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Solar Motion Floodlight
Old 09-06-2008, 07:07 PM   #1
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Solar Motion Floodlight

Anyone have any experience w/ these.....motion floodlight....one of these things you mount on the garage that goes on automatically whenever motion is detected. How bright? How often does the battery need to be replaced?
The garage faces the setting sun if that matters. How much does the battery cost? There is no convenient electrical outlet nearby so it would be a
significant but one-time expense to have someone wire it. The solar seems like a nice easy alternative but not sure if the ongoing upkeep will swamp the one-time cost of wiring. Any other factors to consider.
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:14 PM   #2
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I tried one once and got about 18 months out of the battery. The replacement cost for the battery was almost as much as the light cost originally. Shortly after I replaced the battery the charging board stopped working. At that point I tossed it.
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Old 09-07-2008, 08:04 AM   #3
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CFB---thanks for the feedback.
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Old 09-07-2008, 08:08 AM   #4
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We have one... but it doesn't use solar. It works fine.

The solar panel items I have purchased for lighting in the garden have not lasted much more than about 2 years max. I just threw some away last week.
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Old 09-07-2008, 09:24 AM   #5
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I pirchased one from Home Despot about a year ago It is now dead due to low voltage out of the charging panel.
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Old 09-07-2008, 10:35 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaneohe View Post
Anyone have any experience w/ these.....motion floodlight....one of these things you mount on the garage that goes on automatically whenever motion is detected. How bright? How often does the battery need to be replaced?
The garage faces the setting sun if that matters. How much does the battery cost? There is no convenient electrical outlet nearby so it would be a
significant but one-time expense to have someone wire it. The solar seems like a nice easy alternative but not sure if the ongoing upkeep will swamp the one-time cost of wiring. Any other factors to consider.
Our first batch of solar yard lights (LEDs) only lasted a year but we're approaching two years (and all-night illumination) on the second set. So if you decide to do this then spending for quality will probably buy longevity. For example you'd want at least a NiMh battery instead if NiCd.

One killer is rainwater evaporating on the panel and encrusting it with minerals, so it needs to be sloped for drainage. Another is the amount of sunlight-- if it only gets an hour or two after 3 PM then you might only get an hour or two after sunset.

Don't know about the battery prices, but they're a lot cheaper today than a couple years ago. Two years from now they might be even cheaper. If your expectations are low then it might be worth buying it to see how you like it, and in a couple years it might be not that much money to just replace the entire assembly.

I put in exterior house lights for a neighbor and it was relatively straightforward, but an electrician would never have bothered with the job or would have quoted a ridiculously high price. The solar light is a great way to try out the idea before investing more money, but if there's any other lights or receptacles within 20 feet of the mounting location (especially if the garage has an attic) then a handyman might tackle the job.
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Old 09-07-2008, 12:06 PM   #7
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A neighbor of ours had one on his back deck and every time a rabbit or other critter would move by it, it would go on. I swear it had a 1000 watt light bulb in it and it would shine into our bedroom window. If the thing hadn't burnt out I would have had to resort to illegal activities to take care of it.
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