Solar string lights have four essential parts: a photovoltaic solar panel, a rechargeable battery, LED lights, and a string or cord. Given these attributes, they are considered environmentally-friendly, safe, and cost-efficient. Add to this, solar string lights can resist dust, rain, snow, or other solid and liquid particles that may burn the LED inside. For this reason, they can be used indoors and outdoors. To further examine the degree of its security, an Ingress Protection (IP) rating is given to them. IP refers to the level of protection offered by electronic devices against outside particles. The letters are followed by two numbers, with the first one referring to the protection against solid objects and the second one referring to the water protection. Commonly, solar string lights are rated IP65. This rating means that the solar string lights are protected against water jets (from any angle) but they are not designed to be submerged in water. If you want lights that can handle deepwater applications, look for something that comes with IP68 rating.
According to Scott of Scott Maas Media, some of the other factors that you need to consider when looking for solar string lights include the light temperature (warm or bright), lighting modes, length of the cord, and the distance between the sockets. Likewise, he recommended that when installing the string lights into a smaller space, it is best to find the product with a span interval of light sockets around 2 feet to effectively brighten up the area. As such, Brightech Ambience Pro is the best choice to have since the distance between its bulbs is 20 inches (1.67 feet). Above all, what’s amazing about this solar string light is that the bulbs are very durable. They can last up to 2 years and the soft white glow brings back the nostalgic ambiance effect.
On the contrary, if you want to have a wonderful and colorful night, the Joomer multicolor solar string light is the most compatible option. It consists of blue, green, yellow, and red LED lights that can glow in different 8 lighting modes, with patterns and combinations of flashes, fades, and blinks.
Aside from the models mentioned above, we also listed other items that may satisfy your needs and preferences. From the endless list of options on the market, we prioritize the best and quality items. Reviewing their design, number of bulbs, charging and performance capacity, and light qualities, here are the top 5 picks that will definitely give you the best comfort and beauty every night.
1. Brightech Ambience Pro Solar String Lights
Number of LED/bulbs
For the best nostalgic outdoor light effect, Brightech’s Ambience Pro solar string light is the best choice. It has a 3000 K color that perfectly suits the mood of the night. Although it has a single mode of light, the 12 vintage Edison-style bulbs are just 20 inches apart so the lights are close enough to light up an area effectively.
The bulbs are durable and long-lasting. It can last up to 20,000 hours of operation. They can withstand any weather conditions and wind speeds up to 50 MPH, thanks to the brand’s WeatherTite technology. Apart from this, the silicon bulb shells are shatterproof and can protect the LED lights from heat resistance for up to 122 degrees Fahrenheit.
Another best thing about this solar string light is the bulbs that can be changed individually. Simply look for S14 bulbs and you can replace any other bulbs in the connection. These bulbs are also attached to a black rubberized 27-foot cord that doesn’t tangle easily.
Furthermore, its solar panel is capable of getting sufficient sunlight by being clipped on the roof. Unlike the common solar panel of string lights, Ambience Pro can position and stand straight to the ground using its spike to absorb sunlight. Just after charging for 6 hours, the entire string can light up the night for 5 to 6 hours. There is also no need to manually turn it on and off as it has a built-in photocell that senses light and darkness.
2. Joomer Multicolor Solar String Lights
Number of LED/bulbs
The fun never stops with the classy monotone color of these solar string lights. Designed as a multi-colored (blue, green, yellow, and red) string of lights, it boasts a total length of 72 feet. The entire length of line has 200 LED bulbs with 3.9 inches distance in between, which distribute the illumination evenly in the area where it would be attached. The LEDs are also equipped with 8 lighting modes: patterns and combinations of flashes, fades, and blinks.
3. Brightown Solar Fairy String Lights
Number of LED/bulbs
Brightown manufactured this solar string light with a 3.2 by 3.2 inches Monocrystalline Silicon Solar Panel. The company was supported by studies that this solar panel has a higher conversion efficiency (13-19%) than the commonly used polycrystalline silicon with 9-14% conversion efficiency. With this, it means it produces more energy and higher wattage than the polycrystalline silicon, resulting in brighter bulbs as compared to other options.
Another feature of this product is the built-in 800 mAh rechargeable battery that makes it highly efficient and reliable support to the solar panel. Pairing this with the solar panel, they can light your area for 8 to 10 hours upon full charge. Add to this, the bulbs of this string light have a steady 360-degree lighting angle that can illuminate every direction.
To make the experience even better, the company assembled their fairy lights with 8 impressive lighting modes: waves, combination, fading, fireflies, chasing, twinkle, fading slowly, and steady on. You can choose among these modes by pressing its switch at the back of the solar panel. The product is also rated IP65 so it is fully protected from external particles.
This solar string light is also versatile, given the fact that you can use it both indoors and outdoors. You can also perfectly achieve every shape of your liking since the 33 ft. copper wire cord can be twisted, curled, or straightened easily. Whether you want to attach it to a tree, across the garden or patio, or even inside a box, the two packs of 100 LED 2700 K warm white color stands out. With its overall characteristics, this solar string light is the true bright star of every occasion.
