How to Choose a Solar Flashlight
If you are assembling a camping or hiking kit, bug-out bag, car kit, or emergency storm kit of any kind, a solar flashlight is a great addition. It’s nice and oftentimes essential to have a flashlight in the event of a power outage or if you are out in the wilderness at night.
Benefits of Solar Flashlights
Just in case you were wondering why you should trade in your old run of the mill flashlight for one of its solar counterparts, here are a few reasons:
Solar flashlights are…
- Environmentally friendly.
- Usually more durable than traditional flashlights.
- More convenient than battery-powered flashlights because you don’t have to carry around extra batteries.
- Versatile – they can be used for different types of emergency situations, power outages, camping, hiking, and more!
- Usually able to double as a solar power bank and offer additional features as well!
Solar Flashlight Specifications to Consider
Once you’ve considered your price point, here are the features you should look at when deciding which solar flashlight to purchase:
Weight. Solar flashlights range in weight from a few ounces to several pounds. Consider what you will use the flashlight for and if being lightweight is an important feature. For example, if you plan to use your flashlight for the occasional power outage or around your house, weight might not be a big consideration. But if you will be using the flashlight for hiking, a 6-ounce flashlight will be a lot more appealing than a 6 pound one!
Light life. Instead of battery life, you’ll want to look at “bulb life” or how long the bulbs will last once fully charged. Most basic solar flashlights will last at least 5-7 hours on a single charge, depending on the brightness you have it set on. Consider if this length of time will be sufficient for your needs or if you will need something more advanced that lasts longer.
Extra Features. You can easily find several solar flashlights on the market that are dedicated flashlights. However, there are also many choices that include additional features that may come in handy when camping, hiking, or in emergency situations.
Additional power sources. Some solar flashlights are equipped with alternative power or charging sources, such as a hand crank or a USB cable.
SOS Alarm. In an emergency, an SOS alarm is a great feature to have on your flashlight to alert others to your location.
Power Bank. Solar flashlights equipped with a power bank come in handy when the power goes out and you need to charge your phone, smart watch, and other devices.
NOAA Emergency Weather Broadcast Access. If you plan on using your solar flashlight in emergency weather situations, access to NOAA emergency weather broadcasts may be a useful feature so that you can stay up to date on the latest storm information.