* Prices may differ from that shown
My Husband and I like to go camping in the summer and one of the items we have found useful for the camping trips is a set of solar lights. We like to place the lights around our tent as this gives out a small amount of light and makes it easy for us to find our tent when coming back from an evening out or a night time jaunt to the toilets.
As usual every year when we get the camping gear out the solar light have either fell to pieces or have been repurposed for the garden once the camping season has finished. So we usually order a new set of lamps, last years lamps came from that great purveyor of everything amazon.co.uk. The set of four Stainless Steel Solar Garden Lights cost roughly £10 and are currently available for £7.50 + £5.61 postage.
When the lights arrived I was more than happy to see that they needed minimal assembly and that the batteries were included. My Husband fitted the lamps together and we popped them out in the garden to charge up prior to our camping trip.
The lamps are very easy to stick into the ground using the attached spikes. The build quality of the lamps is good enough but not strong enough to withstand being bashed by footballs. The batteries in the lamps come with a small amount of charge and will start to light up as soon as night begins to fall but if you really want them to be fully charged it is best to charge the batteries in a battery charger prior to placing them in the garden as our inclement British weather can cause the lamps to take a few days to charge.
The light shed by the lamps is what you would expect from a small LED, it is amplified by the clear plastic lamp casing and is white in colour. The lights will glow for about four hours from a full days charging in the sun and for slightly longer when the batteries have been charged up using a battery charger.
The great thing about these lamps is that they are wire free which makes them great for taking camping; I personally don't think they are bright enough or long lasting enough for use in a garden.
A downside to these lamps is that if we suffer from heavy rain as we did last summer the lamps cases can fill up with water which if not spotted and emptied out in time will cause the lamps to stop working.
All things considered I feel the lamps are good enough. When placed around the outside of my tent they give out enough light for me not to fall over the guy ropes when coming back to the tent last thing at night and they are a comforting glow when trying to find your tent in a field of other tents.
I would not want to pay much more than £10 for them so if you can get your hands on a set for less I think they are worth buying for camping and caravanning but not for gardens.
Thank you for reading.
I bought 10 of these from our local DIY store, as we have recently given our garden a makeover and started growing vegetables etc. We have bought a new patio table and chairs and love nothing better in the summer evenings sitting outside taking in the warm evenings. We decided to purchase these to dot around the edge of our flowerbeds, to give a little light for these evenings.
Being solar panel based, they collect their power from the sun during the day, and then as dusk sets in they come to life and illuminate the night-time. Ok, maybe the power in them isn't quite enough to light up the garden totally, but they are very pretty when you look out at night and I do find myself looking out into the garden more in the evenings than I used to. I don't know what benefit that has, just thought I would let you know.
I bought these roughly a year ago and they are all still working, the only problem I have noticed is where we inserted them into the ground last year, we have now dug up all our vegetables (it was all very yummy) and have tried to take them out so we can move them, the plastic steak parts have broken off in the ground on a couple of them. We can't fix them back on as they have snapped totally off so we will need to purchase some more next year, a bit annoying though.
They are still worth buying, as I will be replacing them when the warmer weather comes back.
When shopping for garden decorations to glam up my garden the first thing on my list was solar lights as they are such a simple yet effective and attractive addition to your garden. I also like the fact that with solar lights there is no need to purchase batteries or have any wiring because the sun does all the work!
I paid around £20 from my local garden store for a pack of 4 which wasn't really enough for me actually because my garden was so big, but £20 for 4 is a lot of money in my opinion so i just decided i would put one in each corner of my garden. They were very easy to install i just had to simply stick them in the ground and the shape of the bases on the lights makes them stand in the ground well without falling over, i also liked the stainless steel look that they had.
I waited excitedly for night time to fall to see my new lights sparkle in the dark, but i have to admit i was a little dissappointed by how small they seemed to be in the dark and there were barely little twinkles around my garden. I tried moving the lights around to different spots in my garden to see if i could get them to capture more sunlight during the day to make them shine brighter at night, but still had little success.
At a cost of £20 for 4 i expected them to work a lot better, when i next buy solar lights i will probably shop around to get a larger quantity pack of them at a good price so that they make a bigger difference to my garden.
I first bought my Rolson Solar Light Set from Rockfield D.I.Y shop in town for a set of four that cost me £24 and they were I the garden section of the shop so easy to find if your looking for any this coming summer.
The pack is four solar lights that stick into the ground in your garden and are powered by the solar panels in the top of the light.
I have placed mine two at each side of the path in my garden so that I can see where I am walking when going to collect wood for my fire in the evenings.
The lights charge up during the day when it is sunny and then the energy is used for lighting the lamp's which stay lit for hours at night, they last about six hours.
The lights sit in a pole which are then held in the ground by a metal spike. These do stick up out of the ground so be careful where you place them, putting them on a slippy path is a little dangerous as you can fall over them. I have them at the side of the path to light my way at night.
