Outdoor lighting often serves multiple purposes; it can light your way in the dark, be an excellent feature in your outdoor social spaces, and – perhaps most importantly – also provides additional security.
Motion sensor lights are a proven deterrent to prospective intruders. They create an initially startling effect that reduces confidence, and when they are used along with an alarm and/or CCTV system they are very effective.
The only problem is there are so many to choose from! So, read on for our advice as to how to choose the best solar powered motion sensor lights for your needs.
What You Need to Consider Before Buy Best Outdoor LED Motion Sensor Lights?
Before you go about reading reviews and listing the outdoor lights that fit within your budget, you need to consider the following points:
- What are the lights for?
- What power source are you going to use?
- Are they to go on a wall, or alongside a pathway?
- How bright do they need to be?
- What is your budget?
Those questions are the six main factors that you need to work within the first instance, so let’s start with the first one.
What Do You Need Outdoor Motion Sensor Lights For?
You’ve decided on motion sensor lights, but what do you need them for? As we touched on above, many people install this type of lighting for security reasons.
If this is the case, you need to consider the area that you need to cover – making sure you have all the most likely points of entry taken into account – and the number and positioning of lights.
These will most likely be wall-mounted lights.
If for lighting a path or driver, you have a choice of either wall-mounted lights or those that can be installed on poles alongside the area you need to light.
If for decoration – for example, a patio lighting or pool lighting effect, or just for in the garden when you are outdoors – you also need to consider the location and how you will get power to them, which brings us onto the next point.
Choosing a Power Source
There are three main types of outdoor lights when it comes to how they are powered.
Some are mains powered, you plug them into your home electrical system as you would most appliances or they can be hard-wired into the system in some cases – and some are battery powered.
The third option is often the preferred method as they require no maintenance and cost nothing to run, these are solar powered motion sensor lights.
Each has its advantages and disadvantages:
The mains powered light will always be on – as long as the power is on at source – at the flick of a switch. However, it is limited by the length of the power cord and the location of your power outlet.
This type of outdoor light is perfectly suited to fitting above the front or rear door for security reasons, or as a patio light close to the house.
A battery powered light has the advantage of portability – you can put it where you want, and simply switch on for when it is needed.
However, as with all battery devices, they will need replacing or recharging regularly. These are best for occasional outdoor use such as garden lighting and decking or patios, and certainly not for security use.
Solar powered outdoor lights also have the advantage of portability, and as they are charged by the light from the sun will not need batteries changing.
However, they do need a certain amount of sunlight to charge them during the day – which is not always available – and do have limited illumination time before they need charging again.
This type of light is best for lining a path or as a garden illumination effect, and again perhaps not for security use.
Where to Fit Your Lights
So, now you know what your light is for and which type is best suited to the purpose, you need to consider where you are going to fit your lights and how.
There are many different types of outdoor motion sensor light, so there will be something that suits you.
For lights that need to go on a wall, choose those that come with full fittings and instructions as they will be engineered for the job.
You will need a modicum of DIY ability but it will be a simple case of a drill and screwdriver. Here’s a Youtube video that will help with the installation.
If you are lining a path with a series of lights, look for the type that comes in packs of a few and are fitted on spikes that simply drive into the ground. These take no time to fit and are generally of the solar-powered type.
For the garden, patio or decking lights – or any others for occasional use – the choice is yours as there are many wall-mounted, free-standing and even decking mounted lights – sunk into the wood or under the sides of the deck – that provide excellent effects, and all at sensible prices.
What About The Brightness?
The beauty of motion sensor lights is that they are not on all the time, so they will only light when they are needed. This will please your neighbors, and so will a sensible choice of brightness!
For security lights you need to be as bright as possible in order to give the potential intruder reason to leave and to get a good camera view, but for those that line a path or drive – or provide light for the evening in the garden – you only need enough light to get by, and enough to not upset those who might be affected by your outdoor lights.
Stick to Your Budget
The market for outdoor motion sensor lights is a competitive one, so expect plenty of choices when you come to choose the right set for you. Read all the reviews and check the manufacturer descriptions, and make a shortlist using our points to consider above.
Outdoor lights – whether for security or enjoyment – are a sensible adornment for your home, so get looking now and you’ll soon find something within your budget.