Best Security Lights: Who’s Lurking In The Shadows?

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Ring outdoor light with camera at night (Caption: Best Security Lights)Having your home well-lit at night can deter criminals from lurking around your property. But if you’re only leaving them on while you’re on vacation, it may send the opposite signal – that you’re not home. Also, leaving the porch light on all night isn’t the most energy-efficient or cost-saving solution.

Smart security lights that can come on when necessary can not only give your home a “lived-in” appearance, they can reduce your energy bill, make your light at home easier (motion lights don’t require a switch), and you won’t have to swap bulbs as frequently. Our experts comb through the best lights from top providers.

Article Overview

What Are The Different Types Of Security Lights?

You’ll come across all sorts of terms when shopping for security lights. Some of these include flood, motion detection, solar powered, camera, and LED, just to name a few.

Flood Lights

Flood lights do what the name implies – they flood the area with lots of light. These are great if you want to light up a larger area, such as your driveway, carport, outdoor pool area, etc.

Motion Detection

Lights with motion detection will only turn on when they sense motion. This is helpful for three reasons:

  1. Lighting patterns will be more natural – i.e. they will only light up when there’s movement.
  2. Energy savings – by not running 24/7, the bulbs will last longer and your energy bill will be lower.
  3. Draws attention – a light that suddenly comes on can alert you and your neighbors to activity.

How Much Can I Save?

One of our lights that’s on 24/7 cost us $35/year in energy use. Once we upgraded that bult to a motion sensor light our bill went down to just $2/year. And that math is only for one bulb in one location, add up all your bulbs and you’re saving quite a bit of money.

Solar Powered

Solar powered lights are great for areas that get sufficient sunlight. Solar technology has improved to the point where you can get just as powerful a light with a good solar panel as you can a light drawing from electrical power. The economic advantage here is also a zero energy bill.

Read Our Reviews Of Solar Security Lights

Camera

Lights with motion detection and cameras are able to record footage when motion is detected. This can help track down intruders, as well as speed up the dispatch of law enforcement to your premise since “video verified events” receive police dispatch priority over non-verified events in most precincts.

LED

Most light technology has switched away from incandescent to LED (Light Emitting Diode) – a more environmentally friendly, more powerful (brighter) and longer lasting light technology that is becoming the norm.

Best Security Lights

Below are some of our experts’ picks for the best security lights. And here they are sorted by manufacturer in case you’re interested in a particular brand:

Ring | Mr. Beams | Solla | SunforceHeath Zenith

Ring Floodlight Review

Ring Floodlight CamView on Amazon

The Ring Floodlight is the bells and whistles offering in this review, featuring motion detection and a built-in camera. It detects motion from up to 30 feet away, and you get video footage of what is triggering the light to turn on (as long as you have a cloud recording plan).

Ring Floodlight performs well, but it comes at a hefty price, and you have to pay extra for video storage. If you want a device with lighting and a camera all in one system, this is an excellent choice. But if all you want is some extra lighting, there are less expensive options above.

Pros

Cons

  • Includes a camera built-in
  • Two-way talk
  • Ring app
  • Quality material
  • Responsive
  • Bright (1800 lumens)
  • Easy setup
  • Weatherproof
  • Expensive
  • Must be hardwired
  • Must pay monthly for video recording

Pricing

Coupon Code

Ring products are generally discounted from MSRP on Amazon.

Ring Home Security

Ring keypad on door (caption: Ring Alarm Review)Ring has more than just security lights – they offer entire home security systems. Our experts review Ring’s security solution in-depth with features, pricing, pros, cons, and real user feedback.

Mr. Beams Review

Mr. BeamsView on Amazon

This LED security flood light senses motion to turn the light on and off automatically. It is weatherproof and wireless, so you can install it anywhere without a technician. Each LED light provides 400 square feet of coverage and detects motion from up to 25 feet.

It is operated by four D-cell batteries (sold separately), which should last you 1 full year if the lights are activated 8-10 times per day. The light automatically shuts off 20 seconds after the motion has stopped. The light sensor prevents it from being activated during the day time.

