The Best Outdoor Wall Lights to Add to Your Home In 2021
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The Best Outdoor Wall Lights to Add to Your Home In 2021

Outdoor lighting fixtures make a huge difference in the ambiance of your outdoor spaces. Not only do they make the outdoors feel cozy and intimate, but they’re also crucial elements of a multi-layered security system. Outdoor wall lights take your outdoor space from dark and spooky to warm and inviting.

Compared to indoor lights, outdoor lights are more exposed to harsh elements. Because of this, some extra considerations need to go into your purchase. That’s one of our specialties here at Backyard Boss. We go and find out what features matter, why they matter, and then round up the best products with those features. Keep reading for the best outdoor wall lights in 2021.

Backyard Boss Best Five Wall Lights In 2021

PRODUCT FEATURES
Farmhouse Porch Light  - The Best Outdoor Wall Lights to Add to Your Home In 2021Farmhouse Porch Light
  • Automation: Light Sensor
  • Material: High-quality Metal
  • Warranty: 5 Years
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Modern Outdoor Wall Light  - The Best Outdoor Wall Lights to Add to Your Home In 2021Modern Outdoor Wall Light
  • Automation: Motion And Light Sensor
  • Material: Coated Stainless Steel
  • Warranty: 5 years
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Solar Wall Lights  - The Best Outdoor Wall Lights to Add to Your Home In 2021Solar Wall Lights
  • Automation: Motion Sensor
  • Material: ‎Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene
  • Warranty: 18 months
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Outdoor Light Fixtures - The Best Outdoor Wall Lights to Add to Your Home In 2021Outdoor Light Fixtures
  • Automation: None
  • Material: Die cast aluminium
  • Warranty: 3 years
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Outdoor Sconce Wall Light  - The Best Outdoor Wall Lights to Add to Your Home In 2021Outdoor Sconce Wall Light
  • Automation: Light sensor
  • Material: Aluminium alloy
  • Warranty: 3 years
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Why You Can Trust Us

When I first moved onto my house, there was no electricity. There wasn’t even a wall to bolt a light to, but that’s a story for another day. I didn’t want to spend two months in the dark while I waited for the power to be hooked up. So I began buying outdoor solar lights. I gathered quite the collection because many of them didn’t do their one job; make light.

Through some expensive trial and error, I started to recognize what features and materials work and which don’t. When there was finally a wall to bolt a light to and electricity to power said light, I knew exactly what I was looking for.

You can now learn from all my mistakes and experience. I’ve taken everything I learned during my light-collecting phase, combined it with market research and countless online product reviews, and put together this post to make your lighting experience easy and cost-effective.

Best For Aesthetics

Farmhouse Porch Lights
    Form meets function in these outdoor porch lights with light sensor on-off switch.

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Why We Like It: While outdoor wall lights are there to do an important job, they may as well look good while they’re doing it. These farmhouse porch lights bring that popular farmhouse/industrial vibe to your outdoor living spaces.

But this light has more going for it than good looks. It is made from high-quality metal that won’t rust, corrode, or break down in inclement weather. It’s waterproof, so it’s safe outside no matter what.

The light has an automatic sensor that turns the light on or off depending on the ambient light. It means no wasted energy if you forget to turn your lights off during the day.

Who Should Buy It: These trendy porch lights are a great choice if you need to illuminate an outdoor living area, a porch, or even a front door. Any outdoor space that needs light and style will benefit from these farmhouse lights.

Best Motion Sensor Light

Modern Outdoor Wall Light
    This modern outdoor light has an intelligent motion detection system that only works at night. Which means it's on when you need, and off when you don't.

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Why We Like It: This modern-looking outdoor light only turns on when needed. It knows when to turn on because of its advanced motion detection technology. 

The innovative PIR (passive infrared sensor) only works at night, which means your outdoor lights won’t be on during the day. When night falls, the PIR effectively turns the light on when it detects motion and turns off when it goes away.

