Solar vs Wired Landscape Lighting And Which Is Best For Your Yard

Learn The Differences So You Can Make The Best Choice For Your Home In Colorado Springs
Solar landscape light

The main difference between solar vs wired landscape lighting is power. Solar’s free and from the sun while wired is from your home’s energy.

Find out more below-

We Can Harness The Sun!

“What are you talking about, Josh?” asks Melissa.

Josh walks into the living room, eyes bright with excitement. “We can go grab a bunch of solar-powered lights and use them for our landscape! It’s essentially free lighting,” he says.

Melissa narrows her eyes. “Hmm, I don’t know about all that. I mean, yes, solar power is free so it wouldn’t increase our bills, but is it the best landscape lighting? We at least want the best landscape light brands.” Josh shrugs his shoulders. “I don’t know the differences between solar vs wired landscape lighting. How about we look it up on…” he trails off.

Melissa’s fingers are already dancing on her phone, typing the search into Google. Here’s what the couple ends up learning:

Solar vs Wired Landscape Lighting

Lights along a pathway

The differences between these landscape lights are money, ease of installation, maintenance, and style. Solar lights are cheaper, easy to install, and are easier to maintain. Wired lights are brighter, more reliable, and have more control options.

Pros And Cons Of Solar Landscape Lights

These lights are great for quickness, cost efficiency, and DIYers.

This is how solar lights work:

  1. Sunlight reaches the light fixture
  2. The solar panels absorb the energy
  3. Energy is transferred and stored in a battery
  4. The sun lowers as does the amount of energy the solar panel can collect
  5. The battery kicks in when the energy levels fall to a certain degree
  6. Your lights turn on

You won’t have to worry about your solar lights randomly coming on during the day and wasting bulb life. If your fixtures use LED bulbs they can last for years!

Closeup of a bunch of solar landscape lights

Setting up solar lights is usually pretty easy. They come with pointed ends you stick into the ground and *boom* you’re done.

But, solar lights do have their weaknesses.

They need extremely sunny areas or they won’t shine as brightly. They work best with little to no shade throughout the entire day. You’ll need to make sure the solar panels are clean. Dirt and dust can block their ability to absorb energy.

The coloring can be a bit off too. Solar power outdoor lights tend to give off a bluish color instead of bright white. Most homeowners don’t consider it to be a bad thing though. The ones who do usually choose the next option for their landscape lights.

Pros And Cons Of Wired Landscape Lights

These landscape lights need a professional, but it comes with a professional look and style.

Wired landscape lights lighting up a home and water feature

You have all the control when it comes to wired landscape lights. Turn them on and off whenever, change the color, set up a timer schedule, or use photocells so they turn on when the sun goes down.

The lights will stay the same brightness until they go out. They’ll also work on cloudy days and during bad weather.

But, their biggest strength is also their biggest weakness- the wire. The wires can be disturbed, cut, bitten, and otherwise damaged. In this case, you’ll have to rewire or pay for rewiring. You’ll want to know how to troubleshoot landscape lights.

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“Why not do a mixture?” suggests Melissa. “Yeah, the solar ones are cool but the wired ones might be the better choice. Here, let’s see what else we can learn from this blog. Might find something that helps us decide.”