How To Pick the Right Bike Light for Your Next Ride.
In order to pick the right bike light for your next ride, start by asking yourself these questions.
- Does this allow people to see me? Increased visibility from standard reflectors that while not being so bright that it would blind oncoming traffic?
- Does this allow me to see other traffic & obstacles? Does it light your way far enough in advance so you can react to traffic or obstacles in your path?
- Does this last for my ride? Is my light going to die before I reach my destination?
We will use some of our Lumintrail bike light options to show what you want to look for in a light depending on what type of riding you do.
Neighborhood Riders: You are riding for short periods of time in well lit areas where you can generally see obstacles or traffic in your path and you need to increase your own visibility. In this case you will need low or safety lights. This includes the LTC-7043 and the LTC-15 & 15W. Generally these are low power lights which usually do not have a lumen rating, are very compact and run on disposable batteries.
City Commuters and Urban Trails: You are riding for a medium period of time in dimly or poorly lit areas where you not only need to be seen by oncoming traffic but need to illuminate your path for obstacles. You will likely need medium brightness level lights, which are typically rated from 700 to 1000 lumens. These includes the LTC-50, LTC-7026 and LTC 1000. These lights are typically compact and come with either internal rechargeable batteries for shorter commute times and many come with external battery packs for longer run times.
Off Road, Mountain and Downhill Bikers: You are generally riding for long periods of time in areas with no environmental lighting. You don’t have to worry about blinding oncoming traffic and you want as much visibility in order to see obstacles well in advance. You want high output light, typically rated between 1500 and 3000 lumens. These include the LTC-1600 and LTC-3000. These lights generally stay compact thanks to LED technology but almost exclusively have external battery packs for higher output and longer run times. Many riders will ride with two lights, one mounted to the handlebars and the other to the helmet so you can safely move the light without adjusting the steering of your bike to prepare for course adjustment.