Lights on cycle and bike paths are crucial for keeping cyclists safe, showing the way, and encouraging even more cyclists to get off the roads and journey on dedicated paths instead. The lights used on cycle paths must be suitable for the application and should be carefully selected with the use in mind.
The proper lighting and suitability of the cycle path is critical when considering the many benefits of cycle and bike tracks in towns and cities.
In this guide we explain key features that lighting for cycle and bike paths should have, as well as highlight the best solar powered lights for the application.
What are LED solar lights?
LED solar lights are self-sustaining, green energy powered alternatives to traditional electric lighting. Where previously infrastructure changes would be required to install and power lights on cycle and bike paths, LED solar lights are easy to install, require no connections, and result in minimal disruption – making them an ideal lighting solution for cycle paths across cities and towns. Solar light units can either be used as ground lighting, for bollards, or even on lamp posts.
LED solar lights work by charging up during daylight hours then using the stored energy to power them during the night. Even on the darkest, cloudiest days over winter, solar light units generate enough charge to guarantee illumination, whatever the weather. The solar powered, off-grid nature of these lights means no mains connection to electric is required, reducing installation and ongoing maintenance requirements, and resulting in a self-sustaining solution.
The LED (Light Emitting Diode) aspect means these lighting solutions are more effective than traditional bulbs, emitting strong light without the same energy demands. In fact, lights with LED bulbs are up to 90% more efficient than lights with traditional bulbs. LED lights also last many more years than traditional bulbs with bright illumination maintained.
Benefits of LED solar lights for cycle and bike paths
One of the biggest benefits; having reliable lighting on a path encourages cyclists to use the path year-round! People feel safer in lit up areas, knowing that light during dark hours offers security. Families may feel more confident taking children out or cycling even if it’s dark, encouraging more healthy activity during winter. The LED aspect of LED solar lights is especially key here, creating bright luminance with various benefits.
Display hazards (safety)
When travelling at speed, cyclists may be less aware of hazards quickly approaching. It is important that both the cyclist themselves and the path are well lit. Bike lights, helmet lights, and reflective clothing can help make the cyclist more visible to others. Effective lighting on the cycle path, in addition to cyclists, helps to map out the path and highlight any sudden turns or hazards cyclists need to be aware of. Again, this where the efficiency of LED bulbs is most beneficial.
Another great feature of many modern LED solar light units (like Solareye®80) is that they come in different colours, so red can be used to signal hazards.
Read our blog for more top tips on staying safe when riding a bike.
Light units used for outdoor applications, in this instance on cycle and bike paths, have to be able to withstand various weather and temperature conditions. Additionally, any light units used as ground lighting have to remain strong under the weight of people walking and riding over. Many LED solar lights, as modern lighting solutions, have more than adequate IP ratings, presenting strong resistance to the ingress of water and dirt – IP68 is the best rating and makes for the most durable lighting units.
See more: IP68 crtified – What does IP68 mean?
Especially useful for cycle and bike paths sprawling around cities and towns, LED solar lights are automatic. These lights don’t require anyone to manually flick a switch or schedule illumination, instead the individual units use detectors to know when to switch on. This autonomous nature is beneficial when used on cycle and bike paths across large areas, and optimises energy efficiency, ensuring they are only on when needed.
Additionally, the individual detectors are important for path areas that may be darker, due to heavy tree cover for instance, that may need separate lighting patterns compared to open spaces.
LED solar lights, especially when used as ground lightings, can be extremely cost effective and nowhere near the cost of purchasing electric lights, hiring contractors for installations, and ongoing electricity costs to power them. With LED solar lights, once the initial purchase is done, the ongoing costs of LED solar lights is minimal. This factors in largely when the number of lighting units required for cycle and bike paths is considered.
Solar powered lights have an obvious advantage over other lighting solutions – positive environmental impact. The solar green energy is used to power the lights continuously, without the need of electricity or burning fossil fuels.
Councils and local authorities, or those in charge of cycle path maintenance, need not worry about the upkeep of these durable units. The long-lasting batteries in LED solar light units last over 8 years, meaning there is no need for regular maintenance or battery changes. Even in the unlikely event a unit incurs a problem, the unit can be easily replaced with minimal disruption and cost.
Any local authorities or other organisation in charge of cycle paths must ensure they are adequately lit according to applicable standards, such as EN 13201, Road Lighting. Cyclists should be able to follow the route safely and any obstacles should be clearly visible regardless of time and season, something LED solar lighting can successfully facilitate.
The Best LED solar lights for cycle and bike paths
The best LED solar lights for cycle and bike paths are durable, independent, effective, tried and tested, and cost effective – just like the innovative Solareye®80 lighting solution.
We may be biased but we think our Solareye®80 units are great for cycle and bike paths, having been used extensively for this exact application. The units can be used alone for stylish ground or bollard lighting to plot the way, or alongside other lighting solutions for a comprehensive, luminous cycle and bike path lighting solution.
Our specially engineered Solareye®80 lighting units have been designed with durability, application and the environment in mind. We were particularly keen to reduce the negative effect of outdoor lighting in towns and cities on nature, in particular, how light can disrupt the natural regular patterns and lifestyles of nocturnal animals. Therefore, we developed the Bat Hat to make our solar LED light solutions the best not just for our users, but for the environment. By reducing the upward spillage of light, we have retained the same great, bright illumination but reduced the negative effect on animals.
LED solar ground lights from Solareye
If you are looking for effective LED solar lighting for your cycle and bike path, Solareye can help! Our Solareye®80 units are the ideal maintenance free, cost-effective, environmentally friendly lighting solution for outdoor applications, whether it be cycle paths, river walks, pedestrian areas and more. We regularly work with councils and local authorities to provide lighting solutions that encourage residents to get out and about, while feeling safe and secure.
Get in touch with one of our friendly team to find out more about our Solareye®80 units.