Going From Electric Outdoor Lighting to Solar: A How-To Guide
So, you’ve decided to go solar and replace an electric post light. Congratulations! You’re on a path to sustainability, affordability, and never having to worry about the potential hazards and expenses of electrical wiring again.
Like any breakup, however, there are strings attached. The electric outdoor lights you already have won’t go away on their own. Fortunately, you have options as to what you might do with those lines, and we’ll walk you through your primary choices: Lamphead Upgrade or Lamp & Post Replacement.
Replace an Electric Post Light with a Lamp Head Upgrade
Solar lamp heads with fitter attachments can fit on top of most standard 3”-diameter lamp posts, making them perfect for repurposing and retrofitting existing gas or electric lamps. If you’re handy and feel up to the task, you can DIY this upgrade. For your safety, you must first have a licensed technician disconnect and cap the gas or electric line.
Then, you can get to work.
Supplies & Tools You’ll Need
If you’re dealing with a lamp post you’d like to bring new life to, use:
- Sandpaper (for paint removal)
- A rust-resistant, surface-appropriate spray paint
- A screwdriver or drill for screwing/unscrewing the post light
You may also need a spray lubricant, a knife, or a hammer to extract any rusty screws.
*Note: when dealing with potential lead paint or spraying new paint, use correct personal protective equipment.
Once the post light has been removed, and the pole has been sanded and painted to your preference, choose the right solar post lamp for you that also fits within the pole’s diameter. While 3”-diameter lamp posts are a standard size, you can also purchase adapters that will give you more flexibility in choosing a lamp.
Solar lamp heads come in a wide variety of styles and features. You can choose from different light qualities (like a choice between warm white light vs. bright white light) and added features. Gama Sonic’s Victorian Solar Light, for example, has motion-sensing technology, which will brighten the light when movement is detected.
Paint your chosen solar post light to match the pole, attach it, and voila. You will have the revamped outdoor solar light of your home and garden dreams.
For a modern look, choose something like the Modern Solar Post Light 132i90012 (shown above). For classic, traditional charm, something like the Colonial Solar Post Light GS-18F may be more your style (shown below).
Replace an Electric Post Light with a Lamp & Post Replacement
The second and most simple option is to replace the existing lamp post and lamp head. In this situation, you will be replacing the old light fixture entirely, choosing from many options of easily installable standalone solar light posts and lamps. These come in a variety of designs, light qualities, and added features. You can mix and match lamp heads and lamp posts that are sold separately, or you can purchase an all-in-one product that includes the lamp head and the post.
Gama Sonic offers lampposts in a select range of coordinating styles, heights, and colors, like black and white. If you want to make your lamp into a double or triple style, you can use our double heads bracket kit or triple heads bracket kit to easily customize your lamp. Or you can choose from items like the Royal Bulb Single Solar Lamp and Lamp Post in single, double, or triple-headed options.
Check out this previous blog post for more help choosing the right solar post lights to transform your outdoor space.