How to Find the Best Rechargeable Flashlight for Your Needs
If you need a flashlight for emergencies, then you need a tactical flashlight (or torch, if you’re a subject of Queen Elizabeth II). But for the vast majority of people, the best rechargeable flashlight doesn’t have to be that tough (or that expensive).
They just need to be rechargeable, and they should use LEDs. These LEDs are the best options right now because they offer better performance for a longer period of time. Other bulbs are simply bad alternatives.
Why Use Rechargeable Flashlights?
It’s also clear to just about everyone that these flashlights should be powered by rechargeable batteries, whether they’re to be plugged in to a wall socket or in a USB slot. Either way, they’re better than disposable batteries.
Using disposable flashlights can be very expensive in the long run, and it’s also often bothersome to keep buying them or to have several batteries with you as reserve. The impact of disposable flashlights on the environment is also much worse, since you have to keep throwing so many of them away.
So why not use rechargeable batteries on regular flashlights? That’s because often it can get a bit awkward dealing with the flashlight, the batteries, and the charger for the batteries. In contrast, you only need to deal with the flashlight and the charger.
You can just plug in the flashlight itself instead of removing the batteries and then installing them into the charger before you plug it in.There are performance issues as well. In a regular flashlight, the rechargeable batteries ten to offer less power and voltage compared with the disposable batteries.
With low power it means they go flat in a shorter period of time. The low voltage means that even while you still have some juice in the batteries the light isn’t as bright and powerful.Self-discharge and power maintenance is also a problem.
Rechargeable flashlights can be recharged easily enough when not in use, so when it is needed it’s always at full strength. But since it’s too cumbersome to recharge batteries after removing it from a regular flashlight, what usually happens is that you forget to recharge it when not in use.
If you’re lucky, you still have the power level you had before. But sometimes rechargeable batteries continue to drain even when the flashlight isn’t used, so when you do pick it up it’ll be totally out of juice.Since you don’t have the need to remove the batteries from a rechargeable torch, the batteries can be securely sealed in.
You don’t have to worry when you drop it or mishandle the battery cover. It’s not exactly fun when you drop your flashlight in the dark and the batteries fly all over the place—how are you supposed to find them then?
Types of Flashlights
If you need a flashlight for life and death emergencies (or you need it for special circumstances), then you will have to get a tactical flashlight. These torches are really tough, dependable, very bright, and can withstand extreme environments like being dropped in water.However, you may not need that kind of performance. Instead, you may want to think other types of flashlights:
- Lantern flashlights – You hang this up to light up a room or a tent. Some of these can be held in one hand, although in general they’re to illuminate a wide area.
- Regular handheld flashlights – These are the typical flashlights you use when you need to move around in the dark. They should be easy to hold with one hand, although some of them can be set down so you can work with two hands.
- Keychain lights – These are very small and often quite affordable, and their main advantage is that you always have it with you. It’s best for indoor use when you’re just trying to find your way. Many of these are disposable, but some are actually rechargeable.Headlamps – This is a new type of flashlight. It’s meant to fit on your head like a helmet, so the light always goes in the direction you’re looking.
Picking the right type depends greatly on how you plan to use the torch.
Common Factors to Consider when Buying Rechargeable Flashlights
Regardless of what type of flashlight you get, you need to think about the following factors when you finally decide on a particular torch.
- Some flashlights can be really expensive. Your task is to find an affordable one with all the features you need, and perhaps some features you like.
- Recharging options – It’s either you plug the flashlight into a wall socket or you use USB. It’s obviously better if you have both options available for you. If not, go for a wall socket adapter.
- Recharging duration – Usually, this should take about 2 hours or so if you plug it into a socket. With a USB adapter, it often needs a longer time. It’s best if you have a charging indicator light, so you know if it’s not charging and when the battery is fully charged.
- Power duration – How long will you use the flashlight until you run out of juice? This is often connected to the brightness of the flashlight. For example, a battery that can provide 550 lumens of brightness may only last for 45 minutes. But at 7 lumens, it can last for 23 hours straight.
- Battery lifespan – This is about how long before you need to replace the batteries with a new one. In some cases, when the batteries need replacement it’s often just better to buy a brand new rechargeable flashlight instead.
- Usually you should get different levels of brightness. But the brightest setting should be enough for your needs.
- Just how large an area do you need to illuminate? Some offer wide beans, while others offer a focused beam that can illuminate areas farther away.
- This depends on the material of the torch, as well as how it can withstand the circumstances of your use. The really durable ones can be dropped in hard ground or in water and still work.
