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How to decide the lumens you need for a flashlight?

Dec 06, 2021

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If you are a dog owner, I guess you have probably experienced walking with dogs in the dark and feel like a blind. Or, if you live in the top 5 U.S states for power outages, like Texas, Michigan, living in the dark is no stranger to you. Having a flashlight or headlamp can help you to see through the darkness in these scenarios, but the question is how much light do you need?

The answer is: It depends

First of all, we need to learn about lumens. Lumens are the light output measurement. Simply put, the higher the number of lumens, the brighter the flashlight will appear to be. The number of lumens should be the first thing you consider when purchasing a flashlight. With this concept in mind, you then need to consider where you are going to use the flashlight. Are you using it to light up a campsite? Or use it when a power outage happens?

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Today, I will break down what number of lumens you should be looking at for a specific event or occasion.

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1-400 Lumens for Everyday Tasks/Leisure

Flashlights with 1-250 lumens are ideal for simple tasks, just as walking around in dim conditions or basic household activities. For instance, if you are searching for things in a blackout within 80 meters, a flashlight with 100-150 lumens is good enough to handle the job. Flashlights with lumens between 160-400 are good for hiking, camping as the light beam should be able to cover a distance of up to 100 meters.

WUBEN's 1-400 Lumen Pick: WUBEN E18 AA Flashlight

400-1000 Lumens for Mechanics/Caving

As for flashlights with 400-1000 lumens, they are ideal for caving and hiking, especially if you are looking for a light source to cover an area up to 200 meters. Flashlights between 800-1000 lumens are ideal for mechanics who need something bright enough to help them see everything under a car's hood or underside of an airplane wing.

WUBEN's 400-1000 Lumen Picks: WUBEN E05 EDC Flashlight , Wuben C5 Pocket Flashlight

1000-3000 Lumens for Hunting/Tactical Use

Flashlights with 1000-3000 lumens are usually categorized as tactical flashlights. The most important feature of a tactical flashlight is powerful brightness, making flashlights with 1000-3000 lumens ideal for hunters, security guards; also with such high lumens, these flashlights can be used as a blinding and disorienting weapon. With 1000-3000 lumens, you can see objects from a far distance, up to 350 meters or more, that’s why they are perfect for hunters, law enforcement, or military personnel.

WUBEN's 1000-3000 Lumen Picks: WUBEN T70 Tactical Flashlight , WUBEN E62 Tactical Penlight

3000-7000 Lumens for Searching/Law Enforcement Use

Under certain conditions, rescuers can decide which equipment is used individually or at mountain rescue stations. Most emergency workers will find flashlights with 3000 to 7000 lumens that can be used as a handy searchlight at a range of over 500 meters. According to International Rescue Committee, when searching under extreme weather conditions, 3000 lumens is the minimum need, making flashlights with this lumens range are widely chosen by rescue teams.

WUBEN's 3000-7000 Lumen Pick: WUBEN A21 Flashlight

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7000-15000 Lumens for Searching/Outdoor/Emergency Services

High-performance flashlights that blast between 7000-15000 lumens can reach a distance of up to (700 meters), These kinds of flashlights usually combine spotlight and floodlight features, they are ideal for lighting up a large area and suitable for medium and long-distance illumination. Flashlights with 7000-15000 lumens are widely used for outdoor activities, such as camping, hiking, mountain climbing; as well as searching events, when large-area lighting is needed. In the dark wild jungle or the desert, we are more eager to know the surrounding environment, and a flashlight with such a high lumen number can easily meet our needs.

WUBEN's 7000-15000 Lumen Pick: WUBEN A9 Super Flashlight


Providing the right amount of light for a task can have a significant impact on efficiency, productivity, and safety. When purchasing a flashlight, it’s important to understand your needs first and then consider how many lumens you need. That’s said, the lumen is not the only factor that affects a flashlight’s performance, you also need to consider the beam distance, runtime, etc. To learn more about flashlights and their applications, stay tuned with us.

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