When I first got these in summer I thought they were great, they lit up at night and glowed brightly to light up the path, over the course of they year I have found them not to be very weather proof. They get condensation in damp or wet weather and now in winter it's really hard to get a dim light from them at night, so getting wood for the fire has to be done slowly and carefully as I make my way down the path to the woodshed.
They are easy to use and work really well in the sunny days and don't get in the way of the path being strimmed as you can pull them up and replace them after strimming the edges of the garden. I do think they were cheap to buy but not good value for money as less than a year after my purchase they don't produce the light they did when I first bought them.
You have to constantly clean the tops of the panels where the solar sensor is for them to keep working but to be honest I think they are more of a novelty purchase good for the summer months and then need to be taken up and stored away until the next years sun comes out.
I would recommend them for the summer months where they can charge up properly and light at night but for an all year round product, they don't get my vote.
About 2 years ago, I decided it was time to start trying to improve the very plain and bland area that was 'my back garden'. I had never been a fan of gardening, which is surprising, considering that I had been brought up by my two gardening mad parents, but it was just something that really bored me. I Often used to say to my mum and dad, that when I eventually got my own house, I was going to lay an artificial lawn, and have a few artificial plants, and a couple of pots, and that would be it - easy maintenance!
Once I did get my own house though, and eventually started to work on my back garden, I realized that gardening was quite a nice and relaxing hobby, and it soon became really important to me, to keep the area well maintained, and over the last few years it has been transformed from a plain and bland area, into a peaceful and tranquil heaven, which I'm really proud of, and I spend a lot of time in it, especially in the summer months.
One of the purchases that I made, that really had a big impact on the garden was a set of Solar lights. My parents must have about 20 of these in their back garden (which is big enough to carry them off), and so I have always been keen on them.
The set I got was the Rolson Solar light set, which I purchased from my local garden centre for around £20.
What is the Rolson Solar Light Set??
This is basically a set of 4 lights which can be stuck into the ground around the garden either into soil in the borders, or into the lawn itself. The lights charge up during daylight, and then give out light once darkness sets in, providing a homely glow in the garden which is useful to light up any features such as shrubbery, or a pond, or just simply to provide an outline to the garden, or a pathway.
Each light consists of a plastic spike, a metal pole, and a lamp unit, and the idea is to attach the metal pole to the plastic spike, and then press this into the ground, either soil or grass, so that the spike is fully submerged, with just the metal pole on show, and then the lamp unit is attached to the top of the pole. The complete unit once fixed together is about 40 cm in height.
How does this all work?
Solar powered lights in general are a really good idea, as they provide an environmentally friendly light, without any need for electricity (apart from in the initial manufacture of the lights).
The Rolson Solar lights contain a solar panel in the top of each lamp unit. This panel then collects the daylight / sunlight, during the light part of the day, and converts it into electrical energy which is stored in a battery. Once daylight fades and it becomes dark, a sensor in the lamp is activated, and the LED lamps light up nice and brightly. Once the daylight returns, the sensor is activated again, and the light goes off, and the solar panels begin storing up more sunlight again, to convert into electricity.
***** My overall opinion *****
As mentioned above, I have had the Rolson solar light set for about 2 years now, and I have to say I am very pleased with it. The lights are very easy to set up, and are simple to pull back out of the ground to situate them elsewhere if required. I have mine installed in the corners of my lawn, and so each time I mow the grass, I simply pull the whole units out of the grass, while I mow over that particular area, and then simply place them back into the original hole once I have finished.
I find they provide a nice bright white light, which lights up the garden, and gives a nice warm feeling when sitting out in the garden after dark in the summer months.
Positioning of the lights is quite important, mainly due to the fact that they need to be in the sunlight if possible to collect in the solar energy. One of my lights is in quite a dark corner of the garden, and so it doesn't collect that much light during the day, and this is the light that often only stays illuminated for a couple of hours at night. The other 3 however do get a lot of sunlight during the day, and they last a lot longer, and are always still fully illuminated when I go to bed at night. The box states that the lights can work for up to 8 hours, after a full days charge, but this is not something that I have ever bothered staying awake for at night to find out!
Another thing to keep in mind when positioning the lamps, is that if they are put in area that is already quite light at night, they will not illuminate, because the sensor for darkness will not be activated, so they need to be put some distance away from things like street lights etc.
I did find that the lights were not performing very well this year in spring, when they normally start to come to life really well. On closer examination I found the solar panels had got a bit of moisture in them, and a fine layer of green sludge / moss was starting to form over the panel, and light sensor zone. This was probably due to the fact that they had been out in the garden throughout 2 summers, and a very heavy winter.
To resolve this situation I simply removed the clear plastic cases from the lamps, and cleaned over the solar panels and sensors with a cloth, and also cleaned the inside and outside of the plastic cases, and then put them back together again, and this really did the trick! They have worked perfectly ever since, and so this is something that I will probably repeat next springtime.
