Home Cycling Best bike lights 2021 | Front and rear lights for road cycling...

Best bike lights 2021 | Front and rear lights for road cycling & commuting

31
0

You want to be seen, but don’t want to be seen. That’s what lights are for. Whether you’re cycling for fitness, commuting or just out and about, lights are the component that’ll separate you from everyone else. And, there are plenty of options to choose from, from the classic headlight to more mobile models to suit all budgets.

The best bike lights are important when riding in the dark. You need to be able to read the road by the light of your front and rear lights, and the best lights are well-designed, and have a good range of light at different brightness levels.

Front and rear lights are one of the most important accessories for cycling. From the safety of things like a red rear light, flashing lights, or a blinking front light, to the comfort of not having to lock up your bike in the dark. The main difference between front and rear lights is that most rear lights are designed to be mounted on the bike, while front lights are designed to be mounted on your helmet or glasses.

Good quality lights for your bike should be one of the first items on your buying list during the winter and a sensible addition to your bike throughout the summer.

In the United Kingdom, having lights on your bike after dark is a legal necessity, but some riders choose to use them throughout the day, particularly during the winter, to enhance visibility to other road users.

However, since there are so many different manufacturers providing an infinite variety of choices, determining which lights are best for your requirements may be a near-impossible job.

Fortunately, our experienced testers at BikeRadar have put hundreds of light sets to the test to offer you the authoritative list of the best road and commuting light sets on the market in 2020.

There are two types of road lights: those that give enough lighting to see what’s on the road and those that are intended to merely guarantee that you’re visible by other road users – lights to see and lights to be seen, as it were.

We’ve concentrated on more powerful front lights that will let you to see where you’re going on dark bike paths or country roads.

After you’ve read the reviews, scroll down to the bottom of the page to see our buyer’s guide to road and commuting lights. We’ve covered all of the important details, such as light brightness, battery life, and more.

If you’re looking for lights to use off-road on trails, you’ll want something with more power and battery life. See our dedicated roundup of the best mountain bike lights for more information.


Our professional testers have chosen the best front lights for motorcycles in 2021.

  • £100 / $125 / €119.99 / AU$189.99 Ion Pro RT by Bontrager
  • £300 / $350 / €370 / AU$450 Titan 4000 Gemini
  • £60 for SOL 700 Plus by Guee 
  • £55 / $65 / €TBC / AU$90 The Blackburn Dayblazer 800 is a sports car manufactured by Blackburn.
  • £100 / $137 / €120 / AU$TBC for the Sirius MK9 Exposure.
  • £290 / $398 / €TBC / AU$525 for the Strada 1200 exposure
  • £50 for Advanced 1600 Lumen Halfords
  • £175 / $221 / €215 / AU$320 R2i LED Vision Hope
  • £85 / $90 / €TBC / AU$120 Knog PWR Road is a road in Knog, Alaska. 600
  • £85 / $90 / €94.99 / AU$TBC 1300XXL Lezyne Macro Drive
  • £70 / $85 / €85 / AU$119.95 Allty 1000 DRL by Magicshine

Bontrager Ion Pro RT

Bontrager Ion PRO RT road bike headlight

The Bontrager Ion Pro RT is an excellent all-around bicycle. Immediate Media/Russel Burton

Bontrager Ion Pro RT front light for road cycling

The beam’s range is great, and it also has strong peripheral vision. Immediate Media / Russell Burton

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,300 lumens
  • 90 minutes of running duration (maximum power)
  • Beam with a warm color and a good form
  • Compatibility with Bluetooth
  • An excellent band-on mount

The Ion Pro RT from Bontrager achieves a great combination of high lumen output with a steady, pleasingly colored, and well-focused beam pattern.

The clip is simple to apply, and although its practicality is debatable, the Bluetooth connection, which enables you to control the light through a Garmin or Di2 shifter, is entertaining. It’s also quite simple to use.

