change the length of some devices if you would like it to stay brighter for a longer period.
Before installing a gutter light for security purposes, keep in mind that the light will only travel so far. Read the description on the product’s small print to see how far it will travel, especially if you are connecting close to a CCTV camera.
What should you look out for when Purchasing Solar Gutter Lights?
Don’t assume all gutter solar lights do the same thing. Different makes and models provide different features and functions, so before you spend your hard earned money on brand new gutter light, here are a few things you should consider:
- What tools do you need to install the device: Each device should come with an easy-to-use installation manual. Although the product should come with a manual, manufacturers often publish the installation instructions on their official website too. It might be worth your while checking out their website first.
- Do the manufacturers offer a warranty and a guarantee on the product?
- What kind of problems have previous customers had with the product? If there are a lot of disgruntled customers out there, you should easily be able to find negative reviews posted on the web. A lot of folks like to complain about certain products by posting information online, so it might prove beneficial to search the web for details about the product you’re thinking about buying. These posts will also give you a good indication of whether the device is good value for money.
- Is a wall mount included: Most gutter lights come with a wall mount, but if it doesn’t you might have to purchase one separately. Finding a wall mount that fits the device can prove challenging.
There are lots of solar gutter lights out there, so take your time researching the different devices available.
How do solar gutter lights work?
You don’t need a connection to an electrical outlet with solar gutter lights. These lights run on the power that solar panels on the roof give to the unit. Most solar gutter lights come with 2-Volt, 0.5W Polycrystalline solar panels that capture sunlight and turn up to 20% of the sun’s rays into energy.
The solar panels will power a rechargeable battery that has various capacities, according to the model. The more LEDs in the light, the higher the rating of the battery will be.
Most solar gutter lights come with automatic operation. They have built-in sensors which can detect sunlight. As a result, the sensor will automatically turn off the lights and turn on when sunlight is no longer present.
The working hours of solar gutter lights depend on the amount of sunlight exposure. Therefore, the longer the panels are exposed to sunlight, the brighter and more prolonged the working hours will be. Most models provide with 8 to 10-hour service life at night.
You don’t need to hire professionals to install solar gutter lights. Ease of installation, versatility, and effortless maintenance is why so many homeowners choose these lights outside their homes.
How many types of solar lights are out there?
If you want to buy gutter lights, you should gather some basic information. The variety of models can overwhelm you if it’s the first time you purchase these lights. One point to begin with is to decide which of the three main types of solar lights is suitable for your household. Details come next.
Solar sky gutter lights
These make for the essential kind of solar gutter lights. As the name implies, these lights work with the sky, both sun and clouds. They can identify the available light and lighten up/dim/bright accordingly. The panels can effortlessly detect the voltage drop on the solar energy, which leads to lightning levels/fluctuations at night.
Photovoltaic Gutter Lights
Also known as stand-alone/grid-free lights, photovoltaic gutter lights are environmentally friendly and economical. They present the ability to generate their power as they turn the sunlight into electricity and store it in the battery. As a result, the lights will illuminate at night. We recommend installing these lights in places with no grid or for situations when the grid doesn’t lighten. Photovoltaic gutter lights will use the stored energy to lighten.
Hybrid Solar Lights
Hybrid solar lights combine concentrated solar power and photovoltaic. These lights are mostly used for commercial and industrial properties and not so much for residential spaces.
What features to check out when buying?
As we’ve already mentioned, solar gutter lights come in many models which can be confusing for the less experienced consumer. We recommend you take time when selecting solar gutter lights. The features to check out before buying come next.
The light output from the LEDs gives the lumen count. Commonly, most solar gutter lights will have around a 100-lumen count from the LEDs. The lumen cast enough light over an average-sized yard without causing discomfort or feeling of floodlight.
Solar panel capacity
Your solar panel capacity relates to the amount of light it can collect and turn into energy stored by the battery. Commonly, solar gutter lights have advanced solar panels that convert up to 20% sunlight to energy.
