Cycling enthusiasts know that having one of the best bike lights is of paramount importance. Not only so that you can see the road and your surroundings with clarity during night rides, but so that others can see you as well. Reflectors alone can only do so much to make you and your bike visible. The ability to see potential obstacles in your path can mean the difference between a brisk and enjoyable night ride and a disaster waiting to happen.
Use this guide to get “in the know” about this year’s best bike lights so you can take your peace of mind along for a ride with you, day or night.
What to Consider When Choosing a Bike Light
- Luminescence. You need enough illumination to see what’s around you in the dark or when riding in less than desirable weather where visibility may not be at its best. The best bike lights have a light output that is sufficient to provide that much needed visibility that every cyclist needs when going for a ride at night, in the rain, or even in the snow. In general, a bike light that puts out 300 or more lumens will do the job. You may want to use caution when opting for a higher lumen output bike light, as that large lumens number could make for a light that provides more obnoxious than useful illumination.
- Battery Type and Battery Life. Another important consideration for the best bike lights is its battery type and the typical battery life of the light. Is the battery rechargeable, or does it need to be changed out? Is the battery solar powered? How long will the lamp be able to run continuously? One of the worst things that could happen to a nighttime cyclist is having the battery of your light go dead when you are still miles away from your destination. You are going to want a battery with longevity enough to get you through your ride. Consider your nighttime and bad weather riding needs and choose accordingly.
- Ease of Installation. Is the light easy to install, or will it be a pain in the neck to mount? Is the light universally adaptable for street bikes and mountain bikes, or is it specially designed to fit one type of bicycle? Bike lights that come with adjustable mounts can be handy if you use different bikes for different purposes on a regular basis. Some mounts can even house bicycle speakers. However, if you only do night rides with one specific bike, you may prefer a more permanent and specialized light mount to suit your needs.
- Price. You want quality, but you also want value. Why spend more than you need to on one headlight when a headlight taillight combo of equal quality can be found for the same price? That said, watch out for bargains that seem too good to be true. A mixture of quality and affordability is the ideal combination to keep an eye out for when seeking out the best bike lights.
Best Bike Lights Top 8 Comparison Guide
Reviews of the Top Rated Bike Lights
The perfect blend of value and quality, the Night Eyes Bright Bike Light Set offers two lights with a 300 lumen output for one affordable price. You can see what’s in front of you and be seen from behind when sharing the road with others with this bike light set. The rubber mounts make installation a breeze without even having to open your toolbox. The lights run on a 3.7 volt battery that can be recharged at any USB port, attaining a full charge from drained in only two and a half hours.
This bike light set offers versatility in lighting, too. You can use the high beam, low beam, or flashers while on your ride and switch modes with just the touch of a button. The light mounts are adaptable to use with any type of bicycle and the lights themselves are cased in water-resistant and lightweight aluminum, making them a great choice no matter the climate.
While the Vision II 860 Lumen USB Headlight is a bit more on the expensive side, it does have some awesome features that make it worth the price tag. The higher lumen output ensures that you get a better line of sight and can be seen from further away than bike lights with less illumination capability. The lamp can run continuously for more than 24 hours without requiring a recharge. And, when the battery life has drained, recharging is as simple as plugging it into a USB port.
Getting a full charge can take up to four hours, but this bike light comes with a free extra battery, so you can charge up one while using the other on your ride. The mount for the lamp is fully adjustable, making a snug and sure fit with even over sized handlebars. This bike light features five different settings so that you can tailor the level of illumination to fit your needs. Perhaps the best thing about the Vision II 860 Lumen USB Headlight, though, is its lifetime warranty. If this light lets you down, you can get a replacement with no questions asked.
The Sahara Sailor 5600 Lumens LED Bike Headlight is compact and sleek in its design, offering mega high luminescence so you can see your path on even the darkest roads. This is one of the best bike lights because it comes with a strap allowing for a head mount (versus handlebar mount), making it more versatile than its competitors.
There are three lighting modes to choose from: high beam, low beam and strobe beam. The battery life for this lamp is extra long, so you don’t have to worry about losing luminosity at an inconvenient time. This long battery life even stands up when you using the high beam. One touch control allows you to change the lighting mode easily. Also, a handy power indicator will flash green or red to let you know how much longer your battery will last.
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