Bringing Your Home and Garden Into the 21st Century

Can You Use Solar Flood Lights for Outdoor Security?

Outdoor flood lights can improve security outside your home. While you can hook up regular flood lights to do this job, solar lights are also an option worth considering. Solar lighting powers itself, so you save on electricity costs and don't have to run complex connections to a power source. What should you look for in solar flood lights if you want to use them for security in your garden?

Motion Sensors

Security flood lights need to turn on automatically if someone enters your garden. Having a light come on is often enough to deter burglars; lights also alert you to potential intruders.

Regular solar flood lights don't necessarily come with motion sensors that turn them on or make them shine more intensely when someone is in close proximity. If you want to use solar lights for security purposes, then look for models that come with built-in passive infrared motion sensors.

These sensors tell the lights when someone is within a certain distance of them. This turns on the light or increases its brightness. Hopefully, this is enough to shock an intruder into leaving your garden.

Tip: Lights that have sensitivity controls are a good bet. These lights allow you to adjust the range-of-motion sensors to suit your needs.

Light Intensity

Solar flood lights have different light capacities, and some give out a brighter light than others. Intruders aren't likely to be deterred if your solar lights give out a dim, feeble or barely noticeable shine. You may not even notice if a low-power light goes off.

Your aim here should be more along the lines of shock and awe. Look for lights with high lumens and LED bulb numbers. The higher these ratings are, the brighter the light will shine.


Even if a light is marked for outdoor use, it may not be able to cope with inclement weather. Some outdoor solar lights are designed to be used under cover. Before choosing a solar security flood light, check that the model you like is waterproof and weatherproof. If you use a light that isn't, then it may break down in heavy rain or wind, leaving you with no security light at all.

If you aren't sure which solar flood light to buy, talk to local security light retailers. They can show you models and talk you through the pros and cons until you find a flood light that's right for you.