Do solar powered lights work on cloudy days?
Solar lights are easy to set up and require no electricity, making them a simple and eco-friendly addition to your outdoor landscaping. Cloudy days will interfere with these lights, however, slowing, though not stopping, their ability to charge.
The more sunlight the outdoor solar light receives during the day, the longer the run time at night. As most operating times may vary, the average outdoor solar light will stay illuminated for up to 15 hours.
- Photovoltaic cells absorb sunlight during the day to charge the batteries, which then light the bulb at night. Because solar lights are powered by the sun, they must be placed in an area that receives full sun — ideally eight or more hours per day.
- A solar cell is capable of converting sunlight to a direct current. Solar garden lights use a small photovoltaic panel you see at the top of the light. This panel draws the sunlight in, and then charges and stores the energy it makes into the battery under the PV panel in the light.
- Most people assume that solar panels do not work unless they are in direct, bright sunshine, so do not work at all in the shade. However, this is a misconception because modern solar panels work even in poor light conditions. But that said it is still important to understand the impact shade has on solar panels.
Updated: 4th October 2018