Why Is There An On Off Switch On Solar Lights? – Is It Necessary?

Solar lights are one of the popular lighting solutions today to help protect the environment. With self-sufficiency, it can operate independently without being affected by human control. However, the button is still attached to add room when needed.

Then, some people wonder: “Why is there an on off switch on solar lights?”. This article will answer that question and the issues associated with it. Continue reading so as not to miss useful information!

Read more: How to Choose the Right Solar Street Lights: The Complete Buying Guide

Why Is There An On Off Switch On Solar Lights?

Why Is There An On Off Switch On Solar Lights

The on-off switch is usually used for situations that go against its normal operation

Unlike conventional lights, this lamp may turn on and off automatically without any mechanical equipment. It also has a power supply and automatic conversion thanks to energy from the sun. Thus, sometimes, the switch is not necessary for it either. However, when it comes to a few special cases, the button is not so useless.

Having The Switch On

Of course, when the brightness is needed, you have to turn it on, especially not its operating time. For example, I need to find things or work at dusk or dawn, or when it’s overcast. At this time, there may still be some sunlight, but not enough brightness that you need for your activities.

Another case is when you need to look to fix it. Therefore, you need to turn it on to determine if it is damaged or not before replacing or repairing it.

Having The Switch Off

Similar to the above, there will be times when you need to turn off the power while it is operating. Because of its special properties, this type of lamp is often used for lighting in the garden where the panel can receive the most light.

But sometimes, at night, you need a dark space to watch the stars, moon, hold a barbecue or candle party, etc. Then, this lamp does not need to turn on.

On the other hand, you want to organize a party with adequate brightness for your outdoor activities. Therefore, it is turned off to ensure the lamp supply throughout the party for the next few days.

How Do Solar Lights Turn On And Off?

Each manufacturer may have its secret in designing these types of lamps. However, their operations are almost the same.

You need to know that its structure consists of 3 main parts: LED light, solar panel, and power source. In particular, the power source acts as a carrier of energy converted from a panel to a bulb.

The panels will absorb sunlight in the morning and store it under electrical energy

The panels will absorb sunlight in the morning and store it under electrical energy

Conventional LEDs will have a voltage of 3.5 volts, connected to the power source via a 3.7 volt (A) circuit. The battery panel is connected to the circuit board with a minimum 1.2 Volt (B) threshold.

The panel receives more than 1.2 volts of energy in the morning and is stored in the mains. When the sunlight is off, the voltage drops to under 1.2 volts. Next, the power cord will immediately transfer to circuit board A; as a result, turning on the LED light.

Conversely, on the next day, when the voltage to the circuit board increases above 1.2 Volt, it reverses to circuit board B. And at the same time, it disconnects the current being supplied to brighten up the lamp. After that, it turns off automatically.

What Problems Can Arise From The On-Off Switch?

The switch’s appearance is often a bit of a nuisance for solar luminaires because they are attached. Therefore, if it is high and hard to reach, you should turn it on before installation to work right after.

Or you should read the manufacturer’s installation and usage instructions because of the difference in their usage standard products. Some need to turn it on to activate the internal operations; others operate automatically based on the sensor to increase or decrease the current voltage.

In addition, some people commented that the button is difficult to recognize. They often take time to locate it before using it as an on or off feature.

Read more: How to Choose the Right Best Solar Porch Lights: The Complete Buying Guide



Do Solar Lights Have To Be Turned On?

It would be best to turn it on as soon as you set up for lights that require a lot of brightness like “spotlight” or “protection light”. This action signals to the system that it can start working without any hindrance. This type is often produced with high parameters such as a monocrystalline panel, large size, and higher capacity (mAh).

On the other hand, decorative or street lights will have a slightly weaker light. They also automatically operate based on voltage sensing without turning on the button. Usually, the owner will use 8 or 10 products simultaneously, so turning on the switches one by one is unnecessary.

Decorative lights are usually installed in packages of 8 to 10 pieces
Decorative lights are usually installed in packages of 8 to 10 pieces

Decorative lights are usually installed in packages of 8 to 10 pieces

Sometimes, this control button is only used to turn on and off on important occasions or maintenance days. Some manufacturers also provide remote controls and dimmer functions for them.

Should Solar Lights Be Switched On To Charge?

As mentioned above, this lamp will operate on its own based on the variation of efficiency at the two circuit boards, A and B. It will charge when the sun shines on over 1.2 volts and light up the lamp when the voltage is lower than 1.2 volts.

It proves that whether the light is charging or not is affected by the light hitting the battery range, not the switch. Nonetheless, some manufacturers require this button to be enabled to start their products. Thus, you should read the user manual to determine if this is necessary or not.

Are Batteries Included With All Solar Lights?

Yes. These products have three main components: rechargeable Ni-Cad battery, LED light, and photoresistor. The panel will absorb sun energy and store it in the rechargeable battery. When it gets dark, this energy will release to light up the LED.

Solar energy will be stored to illuminate LED lights at night

Read more: Why The Solar Lights Not Working At Night – Causes And Solutions


The question: “Why is there an on off switch on solar lights?” got the answer. This lamp works based on the voltage variation between two circuit boards linked to solar cells and LEDs. And you can use the button for cases that go against its current operation.

You also need to read the user manual to determine if it needs to be turned on before installation. And if you leave it overhead, you will have a hard time finding the position of the switch in need.

Hopefully, the article has helped you understand how the button works and what the switch button means for this type of light. If possible, try to use it to contribute to environmental protection and save on electricity bills!

Further reading:

Why Is There An On Off Switch On Solar Lights – HowToDiscuss

Solar Lights With On Off Switch | Wayfair

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