Don't Throw Out Your Solar Lights Just Yet.

by Ino1738714
2 Materials
30 Minutes

I thought my solar light batteries needed replaced until I saw the battery compartments were corroded. So I took to the internet and found 2 options, white vinegar or baking soda and water mixture, neither worked. Then I remembered the old remedy I had used to remove tarnish from brass, ketchup. I didn't want to throw them away because they were still in great shape and I didn't want to have to buy more, so what did I have to lose but a little ketchup.

This is what they looked like .

I slathered the ketchup on the contacts and the springs with a Qtip. Then let them sit for quite a bit of time.

I cleaned them with a Qtip and water. Some were more corroded than others so I reapplied more ketchup. Cleaned them again and let them all dry.

This is the end result, no more corrosion.

After letting them dry, I placed a ( regular ) battery in the compartments to test them. They now work !

Read this guide on how to clean the battery corrosion for more tips!

Suggested materials:
  • Ketchup
  • Q-Tip
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 5 questions
  • Rose Rose on Apr 25, 2016
    can I use regular batteries in these outdoor solar lights ??? thanks. Rose P.S. THey come with rechargeable,but they don't recharge.
  • Kathy Brougher Kathy Brougher on May 11, 2020

    there is water and rust build up rechargable battery coroded can i replace the whole compartment

  • Anthony Anthony on Mar 03, 2022

    What is the little switch and plug in my pic.

Join the conversation
2 of 68 comments
  • Lovesunique Lovesunique on Jun 02, 2019

    I'm going to try this as I have a lot of solar that stops working because of rust!

  • Eliza Eliza on Jul 11, 2019

    This is a good idea...gotta upcycle...think most of us just get tired when stuff like this stops working...but it was $¢ spent, anything decorative is landfill stuff and should be prevented. I will attempt the 'cleaning.'. Throwing out stuff is going out of style, fixing is in.