The 10 Best Mounted Solar Lights of 2022, According to Testing

The Maxsa Dual Head Solar Powered Wall Mounting Light outshines the rest.

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Best Mounted Solar Lights of 2022

Better Homes and Garden / Jennifer May

A well-lit property is not just about creating curb appeal after sunset. It’s about keeping your entryway, yard, and patio safe and secure, too. Mounted solar lights are an excellent way to illuminate your property for all of these reasons. These easy-to-install lights harness the power of solar energy during the day so they can stay lit from dusk until dawn without running up your electric bill.

“When it comes to outdoor lighting, a big factor is being able to keep the home visible at night while not leaving lights on all night, since that can be a waste of energy,” says Tara Dennis, co-founder and director of Archie Bolden, a design studio. “The best light type is a motion sensor light. It only activates when movement is detected and is a great solution when thinking about conserving energy.”

To find the best mounted solar lights, we put 18 different styles to the test right at home. Over the course of two weeks, 14 testers used the lights and evaluated them based on six pre-determined categories: set up, features, design, brightness, durability, and value.

The Maxsa Dual Head Solar Powered Wall Mounting Light tops our best mounted solar lights list because of its compact design that will easily fit in with the exterior of your home. Both the light heads and the motion sensor are adjustable, so you can provide your property with the illumination and security you desire.

Here are the best mounted solar lights.

Best Overall

Maxsa Motion-Activated Dual Head Solar Security Light

4.9
Maxsa Motion-Activated Dual Head Solar Security Light

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: The light heads and motion sensor are adjustable.

Keep in Mind: It’s not a decorative design, unlike some other options.

The simple, compact design of this Maxsa Dual Head solar light packs quite the punch when it comes to illuminating your property for safety and security. It features a pair of light heads that, while small, hold LED bulbs that are very bright. These light heads are also adjustable, so you can ensure that you’re illuminating your property exactly where you need it.

Overall, one felt that the price point was appropriate, especially in regards to the accurate yet adjustable motion sensor. The tester lives on a busy street with cars often passing by that activated the light, yet they were able to adjust the sensor so that it wasn’t so sensitive.

All the hardware is included to install the light, however you’ll want to keep a power drill handy for faster installation. Once in place, you can feel confident these lights are secure—even after a big storm, these lights were still in place and functioning.

The Maxsa Dual Head solar light comes in either black or white, so you can choose the color that will work best with the aesthetic of your home’s exterior. The lights have a sleek, minimal design that will look good on a variety of home exteriors. Just keep in mind if you're looking for a solar light with a fancier design, this might not be the right one for you.

Price at time of publish: $36

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights Included: 2
  • Dimensions (of single light): ‎8.6 x 8.6 x 6.2 inches 
  • Water Protection Rating: IP44
  • Lighting Color: Not listed 
  • Battery Type: Nickel-metal hydride
  • Battery Life: 2-3 years
Maxsa Dual Head Solar Powered Wall Mounting Light

Better Homes & Gardens / Patricia Huffstead

Best Budget

Better Homes & Gardens Beckon Outdoor Sconce Solar Lamp

4.8
Better Homes & Gardens Satin Solar Lamp

Walmart

Why You Should Get It: It’s easy to assemble and install.

Keep in Mind: Depending on what type of wall you want to install the lights on you may need to purchase additional hardware.

This Better Homes & Gardens design is one of the best mounted solar lights if you’re looking for an effective design that’s easy to install. Our tester found that the light turned on as soon as it started to get dark and it stayed on until sun up the next day, though there is a handy on/off switch for you to cut the light if you need. Plus, the lights have an industrial chic design that’ll work well with different home decor styles.

This sconce from Better Homes & Gardens doesn’t come assembled, but don't worry—our testers found it only took a twist of two parts to put them together. The mounting hardware is included, though if you need to attach it to a brick facade, you will need additional hardware. Overall, both assembly and installation were quick—it only took our tester about 10 minutes for each light.

