Do Projectors Work In Daylight? The Correct Answer Is Here!

Projectors appear everywhere. Most of the time, you will find them working indoors or in locations not exposed directly to the sun – in classrooms, business meetings, conferences, advertisements, and more.

But have you ever seen a projector displayed outdoors? Have you ever wondered about its application in the open? Do projectors work in daylight? Do projectors work with lights on? Let’s dive into our article to learn more!


Do Projectors Work In Daylight?

The answer is yes. Projectors do work in the daytime as long as they have enough lumens to deal with the sun’s light.

Understandably, many people wonder if they can use projectors outdoors in daylight. You probably experienced the feeling of browsing your smartphone in the sun, so you could imagine how hard it is to watch projector screen images.

So, can you use outdoor projector in daylight? It’s going to be hard, but hard does not mean impossible. The sun is brighter than projectors; you must use a good-quality projector with a high lumen count to compete with the sun.

Though projectors can work on a sunny day, provided the lumens are high enough, it’s important to note that watching your projector in direct sunlight is not practicable. The more shady the environment, the better. 

How Many Lumens Do Projectors Need To Work In Daylight? 

You should consider the lumens when purchasing a new projector

You should consider the lumens when purchasing a new projector

The lumens of a projector should be one of the most crucial factors you should pay attention to when purchasing this device.

It’s hard to estimate the projector’s brightness when you set it up outside. It’s when the lumens come to help you.

As you may not know, people use this unit to measure the brightness of the light source. The higher the number of lumens, the brighter the light is.

Yet, the lumen levels vary significantly based on the uses. If you wonder how to use a projector in a bright room or even in the daytime,  you will need a device to produce at least 3,000 lumens. You had better choose a device with at least 5,000 lumens for the best use.

If you expect your projector to work during full daylight, it must produce up to 10,000 lumens. Still, they are neither affordable nor portable as they are intended for large venues such as conventions and expos rather than afternoon movie sessions with the family.

For family use, you only need a capable projector that is easy to transport and set up almost anywhere. It should have 50% parity with a bright day. 

3000 lumens is a good starting point for areas with a lot of shade. Yet, 4000 or 5000 lumens is preferable, though these projectors are also quite expensive.

What Are The Best Types Of Projector Screens?

Now that you better understand the lumens of a projector when using it outdoors, you should wonder about the screen types you should choose. 

Inflatable Projector Screens

These screen models are the most recent products in the screen market. They are ideal if you need a movie screen that can endure most climate and weather conditions. You can feel comfortable watching films even if it’s about to rain.

When purchasing these screens, you should check if they are portable as you may need to move them when in use. Some types are self-inflating, and you can set up in no more than five minutes.

Inflatable screens are ideal for watching movies in your outdoor space since they are versatile, inexpensive, and easy to set up.

Tripods Projector Screens

Tripod-based screens are another type of screen you can consider. These models are more affordable and simple to install but unsuitable for working in windy conditions or on non-flat surfaces.

In some cases, the tripod types may not be steady enough to support the weight of the screen. You can move it to any side of the yard or garden, making it preferable to many consumers.

If you want, you can even install the screen and projector indoors. If the sun is too bright or it’s going to rain, this screen model will allow you to enjoy the end of your film without difficulty.

Hung Projector Screens

These screens are also a common type in the market as you can install them securely or temporarily. 

They are extremely versatile and work on any wall or surface. Aside from the included ties and cable ties, you don’t need anything else to set it up.

However, if you desire to put your projector in the center of the yard or garden, these screens may not be as useful.

What Are The Tips For Great Viewing?

Below are some useful tips when using projectors in daylight.

Pay Attention To Weather Conditions

First, you should avoid enjoying this activity on heavily rainy or windy days. 

Though you may watch the movie because of the low outside light, wind can cause serious damage to the screen, and rain can make your projector fail.

As a result, a cloudy day with a light breeze and not too much sun is always ideal for watching your favorite series in your garden.

Weather conditions are important.

Weather conditions are important.

Choose the Appropriate Time of Day

Aside from the weather, it is crucial to choose an appropriate time to enjoy your day. It’s when you have a good chance of watching the movie without interruptions.

If you want the sunniest times of the day, such as 10 am, you may need to use a tent to provide some shaded areas.

While it may not be a major issue during the winter months, you will probably use the projector in the summer.

If you have a weak projector that emits less than 2,000 lumens, you must ensure that the amount of light reaching the projector is not entire!

Clean the Screen

The projector screen can become dirty and develop a patina after years of daily use, so it’s important to clean it regularly. 

Otherwise, you will not make the most of the screen and enjoy your time at its best. If the projector screen isn’t of the same quality, you will find it hard to distinguish shapes and colors.

If you experience this issue, clean the projector with lukewarm water. You can also use a mild, alcohol-free, bleach-free, and pH-neutral cleaner to deal with it.

Here is a quick guide on how to clean your screen:

Choose the Best Outdoor Location

For the best location to set up the projector, you should always keep the sun on one side. The color images may appear perfect if the sun is behind the projector. If the light is too bright, you may begin to feel blinded after a while.

Keeping the sun to the back of the viewers can reduce the quality of the images. This position can affect your eyes and limit the capacity of the projector.

The best way is to keep the sun on your side. If the light is too bright and your projector is insufficiently powerful, you may still have problems.


So, can you use projector during day? Yes, obviously. Projectors can work indoors and outdoors, making it super convenient for business and entertainment purposes. So whenever you purchase a new projector, it’s important to consider the projector daylight lumens based on your needs.

If you still have more questions, feel free to leave them below. Display Central is always willing to support you. Thank you for reading!

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