4. Blingstar Remote Controlled Solar String Lights
Number of LED/bulbs
Blingstar solar string lights are one of the best among its competitors for three reasons: smart control, wall mount system, and flexible angle of tilting the solar panel board.
Let us start to dig in. First among the best features of these string lights is the infrared (IR) remote control. It has the command over the lights’ power, mode, brightness adjustment, and timer.
Furthermore, this string light is also rated IP65 just like the common type, and still has a power switch and mode button at the back of the panel for an alternative control. It has 200 LED lights that are 4 inches apart from each other which is just enough to create a proper distribution of light.
There are 8 modes, 4 brightness levels (25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%), and 4 timer options (3 hours, 5 hours, 8 hours, timer off) to choose from. This gives you the freedom to customize the activity of the lights in the best possible way. However, it is important to note that the remote is only functional within a 5-meter distance.
Another astonishing feature of this string light is its mounting mechanism. Mounting it is so easy and it comes with a lot of essential hardware you need. This includes a 5.8-inch spike, 2.5-inch fixing knob, and 2 screws for the stake of the panel. It is an added security to the panel’s stability in its place. Add to this, the 3.8-inch by 5.5-inch solar panel that comes with the package can be tilted up to a 120-degree angle.
5. SKYFIRE Two-way charging Solar String Light
Number of LED/bulbs
Experience the unique look and feel of solar lights with this waterdrop bulb design of Skyfire. It is weather-resistant and IP65 waterproof; thereby enabling the lights to be used outdoors.
What we love about this creation from Skyfire is the two-way charging mechanism. We are aware that insufficient absorption of sunlight will affect the brightness and duration of the string light. As such, for power source alternatives during winter and rainy season, you can charge it via the included USB cable. To do this, connect the male and female sockets to each other. Then, just screw in the cap to secure the waterproof protection of the connection. For sunlight charging, it will take 5 to 8 hours to fully charge while it will take 2 to 5 hours for USB charging.
Best Solar String Lights - Buyer's Guide
Most solar string lights have their mode and power switch at the back of the panel. However, there are certain brands just like the Blingstar that accompanied their solar string lights with an IR remote control. It is of course loved by most buyers. However, know that there is a limitation with the range that it could accommodate. Prior to purchase, it is important to know if you prefer to have the traditional control or the advanced one.
Light-emitting Diode (LED) lights that are recommended to use among string lights. They are energy-efficient, durable, safe, and have a longer life span. All of the reviewed items above use LED lights.
Brightech is a sure winner to consider if we are just talking about light capabilities and brightness. It can last up to 20,000 hours of operation and can withstand any weather conditions and wind speeds up to 50 MPH. The silicon shell of this bulb is also shatterproof and can protect the LED lights from heat resistance for up to 122 degrees Fahrenheit.
Furthermore, string lights also differ in their light temperature. For white light, they can be warm or bright ranging from 2700 K to 6500 K. On the other hand, there are also multi-color such as the Joomer multicolor solar string lights. Find the one that suits your preferences.
The distance between bulbs is one of the factors that will determine the string light's brightness and coverage . According to Scott of Scott Maas Media, if you are installing the string lights into a smaller space, you may consider a two-foot span interval in between the light sockets. Through this, black and dark spaces are limited, resulting in better illumination of the area.
Whether you’re a fan of warm or bright lights, single or colorful lights, solar string lights can give you your preference. If you intend to use your solar string light for a colorful party, then the multi-color type is suited for the activity. The Joomer solar string light has blue, green, yellow, and red lights that simultaneously light up upon the absence of light. Meanwhile, if you just want to have a nostalgic, bistro aura, the Brightech Ambience Pro is our recommendation.
Solar panels are designed to be charged under direct sunlight to ensure the maximum absorption of light. Each panel of the solar string light is commonly assembled with a pointed spike, connecting bars, and a tilting solar panel. This is to let you put the solar panel in its best spot. While this is the usual way of charging, there are other solar panels that may be clipped on the roof or may also be charged via a USB port. Also, look for a model that can give other means to charge the lights just like the SKYFIRE Two-way charging Solar String Light.
Best Solar String Lights - FAQs
Every string light has its own Solar Photovoltaic (Solar PV) technology. They are connected via cord and its cap. This serves as the junction between the energized cell to lose electrons that are set into motion by an electric field. Thereby, it creates an electric current. When the photoresistor detects the absence of light, the battery of the solar panel turns on the LED light.
Yes, they are. There are numerous reasons why solar string lights are convenient to use. Apart from being eco-friendly, solar string lights enable you to save electricity and appreciate the power of sunlight. They are also easy and simple to install.
Yes, you can. The internal sensors of the solar panel can detect when to charge their batteries and when to activate and deactivate the LED lights. In all cases, it is better to let the power of the panel ‘ON’. However, if you wish to totally shut off the whole system, you can turn off the switch in the board and it will preserve its battery life.
Maintenance is always the key to keeping your electronic devices in good shape. For solar string lights, it is recommended to clean the solar panels once specs of dirt accumulate on its surface. Furthermore, checking the bulbs and cord is also essential to avoid any damages to the whole system.