The Best Bike Lights For Every Kind Of Ride
If you like to hit the trails at night, commute home after dark, or spend time riding on public roads, the best bike lights in our store keep your ride fun and your path clear and safe.
Whether you’re new to bike lights or are just looking at upgrading your current setup, we’ve got everything you need to know right here.
Where And When Will You Use Your Lights?
If you’re riding on public roads, the short answer is “everywhere, and all of the time.” That’s because when we talk about bike safety, visibility is key. Bike lights are intended to prevent accidents by making sure you get noticed by the vehicles you share the road with. For that reason, both headlights and taillights should be equipped and running on your bike anytime you’re on a public road.
Aside from that, headlights (both bike-mounted and rider-mounted) are great on the trail when those long afternoons accidentally stretch into evenings. Having a high-powered headlight means being confident you can finish your ride without getting lost in the dark.
Is Brightness All That Matters?
Brightness is important, but it isn’t the only important feature you should consider when shopping for bike lights.
Runtime is also a huge factor. You don’t want to be caught by surprise when your light runs out of juice halfway home. Remember, anything that impacts a light’s reliability is a serious safety consideration as well as a feature.
Speaking of reliability, you should also focus on bike lights that utilize high-quality LEDs rather than incandescent bulbs. Good LEDs (like those from CREE and LUMINUS) are rated to run trouble-free for 50,000 hours or more. Compared with the 1,000-2,000 hour life expectancy of other bulbs, LEDs are the clear choice.
And while no one likes the idea of riding in the rain, if you commute for long enough, it’s going to happen at some point. For that reason, we also recommend paying close attention to the specs of any bike lights you consider. A reliable waterproof rating like the IP66 or IP67 standard is well worth the money.
Best Bike Lights of 2021: Our Favorite Picks:
The list below includes all of our favorite bike lights, and represents a broad range of technology, performance, and value. We’ve included our picks for best light all around, the best bike light on a budget, and the best light bundle currently in our store, as well as several models that fit somewhere in-between.
Fenix BC35R (Best Bike Light All-Around)
We’ve got several Fenix products on this list, and while they’re all fantastic quality, the Fenix BC35R is currently our favorite.
Combining a bright 1800 lumen max output, clear OLED display, simple controls, and high-tech features like a smart built-in anti-theft alarm and remote turbo switch, the BC35R is as versatile as it is effective.
Nitecore is one of the most popular flashlight manufacturers in-store, and for good reasons. Their products have a dedicated following for their build quality, reliability, and well-designed features.
The Nitecore BR35 is no exception. Its 1800 lumens output utilizes a dual-beam system that covers both short and long-range, making the BR35 as useful in the city after dark as it is on the trail. We also love the BR35 for its easy-to-read backlit display, which includes a run time indicator to make sure you know how much juice you’ve got left between charges.
The Acebeam BK10 made our list in part due to its impressive power output. Brightness isn’t everything, but we can’t ignore its 2000 lumens of peak output backed by its incredible 5100mAh 21700 battery either.
We also like the versatility of the BK10, which ships with two different mounts for your handlebars in the package as well as a mount for your helmet. An integrated USB charge port rounds out the Acebeam package, which is just as weather-proof as the rest of the light thanks to IP65 water and dust proofing.
Precursor to the Fenix BC35R at the top of our list, the Fenix BC30R came out in 2017, but it’s still just as good as ever.
The two are almost indistinguishable in terms of quality and features, but the BC30R trades out the 35R’s new anti-theft feature for a little extra run-time. Entirely up to personal preference, but if runtime is your top priority, don’t rule out the BC30R.
Olight RN800 Bundle
The Olight RN800 bundle we’re currently offering is one of the best deals on the market, and includes both the powerful RN800 headlight and the smart RN120 tail light system.
The RN800 is the perfect companion for city and road riding, and utilizes a range of convenient features from multiple light modes, USB-C recharging, IPX6 waterproofing, and a powerful 21700 4000mAh battery.
The RN120 tail light utilizes a built-in light sensor to automatically adjust brightness for changing conditions. It also features an integrated motion sensor, which automatically brightens the output as you slow down just like an automotive brake light.
Olight Allty Bundle (Best Bike Lights Bundle)
Our Olight Allty bundle is a premium option, which includes the same intelligent RN120 tail light alongside an upgraded Olight Allty headlight.
The Allty features a full 2000 lumens max output, a sleek OLED screen, and an integrated daytime running light feature for enhanced safety. It also has an improved beam distance compared to the RN800, packing a full 541-foot throw compared to the 800’s respectable 449-foot range.
Fenix BC30R v2.0
The exceedingly popular Fenix BC30R v2.0 received an overhaul in 2020, improving several features that now distinguish the “2.0” version you see here. Output is up from 1800 lumens to 2200 lumens, and the remote switch was also updated to a wireless model, which uses Bluetooth rather than a hard-wired switch for rider inputs on the fly.
Runtime increased from 20 hours to 50 hours on the new model, and the already sturdy IP66 waterproofing improved to a full IP67 rating.
Fenix BC05R Tail Light
Perfect companion to the Fenix headlights on our list, the Fenix BC05R taillight is designed to last the average commuter a full month between charges.
The super-compact size is also ideal for a range of other applications, including nighttime running and use as a headlamp with the included body clip attachment.
Fenix BC25R (Best Bike Light On A Budget)
If you’re interested in getting into Fenix’s range of bike lights but don’t need all the bells and whistles, the Fenix BC25R is an inexpensive alternative that still packs plenty of punch for urban riding.
With 600 lumens of peak output, a 36-hour maximum runtime, micro USB rechargeability, and simple one-switch controls, the BC25R checks a ton of boxes at well below the $100 mark.
Simple, straightforward, and affordable, the Olight RN400 is a feature-rich urban bike light at an incredible price. Its 400 lumens max output isn’t the brightest on our list, but it’s plenty bright for typical city and road duty both day and night, and doubles as a great helmet light option out on the trail.
We give the Olight RN400 high marks for its low cost, lightning-fast USB-C recharging, anti-glare lens, and durable IXP7 waterproofing.