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Alternative Energy (Solar/Wind)/Solar powered motion detecting security lights


Hello: Are solar powered security lights up to the task of providing adequate illumination of protected areas? I have heard they are rather anemic compared with conventional lighting.I wanted a security light I could mount over my garage doors that face the back lane.Thanks!

Hello Michael,
"Providing adequate lighting" is all up to the end users perspective.   If you want a light to turn on automatically when someone crosses the detection field and you don't want to pay for the electricity, don't want to run wires out to the area or you want it to work even if there is a power outage, then yes, solar powered is the way to go.

If you want the area to blaze like daylight and you have no problem paying for the electricity for the high powered security light, then no, solar won't work for you.

Remember, if you use solar, you are essentially using a battery to light up the area as apposed to the utility grid which can supply an unlimited amount of power whenever it is needed (and available).

One more thing to consider before mounting your solar powered security lights.  I had a client who used them in a field to light up an area where he was getting robbed but had no power in the area.  The thieves discovered the security the first time they returned.  Spotting the solar panels, they used a long object (probably a stick) and smashed them up.  Then return on another day once the batteries were dead and robbed him again.  We discovered the broken panels once the second robbery occurred and investigated why the lights didn't work.  So make sure the panel is in the sun most the day and out of attack range when installing.  The same should go for the battery housing and the light itself.

One last thing to consider, the bigger the battery the more power delivered and the longer the unit will work.

Good luck,

Alternative Energy (Solar/Wind)

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Marshall Scott


I am knowledgeable about residential solar pool heating, moderately knowledgeable about residential solar electric systems, and can resource answers in solar hot water and battery back up PV systems, but personally have little experience. I review questions when I get a chance During the PEAK SOLAR SEASON (May - September) , my replies will be delayed as I am usually working 60+ hours a week.


Solar pool heating and solar electric systems

BA in Psychology which has nothing to do with solar. Various trainings and presentations on solar and 8 years experience.

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