Having the outside of your home lit up is pretty important for many reasons. You want to be able to make it to your front door without tripping on steps, ensure there’s visibility on people sneaking into your backyard, and be able to see friends arrive for a visit. Let’s go through some of the best outdoor lights available. All of the lights here are rated as waterproof and can withstand outdoor elements. Don’t be shy about leaving them out year-round.
Govee Outdoor String Lights
Best patio lights
- Robust mobile app
- Alexa and Google Assistant support
- Music sync
- Power supply not waterproof
A good set of string lights can add a whimsical ambiance to an outdoor dinner party. The Govee Smart Outdoor String Lights are well-suited to that task. These LEDs are available in either 48- or 96-foot strings, which can cover most residential areas. A dedicated mobile app provides a wealth of custom animation options. Since it's compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant, you can control the lights hands-free. When the party gets going, you can turn on music sync and have the lights animate with the tunes.
GIGALUMI Solar Pathway Lights
Best outdoor path lights
- Premium construction
- Beautiful design
- Easy installation
- Could be brighter
Solar lights are handy for pathways that are far from plugs in your home. Even if they are in range, placing wiring across a lawn can be unsightly or dangerous. The Gigalumi Solar Pathway Lights provide a nice mix of class and utility. These glass and metal lights come in a pack of six and can provide 10 hours of warm, white illumination on a single charge. They’ll automatically turn on when it gets dark and turn off when there’s enough sun to start charging them again. It helps that the pattern these lights cast is quite striking and likely to catch the eye of neighbors.
Eufy Floodlight Cam 2 Pro
Best outdoor security light
- Very bright
- 360-degree vision
- Light panels have tunable colors
- AI camera tracking is hit-and-miss
For those seeking a little bit of connectivity and security, Eufy offers an impressive flood light that includes a motion-sensing camera. In addition to providing 3,000 lumens in a 140-degree span, there’s also a 360-degree 2K livestream camera that can send you mobile notifications of trespassers. When spotted, the Eufy Floodlight Camera 2 Pro can fire off a siren to spook those ne’er-do-wells. You can record video clips without having to pay subscription costs, which is a big leg up over other home security lights. Both Alexa and Google Assistant support is available so you can activate the lights with your voice.
Philips Hue Outdoor Spot Light
Best outdoor decorative lights
- Full-featured app
- Works with all voice assistants
- Beautiful color array
- Limited number of extensions in same row
Philips Hue remains the go-to brand for smart lighting indoors, and they’re asserting that dominance on outdoor lights, too. The Philips Hue Outdoor Spot Light lets you light up the front of your home with whatever splashes of seasonal color you desire. You’ll need a Bridge hub already set up inside, but it will let you group all of your lights together and control them via Google Assistant, Siri, and Alexa. Paired with a Hue Motion Sensor, you can have those lights automatically turn on as you pull into the driveway.
JSOT Solar Step Lights
Best outdoor step lighting
- Tough construction
- Built-in light sensor
- Low-profile design
- Could be brighter
Steps are a real hazard when navigating the outside of your house at night. Picking up an eight-pack of these JSOT Solar Step Lights should provide all you need to make it up and down stairs in the dark safely. They turn off and on automatically as lighting conditions change. With between four and six hours of solar charging, you can get between six and eight hours of light from each fixture. Since they’re powered by the sun, you don’t have to run any wires to them — just screw them right into your steps. They each emit about 30 lumens, which should be plenty to illuminate nearby stairs.
Globe Electric Sebastien Wall Sconce
Best outdoor wall lighting
- Modern design
- Easy installation
- Fully dimmable
- Fragile construction
Sometimes you need a full-blown fixture replacement, and the Globe Electric Sebastien Wall Sconce is a great fit. A classic style with neutral coloring makes it a versatile choice. The scone is fully dimmable and supports the standard E26 bulb socket, so you’re free to pop in whatever outdoor-rated LED bulbs you like.
Those are our recommendations for the best outdoor lights available. Between these models, you should be able to keep every little nook and cranny of your yard visible at all hours of the night if necessary. Take advantage of the few smart options and you’ll be able to control the important stuff from your phone while allowing lower-tech solar options to turn on and off just when they’re needed.
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