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Spotlights are useful for not just for emergency purposes, but also when you simply need a more powerful light source than a flashlight. But with so many spotlights on the market, it can be difficult to narrow down your choices. To help you choose the proper product for you, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the best spotlights available on Amazon. Here are our top five recommendations.
Best For Work: DEWALT 20V MAX LED Work Light
This spotlight is a great choice for working outside or in dark conditions since it comes with three bright LED lights and two different brightness settings. Furthermore, it uses a rechargeable battery that is compatible with many other tools from the manufacturer.
- Head pivots 90 degrees for extra versatility
- Can be seen at up to 508 yards or 1,525 feet
- Features over-molded lens cover for increased durability
- Comes with a belt hook
What Customers Are Saying
Customers who gave this product positive reviews said that it had a high brightness level, long battery life, and was made with highly durable materials. However, others who left negative reviews for this spotlight were disappointed it did not have a dimming feature, while others lamented the lack of a floodlight feature.
Widest Range: Streamlight Spotlight
This spotlight has a 1,000-lumen light on its highest setting and can be seen at a distance of over 740 yards. It is also super lightweight, weighing under two pounds, and it comes with a 120-volt AC charger with a rechargeable lithium-ion battery.
- Made with high-impact polycarbonate with an unbreakable lens
- Has three different light settings
- Comes with an adjustable lanyard
- Has a cushioned grip handle for easy, comfortable use
What Customers Are Saying
Those who gave this product positive reviews liked that it was durable, waterproof, and had a large light range. However, some who left negative reviews said that this light didn’t last as long as anticipated, and others said it sometimes stopped working after minimal use.
Most Versatile: Avid Rechargeable Spotlight
This spotlight can produce 900 lumens of light and is nearly completely waterproof with a rating of IP67. It has three different light modes, making it a great choice for any activity from hiking, to working, to fishing, to indoor use. It is also rechargeable via the included USB cable, so you never have to worry about battery replacements.
- Has an adjustable stand that can rotate up to 135 degrees
- Comes with a sealed rear cover that helps keep out dirt and dust
- Is lightweight and easy to transport
- Includes a flashing/SOS setting for emergency purposes
What Customers Are Saying
Customers who were happy with this product liked that it was lightweight, had a high brightness level, and was well designed. However, others who were not satisfied with this product claimed that it stopped working after only a few weeks of use, while others said that the charge didn’t last as long as they’d hoped.
Best Colored Lens: BIGSUN LED Rechargeable Spotlight
This spotlight stands out from other products due to its additional red lens that creates a less intense light that won’t harm your eyes, making it an excellent choice for hunting or stargazing. Furthermore, this spotlight also comes with a USB charging cable, a wall charger, and a hands-free kickstand.
- Has three different lighting modes
- Can shine nearly 2,600 feet
- Comes with a rechargeable battery
- Includes a foldable stand and shoulder strap
What Customers Are Saying
Those who left positive reviews for this spotlight said that it was lightweight, easy to charge, and good for camping. However, some customers who left negative reviews said that this light was not as bright as they were expecting, and others said it stopped working after a short period of time.
Best For Emergencies: STANLEY LED Spotlight Flashlight
This spotlight is a great option for keeping in your home, vehicle, or to-go bag for emergencies when you need a light. It features up to 10 hours of continuous runtime and can last up to one full year on a charge, giving you peace of mind that it will work when you need it.
- Can deliver up to 900 lumens with an ultra-bright LED light
- Has five different lighting modes
- Has a trigger lock with a comfortable rubber grip
- Includes power-saving halo mode with eight ambient LEDs
What Customers Are Saying
Customers who gave this spotlight positive reviews said that it had a long-lasting battery, was good for long-distance viewing, and that it held up over multiple years of use. However, some customers who left negative reviews for this product claimed that it sometimes didn’t charge properly, while others said that they had difficulty lining up the charging cable and port.
Spotlights are highly versatile lights that can be used outdoors while hiking, camping, or fishing. They can be a great addition to a severe weather emergency kit, or they can be used in the home when your electricity goes out, when you’re working in a dark space like the basement, or whenever you need a temporary light that’s brighter than a traditional flashlight. Before deciding on what spotlight works best for your needs, there are a few important factors that you should first consider to make sure you’re getting the best product for you.
To determine how bright your spotlight should be, consider where you will be using it and how much lighting you truly need. A spotlight’s brightness level is measured in lumens, with high-end versions able to produce up to 8,000 lumens. If you will be using your spotlight for things like hunting or hiking, a high-brightness spotlight may be needed. Smaller spotlights will be in the 500-2,000 lumen range, which will be perfectly fine if you only need it for around your house or yard.
Most spotlights are battery-operated, with some models requiring replacement batteries when they run out, and others using rechargeable batteries that can be juiced up by an electrical outlet, power bank, or USB port. Some spotlights are corded and require an outlet to work properly, which may be logistically challenging when using them outdoors unless your vehicle has a power outlet.
If your spotlight is using non-rechargeable batteries, you’ll want to be aware of how long its batteries will last, so you’re not left with a dead light. How long batteries will last in a spotlight largely depends on what power setting it is being used at and how long it has been in operation, but check the individual product descriptions closely to get an idea of how long each spotlight’s battery is intended to last. To ensure you will be fully covered, it’s always smart to have a backup set of batteries on hand.
Spotlights should be made from durable materials that will stand up to being used in harsh conditions outside. Spotlights that are made from heavy-duty polyethylene with a water-resistant case will hold up much better than those made with cheaper materials. To see how well your spotlight will hold up to moisture, check the IPX rating. A rating of IPX-4 means your spotlight can resist light rain, while an IPX-8 light can survive being submerged in water for several hours.
Types of Spotlight Bulbs
When talking about spotlights, there are three main types of bulbs that can be used: LED bulbs, incandescent bulbs, and noble gas bulbs. Each of these bulbs has its own unique characteristics. Here are the main differences between them.
LED bulbs are the most common type of bulb used in spotlights. They are energy-efficient and emit bright white light without creating excess heat. LED bulbs don’t use a glass filament, making them much tougher to break than other bulb types. LED bulbs are typically a good choice for activities like hiking, camping, or fishing.
Incandescent bulbs have gradually been replaced with LED bulbs over the years in spotlights as they are usually less durable and efficient. Still, incandescent bulbs can be found in a wide range of spotlights. They emit a warm or yellow light, which some may prefer over the white light of an LED bulb. They are also typically less pricey than LED bulbs.
Noble Gas Bulbs
Noble gas bulbs are similar to incandescent bulbs but are filled with gas such as halogen, xenon, and krypton, which creates a brighter, more energy-efficient light. Noble gas bulbs are very fragile, which is why they are not often used in spotlights. However, they can emit a brighter light overall than both LED and incandescent bulbs.
Frequently Asked Questions
How many lumens should a spotlight be?
The amount of lumens you need in your spotlight depends on what you are using it for. Typically, for general outdoor use, a spotlight that can emit between 500-1,500 lumens is perfectly sufficient.
What are the different color temperatures in spotlights?
If you’re using an LED spotlight, it’s likely you will have a white light, but the color shade may vary depending on the model. Warm white models create a soft, halogen-like glow, cool whites are bright and clear, and daylight whites create a more naturalistic-looking light. Color temperature is sometimes measured in Kelvin, ranging from 1,000 to 10,000. Lower numbers represent warmer hues, while higher numbers indicate cooler hues.
Are spotlights waterproof?
It depends on the type of model you purchase. If you need a waterproof spotlight, look for one with a high IPX level of at least IPX6 with a waterproof case.
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This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.
We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.
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