Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning we get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through our links, at no cost to you. Please read our disclosure for more info.
Solar panels save American families over $1,335 every year on electricity alone.
That’s a big number. So, obviously, solar powered landscape lights must also be the better choice, right?
Well, not always.
Choosing the best landscape lights comes down to the personal needs of you and your property. To have a reliable company by your side can also be an excellent way to reduce your power bills. For instance, if you look online for the best electric company, you will find many great providers offering great rates. It won’t be hard to choose if you carefully read at their customers’ reviews and past experiences.
Keep reading below to learn the pros and cons of electric vs solar powered landscape lighting.
In This Post:
- Pros of Solar Powered Landscape Lights
- Cons of Solar Powered Landscape Lights
- Pros of Electric Landscape Lights
- Cons of Electric Landscape Lights
- Electric vs Solar Powered Landscape Lights: What’s the Better Choice?
Pros of Solar Powered Landscape Lights
Solar powered lights are a good option for many homes because it’s a low cost, environmentally friendly option.
Here’s a closer look at some of the other benefits that come with solar powered landscape lights.
Lower Energy Bill
Solar powered lights aren’t hooked up to your electricity. That means you don’t have to spend a cent to light up your yard.
As long as your property gets enough direct sunlight, the sun will do all the work for you.
Solar powered lights don’t suck up extra energy, but that’s not the only way they do their part for the environment.
These lights also don’t contain any mercury, which is a toxic element. When too much mercury gets introduced in an environment, it can be dangerous to both your family and nature.
Most electric lightbulbs last about 10 years. Solar powered lights, on the other hand, can last a lot longer. Many solar powered lights have a lifespan of at least 20,000 hours.
And you don’t have to worry about the bulb suddenly dying or “blowing out.” Solar powered lights simply dim over time. You can tell when they’re going out and replace them before you lose the lighting entirely.
You Can Install Them Yourself
Because there’s no electrical work involved, you can install solar powered lights on your own.
Most of the time, all you have to do is stick the steak connected to the light into the ground.
Cons of Solar Powered Landscape Lights
Despite all the benefits of solar powered landscape lights, they do come with some distinct drawbacks as well.
Some of them include the following things.
Solar powered lights aren’t as bright as electrical lights. If you want to entertain guests on your back porch into the evening hours, outdoor solar lights might not provide enough illumination.
You can find brighter solar lights. But these lights need more power to get that bright. Because of this, they’ll only stay on a few hours at night before running out of energy.
In order to power your solar lights, your property must get enough direct sunlight. If your home is surrounded by tall trees or other obstacles, the lights might not be able to absorb the amount of sun they need.
This also means solar lights aren’t always the best option for covered decks porches.
If solar panels get too dirty, they’ll have trouble absorbing the sunlight. You might have to spend time cleaning them off every once in a while to keep them in good condition.
Higher Upfront Cost
Some solar powered lights, especially high-quality lights, can have a steep upfront cost. While the solar lights will pay themselves off over time, you have to be prepared to spend a chunk of money at first.
The actual light from solar powered lights doesn’t look like the light that comes from electric lights. Instead, it has a blue tint.
Pros of Electric Landscape Lights
While electric lights might not save you as much money as solar powered lights, they do provide several benefits solar lights don’t.
Here’s a closer look at some of those benefits below.
Brighter, More Natural Lighting
Electric lights are brighter than solar lights. They can light up your yard as much as you want, which can make pathways and stairs less hazardous.
They also look more natural.
Unlike solar lights, the light that comes from electric lights doesn’t have a blue tint. Electric lights are often the better option for outdoor entertaining.
Higher Resale Value
Installing an electric light system in your yard can also improve the resale value of your home. If you’re planning to sell your house in the future, it might be a good idea to invest in electric landscape lights.
Lower Upfront Cost
Depending on what type of lights you choose, electric lights can have a lower upfront cost. If you don’t have a lot of money set aside for your landscape lighting, they might be a more affordable option.
Work Rain or Shine
You don’t have to worry about whether your property gets enough sun with electric lights. And if the day is overcast, you’ll still have the same quality of light at night.
Cons of Electric Landscape Lights
Like solar powered landscape lights, electric lights also come with their own set of disadvantages.
Here are a few reasons electric lights might not be the best choice for your yard.
Because of the wiring and electrical work, you can’t install these lights on your own unless you know what you’re doing. This might cost you some extra money, and it takes away the freedom of setting them up in your spare time.
Higher Energy Bill
Electric lights do suck up power from your home. Because of this, you can expect higher energy bills each month when you choose electric landscape lighting.
You Have to Remember to Turn Them Off
If you forget to turn off your lights before you go to bed, they’ll keep pushing that energy bill up.
This isn’t always a problem if you hook them up to a timer. But you will have to remember to change the timer during Daylight Savings.
Electric vs Solar Powered Landscape Lights: What’s the Better Choice?
There’s no right or wrong answer to this question. The right landscape lights for your property depend on your personal needs.
Do you entertain in your yard after dark? You might want electrical lights. Do you just want something to light up your garden at night? Solar powered landscaping lights might be the right choice.
Still designing your outdoor living space?
Make sure you take a look at this guide to get some inspiration!