These $10 Battery-Powered Lights Immediately Improved the Look of My Staircase
More often than not, some of our favorite buys are small, how-didn’t-I-know-about-this products that solve an everyday problem. That’s what we’re highlighting in our Little Lifesavers series: cheap, simple purchases that you’ll use on the daily. Hit “Add to Cart” and thank us later.
The Problem: After a scary late-night tumble down the stairs, I decided it was time to invest in some stair lights.
The Solution: Mr. Beams’ motion-activated LED lights costs just 10 bucks a pop and take mere minutes to install, but they look as though an electrician put them in.
My favorite kind of products are the ones that are small and inexpensive but make a huge impact on my day-to-day life — and Mr. Beams’ Motion-Sensor Stair Lights are just that.
These motion-activated LED lights are battery-powered, tiny as can be (4×2.5-inch, to be exact), and are an easy and inexpensive way to add more light where you need it.
I settled on Mr. Beams’ lights after scouring websites like Houzz and the Home Automation subreddit to find the easiest, most-inexpensive path to illuminate the staircase in my home.
Mr. Beams’ LED night lights provide bright (but not too bright) amber (or white) lighting in a sleek and easy-to-install DIY design that’ll fool people into thinking they were professionally installed.
The lights are completely wireless, motion-activated, and they shut off automatically after 30 seconds. They come in a 1-, 3-, or 6-pack, and each light can cover roughly 10 square feet.
You have two options for installing them. Homeowners can use the included wall anchors and screws to affix them to a wall. Or, if you’re looking for something a little less permanent, you can install them using the adhesive strip that comes included with each pack (making them an apartment-friendly accessory as well). I used three for my staircase, which has 16 steps, and it took me less than 5 minutes to install them.
The lights are powered by four AAA batteries and emit 15 lumens of brightness. The manufacturer claims they provide 1 year of light with an average use of eight activations a night. Since my bathroom is on the second floor, mine are triggered much more frequently, so I have to replace the batteries every 6 months, which is a small price to pay given how affordable they are and how much money I saved opting against professional installation.
I also recommend opting for some rechargeable batteries to reduce your carbon footprint and save some money in the long run.
As much as I love the Mr. Beams lights, they are not perfect. Occasionally, when I walk up or down the stairs, one of them won’t turn on. I’d say they work 90% of the time, which, again, is good enough for me given their fair price point.
The motion sensors are upward-facing to prevent false triggers, and they have a 120-degree detection angle. The light that’s closest to the top of my staircase even turns on when I exit my bedroom to go to the bathroom, which is very convenient at nighttime.
It’s worth mentioning that the lights won’t illuminate in a bright, well-lit room — which I assume is a feature that helps conserve battery life. My lights start turning on at dusk.
I’ve gotten several compliments on my stair lights from family and friends, and having them makes my place feel a little more luxurious, which is especially surprising considering they only cost $10 a piece.
All in all, I highly recommend Mr. Beams’ motion-activated lights. They’ve made my home a little brighter, safer, and I think they have the power to do that for you as well.
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