Gemini Titan 4000

Best road bike lights

Gemini’s eyesight is similar to that of daylight. BikeRadar

  • 4,000 lumens is the claimed maximum output.
  • 1 hour 50 minutes of run duration (maximum power)
  • Six LEDs provide unrivaled power.
  • Customizable settings and a wireless switch
  • Excellent dependability and the most effective method to illuminate your bike journeys

Nothing matches Gemini’s innovative Titan for rally car-like amounts of light on your bike. Instead of harsh single/double point shadows, six LEDs in a horizontal strip provide a realistic 3D representation of the road/trail for true daylight-style viewing.

While it reaches a maximum brightness of 4,000 lumens, half of that is sufficient in 90% of circumstances, thus the backpack battery capacity is sufficient for long trips.

Each mode is configurable in 10% increments, and a wireless remote is included as standard. We’ve been utilizing Titans without issue for years.

Guee SOL 700 Plus

Best road bike lights

Smart Ambient Sensor mode automatically adjusts power levels to fit the darkness of the environment.

  • Maximum claimed output: 700 lumens
  • 2 hours 50 minutes of run duration (maximum power)
  • Adjusting the power automatically
  • The body is CNC-machined and looks great.

If you’re the kind of person who constantly forgets to dip their full beam (don’t be that person), the Guee SOL 700 with automatic power adjustment may be the light for you.

While this may seem to be a gimmick, we’ve found the automated adjustments to be very helpful, especially while riding at dawn or dark when street illumination may be spotty.

The light also attaches to GoPro attachments, allowing for a variety of mounting options.

Blackburn Dayblazer 800

Best road bike lights

It can withstand even the wettest of rides because to its submersible waterproofing. BikeRadar

  • Maximum claimed output: 800 lumens
  • 1 hour 26 minutes (at maximum power)
  • Multiple mounting options are available.
  • It’s bright and long-lasting enough to be useful in a variety of situations.
  • A strong and durable light

Blackburn’s slimline Dayblazer is mounted nearly anywhere using a mix of GoPro-style tabs and a rubber band strap, so no matter how your handlebars are configured, you’ll find room for the light.

On any journey, the 800-lumen ‘Blitz’ setting will come in handy for spotting danger in the darkest alleyways and gutters.

With flash and pulse settings for daytime running, the TIR lens provides a good ‘see me’ spread with diffusing side cutouts. Basic battery information is provided, and the 1.5-hour run duration at maximum power may be recharged in four hours through USB.

It’s also submersible and waterproof, so if you live someplace with a lot of rain, it’ll more than hold up to Blackburn’s modest reputation for toughness.

Exposure Sirius MK9

Angled view of the Exposure Sirius MK9 front road cycling light

The ninth generation of the Exposure Sirius has arrived. Immediate Media / Russell Burton

Exposure Sirius MK9 front road cycling light

Oncoming drivers’ eyes are saved because the housing is designed to cut off the top of the beam. Immediate Media / Russell Burton

  • 850 lumens is the claimed maximum output.
  • 90 minutes of running duration (maximum power)
  • Build of exceptional quality
  • Beam with a road-friendly form
  • Lightweight

The road-specific Sirius from Exposure is now in its eighth iteration and remains one of our favorite lights.

The light makes the most of its modest 850-lumen output by combining a high-quality metal body with well-thought-out optics.

It does need a proprietary cable to charge, but considering how well it performs in other areas, we’re prepared to overlook this.

Exposure Strada 1200

Best road bike lights

The Strada 1200 by Exposure is a well-designed and well-made light. Immediate Media / BikeRadar

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,200 lumens
  • 2 hour run time (maximum power)
  • Switching between high and low beams from a distance
  • Extra plug-ins and tunable output
  • It’s a high-tech, high-performance illumination that’s well-designed.

For more than a decade, Exposure has been producing high-performance, high-tech lighting in the United Kingdom.

