Solar Security Lighting Review

Solar Security Lighting Review
Our Solar Security Lighting Review is based on customer feedback and extensive testing undertaken here at The Solar Centre. We have stocked all these solar security lights at one time or another so The Solar Centre and our customers have a good working knowledge of each light featured.

Under Part P of the UK Building Regulations it is now compulsory to have any sort of electrical installation carried out by a qualified electrician, but this does not apply to any of the solar security lights listed below which are all safe and easy to install.

We hope you will find our solar security lighting review helpful when selecting your product.

We will add more solar security lights to this review as they become available so please check back soon.

The Eye is designed to shake up the 2013 solar security light market in the same way the Evo36 and 56 did back in 2009. The Evo's are still very popular so they wont be going anywhere soon, but the Eye represents a huge leap forward on previous designs.

The first thing to note is that the Eye is only 4cm thick and is attached to its mount using a semi-circular metal band. This innovative design means the Eye and can be pointed in virtually any direction 170 degrees up and down and 180 degrees left to right Next up is the new digital motion sensor which was added to the Astron64 earlier in the year and has now been rolled out to the Eye. Digital motion sensors are not only more accurate, but much more waterproof because they dont use standard dials which are prone to water ingress. The light unit itself is also much more waterproof than previous models. A close inspection of the Eye will prove reassuring for those concerned about ingress as there is simply nowhere for water to get into this unit. There are no nooks, no crannies and no weak points. Like the Astron64, the Eye uses a remote motion sensor rather than one built in. The sensor comes with 30cm of cable for those that want it close to the light without a load of excess wire, but it also comes with a 1m extension cable for customers looking to place the sensor further away.

The Eye ticks all the boxes: Its brighter than anything in its class, much more waterproof, much more manoeuvrable, has a remote digital motion sensor, looks good AND much better value.

SolarCentre says: We're particularly proud of this light. We've taken 4 years of customer comments and recommendations and put them all into the Eye. Having achieved all crucial mission objectives we were determined to ice the cake by making this light good looking and boy does it look good!
In 2009 we described the Evo15 Solar PIR Utility Light as 'a real game-changer for the budget end of the solar security light market' and so it has proved. Three years and several upgrades later, the Evo15 is now easily the best selling solar security light in the UK and for good reason. If you're looking for a small sensor light for under 20 which is effective and easy to install then look no further.

SolarCentre says: Keep in mind that like mains powered lights, the Evo15 has a waterproof rating of IP44 so it needs to be installed somewhere with a bit of cover!
Brand new for 2012 the Curve Solar Motion Light looks and feels like a light worth twice the price. Unlike the Evo15, which has a separate solar panel, the Curve comes as one self contained unit and is a doddle to install. At night the 16 SMD bulbs give off a gentle glow until motion is detected and the full force of the Curve's 16 LEDs come into play (which is roughly equivalent to a 50W bulb). 30 seconds after motion stops the Curve settles back down to a gentle glow until the next time someone comes in range. With an IP64 waterproof rating the Curve can be installed in exposed locations that would make the Evo15 wince! That said, you can stick an Evo15 in a shaded area because the panel can be located upto 5 metres away.

SolarCentre says: If you're thinking about a Curve first think about where you want to put it! I want a solar light by my totally shaded north facing back door too, but that doesn't mean its going to work there! :-)
The Solar PIR Porch Light is an extremely effective porch or solar shed light. This highly portable disk shaped unit has 36 LEDs which turn on automatically as soon as it detects motion and turns itself off 25 seconds after motion stops. The Solar PIR Porch Lights is best located on a ceiling facing down where its 360 degree motion sensor will detect movement from all angles.

