Solar Bollard Lights: Landscape Trash or Treasure?

Make sure the great outdoors won’t turn accents into eyesores

Solar bollard lights along a pathway
R-9821 solar bollards direct light to highlight paths and landscape features.

Solar bollard lights offer features that make them a landscape treasure, even for designers not motivated by sustainability. The most obvious feature is that they do not incur ongoing electrical costs. Less known is that installation offers additional, immediate cost savings: no trenching or utilities boxes are necessary. Solar bollards are stand-alone systems. They can bolt down or be embedded without disrupting the landscape by installing a grid. Not being “leashed” to the grid can also decrease ongoing maintenance concerns. There are no AC cables to be exposed to become trip or electrical hazards. Solar powered outdoor lights are also dependable as they continue to work in emergency conditions when the power goes out and AC lights go black. Yet outdoor site furniture is at the mercy of the elements, animals, and vandals. Anything that cannot survive these threats is in danger of becoming a non-functioning eyesore. Facilities managers know that maintenance and replacement costs on cheap site furniture can mount. To confront these fears, our R-9821 solar bollard has been built to be as tough as nails and provide a distinctive modern accent.

Mischief and vandalism are a destruction risk for outdoor amenities. Lighting is often installed as part of a crime prevention strategy against these very nuisances. To prevent vandalism from becoming an ongoing site maintenance issue, the R-9821 solar light bollard must be able to stand up to bullying. During development, the model design was rigorously tested under extreme conditions. These bollards have been assaulted by baseball bats and sledgehammers, on dome and body, and stood unharmed after these extreme human-powered attacks. Independent testing confirms the model's IK10 rating. The bollard’s unusual design, with a curved domed top, offers a structural reinforcement of its material strength. The base of the bollard is made of steel and can be embedded in concrete for maximum impact resistance against human-powered assault.

On our standard models, the bases of these solar bollard lights are powder coated. This alternative to paint creates a seamless sealed layer for complete corrosion protection. However, sites with vandalism concerns often worry about graffiti. These sites can choose IronArmor for added protection: a revolutionary new alternative that provides extra resistance to graffiti. IronArmor also is easy to re-seal on site.

Bugs and small animals can also be a hazard to site furniture. Bugs or small rodents may exploit small spaces as habitat, and rodents particularly like to gnaw. Birds can also be an issue for some types of site furniture. If birds decide solar bollard lights are a wonderful place to perch, they can cut off the needed hours of sunlight, by sitting on the panel or by fouling it. The R-9821 is designed to discourage these wildlife issues. The domed top is not a preferred landing place for birds. As a light fixture, it’s been certified as IP68, which means it is dust tight. With this level of certification, the bollard will be impenetrable to bugs, even if moths find it attractive.

A solar bollard shines beneath a thick cover of snow
R-9821 bollards can manage a 10 foot water submersion: they shine on even during a flood!

Weather creates a lot of material stress for many small site furniture items. Temperature changes, dirt and debris, and precipitation are constant factors. Locations like marinas or sites with heavy winter conditions must deal with salt or de-icing chemicals. Materials, housings, and finishes all need to be able to manage the environment.

R-9821 solar light bollards are designed to manage ambient temperatures from -22°F to 140°F+. With IP68 certification, they’re fully sealed against dust, and are fully submersible up to 10 feet. Neither dust storm nor most flooding will break the housing. Powder coat is the standard colored finish for outdoor site furniture, warrantied against fading for 2 years. IronArmor is even more resistant to color fading in harsh chemicals, UV, or salt spray, and is warrantied for 5 years—and the warranty can be upgraded. Bollards can be finished in a way appropriate to location and maintenance schedule.

Outdoor lighting makes spaces safer after sunset by keeping them well-lit and visible. Lighting can also be aesthetic, beautifying a space and making it a place people want to be. Unlike other lighting sources, solar bollard lights can be quickly deployed, singly or in groups, as an immediate solution. Designers can quickly and efficiently create beautiful outdoor nightscapes that highlight paths and landscape features.