When it comes to this lamp, keep in mind that you can’t control its brightness so you’ll want to be mindful of where you place it. Regardless, these sconces are waterproof and weather resistant so they won't rust. Our tester found that even after a couple of dreary days of rain that made for a lower solar charge, these lights were functioning normally.

Price at time of publish: $20

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights Included: 1
  • Dimensions (of single light): 5.39 x 6.69 x 9.61 inches
  • Water Protection Rating: IPX4
  • Lighting Color: Warm white
  • Battery Type: 500mAh lithium
  • Battery Life: Not listed
Better Homes & Gardens Satin Black Outdoor Sconce Solar Lamp

Better Homes & Gardens / Daniela Galvez

Best Splurge

Alcott Hill Rasberry Wall Light

4.7
Alcott Hill Rasberry Wall Light

Courtesy of Wayfair

Why You Should Get It: You can adjust the brightness between high and low mode.

Keep in Mind: It doesn’t have a motion-activated sensor, so it depends on your preferences and where you’re placing the light.

If you're looking for something that makes a statement as well as provides security for your house, this wall lantern from Alcott Hill is the best mounted solar light to consider. Although the light is an investment, it’s easy to install and allows you to adjust the brightness to your liking.

Our tester found that all they needed to install the light was a tape measure, a screwdriver, and a drill. Everything was already assembled and installation was quick and easy, though keep in mind the lantern is a bit heavy.

It’s got an on/off switch and a high/low switch for adjusting the light, which stays on from dusk until dawn. You can switch between high and low mode but it doesn’t have a motion-activated sensor, so it depends on where and how you want to use the light.

The lantern’s illumination is bright enough that you can put it in a place where you want added security. The on/off switch is at the top of the light, however, which could be inconvenient. Overall, this is a durable option that almost looks as if it’s hard-wired, so if you don’t mind spending more money, you’ll have a light that’s rather attractive for your home’s exterior.

Just keep in mind that the light has a more ornate style, so it’s not ideal if you prefer a simple, streamlined look.

Price at time of publish: $234

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights Included: 1
  • Dimensions (of single light): 21 x 8.75 x 12.50 inches 
  • Water Protection Rating: Not listed 
  • Lighting Color: Not listed 
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion
  • Battery Life: 3 years
Alcott Hill Rasberry Wall Light

Better Homes & Gardens / Jenica Currie

Best Sconce

Gama Sonic Barn Solar Brown Outdoor Integrated LED Wall Light Sconce

4.6
Gama Sonic Barn Solar Brown Outdoor Integrated LED Wall Light Sconce

Lowe's

Why You Should Get It: You can switch between warm and bright light.

Keep in Mind: It’s got a very long cord that might be obtrusive.

Our testers found that this LED sconce provided consistent warm light from sunset to sunrise, making it one of the best mounted solar lights if you prefer a sconce style. The light is easy to install, has different brightness modes, and makes for a stylish addition to your home’s exterior.

Overall, one tester found that installation is fairly straightforward, though there was a bit of a hitch when anchoring it against stucco siding—our tester needed additional hardware, and you might, too, depending on your home’s exterior.

This barn-style light is made from powder-coated cast aluminum for a simple yet attractive design that combines aesthetics with functionality. Perhaps it’s a little too functional—there's a 7-foot power cord connecting it to the solar panel that proved to be way too long. Cable brackets were needed to disguise it; depending on the color of your home’s exterior, you might run into the same issue.

Assembly took less than a minute and installation took about 35 minutes—not bad considering some tweaks had to be made during the process.

One of the best features of this light is that you can switch between two light options warm and bright. Plus, there's an on/off switch to control the illumination, which will normally last from dusk until dawn. The tester liked the warm mode, as it provided nice ambient light for their side porch, but you might prefer the bright setting for better security.

