How to choose bike lights
With the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic, city biking became the most famous mode of personal transportation these days. Aside from the fact that it’s the cheapest way to go through a place apart from public transport, it also gives you the necessary daily exercise that you need to boost your health and immune system.
Because of that, bicycle lights and other biking accessories have been all over the place—which is pretty much a good thing. However, for new bikers, it could be difficult to know how to choose bike lights properly.
This is why we came up with a simple guide for novice cyclists on how to choose bike lights properly. Make sure to list these tips before you go to your bike store!
Determine your use of the bike lights
The first thing you have to figure out is the place and time where you would be mostly biking.
Biking on busy city roads needs different kinds of lights compared to those going through dark countryside ones. Same with biking through daytime and nighttime.
When biking through well-lit city roads, it’s best to choose rear bike lights with medium brightness and smart technology. This is mostly because you would not be using your lights to see the road. Instead, they will serve as your warning lights for other larger vehicles.
On the other hand, if you will be biking in the countryside, it’s best to choose bike lights with at least 90 lumens and customization features such as beam and flash. These roads can get too dark and foggy every now and then—flashing bright lights might be the best way to be seen.
When biking in the daytime, it’s best to focus on the optics of your lights instead of their brightness. This is mostly because lights with high luminous intensity might not be visible in the daytime. It’s also best to look for bike lights with daytime running settings.
Identify the type of bike lights that you need
There are various kinds of bike lights depending on the function. And contrary to popular belief, they aren’t interchangeable with one another. Some kinds of bike lights can’t serve the function of the other kinds.
There are front lights whose main function is to give visibility to the biker over the road. This kind of light is mostly high-output with bright luminosity.
There are rear bike lights or taillights that are used to make the cyclist more visible to other people in the street—be it larger vehicles or even pedestrians.
Perhaps the most essential of all bike lights—the brake lights. Just like in cars and other vehicles, brake lights are used to signal vehicles from behind if the bikers would go into a halt.
While not really that common, there are also side safety lights. They are mostly low-output lights that improve your visibility on the road and notify other drivers in which direction you’re going.
There are several cases in which light serves two functions. For instance, some tail lights also serve as brake lights. Some rear bike lights can also notify other motorists about which direction you will be heading, just like sidelights.
Embrace smart bike light technology
Gone are the days when bike lights were just regular lights. There are already loads of bicycle lights that come with smart technology. But what smart technology should you be really looking for?
For starters, your brake light should at least have accurate and adjustable sensors. This way, you won’t have to worry about giving false alarms to fellow road users that may cause accidents instead of preventing them.
Smartphone connectivity is also standard these days. Bike lights are now made compact and lightweight since you could already make all the adjustments and customizations through your smartphone.
Lastly, it would help if you looked for anti-theft technology. Studies show that it only takes 15 seconds to steal an unattended bike. So, it would be beneficial if you can add a layer of protection to your bike. Most anti-theft technologies are convenient since they give warning alerts straight to your phone.
Ready to buy your next bike lights? Always remember that safety is a biker’s best accessory!