Pros

Cons

  • Wireless (battery operated)
  • Responsive
  • Easy setup
  • Weatherproof
  • Material feels cheap
  • Not as bright as others in this article (300 lumens)

Pricing

Solla Review

Solla LED Solar Motion Sensor Flood LightView on Amazon

If you have a big yard, the Solla LED Solar Motion Sensor Flood Light is an excellent choice. It’s more user-friendly than most solar security lights and it’s easy to set the sensor to detect at various ranges (20, 33, 49 feet) and lengths of time (30, 60, 120 seconds).

Reviews revealed some questions about the product material quality and the consistency of the sensor.

Pros

Cons

  • Waterproof
  • 2 modes: permanent on and auto mode
  • Adjustable light-up time
  • Adjustable heads
  • Up to 180° wide sensing angle
  • Detects motion up to 49 ft
  • Lithium-ion battery
  • 30-day return policy and 24-month warranty
  • Easy to install
  • Must install under a roof to prolong the working life
  • Only 950lm brightness output
  • Some customers complain that the motion sensor doesn’t work consistently

Pricing

Read Our Reviews Of Solar Security Lights

Sunforce Review

Sunforce lightView on Amazon

The Sunforce solar flood lights are our pick for best solar security light because they charge in all weather conditions, have a detection distance of 30 feet and a range of 180°. This flood light has an amorphous solar panel, which means it has silicon sprayed onto the glass.

This allows it to generate electricity better in all lighting conditions, so no more worrying about locating these in shady locations or having a cloudy day. These are great for places that have unpredictable sun conditions. You get to choose the duration of light once motion is sensed (30, 60 or 120 seconds).

Pros

Cons

  • Wireless (battery operated)
  • Choose the light duration
  • Responsive
  • Bright (900 lumens)
  • Easy setup
  • Weatherproof
  • Wires connect the solar panel and light
  • Light only rotates vertically

Pricing

Heath Zenith Review

Heath ZenithView on Amazon

Heath Zenith has some of the best outdoor security lights. It detects motion from up to 70 feet away, and you can select the duration of light (1, 5 or 10 minutes).

It does not turn on during the daytime, so the charge is preserved for nighttime use only. The biggest downside for this light is that there isn’t as much information compared to others in this article.

Pros

Cons

  • Quality material
  • Responsive
  • Bright
  • Easy setup
  • Inexpensive
  • Light bulbs not included
  • Must be hardwired

Pricing

See Security Lights In Action (Video)

Check out this video from Mr. Beams showing the effectiveness of outdoor security lights.

Man looking into security camera: Home Surveillance Cameras 101Add Security Cameras To Catch Intruders In Their Tracks

While motion sensor security lights can definitely increase the security of your home, a camera can improve it even more. If you’re interested in learning more about your options, read our experts security camera guide.

Which security lights are you leaning towards?

About The Author:

Kimberly is our home security expert and has been writing about security and safety since 2013, covering everything from security systems and home automation to identity theft protection, home warranties, medical alert systems, and more. She has personally tested hundreds of system components and interfaced with dozens of home security companies to find out what’s happening behind the scenes. Her work has appeared in many notable brands, including The New York Times' Wirecutter, Reader's Digest, Forbes, People, Woman's World, and Huffington Post.

In 2018, she had her first child, which opened up a whole new avenue of security experience with baby gear. She wanted to purchase the safest items for her family.

Kimberly received her Bachelor of Arts in multimedia journalism from Simpson College. Her natural curiosity helps her research as she seeks the truth when learning about, comparing, and personally testing products and services.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Disclaimer: This website contains reviews, opinions and information regarding products and services manufactured or provided by third parties. We are not responsible in any way for such products and services, and nothing contained here should be construed as a guarantee of the functionality, utility, safety or reliability of any product or services reviewed or discussed. Please follow the directions provided by the manufacturer or service provider when using any product or service reviewed or discussed on this website.

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