Price at time of publish: $82

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights Included: 1
  • Dimensions (of single light): 9.5 x 12 x 10 inches 
  • Water Protection Rating: Not listed 
  • Lighting Color: Bright white
  • Battery Type: Not listed
  • Battery Life: Not listed
Gama Sonic Barn Solar Brown Outdoor Integrated LED Wall Light Sconce

Better Homes & Gardens / Lizz Leonard

Best with Motion Sensor

HMCITY Outdoor 120 LED Solar Lights

4.4
HMCITY Outdoor 120 LED Solar Lights

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: It has three light modes, so you can set it however you see fit.

Keep in Mind: The screws are short, so keep those included anchors on hand.

If you prefer a motion-sensor light, the best mounted solar light is this pick by HMCity. The light has three modes: security mode, which uses the motion sensor to go on and off automatically; smart brightness control, where the light stays on all night but turns brighter when it detects motion; and permanent on, which turns on and stays on all night.

The tester was impressed with the smart mode when activated—the light brightened quite noticeably. However, they'd be even more impressed if the bright light lasted longer than 15 seconds, though this is typical for most of the motion-sensor lights on our list. The motion detector functions exceptionally well and the light runs the entire time on the dim setting. Overall, our tester found these to be a good value.

Our testers said the light was very easy to install with only some assembly required. It’s light as a feather, though it does come with screw anchors for better support. It turns out our tester needed them because the screws that were included were too short to install in their home’s siding, so don’t toss those anchors in case you need them, too. Still, it only took five minutes to install.

One of our testers is a dog owner and especially liked having this light installed for when his dog went into the backyard after dark. However, it’s also a great choice for any homeowner who wants to add a level of security to the perimeter of their home.

Price at time of publish: $22

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights Included: 2
  • Dimensions (of single light): ‎6.1 x 3.98 x 3.23 inches
  • Water Protection Rating: IP 65 
  • Lighting Color: White
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion
  • Battery Life: Not listed
HMCity Outdoor Mounting Solar Lights

Better Homes & Gardens / Anna Knief

Best Spotlight

Ameritop Outdoor Mounting Solar Lights

4.7
Ameritop Outdoor Mounting Solar Light

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: The lights were very bright, so it’s ideal for areas you need more security.

Keep in Mind: It’s not a decorative design, so it depends on your preferences.

The Ameritop Outdoor Mounting Solar Light is the best mounted solar light if you need a simple design that’ll get the job done. Testers noted that the light is easy to install and very bright, so it’s a great option if you want a spotlight for your home.

One tester noted that the motion light only goes off if there's “something of substance” that walks in front of the sensor. However, you can adjust the light in all directions to that you have a better chance of illuminating whatever (or whomever) is there once motion is detected. The light, once activated, stays lit for about 15 seconds.

Our testers found the Ameritop outdoor solar light very easy to set up thanks to a mounting bracket that the light just slides onto. Depending on where you install the light on your own home’s exterior, though, you might need to buy a mounting bracket separately. Our tester did need a separate bracket, but it still only took her about five minutes to install it on her siding.

This is a sturdy light pair of lights for securing the perimeter of your home. Even after a huge storm at our tester’s residence, they weren't jostled out of place—they kept on working and stayed on through the night. If you're looking for a security floodlight for your home and don't really care too much about aesthetics, this is the one for you.

Price at time of publish: $31

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights Included: 2
  • Dimensions (of single light): ‎11 x 2.5 x 4.5 inches
  • Water Protection Rating: IP65
  • Lighting Color: Not listed 
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion
  • Battery Life: Not listed
Ameritop Outdoor Mounting Solar Light

Better Homes & Gardens / Jennifer May

Best Lantern

Cyhkee Solar Wall Lantern

4.8
Cyhkee Solar Wall Lanterns

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: The set includes two lights that have a simple yet attractive design.

Keep in Mind: You might need additional mounting hardware depending on where you install the lights.

