How Much Does a Street Light Cost to Run

There are many kinds of street lights in life, they bring us light and safety. Do you want to know the cost of street lights? and the installation and operation costs?

In this article we will introduce the types of street lights, the price factors of street lights, and how to calculate the operating costs of street lights.

Type of street lights

The street light system is mainly composed of two parts: light fixture and poles. According to the different power supply methods of the light fixture, there are traditional electric street light and solar street light.

Traditional street lights:

For a long time, traditional street lights rely on urban power grids to supply power. From traditional incandescent light, metal halide light, high-pressure sodium light to today’s new LED light, each light will consume a number of energy during operation. The latest LED technology improves energy efficiency and save energy cost. So,most street light are LED street light system.

Solar street light:

solar street light

With the development of technology and the increasing awareness of carbon neutrality, solar street lights are more and more popular. These solar street lights rely on solar panels, batteries, controllers and other components to automatically supply power for lighting.

How much does it cost to install street lights?

Street lights are indispensable for roads at night,which are a very important part of urban construction. Of course, with the development of society, street lights on rural roads are becoming more and more popular. If you want to use a street light, then you will first consider how much does it cost to install a street light?

Cost of installing a street light

Street light should meet the road lighting standards according to local conditions. If the area is rich in solar energy,you should consider whether to install solar street lights, otherwise, install LED street lights.

The price of the street light system depends on several factors, such as LED lights power,the height of light pole.If it is a solar street light, you also consider these elements:solar panels, storage batteries, controllers etc.

Light pole type and height

There are stainless steel poles, galvanized iron poles, and high-strength aluminum alloy poles, etc used for street light poles. High-strength aluminum alloy poles are commonly used for highways or main roads with large traffic, and   stainless steel is commonly used for ordinary road lighting, while galvanized iron poles are commonly used in courtyards, residential areas or places with low traffic.

Common pole heights used for street light

The common height of the street light is 4 meters, 8 meters, 10 meters, 12 meters, 14 meters and other specifications according to the application. The height of the street light is closely related to the installation environment and the width of the road.While the height of the street light will determine the power and cost of light.

LED street light cost:

First, let’s take a look at the cost of installing LED street system. The cost of installing traditional LED street light system includes 3 parts of the cost: =light fixture + light pole cost + installation cost.

For example:

If you install a 100W LED street light, the cost of the  street light is about 100-150 USD. The price of the light pole is between 4m-12m from the factory price is between 100 and 300 USD(EXW). The installation cost is different for each region. if you are in the United States, it may cost 1,000 US dollars, and the cheaper places may only cost 200 US dollars, so the installation cost should be based on the actual situation.

Solar street lights cost

Compared with traditional LED street light, each solar light is a relatively independent system, which is more convenient for installation and construction without power cables that saves a part of material and labor costs. It can also avoid the safety risks caused by the old aging of electricity system.It is more advantageous to operate solar street lights in areas less electric power.

In addition to the cost of light fixtures, there are also the cost of solar panels, battery storage, controller, etc. The following is the cost except for the light pole for reference:

Type20W/4meter60W/6meter70W/8meter
Price200-400USD500-700USD600-800USD
LED Power20W60W70W
Pole height4M6M8M
batterylithium batterylithium batterylithium battery
Light source efficiency120-140lm/W120-140lm/W120-140lm/W
Charging time5-6hours5-6hours5-6hours
IP ratingIP65IP65IP65
Pole thickness3mm3.6mm4.5mm
Solar panelMonocrystalline siliconPolysiliconPolysilicon
Battery Volume60-80A60-80A70-90A
Voltage12V/24V12V/24V12V/24V
Lighting time6-86-87-8
Without sun day34-56-7
ControllerLight+timeLight+timeLight+time

How much power is used for solar street light

Battery Power parts:

1. LED light  power: 30 W × 1 = 30 W, voltage: 12 V

2. The average daily working time is 12 hours (working time: 18 pm-6 am)

Control the power of LED lights by time period(18pm-24pm 100%, 00am-6am 30% so the actual  time 7.8 hours)

Max number of rainy days: 3 days(the actual day: 3 + 1 = 4 days)

Working current = LED light power/voltage=30 W/ 12 V= 2.5 A

Battery capacity = working current × actual working time × working days= 2.5 A × 7.8 H × 4 days= 78 AH

Battery charge and discharge reserve adding 5%

Electrical circuit loss adding 5%

Actual battery capacity = 78 AH × 105% × 105%= 86.0 AH

Solar panel Power:

Working currentWorking time/dayAverage sunshineSolar panel voltage
2.5A7.8h5h17.4V

Solar panel power = working current × actual working time per day × solar panel working voltage/ average daily sunshine= 2.5 A × 7.8 h × 17.4 V /5 h= 67.86 W

Solar panel capacity  adding + 5%;

Electrical circuit loss adding 5%;

Actual solar panel power = 67.86 W × 105% × 105%= 74.8 W

How much does it cost to run street light?

The total cost of street lights includes two parts:

Energy consumption cost and maintenance cost. Energy cost is the total amount of electricity cost of street lights.

If you want to run street light properly,you need to add the maintenance cost ,which is the amount maintain cost of the street light,including replacement of light bulbs, or cleaning, repair of damaged light poles, etc.

So when you add them together, you can actually check the cost of running street lights.

For example

For a 1KM two-lane road,and the light pole distance is 40m, a 100 watt LED street light is used in both side. So,we need to install 50 piece of led street light, they will work 10 hours per day, and an average electricity cost of $0.10 kW/h.

So,the electricity cost per day:0.1*100*50*10/1000= 5 USD.

Wrapping Up

In this article, we have introduced the approximate cost of LED street lights and solar street lights. The installation of street lights mainly considers three parts of the cost:light fixture + light pole + installation labor cost. After the installation , the running cost mainly includes: electricity cost + maintenance cost.

Whether choosing solar street lights or LED lights is based on the number of your light + the cost of electricity and your budget etc. You can compare the approximate cost of them. In general, the initial cost of solar street lights is higher, but the longer the operation, the cheaper the cost. Of course, it make sure that the high quality of light fixture system, if you want to know more about the wattage and lumens of the street light, you can check how many wattage and lumens of the street light do i need.