The new Strada road light is 300 lumens brighter than the previous model for unrestricted back-road riding, and it comes with a wired remote for switching between high and low beams.

A strip OLED displays the run times for a variety of customizable settings. As an option, plug-in batteries, back lights, and USB chargers are all available, and the newest version recharges 40% faster than the previous edition.

The CNC-machined light, bar, and stem mounts are stunning, and UK manufacturer support is second to none.

Halfords Advanced 1600 Lumen

 

Halfords Advanced 1600 Lumen front light for mountain biking

The Halfords Advanced light is a good value for the money. Immediate Media / Ian Linton

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,600 lumens
  • 2 hours and 10 minutes (maximum power)
  • The intelligent power bar displays the amount of time you have left to run.
  • For the price, it’s very impressive.

This basic all-in-one light provides a good power at an acceptable weight, all at a very cheap price. Three LEDs with a reasonably powerful beam are powered by a 6,400mAh battery.

The ‘intelligent power bar,’ which shows how much battery life you can anticipate for the run mode you’re in, is a wonderful feature. To bring you home safely at low power levels, the light will automatically convert to a power-saving flash mode.

Thanks to a USB connection on the rear of the lamp, the Halfords Advanced may also be used as a power bank to charge your electrical device while on the go.

The rubber strap mount worked well, however the provided out-front mount didn’t keep the light stable enough for us.

Hope R2i LED Vision

Best road bike lights

The Hope R2i LED Vision is a large, yet well-made piece of equipment. BikeRadar

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,300 lumens
  • 1 hour 30 minutes of run duration (maximum power)
  • Construction is very durable.
  • The use of a ‘double barrel’ LED arrangement increases visibility.

Hope’s distinctive machining style is carried over in the R2i LED Vision, which houses two eye-friendly, warm-colored LEDs in a highly robust all-alloy casing.

The LEDs’ ‘double barrel’ arrangement creates a binocular-like effect that aids in deciphering what’s ahead, with the seamless transition at the beam’s border avoiding harsh reflections and sharp edges.

The light is hefty, but we’ve found that the weight penalty is well worth it, thanks to renowned dependability and factory-direct service.

Knog PWR Road

Knog PWR Road front light for road cycling

The Knog PWR Road is compatible with the rest of the PWR line of devices. Immediate Media / Russell Burton

Knog PWR Road front road cycling light

There is no distracting dazzle thanks to a firm cut-off point at the top of the beam. Immediate Media / Russell Burton

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,300 lumens
  • 1 hour 30 minutes of run duration (maximum power)
  • Modular lighting system that is really unique.
  • Nicely put together.
  • Mounting that is solid

The modular PWR system from Knog was unveiled amid great excitement. The whole system is built around a core power pack that comes in a variety of capacities.

Knog’s PWR family now includes compatible camp lights, Bluetooth speakers, and more.

During our testing, we discovered that the PWR system is completely hassle-free. For a mid-powered light, the battery life is actually very excellent.

Lezyne Macro Drive 1300XXL

Angled view of the Lezyne Macro Drive 1300XXL front light

The Lezyne Macro Drive 1300 XXL features a ladder-style band that is very secure. Immediate Media / Russell Burton

Lezyne Macro Drive 1300XXL front road cycling light

The Macro Drive is a brilliant beast of a light in its Overdrive setting. Immediate Media / Russell Burton

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,300 lumens
  • 2 hours 30 minutes of run duration (maximum power)
  • For dirt and off-road riding, Overdrive mode comes in handy.
  • The auto-cooling function comes in useful.
  • Mounting system that is very secure

In its ‘Overdrive’ mode, Lezyne’s Macro Drive 1300XXL produces a massive 1,300 lumen output, which is light than adequate to navigate on dark roads or dirt pathways.

The intermediate settings are well-thought-out, and although we’d like a smoother transition between them, the light can be programmed to fit your requirements.

The mount is very secure, however getting it to fit the first time was difficult.