- Portability and ease of use – Even the lantern flashlights need to be held sometimes. So how does it feel in your hands? How heavy and bulky is it? Can it fit in your pocket? Can you turn it off or change the setting with one hand, or do you need two hands? How easy is it to use when you’re wearing gloves? The answers to these questions will tell you whether or not you’ll find it easy to use a particular flashlight.
Handheld Rechargeable Flashlight Reviews
Handheld flashlights are usually cylindrical and they provide a focused beam of light. Here are some of the rechargeable flashlight reviews in this category:
This is one of the most popular and most highly rated torches online, and that’s not surprising.
Considering what you get, it’s certainly one of the best rechargeable flashlights for the money.
It’s black, and made with aluminum and it’s also water-resistant. It measures just 1.69 x 4.21 x 6.5 inches and weighs a paltry 0.52 pounds.
The LED light offers 700 lumens, which is great even for emergency outdoor use, as you can illuminate a tree 100 yards away.
You actually have 5 modes, and you just tap a button to change modes. There’s the 3 beams, (high, medium, low) as well as a strobe and SOS signaling for emergencies. It also comes with a wrist strap.
The battery can be recharged up to 500 times before it needs replacement. A full charge gives you about 3 hours of power. It also comes with an AAA battery holder, so you can also power it with your 3 AA batteries.
This is very easy to use, very bright, quite tough even when you drop it, and affordable. It’s a “tactical” rechargeable flashlight, so it’s great for all types of outdoor emergencies.
With this one, you also have a rechargeable battery that can be recharged via USB. It has a 1W LED light which via USB you can recharge in about 4 to 5 hours.
But you can also recharge this using its built-in solar panel, either with sunlight or even with artificial light. That will take about 10 to 12 hours.
This one is also a bit cheaper than the BYB tactical flashlight. It measures 6.5 x 1.1 x 1.4 inches and weighs only about 5.4 ounces.
Now this is not a super bright light, as its single LED bulb is enough to light up objects up to 20 meters away.
It’s very simple to use with just an on/off switch, its aluminum alloy casing comes with an anti-slip textured handle, and it should be ready every time you need to use it, as long as you don’t hide it in a drawer somewhere.
Now this has a different design, as you hold it as you would a hair dryer.
It’s rather big at 7.8 x 6.5 x 3.8 inches, although it’s not that heavy at 1.5 pounds.
It’s expensive because it can give you a tight focused beam with 2000 lumens for brightness.
At this setting, the battery is good enough to give you an hour of operational use.
But you can set it to a still-bright 700-lumen setting and you get 7 hours of use. Although you can use a pistol grip on this, there’s also a locking pivoting stand that allows for hands-free use.
If you don’t use this flashlight and it has a full charge, you won’t have to recharge it for a full year. For recharging, you also have AC and DC recharging cords. The warranty is for 3 years, but it covers defective materials and workmanship, and not abusive use.
With this design, you hold it like you would a briefcase, as its handle is on top of the main casing.
This one is also a bit bigger than the tactical flashlights, and it measures 6.5 x 2 x 2 inches and weighs just a pound.
Annoyingly, it doesn’t come with the rechargeable batteries. You need to buy the 3 x 18650 3.7V 3400mAh lithium rechargeable batteries separately. Why should you consider this when it’s such a hassle?
That’s because if you need something really bright, this is it. This gives you 2,800 lumens! It has 3 settings, and in the highest setting you can get 3 hours of light.
At the lowest setting, you get 6 hours. You can also adjust the beam focus.It’s also water resistant with O-ring seals at every connection, and the aircraft aluminum body is quite tough. The on/off switch even glows in the dark. It comes with a shoulder strap as well as a wall and car charger.
Lantern Flashlight Reviews
Sometimes you just want to light up a wide space for hours at a time, without having to hold the flashlight. That means you need a lantern flashlight. This type of flashlight really needs a powerful battery, as often the light is on for a very long time.
Now some may debate whether or not a lantern is actually a flashlight. Amazon categorizes them as such, so that’s that. But in this case the point is moot.
This Liekkas is both a lantern and a handheld flashlight with its own handle at the bottom.
And you can use both lights at the same time. It’s collapsible too.It’s easy enough to use, as you just need to push a button for the light to come on. The 6 LED bulbs offer 160 lumen of brightness, and you can have light for up to 12 hours.
During the day, you can just recharge it using the solar panel, although it also has a DC charging cable. It can also charge many types of cellphones and mobile devices, although it doesn’t support iPhones. All these features are yours and you don’t even have to spend a ton.
