The Best Driveway Lights (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
Illuminate your driveway with a set of bright driveway lights
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BY Scott Murdock / LAST UPDATED ON June 16, 2020
Your driveway is the gateway to your home, so you want it to make a good impression. It should also be safe and easy to navigate. Keeping your property lit at night is a great way to make a positive impression, welcome guests, and make it easier to park. It’s best not to trust the dull reverse lights on your car when backing up at night, especially when children and pets are in the area.
Today, driveway lights come in all shapes, sizes, and styles, so you can find something that fits your needs and decorating taste. Wireless options make installation as easy as placing the lights where you want them, and solar options eliminate the need to run electrical wires or replace batteries.
Some include motion detectors, so they can be set to activate only when there is movement nearby. We’ve chosen some of the best options from a range of designs and uses, so you can make an educated purchase. Read this best-of list to find the perfect set of driveway lights for your house.
This set of eight driveway lights are solar-powered, using LED bulbs to create a cold, white light. The units are waterproof and mount with a stake into the ground.
When fully charged, each light can illuminate for up to eight hours. The lights require no tools for installation. They’re durable for use in rain, sun, and light snow.
If the lights don’t get a full day of sun, then the lights aren’t bright enough to illuminate your driveway. The plastic stakes are a bit flimsy and can break when you try to connect them to the light unit.
This light comes with one unit that mounts high to illuminate your driveway below. There are two spotlights that have 30 LEDs. The unit is waterproof and solar-powered.
The light from this unit is adjustable up to 360 degrees. It has two modes; one is motion-activated. The light will stay dim until motion is detected, and then shine brighter.
The motion sensor isn’t very accurate and may not get bright with motion near it. The unit feels flimsy and is small. You’ll need multiple units to light a large area.
This set of four driveway lights look like real flames. The light is produced by LEDs. The height of the light is 43 inches. The lights are solar-powered and can last up to 12 hours when fully charged.
These lights are waterproof and durable enough to continue working through a variety of weather conditions. No tools are required for installation. They create a safer "flame" than real fire torches.
Some reviewers complain the lights may arrive not working or broken. They may also randomly stop working over time.
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Benefits of Driveway Lights
- Easy installation. Solar driveway lights are easy to install. Some require you to attach the post to the unit, but tools aren’t required; just stick the stake in the ground and you’re good to go.
- Save money. Solar lights charge with sun exposure. They have no effect on your electric or gas bill.
- Safety. Adding lights to your driveway will make the area safer to navigate at night. You’ll be able to light pathways — and see when someone unwelcome enters your property.
Types of Driveway Lights
These are lights that come mounted on a stake. You then place them along the outside edge of your driveway in the soft earth. The stake holds the light elevated above the driveway to illuminate the area around each light.
These lights get installed flush into the ground. The light then shines upward to illuminate the area around the driveway. They work best when you have shrubs, plants, or similar for the light to shine up against. This could be a wall or dense brush, too.
This is typically a single or couple of lights that mount high up and shine downward. You’ll need to mount these on a tree or building close to the driveway, such as a garage or shed.
The Solpex brand is a subsidiary of GIGALUMI. The company specializes in researching and developing new technology to create top-quality solar garden equipment. You’ll find the company’s solar lights distributed throughout North America and Europe. These sleek Solpex Solar Outdoor Pathway Lights will give your driveway a modern look.
Headquartered in China, the TomCare company is focused on producing home goods and products. This includes path lights, diffusers, gardening supplies, and home organization furniture. The TomCare Solar Lights 2nd Version Flickering Flame Solar Torches will create a stunning yet safe lighting effect for your driveway.
Founded in 2004 by two friends, Mr. Beams aims to provide wireless lighting solutions for your home. This includes lights for both inside and outside. The lights are easy to install and provide plenty of light. Try the Mr. Beams MB572 Wireless Battery-Powered Motion Sensing LED Path Lights for your driveway.
Driveway Lights Pricing
- Under $25: You’ll find either high-quality single units or lower-quality sets in this category. They’re most likely solar and have a limited number of LEDs in the lighting unit.
- $25 to $55: The majority of solar- and battery-powered driveway lights fall in this range. They’ll be single units or sets. The durability and construction will be better.
- $55 and up: The lights in this category are top-quality or have distinctive features about them. They typically come in a set. The LEDs are generally brighter with longer illumination times.
Solar-powered lights are environmentally friendly and the cheapest light to run long-term. They only require exposure to sunlight. However, for brighter and more consistent illumination, you’ll want to consider lights that are powered by batteries or ones that are hardwired into your electrical system. Consider your budget and climate, and amount of sun exposure when choosing your power source.
The lighting style you choose will depend on the width, length, and build of your driveway. If you only want to mark the edge, then lights installed flush with the driveway will work fine. A short driveway that’s close to a building could be illuminated by one large overhead light. Long and wide driveways may need several lights on posts or bollards to provide the required amount of light.
You’ll need to decide how long you want your lights to be on. Maybe you only need them to be on for a few hours after dark, or perhaps you want them to be on all night. Or, they could be motion-sensed. The illumination you choose is a personal preference based on your needs and driveway use.
- Number of Lights. The number of lights you’ll need will depend on the size of your driveway. The bigger your driveway is, the more lights you’ll need. Some kits only come with one light, while others will come with as many as eight. Buying a larger kit will save you money on a per-light cost basis.
- Durability. The lights you install will be outside and exposed to the elements year-round. So choose lights that are rated to be waterproof. This will protect the lighting and electrical components inside of the unit. Your lights should also be wind-, UV-, and snow-proof. This will ensure they last throughout all of the seasons.
- Style. The lights you buy should look pretty and enhance the curb appeal of your home. Choose driveway lights that match the style and look of your home so that they won’t look out of place. Some have a more traditional style with intricate detailing, while others look sleeker and modern with smooth, clean lines.
Best Driveway Lights Reviews & Recommendations 2021
- Test your lights before you install them. You don’t want to spend time setting them all up only to discover that they don’t work, and then you have to take them back down.
- If you choose to install battery-powered lights, set a regular reminder for yourself to check the batteries and ensure your lights are always on.
- You may find that solar lights won’t work for the entire length of your driveway. They need several hours of sun per day to fully charge, and that may not happen in all areas of your driveway.
What are the best solar driveway lights?
A: The best solar driveway lights will have a high-quality battery that’s capable of holding a decent charge for a long time. That way, it can illuminate the included lightbulb for the entire night. In addition, the solar panel needs to be durable and large enough to absorb plenty of UV rays.
How far apart should driveway lights be?
A: As a general rule, you should place driveway lights between 10 and 15 feet apart. Try to have the outer edges of the light radius overlap for a continuous glow. You may want to place extra lights in areas that you want to highlight.
How do you light a long driveway?
A: The longer your driveway is, the more lights you should plan on using. A single high-mounted light won’t have the range to extend the length of the driveway. Try to evenly place them down both sides of the length of the driveway. Posts, pillars, bollards, and uplights work best.
What is a bollard light?
A: Bollard lights get mounted on top of a large post that’s designed to act as a boundary marker or structure, such as a fence post. This makes them more permanent than mini lights on stakes. Typically, bollard lights are a few feet tall, and large enough to illuminate a larger area.
The Solpex Solar Pathway Lights are a smart buy because the kit comes with several waterproof lights that are solar-powered and illuminate for a long time. For a more affordable alternative, the Ollivage Solar Wall Light is mounted high and creates a large area of light over your entire driveway.