Every gardener needs a torch, whether for emergency use during power outages or chores like examining a crawl space. These are portable yet powerful sources of illumination that can help you light up the whole space in darkness. That’s why you should keep a spare in your home to ensure security and protection.
With all those uses, it is quite surprising that there is a variety of options to choose out there. I’ve rounded up a list of top 5 best torches on the UK market at the moment, and added some useful information to help you make an informed decision. Let’s check it out.
Why do gardeners need a torch?
The main use of a torch or head torch is obviously to provide light at night. As a gardener, you might experience some situations when it is impossible to finish the work before the sun sets. And a torch can be a simple yet effective solution to ensure the workload. Also, it might be helpful to look for something in your garden, such as a shovel, a key, or even your phone.
Due to the increasing crime rate in many areas, a torch can also work as a self-defence weapon for gardeners. Some tactical models would produce binding light with sharp bezeled edges to scare away any intruders in your property.
Key considerations to look for when purchasing a torch
a) Types of flashlights
Flashlights are available in a variety of options. Utility flashlights are the most common kind, which is often used as general-purpose lights in most households. Industrial flashlights are heavy-duty and can produce a considerable amount of illumination, making them great for garages and gardens. Tactical flashlights can work as a self-defence tool and source of light at the same time. Lastly, emergency flashlights are often used during emergencies or natural disasters.
You can choose a flashlight with rechargeable or disposable batteries. Rechargeable models are often nickel hydride or lithium ion, which can be recharged to help you save money on replacement. Disposable batteries are often lithium or alkaline. You have to dispose of and replace them when they run out of power. Torches often require 9V or D, C, AAA, AA to operate.
c) Controls or switch
There are many switch options in flashlights. Push-button type is often located on the bottom or side of the unit and can be used easily with one hand. Slide switches are a plastic piece that can slide back and forth to turn on or off the unit. A membrane press model can also be operated with one hand by pressing the plastic covers. Another option is the bezel twist control, which often requires 2 hands.
When it comes to levels of brightness in flashlights, lumens are used instead of wattage. Simply speaking, the more lumen a unit has the bright the beam will be. The typical range of lumens for flashlights is often between 100 to 1000. Keep in mind that a higher level would drain the battery quickly, while a lower level won’t provide sufficient illumination for your tasks.
Whichever you choose, make sure to go for long battery life and powerful brightness or lumens to get the best results.
Top 5 best torch reviews
1. Makita DML801 Florescent Li-Ion 14.4V LED Torch
The DML801 LED flashlight from Makita comes with 12 LED lamps to provide bright and wide illumination for your home and garden. Thanks to a rotatable and foldable design, you can choose the perfect angle or direction to light up the space. There is an integrated retracting metal hook on the head that enables the unit to be suspended from everything, making it great for loft spots. This flashlight would be easily switched between 7 LED operation to save energy or 12 LED for full brightness.
With a rubberised grip, you can handle it comfortably and effectively for an extended period of time. The lightweight construction, under 1kg, also makes it easier to manoeuvre around at night. This unit can operate 48 hours constantly with the use of an 18V, 6.0Ah battery, which isn’t included in the package. It can also rotate right or left for multiple angles and has seven positive stops to fold the head down or up.
What I like about it:
- Rubberised soft grip for better comfort
- Ergonomic and compact design
- Multiple angles by rotating right to left
- 7 positive stops to fold head up and down
- Work constantly for up to 2 days
2. Novostella 2000mAh Rechargeable Energy Class LED Torch
Whether you want to check out your garden in emergency cases or go camping, this versatile LED torch from Novostella should be on your list. It is designed with a compact and lightweight form, only 0.45kg. Also, there is a comfortable, large handle so that you can take it anywhere and light up the surrounding space. The package includes an adjustable shoulder strap, making it handy for walking or camping as well.
This flashlight features two modes. The searchlight mode allows has 2 levels of brightness in the front: 300 lumens and 650 lumens for a long distance from 250 to 500 meters. The lantern mode produces red lights on the right side and white lights on the left side. With an integrated 2000mAh rechargeable Lithium battery, the unit can work up 10 to 30 hours with a single charge. You can easily check for the battery level thanks to its blue indicator light. There is a built-in USB port so that you can charge your mobile devices in emergency situations.
What I like about it:
- 2000mAh battery for long-lasting operation
- IPX4 waterproof construction
- Lightweight and compact form
- Light up in all directions and angles
- User-friendly and simple-to-use design
3. PFSN TCP50 Powerful LED Torch 6000 Lumens
With a brightness level of up to 6000 lumens, the PFSN TCP50 torch is one of the most powerful options on the market. As a tactical model, it can produce an amazing range of illumination, up to 400 meters in different weather conditions. With the latest upgrade of CREE P50 chip, you can enjoy great lighting without any safety issues such as overheating or overcharging. The switch located in the neck allows for convenient and fast operation.
