Have you noticed your solar lights aren't staying on through the night or coming on at all? It may be time to replace your batteries! But if you're not sure what type of batteries you might need, we've done the research for you to make shopping that much easier.
For starters, our top 10 list can give you some ideas. Our number one pick, Brightown NiMH AA rechargeable batteries are high-capacity and stand up to cold weather. We've got nine other great options to check out, and if you need more in-depth information on how to choose rechargeable batteries, check out our buyer's guide. Learn how to determine if you need to replace your batteries and what to consider!
If you're new to choosing solar light batteries, you'll want to consider capacity, size, and your area's climate. You'll also want to think about how many solar lights you have and how often you'll need to replace the batteries.
|Recharge cycles||Not provided|
|Recharge cycles||Not provided|
|Size||AA (1/5 shorter than normal)|
|Type||14430 3.2V LiFePo4 (Lithium)|
Brightown NiMH Rechargeable Battery Pack
Solla Rechargeable NiMH AA Battery
Rechargeable AA Batteries
AA Rechargeable Batteries for Solar Lights
Rechargeable Batteries for Solar Lights
Solar Rechargeable Batteries
Solla AAA Rechargeable Batteries
Shockli Rechargeable Solar Batteries
Long-Lasting and Ready to Use
Designed Especially for Solar Lights
High Performance for Outdoor Solar Lights
Versatile and Long-Lasting
Designed for Intermatic and Malibu Solar Garden Lights
NiCD Batteries in AAA Size
Pre-Charged and Anti-Leak Batteries
Highly Reliable and Long-Lasting
Reliable AAA Batteries for All Seasons
Shorter Battieries for Specialty Needs
|Size||AA||AA||AA||AA||AA||AAA||AA||AA||AAA||AA (1/5 shorter than normal)|
|Recharge cycles||400||2,000||1,200||Not provided||1000||Not provided||2,000||1,000||2,000||1,500|
|Type||Ni-MH||NiMH||NiMH||NiCd||NiMH||NiCd||NiMH||NiCd||NiMH||14430 3.2V LiFePo4 (Lithium)|
Even the best solar light batteries won't work well if there's a compatibility problem or an issue with the lights' charging panels. If you're looking for brighter lights or longer life, our buying guide shows you what to consider.
Besides the size of your current batteries, check the voltage and the mAh rating. You'll also want to check the battery's type and consider whether you live in a climate that has both cold and warm temperatures.
mAh stands for milliampere per hour. Typical mAh ratings are 600, 650, 1,200, and 2,800. Experts advise using rechargeable batteries with mAh ratings of 1,000 or higher for the best results.
Higher capacities lead to brighter and longer-lasting lights. However, experts also recommend not going much higher than your current batteries or exceeding your lights' voltage range.
Typical sizes for solar lights are AA or AAA. Although the AA or AAA size does not impact recharge cycles, different corresponding brands and sizes will have differences.
The number of recharge cycles can influence how long the batteries will last, with more recharge cycles equaling longer battery life. Recharge cycles of 1,000 or higher are recommended.
You'll also want to consider self-discharge ratings. Usually, if batteries are not labeled as being low self-discharge, experts do not recommend using them. Low self-discharge batteries are better at keeping a charge. A 70 percent capacity or higher after three years of non-use is best.
Rechargeable batteries for solar lights are usually made of nickel metal hydride (NiMH) or nickel cadmium (NiCD). It's generally best to keep using the same type as your current batteries. However, NiMH batteries perform better in climates with colder weather.
Solar light batteries tend to be sold in packs. Common sizes are six, eight, 12, 16, and 20. See how many batteries you may need to replace at once and how many batteries you'd like to have on hand in case one goes out.
Consider how frequently you'll be replacing batteries, as you don't want to keep too many lying around. They might expire after years of non-use. Figure self-discharge ratings against total anticipated battery life and replacement frequency.
Finally, you may want to consider batteries with longer warranties, as some have one-year, two-year, and three-year options. Warranties allow you to get replacement batteries at no additional charge if the original batteries fail before the guaranteed performance period.
The last thing you want to do is buy replacement batteries if that's not the problem. If your solar lights aren't coming on at night or staying on for long, there are a few things you should rule out first.
If your solar lights are not coming on at night or are not lasting for more than a few hours, it's not always a problem with the batteries. Check to see if the solar panels are dirty or blocked. You can try cleaning them with soap and water, especially if dirt and dust have built up over the fall and winter in seasonal climates.
Another thing to double-check is the placement of the lights. Make sure they are in areas that receive plenty of sunlight during the day. You can try placing them in sunnier locations to see if that makes a difference. You can also try testing the solar lights with non-rechargeable batteries to see if they light up.
Generally, rechargeable batteries in solar lights last for one to two years. If the age of the batteries is unknown or it's been more than two years since you replaced them, it is probably time. Even if some of your solar lights are still coming on, you may want to get new batteries if the old ones are getting old.
Sometimes the inside of the battery compartments can become damaged or broken. This can happen due to battery and compartment corrosion, as well as water damage.
Rust and broken wires often indicate the light itself needs to be replaced. It's also possible that the solar panel's circuit board or controller has become damaged. This usually means it's easier to replace the entire light.
Keeping your yard or garden looking its best takes care and work. Here's some tips to get you started!
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