You won't get the same results with these Cyhkee lanterns as you will with a floodlight, of course, but they are bright enough to illuminate your property for security. These are ready to hang out of the box, though you may need to buy separate mounting strip mount mounting brackets depending on where you hang them. The set includes two lights so you can either install them together or use them at different points of your home’s exterior.

Our tester liked that there were two settings for these lights. One setting keeps the lights off until the motion sensor is engaged and turns on a bright light. The other setting keeps the lanterns half-lit until the sensor picks up motion and the lights get brighter. It is easy to change between the different modes with a flick of a single switch.

There are three solar panels on these lanterns, so it’s easier for it to get a full charge during daylight hours so it can do the hard work of securing your home’s perimeter at night. They offer a simple design though they've got Edison-type bulbs that make the lighting a little bit more decorative. Overall, our tester thought that it gave a classy look to their entry.

Price at time of publish: $59

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights included: 2
  • Dimensions (of single light): ‎8.7 x 5.3 x 5.5 inches
  • Water Protection Rating: IP65
  • Lighting Color: Warm white
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion
  • Battery Life: 30,000 hours
Cyhkee Motion Sensor Solar Powered Wall Lanterns

Better Homes & Gardens / Jennifer May

Best for Fences

Derynome Solar Lantern Outdoor Lights with Wall Mount Kit

4.7
Solar Lantern Outdoor Lights, Hanging Wireless Waterproof Lantern Lights

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: You can take them off the hook and carry them like an actual lantern.

Keep in Mind: These don’t have a motion detection sensor.

If you're looking for an easy, breezy installation for your mounted solar lights, you've found it with this Derynome Solar Lantern. There was no assembly required—all you have to do is flip the switch and let them charge in the sun to fire them up for their first use, making them some of the best mounted solar lights.

The light comes with all the hardware you need, but a drill will be helpful for installation. It took 15 minutes for one tester to set up both lanterns. The tester loved the versatility of these lights; you can hang them on a hook like a lantern or mount them on a wall or fence.

There is an on/off switch, but that’s about it in terms of additional features. They are not motion activated, but they will come on at dusk if you switch them to the on position. Our tester was impressed with the simple modern design of these lights from Derynome, and since they come as a pair, you’ve got options for placement throughout your property.

Price at time of publish: $39

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights included: 2
  • Dimensions (of single light): ‎11 x 6 x 6 inches 
  • Water Protection Rating: IP65
  • Lighting Color: Warm white
  • Battery Type: Lithium-ion
  • Battery Life: Not listed
Derynome Solar Lantern Outdoor Lights with Wall Mount Kit

Better Homes & Gardens / Jenica Currie

Best for Lamp Posts

Kemeco Solar Post Light

4.8
Kemeco LED Cast Aluminum Solar Post Light

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: It was easy to install and one tester noted that it seemed to be high-quality.

Keep in Mind: It’s not motion-activated, unlike some other picks.

If you're looking for a light that creates a welcoming atmosphere at your front door, the best mounted solar light is this Kemeco design. The light was easy to install and one tester felt that it seemed to be high-quality, so it’s worth the investment.

While it’s bright and indeed welcoming enough for your front entry, it’s not bright enough to be a security light like some of the others on this list. There’s also no motion activation, so keep that in mind depending on your intended use.

The light was easy to install on an existing pole, and our tester considered it an upgrade from what was previously there. If you, too, have an existing pole, all you need is the included hardware. It's easy to install on a round pole, but if you’ve got a square pole, it comes with hardware to make the adjustment.

Overall, this is a high-quality white outdoor light that provides a nice warm glow. However, it’s more ambient than high security, so keep that in mind when you install it.

