How To Charge Solar Lights Without Sun?

Solar lights are our true friends when we need green, reliable, and cost-effective lighting solutions for our outdoor areas. But what will you do without direct sunlight or if the sky is covered with dark clouds? Especially in areas with frequent cloudy weather or in winter. The question is how to charge solar lights without the sun.

Well, don’t worry because in this guide I will tell you methods to charge your solar lights in indirect sunlight and with no sunlight.

Can I charge Solar Lights without Sun or in Indirect Sunlight?

Yes, you can charge solar lights without the sun or in indirect sunlight. They only need visible light, which can be indirect sunlight diffused by clouds or artificial light through incandescent bulbs, fluorescent bulbs, or LED lights.

Solar lights can be charged using any visible light and the wavelength of visible light fall between 400 to 700 nm. So any light that is between this wavelength can be used to charge solar lights but the charging time may vary. Sunlight is the fastest option to charge solar lights while other artificial lights will charge slower than sunlight.

Can I Charge Solar Lights Indoors?

Yes, you can charge solar lights indoors. There are several ways to charge solar lights without the sun.

  1. You can use artificial lights to charge solar lights. Keeping in mind that solar lights are thought to save electricity costs and use free solar energy, this is not a good option as it will cost you money to use artificial lights. But if you are already using lights for other purposes then you can place your solar lights near them.
  2. You can use USB to charge solar lights. Many solar lights come with dual charge options. They can be charged using both sunlight and a USB port. So, If your lights have this option, you can plug them into any USB port to charge them.
  3. You can plug them into the socket to charge them. Like USB port many solar lights have the option to charge by plugging in the socket.

Do Solar Lights have an Alternative Charging Option?

Many solar lights are designed by keeping in mind the situations like cloudy weather and winter. So these solar lights have alternative charging options. In case when solar lights are unable to charge using sunlight they can be charged using alternative options like USB or plugging in.

Alternative charging options are great when we talk about charging solar light without the sun.

When and Where We Might Need Alternative Energy Sources for Our Solar Lights?

An alternative charging option is an important factor to consider when buying new solar lights. You might need it in case when sunlight is not enough to charge your solar lights. If you live in a region where it’s mostly cloudy or it’s winter time then you will need an alternative charging option like USB or plugging in.

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Charging Solar Lights with Indirect Sunlight

Sunlight is the best way to charge solar lights. They will charge at a faster rate in direct sunlight but if it’s not available you can even charge them in indirect sunlight. When it is cloudy weather the sun is still shining and some amount of light is passing through clouds and that light will charge the solar lights.

If your solar lights get covered in the shed after a few hours and do not receive direct sunlight they are still charging. However, you can redirect the sunlight on your solar light using mirrors.

1. Use Mirrors to Redirect Sunlight

If your solar lights do not receive enough direct sunlight and get covered in a shed they are still charging but at a much slower rate. You can increase that speed by redirecting sunlight to your solar lights using mirrors.

Place the mirror in a way that reflects the sunlight on your solar light’s panel. It might seem easy but it’s not. You will have to keep adjusting the panel throughout the day as the sun keeps moving. If your solar lights are small and easy to remove then you can just keep your solar lights under the sunlight which is the easy way.

Charging Solar Lights without Sun

You can charge your solar lights without sunlight using several methods.

1. Use Incandescent Light to Charge Solar Lights without Sun

When we talk about charging solar lights without sun incandescent lights can come into action. Solar lights can be charged using incandescent light bulbs. They emit yellow light which is good for charging solar lights.

Solar panels are most efficient when they are hit by wavelengths between 600 to 700 nm (yellow, orange, and red).

However, incandescent lights produce heat which is not beneficial for solar panels because the rise in temperature decreases the efficiency of solar panels. Also, incandescent lights emit infrared lights which are again not beneficial for solar lights.

It is not recommended to charge solar lights using incandescent lights as they consume a lot of electricity which is against the purpose of using solar lights. There are other better options to charge solar lights without sunlight.

You can charge your solar lights using incandescent lights in case you are using incandescent lights already for another purpose and there is no other option available to charge your solar lights.

2. Use Fluorescent Light to Charge Solar Lights without Sun

The light emitted by fluorescent bulbs falls between 400 nm to 700 nm. They are the better option when compared to incandescent bulbs. The fluorescent bulb consumes less energy and can charge solar lights without the sun.

3. Use LED Lights to Charge Solar Lights Without Sun

LED light is the best option when charging solar lights using artificial lights. Use bright LEDs to charge solar lights faster. LEDs consume less energy and are available in almost every house.

Majority of the people have shifted to LED lights because of their benefits. So keep your solar lights under LED light and if you have yellow LEDs then it’s even better.

4. Use a Battery Charger to Charge Solar Lights Without Sun

You can use a battery charger to charge your solar lights. Remove the batteries from your solar lights and charge them using a regular battery charger. It is fast and gets the job done.


In conclusion, charging solar lights without direct sunlight is possible through various methods. Solar lights can be charged in indirect sunlight, such as diffused sunlight through clouds or artificial light sources like incandescent bulbs, fluorescent bulbs, LED lights, or even through USB ports or electrical sockets.

Alternative charging options are available in many solar lights, considering situations like cloudy weather or winter. Mirrors can be used to redirect sunlight onto solar panels, increasing the charging speed. Additionally, incandescent lights, fluorescent lights, LED lights, and battery chargers can be used as alternative charging sources for solar lights.

While these methods offer solutions when sunlight is limited, it’s important to consider the cost and energy efficiency of using artificial lights compared to the intended purpose of solar lights. With these charging options, solar lights can still provide reliable and sustainable lighting solutions even in the absence of direct sunlight.

Hyder Ali is a writer from Pakistan who writes well researched articles on different topics. He has been writing on Medium and other platforms for a long time. He tries his best to write correct information and help his readers solve their problems.

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