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Will Solar Lights Charge in Shade?

September 22,2023

When planning to purchase solar lights, where you’ll put them comes up. Chances are you won’t want your new installation to disrupt the aesthetics of your home. So, you’re curious about placing it in a shaded area.


Well, general knowledge about solar lights is that solar panels need direct access to sunlight.

It’s not unfounded because adequate energy from the sun must hit the boards before the batteries can get a good charge.

However, that doesn’t mean the position must be under direct sunlight. So, yes, solar lights charge in the shade. But again, the word “shade” has varying degrees, so just how much are the sun’s rays must reflect on your solar panels before it gives its optimum performance?

You need to understand how solar panels work to determine where to place yours personally. So, let’s start with the batteries.

Solar panels need rechargeable batteries to synthesize energy and release it through a circuit when it’s required. Another component is the light sensor; this one is very important.

It’s located at the top of the solar lights. When it gets dark, the sensor alerts the battery to activate the energy to turn on your light. If you get bright lights for more than 16 hours, it’s because adequate protons reach the surface of the panels for at least 8 hours.

A tree cannot completely block direct access to sunlight; the sun’s rays will certainly escape through the leaves to reflect on the panels. However, a cover like a garage roof doesn’t permit any access.

Although we cannot define what shade means, your solar panel’s exposure to it will determine how strong its performance will turn out.

You can test it yourself since we cannot define what “shade” means. Again, since we can’t always guarantee direct access to sunlight, we can get at least 6 to 8 hours of energy from a 4-hour charge cycle.

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