Price at time of publish: $100

Product Details:

  • Number of Lights Included: 1
  • Dimensions (of single light): 8.8 x 8.8 x 18.1 inches
  • Water Protection Rating: Not listed 
  • Lighting Color: Warm white
  • Battery Type: Nickel-metal hydride
  • Battery Life: Not listed
Kemeco LED Solar Post Light with Mount

Better Homes & Gardens / Abigail Wetzler

Best Smart

Ring Smart Lighting Solar Floodlight

4.7
Ring Smart Lighting Solar Floodlight

Courtesy of Amazon

Why You Should Get It: You can adjust settings easily using the app.

Keep in Mind: You’ll have to install the Ring Bridge for it to work.

Ring has become brand synonymous with smart home safety, so it's not surprising that the Ring Solar Smart Floodlight made our list as one of the best mounted solar lights. Our tester found that it was easy to install—if you are switching out a current motion sensor light with this one, you'll find it even easier. Plus, the light comes assembled and does have a half-charged battery, so it will work as soon as you install it.

When it comes to this light, note that you will need the Ring Bridge so be sure to choose the option that includes it.  It needs to be installed first, however even that additional step doesn’t take much time at all—just plug it in, open the app, and follow the instructions.

Our testers liked that there were so many options for this smart light, which were easily changeable via the app. You can turn the lights on manually, set up motion alerts, adjust the motion detector, and raise or lower the brightness and settings during daylight. Everything gets attached to the solar panel by a very long cord, so you’ve got plenty of flexibility with where you install it. Plus, it’s good for catching the brightest light for charging during the day.

Overall, our tester loved the multiple settings for brightness—they liked the warmer glow of the light—and thought it had a great run time. The Ring has a sleek and modern look that's not very obtrusive; in fact, it’s available in black or white, so it might even blend into your home’s exterior. The solar panel is large, but it’s also sleek, so you shouldn't worry about it ruining any curb appeal.

Price at time of publish: $110

Product Details:

  • Number of lights included: 2
  • Dimensions (of single light): 5.51 x 10.43 x 4.68 inches 
  • Water protection rating: IP 66
  • Lighting color: Not listed 
  • Battery type: Not listed
  • Battery life: Not listed
Ring Solar Smart Floodlight

Better Homes & Gardens / Dera Burreson

The Bottom Line

The Maxsa Dual Head Solar Powered Wall Mounting Light made the top of our best mounted solar lights list because of its ease in both installation and adjustment, so it’s easy to get the right of amount of illumination just where you need it. Testers liked that all the necessary hardware was included and that the lights were even able to weather a storm.

Our Testing Process

To find the best mounted solar lights, we put 18 different styles to the test right at home. Over the course of two weeks, 14 testers used the lights and evaluated them based on six pre-determined categories: set up, features, design, brightness, durability, and value. Testers did not know the price of the lights until after testing.

In terms of setup, testers noted whether or not the lights came assembled, as well as how easy they were to install at their home. Once set up, they took note of any features the lights had, like motion-activation or multiple light patterns.

When it came to design, testers took note of the look of the light and whether or not they were a decorative option. They also took into consideration any unique design elements the light may have. For brightness, each light was evaluated based on whether or not they provided an appropriate amount of light given the style, as well as if there were any light pattern options.

Durability was determined based on whether or not the lights could hold up against the elements and continues to perform. Then, testers were given the price of the lights they tested. From there, they determined value based on their observations, price, and if they would recommend the light. 

What to Know About Mounted Solar Lights Before Shopping

Light Type

While Dennis is a big fan of motion detector lights, the best mounted solar lights for you depend on what you need them to do for your home’s exterior.

Do you want something that’s merely decorative to give some ambient light for a backyard patio or front porch? Or do you want something more on the level of a security flood light that detects even the slightest of motion? Keep your needs in mind when choosing a light, Dennis says—there’s an outdoor lighting solution for everyone.

Water Protection Rating

The best mounted solar lights are those that can keep shining through inclement weather, including rain and snow. Dennis says it’s important to check the light’s IP rating—that stands for ingress protection.