You can get this one at a fairly affordable price, and the illumination comes from the 40 LD lights on one side of the unit for 200 lumens. It’s not too bulky at 8.3 x 3.75 x 3.5 inches, and at least it’s light at just a pound.
You can just leave it plugged into a 110-volt wall outlet, although it can handle a 220-vilt input as well. When there’s a power outage it will automatically turn on.
At full charge, it will give you 7 hours of light. That should be enough light until you fall asleep. The battery is also rated to last for about 4 to 5 years. If the battery goes bad within the first year, the warranty provides you with a fee replacement.
Don’t worry about leaving it plugged in, as it stops drawing power when its built-in battery is fully charged. You can just flick a switch to turn it on or off, and it also comes with a handle on top.
For quite a few people, this is one of the best rechargeable lantern flashlights for your money. You get 3 modes plus an SOS setting.
The high setting gives off 440 lumens, which can last for 24 hours on a full charge of the 8800mAH high capacity battery.
At the medium setting of 280 lumens, you can extend the light up to at least 73 hours. And you get 84 hours when you keep it at the low setting, which is still bright enough at 200 lumens.
The light can last for a lifespan of about 42,000 hours. It comes with a lamp cover so the light is softer and more natural. It measures 2.76 inches in diameter and 4.17 inches tall, so it’s actually cute and small. Your purchase also gets you a USB charger as well as a carry bag.
Rechargeable Headlamp Flashlights
If you’ve seen a military movie in recent years, then you’ve seen soldiers in action wearing similar devices on their heads. These headlamps can let you use your two hands as you move around, which can be very useful when you have lots to carry. It’s great when you’re biking, or fixing a computer.
This weighs just 13.6 ounces, so it sits on your head comfortably. It’s made of aluminum alloy casing, and it has an adjustable headband to set it right on your head.
Here you have 3 LED lights which can also be rotated up to 90 degrees. At low setting, the big middle light turns on, and the medium setting only has the two smaller LEDs activated.
At the highest setting, al the LED lights are in and you have a maximum of 3,000 lumens to work with. There’s also strobe setting, when all the LEDs are flashing.The LEDs can last for up to 100,000 hours, and when you have a full charge you can get about 4 to 6 hours of illumination.
You have a wall charger, a car charger, and a USB charger too. The headlamp is rainproof too although it’s not for diving. And the price is more than reasonable, too.
This is very similar to the Keku, but in some ways it’s better. It costs slightly less, it’s lighter at 10.6 ounces, it’s rainproof and heatproof, and it can work from 4 to 7 hours with a full charge.
It also comes with the same 3-LED light with the big middle one design, and they also can be adjusted 90 degrees. You have the same 4 modes, the same set of chargers, and there’s also an indicator light so pole can see you when you’re out at night biking or walking.
Keychain Rechargeable Flashlight Reviews
In general, these things offer minimal lighting. In fact, very few keychain flashlights are rechargeable. But we have a couple of excellent examples why they can be very useful.
At first glance, this seems like a typical keychain flashlight. It only measures 5 cm long (less than 2 inches) and the diameter is 2.2 cm (0.87 inches).
It’s practically weightless.But this can be recharged via USB. What’s more, it’s very right at 25 lumens, and it’s able to throw a beam up to 10 meters.
It’s even splash-proof with an IPX-3 rating. At a very cheap price, it’s surprisingly full of exciting features. It even comes in a cute color, although you’ll get a random color instead of getting to pick the one you want.
It measures 2.6 inches long, and the head diameter is 1.1 inches. Now here’s proof that small doesn’t mean puny performance every time.
This uses 2 LEDs that give you 1,000 lumens—that’s brighter than a lot of “tactical” flashlights out there. That’s why you have 4 standard modes (low, medium, high, and turbo) along with a strobe setting.
This has a micro USB port on the flashlight, and it’s like charging your smartphone. You only need about 90 minutes to get it fully charged again. On high (not turbo) you’ll get 20 hours of use before you need to recharge. Just use the turbo sparingly, as you’ll run out of juice in just 30 minutes or so. This thing is also incredibly tough.
It’s made from aero grade aluminum alloy and it even has am IPX-8 waterproof rating. That means you can immerse it in a meter of water instead of just dunk under the surface.Of course, all these terrific features come at a price. You will have to fork out a bit more, but if you want a terrific flashlight with you all the time, this is the flashlight you get.
So before you get a rechargeable flashlight, make sure you get the right type. Be sure to read more detailed rechargeable flashlight reviews on these models, so you can see the light and find the one that suits your needs.