There have been some discussions of this over the months here on Hometalk. As much as I love the idea of solar landscape lighting, I have to admit I haven't had much luck with lights that offer much output or last very long. Here is a slightly more detailed discussion of the issue:
And another one:
I agree with Steve. And I don't even like to think about the number of cheap solar lights ending up in landfills. I've got a couple, which don't work very well, and as soon as it's in the budget I am replacing them with LED versions.
Here's an interesting solar thingy: fireflies. http://www.fireflymagic.com/
Supposedly the inventor spent lots of time timing the flashes of fireflies and developing a controller and LEDs to make it look like you have fireflies in your garden.
I have one and it has lasted 2 years. And even though the insects are out of season in winter, the gentle flickering in my snow covered shrubbery in very nice.
The "newer" styles with LED's work tons better because they do not suck down the small batteries as quick...but as mentioned above the light output is kind of wimpy.
Majority of these lights are made in China. To the best of my knowledge none have lased more than a few months at best. The ones from wholesale warehouses also do not last any longer than any store bought ones. Suggestion: Don't bother wasting your money.
I have the Firefly 'thingee....love it . I have purchased by solar spot lights & motion detectors from Gardener's Supply (they aren't cheap) and love them, they are made up of multiple LED's and the output is awesome.
There is no such thing as good solar landscape lighting!
You get what you pay for.....inexpensive solar lights from discount stores only last a short time. Mid priced lights work pretty well, I've had mine for 3 years and they still emit a decent light for the stairs and walkway. Stay away from the bluish flourescent looking lights, they don't put out more than a sight moonglow. Purchase individual lights, not the type that are linked together by one unit.
You do get what you pay for. I invite Burnco Surface & Decor to investigate our solar landscape lighting. Skyfuel has the answer to quality solar landscape lighting. Have a look at our solar landscape lighting (www.skyfuel.ca). They are construction grade solar landscape lights manufactured in South Korea not China. These lights are not available at the big box store. We market our lights through professional firms in the landscape supply and paving stone manufacturing business.They carry a three year replacement warranty. The failure rate of our lights is less than 1%. They don't use batteries to store the energy. They use capacitors that never need replacing. Each unit is self contained (no exterior wires leading to a stake in the ground with a solar collector). These lights are 100% waterproof rated IP68 (meaning they can can safely and reliably be installed in ponds or fountains). They have an operating temperature range of -40F to 158F allowing them to be installed in the harshest of climates. Each light is UV protected with anti slip surfaces on most models. Have a look at one of our 19 YouTube videos at http://www.youtube.com/user/g30rg3t0wn?feature=mhee.
I have been buying them for about 12 years.... first I bought 2 nice rather expensive sets with glass .. they lasted 11/2-2 years.. I thought maybe new technology,, bought another set.. plastic parts.. again less than 2 years.. then I bought a very expensive set from WESTINGHOUSE, glass, with option of color morphing or clear light. had to send most of those back didn't work at all..replacement weren't available in the correct color.. but oh well. . again about 2 years.. I finally gave up and started buying the ones at the local home improvement and hardware and lastly BIG LOTS.. they have lasted far longer than the others had them 3+ years and they are still working...... they are usually $2.99 each.... come in a variety of finishes..