“It ranks the light source by how effectively it is protected from exterior elements such as liquids or solid objects,” Dennis says. “This alone will dictate where your lights can be installed and how much moisture or external force it can safely come into contact with.”

Dennis says to look for the letters IP that will be followed by 2 digits. The first digit is for the level of protection against solid objects, while the second one is for water-resistant. In general, the higher the digits, the better the protection. “You should take both [digits] into account when deciding your lighting options,” she says.

Brightness and Light Color

When it comes to brightness and light color, your own preference should also come into play when choosing the best mounted solar lights for your home.

“In general, the color temperature of your lighting can change the effect and ambiance it has on your outdoor areas by tinting the lighting and the mood it creates,” she says. She notes that warm lights have cooler temperatures and will appear more yellow, while cool lights have higher temperatures and appear white or even blue.

“When you light with cooler color temperatures, it could potentially make your yard look unnatural, so stick with warm and natural whites to properly feature any landscape area,” Dennis says.

Whether you ultimately choose warm or cool, Dennis says to keep your lighting consistent throughout your home—both inside and out—for a cohesive look.

Other Mounted Solar Lights We Tested

SOLARBASICS SB-57B Luna Flame Bulb Solar Accent Light

The SOLARBASICS SB-57B Luna Flame Bulb Solar Accent Light is easy to install, but it offers lighting that’s more ambient than security. It has a basic design and minimal features, though our testers did like how it flickered like a candle, Still, our testers found it priced a bit high for something so simple, which is why it ultimately didn't make our list. 

Hampton Bay 14.5 in. Black Dusk to Dawn Decorative Outdoor Wall Lantern


The Hampton Bay 14.5 in. Black Dusk to Dawn Decorative Outdoor Wall Lantern took about 25 minutes to install, thanks to small screws that proved to be a bit of a challenge. It’s a basic light that does the job, but you have to take it apart to change out the light, so it can be a bit of a challenge to maintain. 

Techko Maid LED Solar Half Moon Wall Light

The Techko Maid LED Solar Half Moon Wall Light was another light that our testers found would be better for ambient lighting rather than security lighting, though they were impressed by the long-lasting dusk-to-dawn option. Installation was easy, though there was a bit of trial and error. There’s only one brightness setting, though it does stay consistently lit.

Your Questions, Answered

How long will solar lights hold a charge?

Solar lights are typically able to hold a charge for six to 10 hours, though some can indeed stay lit from dawn until dusk. It’s best to mount your solar lights in a position that allows for direct sunlight to charge them fully during the day.

Can you leave solar lights out in the rain?

Most lights are designed so they can withstand the elements, including rain and snow. You’ll want to make sure, however, that any plugs and sockets are protected from moisture.

Do solar lights work in cold weather?

Yes. Solar lights simply need daylight to be recharged. Cloudy days in the wintertime still offer enough light to charge solar lights, though you might find your solar lights work best in the spring and summer when sunny days allow for more direct exposure to light.

Who We Are

Barbara Bellesi Zito is a freelance writer for Better Homes & Gardens. To create this list, she reviewed the findings of our in-house testers, who analyzed a selection of mounted solar lights based on their ease of installation, level of brightness, and effectiveness of features, such as motion detection and smart technology (where applicable). For expert insight, she also consulted Tara Dennis, co-founder and director of Archie Bolden, a globally renowned design studio offering residential and commercial interior architecture and design services.

What Is BHG Recommends?

Next to all of the products on this list, you may have noticed our BHG Recommends seal of approval. Products that earn the seal have been put through rigorous testing to make sure they're worth a spot in your home. We buy most of the products we test ourselves, but occasionally we are provided samples by companies if buying isn't an option. In these cases, we use the same testing criteria we use to test the purchased products and we let you know that we got it for free to remain as transparent as possible about our picks.

Looking for more products that have earned our BHG Recommends seal of approval? Check out our picks for everything from picnic blankets to humidifiers.

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