Now the clocks have gone back, it is even more important to have good bike lights on your bicycle. Not only will you been seen by motorists and pedestrians alike, but it is actually illegal to ride without them.
Surveys show that a bright, flickering light is more effective than a warm static one. As for brightness, you should be aiming for a bike light with at least 600 lumens. This will ensure you are seen at night-time. There is a difference between being seen and seeing the road ahead. 300 lumens and you’ll be seen but over 1000+ will allow you to see where you are riding.
‘BE SEEN’ BIKE LIGHTS
These are ‘be seen’ lights as they emit 120 lumens. This is a Kickstarter project that was funded by over 4000 people. The bike lights hook up to your smartphone to provide you with a host of features. There is a safety feature that can tell if your bike has been lying down for too long and you can programme the light to call a pre-set number in case of emergency. The lights have a slider for brightness and change modes. The lights get brighter automatically as you approach junctions or swerve and data is being collected from all the lights to help improve future products.
A ‘be seen’ bike light that does give some headlight on the road. There are three brightness levels and a battery gauge. The light is made to withstand urban riding so if you encounter a lot of potholes on your journey this is a good product for you.
Waterproof and easy to secure, this is a ‘be seen’ set of front and rear lights. The front light has a number of functions including side windows for when you are stationary. The rear light has a wide-angle so it can be seen from more angles. Batteries are rechargeable and you get 6.5 hours on one charge.
‘SEEING’ BIKE LIGHTS
A ‘seeing light’, this is a great value bike light with a huge 1600 lumen brightness. This bike light is great for those rural roads with no lights where it is pitch black. It includes a battery life bar to indicate how much life you have left. Also, the light will switch automatically to a flash mode when the battery is low so that you have enough light to get home. You can also use the light to charge other devices. phone or cycle GPS on longer rides.
This is classed as a ‘seeing light’. It is waterproof and has a larger lens which gives a wider beam and better light distribution. This bike light performs like a car headlight, brightly lighting your way. Have it on flashing mode or high mode and change with a flick of a button.
Another ‘seeing light’ here with lots of modes available. A bright output of 1000 lumens and a clever lens that maximises the light output. It is sturdy and includes a versatile strap to mount it on many different frames.
REAR BIKE LIGHTS
A clever rear light here with a whopping 200 lumens that is bright enough for daylight riding. Use this bike light for roads with no illumination. It has a day flash mode which is extra bright and a feature that increases the light when you are braking. Waterproof and quick charging for the battery.
This rear light automatically changes its brightness depending on the surroundings. It is tough and waterproof and uses a rechargeable lithium battery. Features include side illumination, dual and constant flashing modes.
You get six modes on this rear light from the brightest static to a low flashing. The 75 lumens is bright for a rear light and you can see it in daylight. What we like is that it senses when a front light is behind it and it dims automatically so as not to blind the rider.