How do you charge solar lights without sun?

The need for sunlight cannot be emphasized enough when it comes to solar-powered lights.  Solar lights need direct sunlight during the day in order to deliver their best at night.  Therefore, it is always recommended to install the lights in a shadow-free area so that the panels can absorb maximum sunlight.  How about cloudy and rainy days?  How to charge the lights without sunlight?

A cloudy or rainy day certainly affects your solar light’s charging ability and there will be a drop in the duration of illumination during such overcast conditions.  However, clouds do not completely block sunlight and solar panels are capable of absorbing any amount of solar radiation that is available.  This helps the solar lights to continue to light up even during rainy days though at a lower voltage.

Tips on how to charge solar lights with indirect sunlight

  • Keep your solar panels cleaned

Solar lights do not require any frequent maintenance; nevertheless, cleaning the solar panels off dust and dirt will help your lights to charge efficiently.  Solar lights can absorb sunlight even in cloudy weather.  Any dust accumulation on the panels makes it difficult for the panels to get charged.  Cleaning your solar light with clean water and a microfiber cloth will do the trick.

  • Position your solar lights correctly

The solar panels must be placed directly facing the sun as there is less sunlight available during cloudy days.  Occasionally trim shrubs or tree branches blocking the panels and also, avoid installing your solar light next to a bright light source.

  • Redirect sunlight with the help of mirrors

If your solar light is installed underneath a shadow, you can take the help of mirrors to redirect sunlight to your solar panels.  Choose mirrors that are bigger than the panels and place the mirror stand in a diagonal position.  This will help to reflect sunlight and charge the battery.

  • Use artificial lighting for charging

Place your solar light underneath a household light or close to an incandescent light bulb to charge it.  LED flashlights can also be used to charge your solar light.  Do this only if you need your solar lights to light up at night during power outages.  Otherwise, there is no point using a hard-wired light to charge an energy-saving light.


The methods discussed above are not as efficient as direct sunlight; however, they can be a lifesaver.  Of course, the best way to charge your solar lights is in the presence of direct sunlight; however, the lights can get charged even when there is indirect sunlight.  Most of the solar street light have energy-saving options now which will help the charge to last for 2-3 days if they are exposed to direct sunlight for 7 to 8 hours during the day.

Tapetum India Solar, a leading solar light distributor in India, deals with compact solar garden light such as Solar European Pathway Light, Solar Vintage Garden Light and Solar Edison Garden Light.  Since they are small in size, they are easily rechargeable and even though not as quickly and efficiently as during sunny days, they can still charge even in indirect sunlight and put out a decent amount of brightness.