Solar lamps are not only for the garden or balcony. You can also use the energy-saving alternative indoors. We present three solid models and tell you what you should pay attention to.

How do solar lamps work?

Solar lamps have either integrated or externally connected solar cells. The solar light absorbs solar energy via the solar cells and converts it into electricity, which is stored in batteries. As a rule, these batteries are more environmentally friendly nickel-metal hydride batteries. Depending on the model, the maximum lighting time after a full charge is 8 – 12 hours on average.

What should be considered when buying a solar lamp?

The Paulmann 94309 solar table lamp is our top recommendation. The solar panel is integrated directly into the lampshade and supplies the built-in LED from there, which is dimmable and glows in warm white (3,000 K). According to the manufacturer, the lamp has an average service life of around 30,000 hours.

You can use it as a decorative floor lamp for smaller islands of light in the living area or as a bedside lamp, but it is also not out of place in a protected outdoor area, for example on a terrace or in the garden shed: thanks to the IP44 protection class, at least occasional splashing water should not be a problem. The lamp’s materials, plastic and metal, at least suggest that it can take a beating.

Our assessment:

The Paulman 94309 is not the last word in terms of design, but if you are looking for a lamp that is not too flashy and saves some electricity for little money, you will definitely be happy with it. Thanks to splash water protection, it is conditionally suitable for covered outdoor areas. So you might consider linking it to a motion detector to light up the front door for incoming guests. According to some Amazon reviewers, however, more than just splashing water or a permanently damp location will cause the electronics to give up the ghost prematurely.

Note: Unfortunately, the Paulman 94309 is currently only available from retailers who charge a little more and have longer delivery times.

For this comparison, our CHIP specialist editor examined test reports from other publications as well as the most popular offers (“best sellers”) and customer opinions from online retailers. Based on this we made the product selection. When selecting the top devices, we focus on models with more than four stars and a reasonably high number of reviews. We have read a selection of customer reviews and selected devices that, based on our professional assessment, meet the needs of the users. The products have not been tested in the CHIP test center.

All products that the CHIP test center had in the laboratory can be found in this overview of the best lists. Products that have also been tested by our cooperation partners can be found in our test

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