Solar energy has the power to provide us with the ability to throw the chains of fossil fuels off our shoulders and onto the ground. Solar power is incredibly versatile, supremely powerful, and capable of giving us a clean and sustainable method of harvesting energy for the foreseeable future.
1. Sun Tubes
Sun Tubes are amazing. Their design is nowhere near new, and they’ve been around since the 1960s. Solar tubes have been used for numerous purposes, including actually heating your home with massive tubes that went from the roof to the floor. These massive tubes are out of style and you’d be hard pressed to find one these days. However, solar tubes are becoming popular as a method to light your home. Solatubes in particular are some of the more popular options for interior lighting. There are dozens of different styles out, some fancier than others.
The Solatube is the top of the line, but is not the only option. Sun tubes act like skylights, but are much simpler, and much cheaper to install. They are also more insulated against releasing heat/cool air in your homes than a skylight. This helps temperature regulation.
2. Garden Lights
There are tons of options to light your garden, or backyard, or whatever you want to call it. There are a variety of different solar powered lights that can be used to light and decorate your garden. These garden lights include the classic mini lamps that are often used to illuminate a path, and are staked into the ground. These small lights are extremely common and can be found for less than a dollar if you look hard enough. There are also small lights that can be mounted to your deck, or to outdoor stairs. These are both small, cheap and provide a certain ambience to your outdoor life.
Outdoor lighting has become popular enough that companies like IKEA are taking notice and producing dozens of different models of outdoor solar lighting. These outdoor lights commonly use the bright, but energy efficient LEDs to produce nice, bright, attractive lighting.
3. Pool Lights
If you want to add some spice to your pool life you can add floating lights that are solar powered. These lights are part inflatable toy, part awesome mood lighting. You can light the pool in a decorative manner that also provides a level of safety for swimming at night. Even an outdoor evening party is spruced up by the addition of these floating lights. They give your pool an awesome appearance at night and are completely powered by the sun.
The solar panel itself is placed on the back of the inflatable and absorbs the sun throughout the day. They charge the devices battery and as the sun goes down simply turn them on and toss them in. They’re of course waterproof, and typically last anywhere from 6 to 12 hours. These solar powered pool lights are also quite affordable with most models being priced at around 20 to 30 dollars.
4. Security Lights
Having a little extra security around the house is never a bad thing. Security lights are a passive method of keeping creeps off your property. From the lowest vandal to the most violent home invader, all fear light. They prefer no one to see them do what they do, and security lights make that possible. Solar powered security lights are a cheap, easy to maintain and useful security tool. Once paired with a motion sensor they are impossible to beat. These lights use LEDs and are quite powerful enough to keep the raccoons out of your trash and to keep burglars moving.
5. Light Fixtures
You can install light fixtures indoors and outdoors. Be it a living room light, or an outdoor deck light, you have the ability to use solar powered light. These fixtures are incredibly varied, and the designs that are around can meet all home styles. Outdoor models are designed to be weatherized and withstand whatever abuse is tossed at them short of a tornado. These light fixtures typically have a small solar panel that is designed solely to power that light. Installation is simple; if you can install a fixture you can install one of these. These lights are perfect for outdoor use, especially in barns, garages, and other outdoor buildings. These fixtures commonly use highly efficient LED lights that shine bright even on low charge.
6. Rope Lighting
Christmas lights are pretty cool. Most of us grow up and still love to see those folks who just take Christmas lights and take it up a notch. These Christmas light system is commonly associated with spikes in power usage, and relatively high power bills. These decorative lights look cool, but are quite wasteful, and from a pragmatic sense they are useless. However, there are solar powered options. A quick glimpse at the Wal-Mart website shows tons of different solar powered Christmas lights.
Outside of Christmas lights there are also white rope lights that can strung to provide some excellent mood lighting. All of these lights tend to run off of a simple solar panel that can be staked into the ground and powers the LED placed in the lights. These small panels can disappear once staked and they are easy to remove when the Christmas season is over.
7. Solar Lamps
If you are looking for super easy, no fuss indoor and outdoor solar lights look any further than solar lamps. These solar lamps are not as handy as having a permanent fixture but they are cheaper, easier to deal with, and effective enough for most tasks. Solar lamps are very simple. Most have a built in battery system that is charged by the sun during the day, and powers the lamp at night. These lights can be easily moved from room to room, they are cordless, and made by brands like IKEA. These solar lamps are designed for both indoors and outdoors use, and can light entire rooms with ease. They are good for deck parties and pool parties that might need extra light.
These are just seven examples of what solar power can do for you in and outside of your home. Solar power and solar powered lighting is versatile, and valuable. Take the time to research your options and I guarantee you’ll find one that fits you.