The quality of the LEDs in the solar gutter lights affects the performance and lifespan. Poor quality LEDs don’t last for a long time and decrease the light capacity and the lumen count of the light. Should the gutter lights have a blown LED, you will notice a distorted effect in the lighting area with another solar gutter light. Moreover, one light will seem brighter than the other.
High-quality LEDs will help the solar gutter lights last for more than a decade and up to 15 years. Even if you pay the extra buck for the high-quality LEDs, they are worth every single penny in the long run.
Charging efficiency and battery life
We recommend you pick solar gutter lights that need 6 to 8 hours to charge completely. If they need longer than that, the battery won’t have time to be fully set before the sunset. Look for Lithium-Ion batteries as they represent the best option for your lights. Such batteries can store an impressive charge and last longer than the regular Ni-MH batteries in other models.
Even if you get Li-Io batteries for your solar gutter lights, you still need to replace them after some time. Most Li-Io batteries last for a year or so. Keep in mind that such batteries are pricier to replace than Ni-MH batteries. At the same time, they last for a longer time and need replacement less often than the traditional batteries.
Most solar gutter lights come with automatic operation. The solar panel has a sensor that identifies fading light conditions as the evening comes. Therefore, the unit turns on automatically when it no longer detects light and turns off in the morning when the sun’s rays shine.
ABS plastic housing is the most appropriate material for solar gutter lights. It presents fade resistance against the sun’s UV rays and the tough casing withstands extreme inclement weather, such as hail storms.
Most homeowners want solar gutter lights that have a subtle design that doesn’t alter the appearance of their home. You can find many models with a slimline design. Select the right housing color that matches the home’s exterior décor. We recommend you check out lights with white color—they will work as security devices and keep possible intruders at a distance.
Most solar gutter lights are relatively effortless to install. When buying, you should see that the lights come with all the hardware you need to install them around your home. Look for models with galvanized or stainless steel fittings as they are resistant to corrosion.
Make sure you set a budget before you go shopping and stay within that budget as well. If you don’t go shopping on a set budget, you could get overwhelmed and spend more than expected. You can find good-quality solar gutter lights for prices between $20 and $60 per set. The number of lights included in the set and the quality of the lights affect the final price.
The risk of buying defective and not durable products isn’t null—the market is made that way. To avoid buying a lemon, we recommend you select products that have a reasonable warranty period. It secures your money and ensures the high quality of the solar gutter lights. During the warranty period, the manufacturer cannot charge you for repairs or replacement. 1 to 2 years of warranty is common within high-quality products from reliable manufacturers.
Maintaining the solar gutter lights—the tips to follow
Solar gutter lights are highly functional, and you need to take care of them regularly for proper performance. Here are some tips:
- Set up the solar lights where is enough sunlight
- Install the solar gutter lights away from fire sources
- Clean the panels from time to time
- Leave the switch ON when using the solar light
- Remove the batteries when you don’t want to use the solar lights for some time
- Don’t install the solar lights near other light sources such as street lights. Because of these lights, the solar gutter lights will not turn on at night
- Clean and maintain the solar gutter lights for efficient operation.
Frequently Asked Questions
How bright is solar gutter light?
The brightness of lights, whether they’re solar or not, is measured in lumens. The higher the lumen, the brighter the light. Most of the time, the brightness of solar gutter lights ranges between 100 and 400 lumens.
How quickly do solar gutter lights charge?
Modern solar panels present high-efficiency ratings, which means that they charge the battery really quickly. A full charge will take six to eight hours for most models.
Do solar gutter lights charge in overcast conditions?
Modern 2-volt, 0.5 W polycrystalline solar panels, come with a high-efficiency rating. Among other things, this means that the solar gutter lights can charge even on overcast days. Next-generation solar panels can turn up to 20% of the sun’s rays into electricity to power your lights.
How long do solar gutter lights last?
Typically, the batteries in outdoor solar lights will last for 3-4 years before needing replacement. However, the LEDs will last for more than a decade.
Why do solar lights stop working?
Your solar gutter lights may stop working when the plastic covering of the solar panel becomes cloudy. The plastic covering allows the panel to get solar light, so it has to be clear for the proper operation of the panel. Take care of the plastic covering to receive as much sunlight as possible to charge the panel.