It’s night time. The cicadas are out, and a myriad stars twinkle overhead. In these circumstances, perhaps the last thing we want is a floodlight covering our area in blinding white. That’s where flameless candles for outdoors come in, and we’ve rounded up the best picks for your yard.
Flameless candles? Well, who wants to leave a candle in the sun. Flameless is better when outside—and also when inside, as you will soon see!
What Are Flameless Candles?
True, it sounds contradictory—but only until we get deeper into it. Instead of a flame, one of these candles relies on more conventional lighting, which is often of the LED type; this means there is less energy consumption.
And where does the energy come from? Batteries (usually of standard sizes, such as C, AA, AAA, depending on the candle’s size), or from a wall socket, depending on the model. Most (or all) of them are made of plastic on the whole or in part; a few models will have some parts made of wax, for a more realistic look.
And speaking of realism: if you’re all too attached to the flickering of a candle’s flame in the slightest breeze, you have nothing to worry about, as many flameless candles feature this effect (which can be turned off, should you want a more steady source of light).
You can also get them in different colors, sizes (both in height and girth; there’s even packs that include different sizes), you can find them optimized for specific platforms such as sconces and chandeliers… to sum it up, they can do everything a standard candle can do—and they still stand apart in quite a few good ways.
Why Use Flameless Candles Outdoors
No Fire Hazard
Candle was left on all night? Did it topple over? It’s all good! By their very nature, there’s no flame that could possibly turn into an all-out blaze.
Many people are adverse—sometimes even allergic—to the smell of candles (and let’s face it, some come heavily scented). Flameless candles are completely odor-free.
A conventional candle will literally melt before your eyes when in use—and even when not in use!, as all it takes is a sufficiently strong source of heat. Flameless candles will be around for much, much longer, especially considering their LED light which, as it is well known, lasts for quite a while!
No need to leave your favorite chair to turn the candle on or off, or to switch from steady to flickering and back. All you need to do grab the remote and press a button!
We know there’s little reason to turn one of these off, given their fairly minimum energy consumption and inherent fire safety; however, there may be times when you just don’t want the light on—because you expect to fall asleep soon, for example. For those cases, you can simply set a given time limit, and forget about it: the candle will go off all on its own when it’s supposed to!
No conventional candle can be left outside: either it will melt in the sun, or go out in the rain. All flameless candles can endure the sun well; the one thing many can lack, is resistance to water. Not all models come with this feature, but it is also not hard to find those, by design and by grace of the materials used in their construction, can achieve a bona fide IP rating as high as 44. And that is, precisely, what this review will be focusing on: candles that will be just as comfortable in the rain, as in a sunny day.
The Best Flameless Candles to Use Outdoors
Below is a list of models suitable for a variety of tastes; we believe it likely you will find a good match for your taste or needs.
LampLust Outdoor Flameless Candles with Timer – LED Pillar Candle Set
This one’s worth a closer look if you value realism, as it goes above and beyond with its realistic black wick right below the flickering-capable flame. Its IP rating is 44, which means it’s protected against any splashes of water—such as rain.
You can acquire it as a pack of 3 (same diameter, 3 different sizes) or a pack of 4 which all come in the same size (3×6). Light is LED, with the body being made in resin and waterproof matte plastic. Whichever set you choose, it will include a remote control, timer, flicker function, and a 90-day warranty straight from the manufacturer.
- Wick props the flame up a little bit, which helps provide additional light.
- Rather thick; will require no less than a C battery.
LANUOS Glass Candle Set, Pack of 3
While they’re not made for heavy rains, they are a good option for your pergola o gazebo, or on seasons of favorable weather: they’re made in glass, which comes colored in different hues, allowing you to set the ambiance of the area of room just the way you like it.
Go golden for a warmer feel, or choose white or black for a more subdued look. The remote control is included, and the timer is fairly useful in that not only can it be set in a variety of time slots in 2-hour increments, it can enable the candle to turn itself back on at the same hour every day.
- Very functional timer.
- Unique looks thanks to the colored glass.
- General confusion with batteries; rather than purchasing them before candles arrive, it is usually better to wait for arrival and check the compartments beforehand.
Homemory Waterproof Flickering Flameless Candles
Dimmer, brighter, 2 hours, 6—not only is it controlled remotely, but it has quite a few functions you might find to your liking.
This one departs from the fairly homogeneous look of most other models by shaping a higher lip on half of the top and a dip on the other half, which makes the candle give out asymmetrical radiance. The manufacturer saw fit to prepare for just about anything by treating not just the outside, but also the inside, for water resistance, in the event of water slipping in and towards the bottom.
- Waterproof inside and out.
- Ill suited for all-around light; better to be placed at a corner or next to a wall an oriented accordingly.
- Remote known to lack power.
Luminicious FLAMELESS Candles, Set of 3
They can’t get out in the sun (as they are covered with real wax), but they make up for it with an impressive 14-color range (some with gold trim, even), which should provide something for any gazebo, no matter its theme or palette.
The dancing wick provides the impression of a real flame, and it comes with not one, but two remotes for controlling brightness and time of operation (between 2 and 8 hours, 2-hour increment). As the candles undergo inspection by a third party company, manufacturer conveys its trust in quality with a rarely-seen 12-month warranty.
- A good option for gifting.
- Ample warranty.
- Suitable only for a limited number of outdoor locations.
Editor’s Choice: Enido Flameless Candles, Pack of 9
This is a solar powered device that can effectively protect a space from small animals such as birds, raccoons and mice, including bugs.
Made in resin plastic, they come with the necessary protection to withstand the rain as well as the sun, and the bottom comes with a rubber-O ring so there won’t be any leaks into the battery compartment should the candle be placed upon wet or snow-covered surfaces. You can chose from two pack options. Both offer 9 candles, varying slightly in size (both in diameter and height). The included controller can transmit button commands from as far as 18 feet.
- Improved protection at the bottom.
- Packs include more units than those from many other manufacturers.
- On/Off switch is not easily accessible, which may be an inconvenience should the remote fail.
Why We Love Using These Enido Flameless Candles Outdoors
Do you want them taller? Stubbier? Between the 2 packs offered by this manufacturer, you may very well find something that suits what you’re going for, as not only do you get several pieces, they are also offered with a certain variety of both diameter and height.
The protection at the bottom helps preserve the interior from water or even snow, and with the range offered by the remote, you could be inside and still turn the candles on or off should you want to change the ambiance of your patio.
They are not particularly expensive, either; only a fraction more than the asking price of some 3-piece packs out there.