SolarCentre says: As the name suggests the PIR Porch is designed for covered areas and is not an outside light.
The Solar Power Security Light is a good looking light but is let down over the darkest winter months by its integrated solar panel. Because this is mounted on the top of the light and unable to be angled towards the low sun in winter its performance suffers compared to the other lights here that benefit from a remote solar panel.
They say imitation is the best form of flattery and believe us, we have received a lot of love from our competitors with this light since we launched it in 2009! The Evo36 Solar Security Light is housed in a traditional security light casing and benefits from an innovative reflector design that multiplies the brightness effect which combined with high powered LEDs make the Evo36 solar security light brighter than any solar security light weve tested or sold that retails for under 50.

Both the Evo36 & Evo56 Solar Security Lights have an optional Evo Booster Solar Panel upgrade available separately for 19.99 which make them ideal for heavy winter use or for Evos located in non-solar friendly locations.

SolarCentre says: Like the Evo15, this light is IP44 rated so needs to be installed somewhere with a bit of cover. If you want a security light that can take the full force of the elements, check out the Eye, Curve or Astron64.
The Evo56 Solar Security Light boasts 56 LEDs and is brighter than any Solar Security Light here except for the Atron64 of course! This next generation solar security light is made predominantly from metal, has a glass lens and is styled like a compact traditional mains powered security light.

Both the Evo36 & Evo56 Solar Security Lights have an optional Evo Booster Solar Panel upgrade available separately for 19.99 which make them ideal for heavy winter use or for Evos located in non-solar friendly locations.

SolarCentre says: Still a very popular light 4 years after its release and the second brightest light here, but has since been matched by the Eye (which is 15 less expensive) and superseded by the Astron64 which gives you much more than the 20 difference in price.
The Astron64 was our response to a huge increase in enquiries from councils, housing associations, businesses and even the MoD for high quality commercial grade solar security lighting. This is the brightest, most reliable, most versatile and most waterproof solar security light we have ever made. Made totally from high quality aluminium and toughened glass this light oozes class.

Unlike our other security lights, the Astron64 has a remote motion sensor which can be installed round corners or in any other sneaky location within 1.2m of the light. 89.99 does seem quite expensive, but when you first hold the light in your hands and when you first see it in action you will realise why. If you're still not sure, try phoning a few local electricians to get a quote for installing a halogen which will cost you at least 100. Add to that the cost of a the actual light unit and the on going bills and the Astron64 starts looking cheap. This is probably the best solar security light in the world.

SolarCentre says: The Astron64 really does provide a credible alternative to mains-powered halogen security lights
The Astron Solar Floodlight boasts 40 natural white LEDs backed up by a huge 10 watt solar panel and 36Wh battery. Once fully charged the Astron Solar Floodlight can run for up to 12 hours. Made totally from high quality aluminium and toughened glass the Astron oozes class. The Astron is an ideal 'constant on' light that can be installed literally anywhere. It can be activated on demand from up to 50 metres away by RF remote control or you can leave it in automatic mode where it will light up at dusk and turn off in the morning.

SolarCentre says: The 149.99 price tag is justified by the fact this floodlight can work for up to 12 hours a night and has a remote control with a 50 metre range. The Astron64 (reviewed above) is brighter and cheaper than this light, but has a much smaller battery and solar panel because it only needs to come on when it detects motion.
Astron 64 Solar Security Light
We've selected 3 stand out lights from the 10 we've reviewed. It would be unfair to compare a 20 light with a 150 light so our 3 winners fall into 3 price categories (under 25, under 50 and over 50).

For under 25 we would recommend our Evo15 which is the UKs best selling solar security light and a steal for 19.99.

For under 50 we would recommend the amazing Eye Solar Security Light which is pound for pound the best light here.

For over 50 we would recommend our overall winner, the Astron64 which, put simply, is the best solar security light we've ever made. The Astron64 has won two awards: DIY Week - Security Product of the Year 2012 and Totally DIY - Best Security Product 2013.

It is worth mentioning that the Astron Solar Floodlight is an excellent product if you're looking for 'constant on' light rather than a motion sensor light. Constant on lights need bigger solar panels and bigger batteries than motion sensor lights which explains why the Evo15 RC is more expensive than the Evo15 PIR and the Astron Solar Floodlight is more expensive than the Astron64.