The modern design will fit into many contemporary styles, and the stainless steel construction means this light will be showing you the way for years and years to come. Motion detector lights are also useful additions to any areas of your house where you’re coming and going, such as garages and driveways.

Who Should Buy It: If you want to light up the entryway to your house without having to flick any switches, this motion detector light is for you. Especially if you’re looking for a fixture that will fit your modern/contemporary home. 

Best Solar Lights

Solar Wall Lights
    This 6 pack of solar powered wall lights will light up your walkways without costing you a cent for electricity. 3 operating modes gives you lighting flexibility.

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Why We Like It: These solar lights might not look like much, but that’s the point. Having solar-powered, motion-detected lighting solutions is a dream come true for many backyard enthusiasts. 

This offering has three different settings, so you can choose between always on dim, bright light triggered by motion detection or a mix of both. However, be warned because the bright light setting is similar to a floodlight. Low-key, hassle-free outdoor lighting solutions are a breeze with 6 of these lights.

These lights come in a pack of 6, so they’re useful in a dark walkway that needs to be lit up as you walk along. The detection range is 10-16 feet, and the lights are waterproof and weather resistant.

Who Should Buy It: If you’re looking for a range of settings, lights you don’t have to turn on or off or even connect to power, these are the outdoor lights for you.

Best For Weather Resistance

Outdoor light fixtures
    The die cast aluminium construction of these lights are sure to stand the test of time. The sleek design will match your decor while keeping you out of the dark.

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Why We Like It: Die-cast aluminum is highly corrosion and rust-resistant. These aluminum lights will also hold up against salt air and look great while doing it.

Aluminum is often recommended in coastal areas where salt corrosion and rust are common problems. These outdoor wall lights are made from die-cast aluminum so that they last for ages.

Besides being extra durable, these lights are sleek, simple, and will go with any decor. The E26 screw-in attachment is widely available in several different bulbs, and these lights even come with two bulbs. 

Who Should Buy It: Those who live near the coast know that corrosion is a big thing to contend with when it comes to house maintenance. 

Best Sconce Light

Outdoor Wall Sconce
    This sconce will bring some old-world charm to your outside space. Don't let that fool you because this light is packed with modern features including light sensor automation.

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Why We Like It: Sconce’s give that old-world feel to your lighting solutions, especially when the extra-thick glass has that old-timey ripple effect. 

Despite the timeless look of this light, it’s packed with modern features. The rugged aluminum alloy that this light is made from will stand the test of time, and the automatic light sensor switch means the light turns on at dusk and turns off at dawn. 

No more wasted energy with lights on during the day. It’s also compatible with LED bulbs for further energy saving.

Who Should Buy It: Looking for a timeless outdoor sconce packed with modern conveniences? Then look no further than this classic outdoor lighting fixture.

Where To Put Outdoor Lighting Fixtures

House at night in snowy neighbourhod
Image credits: Jill Wellington via Pixabay

Before you go out and buy outdoor lights, consider where these lights will go and what function they will perform.

Are you buying lights to frame your front door? In this case, some aesthetically pleasing sconces or farmhouse porch lights might fit the theme of your house. Consider also if you want these lights to be motion detected, turning on when you drive in or as soon as you leave the front door. Maybe you’d prefer them to be on light sensors, turning on at dusk and off at dawn. Or you could go the traditional route with manual switches inside your home. Either way, make sure you’ve considered how these lights will fit into your life and what features they have.

If you need to illuminate an outdoor walkway, for example, between the house and the BBQ area, consider getting a pack of motion detector lights. These turn on when you walk past, stay on for a short time and then turn off when no more motion is detected. It saves on energy, plus it looks cool when the path is lighting up in front of you and descending back into the darkness behind you. Many of these lights come with a few settings too. That’s why they might be in a dim setting until they detect movement. At which point they pump up the lumens and give you a nice bright pathway.

