5 Best Rechargeable Headlamps
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Are you planning a camping trip? This adventure will require a tent, a pair of sturdy shoes, and yes, a headlamp if you’re staying in one place.
Every serious camper or hiker knows that a headlamp can be your best friend on a dark trail, especially if you don’t have to think about replacing the batteries all the time. In this article, we’re going to talk about what to look for in the best rechargeable headlamp and the models that you might want to Consider.
The Top 5 Rechargeable Headlamps
PETZL - TIKKINA Headlamp 150
If you want a simple yet effective headlamp, this is an excellent choice. It’s not an overly complicated product but it will serve your basic needs. It features a button at the top that toggles through three levels of brightness. An interesting feature of this model is that you can get it with AAA batteries or with the rechargeable lithium battery, which you can also upgrade to later. The burn time is rated at 220 hours at the lowest level, which is pretty great. However, it’s not entirely waterproof and missing a red mode light.
- Great for family camping
- Three brightness levels
- Affordable Cons Max lighting may not be bright enough
BioLite HeadLamp 200
Apart from the sleek design, the BioLite Headlamp is also super lightweight and very comfortable to wear. It features an excellent beam distance of 165 feet, which only the best rechargeable headlamp for night hiking or fishing can claim to be capable of.
The ergonomic design will ensure that it doesn’t slip during more intense activities and it won’t cause any pressure to your head.
This is the kind of headlamp that’s meant for shorter trips or just evening walks. It has all four light modes, including strobe and red light. The only real downside of this otherwise amazing headlamp is that the burn time is short. If you use it at maximum brightness, it will last no more than three hours. At the lowest, that number goes up to 40.
- Very comfortable
- Features strobe and red light
- Locking feature
- Lightweight Cons Small On/Off button
Black Diamond Spot Lite 160
Black Diamond’s Spot Lite 160 on its own is not rechargeable, but there’s nothing to stop you from using rechargeable AAA batteries rather than the regular. It’s still an excellent choice for anyone looking for an affordable and high-quality headlamp.
It weighs less than 2 oz., which makes it one of the best lightweight headlamps on the market. The fact that it uses AAA batteries means that the burn time and brightness level may vary.
But it makes up for it with how comfortable it feels. It has a locking feature and is rated IPX8 waterproof.
- Great beam distance Cons Not inherently rechargeable in the box
Black Diamond Spot 325
Even a non-rechargeable headlamp can sometimes make a worthy competitor to the rechargeable option. Case in point – the Black Diamond Spot 325. Once again, you can just add rechargeable batteries.
It’s one of the best for people who are passionate about hiking and camping. Compared to its predecessor, this model has a much longer burn time. It also features a very bright LED and on top of that, it looks and feels very comfortable.
This is a high-quality headlamp that’s affordable and loaded with excellent features. It’s rated at three ounces and 272 feet beam distance. Like many other Black Diamond headlamps, it does have a bit of a learning curve but it’s an overall fantastic choice.
- 200h at low
- Very bright
- Battery life indicator Cons A bit heavy
PETZL ACTIK CORE
The best rechargeable headlamp can mean something different for everyone. But the Petzl Actik Core will likely satisfy anyone looking for a durable and practical headlamp. This is a powerful, yet lightweight model that is an excellent choice for mountain climbing, camping, or bike riding. It offers two different beam patterns and will work great for any type of outdoor activity. The burn time is rather impressive at over 160 hours on 350 lumens. Charging the Actik Core is easy because it comes with a micro USB port and a CORE rechargeable battery. But it’s also compatible with AAA batteries.
- Doesn’t dim with battery life
- Easy to use
What is a Headlamp and Why Do You Need One?
A headlamp, or as it’s sometimes referred to as headlight, is a type of light source attached to a person’s head. You can get either a headlamp that uses standard AAA batteries or one with a rechargeable battery. There are many uses for a headlamp, but it’s commonly associated with camping and hiking.
