Solar Street lights and Solar Area Lighting UL 8801

A blog tile showing off one of our solar street light products.
Having a UL listing is essential and often required to guarantee the safety of grid-connected products in commercial and industrial settings. Engineers and specifiers greatly value the UL label, as it assures them that the electrical equipment has undergone rigorous testing and met all safety standards. The UL certification, which serves as a safety indicator, was initially designed for machinery, heating, lighting, and other power equipment. The emergence of new solar lighting technology initiated a new approach to existing UL procedures that required a tailored testing format for PV luminaires (aka. solar lights).

SOLTECH Solar Street Lights UL 8801

As a leader in solar lighting technology. SOLTECH was the first solar lighting manufacturer to seek out and establish a UL standard for PV luminaire systems. This initiative was originally recognized as the UL 8801 Outlines of Investigations for PV Luminaires which developed into the official UL 8801 standard. To understand the UL process, it is important to factor in the four subassemblies that make up solar parking lot lights:
  1. PV module (Energy Harvest),
  2. Battery (Energy Storage),
  3. Luminaire (Light Output),
  4. Controls (Energy Management)
To address the safety concerns of this new lighting category, UL sought to test and monitor each component, ultimately assessing the system as a whole for its safety and inherent quality. From initial testing outlines to the official 8801 standard, UL engineers and laboratories started from a proposal stage > preliminary review > consideration of comments> proposal review (ballot)>comment> recirculation> comment resolution> final standard publication (2022)

Do solar street and area lights need to be UL 8801?

As new projects break ground with new infrastructure in progress, many municipalities and stakeholders are looking at solar street lighting as the most practical solution to revamp streetscapes and roadways with reliable illumination. With municipal groups looking to retrofit lighting fixtures with new solar street lights, electrical teams question whether solar street lights need to be UL-listed. In short, UL 8801 adds confirmation from a respected 3rd party but is not necessarily a requirement for self-powered lighting, as solar area lights are generally low-voltage systems that pose no harm to the human body and installing party.

UL On-Grid vs UL Off-Grid Requirements for Solar Parking Lot Lighting?

Since off-grid lighting is commonly low-voltage, there is no hazard when handling these kinds of lights. Compared to traditional lighting, where wiring must be directly connected to the grid, solar parking lot lights are easier to install and more convenient for city street lighting projects. The time and money saved by using self-powered lights serve as a quick solution for simple roadway projects, making them worth investigating.


A UL certification is important and commonly required to ensure the safety of grid-connected products that draw power. Although solar street lighting can be the exception due to its low voltage and self-powered design, solar lights like SUNLIKE are UL-certified to ensure safety. For engineers and electrical contractors, the move to solar lighting simplifies the design and installation process, resulting in faster project completion. To learn more about the best solar lighting solution for your project, speak with a SOLTECH Solar Lighting specialist to assist during your design stage.
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