You can charge it quickly and conveniently with an integrated input port. The whole construction is IP65-rated waterproof for use in nearly all extreme weather conditions. Also, its durable and shock-resistant aluminium body can endure any rough handling. The high-quality and premium LED bulb can deliver optimal and consistent performance for up to 50,000 hours of operation.
What I like about it:
- 6000 lumens for powerful brightness
- Anti-reflective coating and ultra-clear glass lens
- Crafted from sturdy aircraft-grade aluminium
- Built-in chip to ensure safety
- Durable switch for convenient and fast operation
4. Ledlenser 501046 Professional P7 1.5V LED Torch
The Ledlenser 50146 is an advanced upgrade of the previous series to bring more powerful lighting performance. With a reconfigured reflective lens, it can illuminate a wider area in your garden. The integration of advanced CREE LED chip also allows for better performance in any weather conditions. In addition, there are 3 levels of brightness so that you can choose one to fit your needs.
The patented Focus System ensures the ultimate illumination in a specific area that you head for. You can choose to operate this unit at 40 lumens, 250 lumens, or 450 lumens for different purposes and conditions. With an IPX4-rated construction, it would endure water splashing and other weather conditions.
On full power, it can produce a beam range of up to 300 meters. The flashlight can also instantly focus to spot or flood with one hand. The powerful battery and energy-efficient operation ensure that this unit can work for many hours with a single charge.
What I like about it:
- Reconfigured reflective lens for wide illumination
- Provide 3 levels of brightness
- Advanced Focus System for better performance
- Accurate and quick handling with a responsive switch
- Long running time of up to 25 hours
5. Ledlenser M7R Multi-Function Rechargeable LED Torch
The multi-function M7R torch from Ledlenser features to ten micro-chip controlled lighting options for versatile applications. The unit is crafted from anodizing aluminium to ensure durability and long-term use. Also, there are internal gold-plated contacts for superior conductivity and corrosion-resistance. The patented Focus System can produce universally consistent illumination from spot to flood, making it an ideal option for every household.
The Smart Lighting Technology provides 2 energy modes to control power usage and 8 lighting options, including low power, power, boost, blink, defence strobe, dim, SOS, and Morse. Inside the flashlight comes with new-generation CREE chip to send intense white lights at a maximum 400 lumens with a distance of 280 metres.
The wide-angle reflector lens can project high-intensity light to an amazingly broad area. This model uses a single Li-Ion rechargeable battery that can operate many hours with a full charge. Lastly, there is also a USB cable so that you can charge your digital and mobile devices.
What I like about it:
- IPX54 dust and water-resistant design
- Fast lock and speed focus with a single hand
- Advanced focus optics for flawless flood
- 3 pre-set lighting programs
- Micro-chip controlled technology
Frequently asked questions
What do you want from a torch?
Assuming you don’t have children who need to use your torch to make shadow puppet displays on the walls, the main function of a torch is to be able to see in the dark. You can use a torch to help you find your way home; to look for lost items after dark; to change a tyre if you break down at midnight – the list is pretty exhaustive!
A torch can also be useful in the daytime – for seeing into dark areas where the light doesn’t reach, for example. A torch is also very handy to have lying about in the case of power cuts, to help you find the candles and the fuse box!
What are the different types of torch?
A. Hand torch
This torch is your standard, carry it around in your hand torch. Great for being able to see in the dark if you don’t have to carry anything or do anything with your hands.
B. Head torch
Designed to be worn on the head, this is the deal torch to help you see, whilst still leaving your hands free to carry things or do activities.
C. Dive torch
Totally waterproof, these torches are suitable for deep sea divers who need to light up the ocean’s depths.
D. LEP torch
These have exceptionally bright light which travels for a long way, with barely any overspill away from the central beam.
E. Coloured torch
Some torches come with a light that is not the standard white. These are great for different purposes such as hunting, or for being able to see in the dark without being quite so visible.
What are the best uses for a torch?
The best use for your torch depends on what you want it for. Are you looking for a simple white beam that can help you see your way up the garden path? Or do you need to direct an intense beam of light at a far away object?
Are you looking for a torch to mount on a gun for night hunting? Or do you intend to go jogging in the dark whilst carrying a water bottle and a Fitbit? Whatever your torch needs, you will find the exact thing you are looking for with just a little searching.