It's the middle of the night and you're in the middle of nowhere when—whumpa, whumpa, whumpa—you get a flat. Rather than fumble through the tire change in the dark, why not keep this portable LED lantern in the boot should the need arise?
A 300-lumen area light from Energizer's Light Fusion Technology line.
Backpackers and campers looking for an alternative to bulky and explosive propane lanterns, DIY mechanics tired of singeing themselves on white-hot drop lights.
A radical departure from the conventional gas lanterns you took camping as a kid (looking at you, Coleman), the dimmable 300-lumen LED light source spreads evenly across a roughly 4.5-inch square translucent fold-out plate hinged at the unit's top rubberized handle. An integrated kickstand flips out from the opposite end of the case (which houses the AA batteries under a locking cover plate) just below the power switch.
This lantern only has two moving parts: the lamp plate and the kickstand. Extend both of these, press the power button, and boom—illumination.
This lamp runs forever. Even at maximum brightness, it lasted 6 hours with eight NiMH 1.2V, 3 hours with eight 1.5V alkalines, 3.5 hours with four NiMH 1.2V, and 1.5 hours with four 1.5V alkalines. Lowering the brightness, which at full power gets a bit glarey anyway, dramatically extends its run-time.
The battery compartment cover is secured by a pair of quarter-turn plastic screws that cannot be opened by hand. You'll need a flat head screwdriver to release them, though nickles work in a pinch.
The lantern accepts batteries in sets of four or eight. This doesn't affect the brightness, only the runtime.
- It's got an IPX4 water resistance rating meaning it can endure minor splashes and downpours but can't be submerged
- Press and hold the power button to dim, press and hold again to brighten. The lamp will blink in shortening intervals as it gets really low on power.
- The lantern can use both disposable alkaline and rechargable NiMH batteries
Yes. It's only $35, runs on the most common battery size, and is small enough to stash in a car trunk or go-bag. It's a sensible, low cost, long-lasting solution to emergency lighting, what more do you want?
• Bulb Type: LED
• Brightness: 15 (est) - 300 lumen
• Dimensions: 11 x 1.6 x 8 inches
• Power: 4 or 8 AA
• Weight: 1.3 pounds
• Price: $35 at Amazon