Outdoor Lighting solar-pathway-lights-ikea-droppar-hack

Published on July 11th, 2017 | by Contributor

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Modern Solar Pathway Lights from Droppar Jars





I’m always looking for an easy and fun project and this one fit the bill. I needed some lights for my stone path in the front yard and wanted something unique and finally concluded I needed to make my own. They needed to be solar so they would not require any exterior wiring and could be easily moved as needed.

I search all over to find a suitable candidate for the outer containers. They needed a top so they would not fill with water in the rain and still allow a wire to exit so the solar cell could be positioned to catch the light. I found the Droppar Jar with Lid at IKEA to be perfect as it has a lid and a clear top which allowed me to put the solar cell inside, making them completely self-contained.

Materials for Solar Pathway Lights

I started by cutting 2″ PVC pipes into sections about 5″ long (your needs may vary based on the thickness of the solar cell on your string lights).

PVC tubes

I then cut notches into the top and bottom as shown. This does not have to be pretty as none of this will show when you are done.

PVC tube notch

PVC tube notch

PVC tube notch

I then took the last light on the string and hooked it into the notch on one side of the tube as shown, twist the wire as I went to ensure the LEDs pointed straight outward as much as possible, then continued to wrap the string around the PVC tube until I ran out of bulbs.

solar string lights wrapping

solar string lights wrapping

I then wrapped the extra wire through the notches on the other end until it was secure. Lastly I placed the solar cell on top.

Solar pathway lights assembly

Then I simply slid the whole assembly into the Droppar and put on the lid.

Solar pathway lights assembly

Solar pathway lights assembly

Solar pathway lights assembly

I now have a very modern set of pathway lights that require no maintenance, look great and light the path well as shown.

Solar pathway lights - day

Solar pathway lights - night

~ by Tim Baker


More ideas for outdoor solar lights

Pendant solar lights hacked from the very affordable Socker plant pot.

Hanging solar lights

An ambient solar light for the balcony hacked from the KROKEN jar.

DIY solar light


Maximising the MAXIMERA kitchen drawer
Hackers Help: Thickness of the sliding door panels?


The Author

This post was contributed by a reader. Please see credits at the end of the post. To submit your own hack, please click here.

3 Responses to Modern Solar Pathway Lights from Droppar Jars

  1. Amazing idea!! I’ll definitely be trying this hack for our outdoor area when we have our friends over this Thanksgiving!

  2. Fonda says:

    Genious!

  3. Nick says:

    What a great idea and an ingenious hack. I’ve been looking for some solar lights for the garden for ages and these will fit the bill perfectly. I much prefer the look of these to anything you can get off the shelf. They’ll be a boon for parties, and no more stumbling up the garden path in the dark!

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