But you can use a headlamp for other uses too, like reading a book in the dark or working on home repairs. When you’re walking your dog in the night, it beats having to hold a flashlight for sure.
A headlamp is something all of us will need at some point in our lives, so it’s always smart to keep it somewhere close.
The Different Types of Rechargeable Lamps
Rechargeable headlamps are usually categorized according to the light source. There is no wrong or right light mode. Your activity will dictate your choice for the best rechargeable headlamp type.
This light source is also known as focused or narrow, and it’s the best choice for long-distance viewing. When you’re navigating a dark trail, this bright and condensed light is exactly what you’d need. However, they’re not the best choice for up-close work, reading, or when you’re not moving around too much.
Like the floodlight in your backyard, this offers a wide and lower intensity light. It’s all about proximity and battery Conservation.
The beam is usually softer and dimmer. When you’re cooking outdoors or setting up your tent, this is the headlamp to go with.
On the other hand, if you’re planning to ride a mountain bike or go for a night hike, this headlamp type won’t work as well.
Strobe headlamp is usually used to ensure you stay visible while hiking. Also, if you need a simple yet effective signaling tool in an emergency situation, a strobe headlamp is a good option.
Another common type of rechargeable headlamp that uses a minimal amount of energy. It also doesn’t dilate your pupils at nighttime.
It will provide more than enough light for you to get on with your camping chores, without attracting all the insects around. It also won’t disturb the sleep of other campers. The downside is that it won’t provide anywhere near the amount of light you’ll need for certain activities.
3 Benefits of Using a Rechargeable Headlamp
Do you already have a headlamp that uses alkaline batteries and thinks of switching to rechargeable? There are many reasons why rechargeable headlamps are a better choice.
1. Environmentally Friendly
If you’re an environmentally Conscious person, you’re probably worried about all the waste dumped on our planet. The fact is, using a rechargeable headlamp will reduce battery waste. And you can always invest in a long-lasting lithium battery and a spare.
2. Longer Burn Time
Yes, headlamps with disposable batteries might last a little longer overall, but according to the design and battery used, the light might get dimmer with use.
In contrast, rechargeable headlamps will offer more Consistency when it comes to light output. The light might go out more abruptly, but you won’t ever have to squint while using it.
3. Easier to Use
When you have a non-rechargeable headlamp, you’ll need to replace the batteries often to have it ready whenever you head out hiking or camping.
You have to worry about whether they’re entirely depleted or not. Rechargeable headlamps are low-maintenance. All you need to do is make sure you charge it before your next adventure.
3 Things to Look for in a Good Rechargeable Headlamp
Shopping for a rechargeable headlamp isn’t as complicated as some other camping gear purchases. But there are still features you want to pay attention to so you don’t run into an unexpected problem.
The adjustment strap is an essential feature of a good headlamp. It’s supposed to feel secure on your head but without any uncomfortable pressure.
Also, the weight distribution on the front and the back will impact how comfortable the headlamp will feel while on a hike.
The material used will impact how much ruggedness your headlamp will be able to sustain. And also, the water resistance level will vastly vary from product to product. Most headlamps will be somewhat water-resistant, but you’ll want to look for an official waterproof rating if this is important to you.
This is a feature that most buyers don’t think of. But the option to move the headlamp up or down will mean a lot. Some headlamps have this option, but many do not. Generally, you’d want to have better control of where the light beam is directed. And that it doesn’t involve you moving your head too much.
All outdoorsy people are going to appreciate the usefulness and comfort of the best rechargeable headlamp money can buy.
Even at home, if the power goes out or if you have to work on your car, nothing beats a good headlamp, and the PETZL TIKKINA Headlamp 150 has our highest recommendation — not only because it’s affordable and has an excellent burn time, but it’s also because you can get it with rechargeable or non-rechargeable batteries. It’s a product that will work great whatever the activity may be.