So overall they are highly recommended by me, as they are reasonably cheap to buy, and use no electricity. They are also super easy to install in the garden, and obviously have no electrical cables or wires attached to them, meaning that it is simple to move them around to different locations in the garden.
The bright LED lights have a quoted life expectancy of over 100,000 hours, which equates to 4166 days, or 11 and a half years, so they are well worth the investment. They are stylish to look at, and environmentally friendly, and I find the light that they emit at night is quite bright, and it really improves the ambience of my Garden.
Thanks for reading.
© L500589 2010
Rolson Solar Light Set
We only recently moved into our house at the beginning of the year, we moved from somewhere where we had no garden to the country where I have a lovely large garden. The garden needs quite a lot of work and attention, which I have started. One of the first items that I wanted to get for the garden where some solar lights, especially after admiring my mum's lovely lit garden for years.
We have been lucky enough to get a house with quite a large garden and living in a small village means that there isn't that much light pollution, it gets dark. After living in the city centre for years it took me a while to get used to how dark it gets out here, so these lights were a nice practical and pretty solution.
The lights are pretty straight forward to use and set up they have a bit of a stake like design where you just push them into the ground where you want them placed. It is best of course to try and place them where they will have a good exposure to some direct sunlight. They work by the sunlight charging the internal batteries and then powering them when the sun goes down.
In a packet you get four individual lights, of the four only three of mine seem to work well. One seems to be the slowest at giving off any substantial light. I have tried moving it around and it just doesn't seem to be as bright as the others. However, having said that none of the lights give off all that much light, it is more of a nice soft light, more for decoration than actual brightness. I also won't really think that these would replace security lighting in any way.
These lights are also quite small so they don't really need that much room or space. My mum uses something similar to highlight her garden path. However, I haven't done anything clever with mine except highlight some of the grassy sections closer to the house. Next year I would like to invest in some more of these or something similar to get a more well lit back garden.
It is also worth bearing in mind that these lights work depending upon the amount of sunlight that they get and I have noticed that since winter is pretty much upon us and the days are short, these lights are not really doing all that much. These lights really do work much better in the summer months.
I bought mine for £12.99 from Amazon back in the spring.
This gets a pretty average three out of five stars from me. It isn't by any means a terrible product it just isn't as good as I was expecting.
OK, so why bother with a solar light set. There are two distinct uses, either to accentuate your garden's features such as a rockery or border, or perhaps to light up a pathway. In my case it was the latter as my wife tripped up one night making a sojourn to the dustbin and I was coerced into looking for a set.
Having read reviews on various makes, it was disconcerting to read that certainly with the cheaper models they invariably let in water. In the end I liked the look of the Rolson 4 piece Stainless Steel Solar Light Set, and with it being reduced in Woolworths from £19.99 to £12.99 I greedily purchased two sets.
The solar garden light is a green and environmentally-friendly product. The light is powered by solar energy via a solar panel situated on the top of the light. The panel converts sunlight into electric energy and then charges the built-in "AA" Ni-Cd rechargeable battery during the day. A light sensor automatically turns the light on at dusk and switches off at dawn.
Obvious I realise, but it has to be placed where it can pick up sunlight. The light source itself is a super bright white LED which can work up to 8 hours at night after a full day's charging. The lifetime of the LED lamp is over 100,000 hours so you need never change it. Should the battery need replacing, that is easily done with a fresh 1.2V Ni-Cd battery.
In a set you get four lights, each consisting of a plastic spike to go into the ground, a stainless steel tube that fits onto the spike, finally followed by the main body of the light. This is made up of a clear plastic surround with another internal plastic section that the LED fits into. The top of this body is covered by a rounded stainless steel top encompassing the solar panel. On the underneath of this top, the small LED light protrudes. Everything about this is high quality and totally waterproof. They are approximately 410mm in height.
The instructions are extremely easy to follow and, of course, there is no wiring. Simply push the hollow stainless steel tube onto the spike and insert into the ground. Although the spike is plastic, I found it to be strong and as long as you insert it into soft ground you should have no problems. To prime the light, twist off the stainless steel cover and remove the plastic strip to make the connections. Screw the top back on and place on top of the tube. It's as easy as that. To test they work, simply cover the solar panel. The battery has been charged by the manufacturer prior to packing though the charge may have dissipated a little by the time they are set up. It should therefore be charged for afull day to realise maximum performance.
One slight note of caution - the light is designed to work when it is dark. If there is high ambient lighting nearby, then the LED light may be dim or not turned on at all. Occasionally, after several very dark gloomy day, the the lights won't have enough charge to go all through the night but that is indicative of most solar light products.
These lights really add a bit of oomph to a garden or pathway and under normal UK weather conditions, they are getting enough charge to last through the night and provide enough light to see your way along a path.
To summarise the main features,
The solar panel recharges the batteries.
There is no wiring at all and installation is easy.
Switches on and off automatically at dusk and dawn.
Bright ice white LED's.
I think I've made the right choice with these.
Stainless steel solar powered garden lamps. Set of four.