Power Source For Outdoor Lights

Large modern house at night
Image credits: Rendy Novantino via Unsplash

Another important thing to consider before buying outdoor lights is how you plan to power them. If they’re attached to a building that already has power, then you have a hassle-free installation on your hands. What happens, though, if you’re attaching them to an outside shed that doesn’t have a power supply? Maybe a perimeter wall or fence that’s a considerable distance from your distribution board? In this case, you’re going to have to do some planning beforehand.

If you have to dig a trench to lay some power cables, it’s a good idea to do this beforehand. I’ve been doing DIY projects long enough to know that things rarely go to plan, and that’s part of the fun. If you rush ahead into buying things, it could lead to expensive mistakes.

Does digging trenches, laying cables, and dealing with electricity sound like a nightmare to you? Then you should consider solar-powered outdoor lights. Some variations have the solar panel and battery built-in to each light fitting, while others have one larger panel and battery setup for multiple lights. Which one you choose depends on what you prefer. Battery-powered lights also exist, but I reserve those for camping instead of permanent light fixtures on my home.

More Considerations

Modern House at dusk
Image credits: Brian Babb via Unsplash

Most of your decision comes down to your personal preference when it comes to lighting the exterior of your house. I live in a very rural, natural area, and I share my property with many animals, birds, reptiles, insects, etc. These critters are not accustomed to bright spotlights lighting up their home when the sun goes down.

Excessive outdoor lighting is illegal in my area due to its nature conservancy status. It was a major consideration for me when choosing my outdoor lights. I eventually found lights that point down and illuminate the ground instead of the whole environment.

The lights framing my front door are motion detected, so while they light up more than just the ground, they’re only on for about a minute or so while I walk between my car and the front door. This setup works perfectly for my lifestyle, but it might not work for you. So carefully consider why you need outdoor lights and what you need them for before any buying decisions.

Another mistake I see quite often is the positioning of the lights with the rooms inside. You don’t necessarily want a bright spotlight outside your bedroom window. Especially if you’re a light sleeper and don’t have blackout curtains. Get motion detector lights or angle them in a way that won’t disturb your sleep if you want to have a light outside your bedroom window.

This point is especially important for outdoor lights that you intend to have on constantly during dark hours. Make sure you’ve considered how these outdoor lights will affect the rooms likely to be occupied when the light is on.

How We Picked

Since outdoor lights are more exposed to the elements compared to indoor lights, you need to be more deliberate with your buying choices. It doesn’t mostly come down to aesthetics, as would be the case with indoor lights. The materials have to withstand years in the sun, snow, and rain without deteriorating. Outdoor lights are also used differently, so they come with different features compared to their indoor counterparts. Here are the criteria we used to choose which products made it onto our list.

  • Materials. We made sure to choose products that are made from rust and corrosion-free materials. The hard plastic is an excellent material, but it won’t hold up to years of UV exposure. We chose products that are made from various metals or metal alloys.
  • Motion/light sensors. Most scenarios where you need an outdoor light would benefit from a motion or light detector to tell the light to turn on or off. It’s easy to forget to turn off all the outside lights when you wake up in the morning, so a light that turns off automatically when the sun comes up will solve this problem. We also included an option for manual switches, as it is often necessary.
  • Universal fittings. We made sure that all these lights are compatible with most light bulbs you’ll find on the market. Whether you prefer incandescent bulbs or LEDs, there’s a fitting for you on this list.

The Final Verdict

All products we included are worth the recommendation, but our top choice for the best outdoor wall light is the Farmhouse Porch Light. The anti-rust and anti-corrosion material of this product means it stands up to the elements. Although it comes with rugged construction, it looks trendy thanks to the farmhouse shade design and gooseneck base.

This light also has an automatic ambient light sensor so that it turns on at dusk and turns off at dawn. No more forgetting to turn the outside lights off. The E26 bulb fitting is universally available and will fit both LED and incandescent bulbs.

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