Magicshine Allty 1000 DRL

Angled view of the Magicshine Allty 1000 DRL road cycling front light

The Magicshine Allty 1000 DRL has a nice Garmin-style mount. Immediate Media/Russel Burton

There are more powerful lights than the Magicshine but the beam pattern produces a nice usable balance

Although there are more powerful lights than the Magicshine, the beam pattern provides a good balance. Immediate Media/Russel Burton

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,000 lumens
  • 1 hour 48 minutes of run duration (maximum power)
  • It is very simple to use.
  • Excellent value for money.

The Magicshine Allty 1000 DRL, which won a Red Dot Design Award, offers great value for money in a well-made and simple-to-use packaging.

The light can be simply incorporated into your current cockpit configuration thanks to its 1,000-lumen output and elegant Garmin mount interface.

PR1200 Ravemen

Angled view of the Ravemen PR1200 front light

The Ravemen PR1200 has a handy high/low beam function. Immediate Media/Russel Burton

Ravemen PR1200 front light for road cycling in action

Going from dark trails to city streets is a snap because to the dual LED arrangement. Immediate Media/Russel Burton

  • Maximum claimed output: 1,200 lumens
  • 2 hour run time (maximum power)
  • The ability to switch between high and low beams is very helpful.
  • Indicator of battery life on a digital display
  • The remote control has a wired button.

The Ravemen PR1200 features a handy high/low beam option, similar to what you’d find in a vehicle, that you may use to prevent blinding approaching drivers.

For those riding with flat bars, a connected remote button may be helpful, and the light’s outstanding IP8 certification means it should withstand even the most torrential rain.


Our professional testers have chosen the best rear bike lights for 2021.

  • £14.99 / $20 / €16.95 / AU$28 Tau Alpkit
  • £32.99 Redlite Aero 1W by Topeak
  • £30 / $60 / €39.99 / AU$75 Flare R City by Bontrager
  • Rapid X2 Cateye costs £40, with foreign prices to be determined.
  • £45 / $62 / €54 / AU$81 for the TraceR MK1 DayBright Exposure
  • Cobber Knog £60 / $70 / €69.99 / AU$100 (middle)
  • £48 / $49.99 / €TBC / AU$59.95 Zecto Drive Max by Lezyne
  • X-Pro Moon Comet: £31.99 / $41 / €TBC / AU$58 Moon Comet X-Pro: £31.99 / $41 / €TBC / AU$58 Moon Comet X-Pro

Alpkit Tau

Best road bike lights

Cost-effective and high-performing. BikeRadar

  • Weighs just 20g and is ultra-light.
  • Long duration of operation

The Tau 20g featherweight light from Alpkit has a 20-lumen LED light strip with five settings, including high and low flash, constant and pulse functions, and a constant and pulse function.

On full-whack, the light will operate for 3 hours 30 minutes, and the light’s switch will show the charge level.

Topeak Redlite Aero 1W

Best road bike lights

It’s always ready for a journey and has never let us down. BikeRadar

  • The maximum power level is 55 lumens.
  • There are many mounting solutions available.

Topeak’s Redlite Aero 1W isn’t very impressive on paper, but it’s always the one that’s ready to go and has never let us down on a ride.

With a low battery indication, four settings peak out at 55 lumens (two-hour run duration). The single LED strip is angled and charges in two hours, with different back parts and bands fitting various shaped tubes/posts.

Bontrager Flare R City

Best road bike lights

It will run for little over five hours on the highest setting. BikeRadar

  • Charge time is short.
  • Long-lasting and lightweight

The light’s single LED produces 35 lumens via a wide-angle reflector, and it lasts for little over five hours in its maximum setting, which is daylight-flash mode.

It’s a good companion for daytime and nighttime trips, with a 2 hour charge time and a 26g weight.

Cateye Rapid X2

Best road bike lights

With a maximum brightness of 50 lumens, dual LED strips scroll through six settings. BikeRadar

  • Visibility in all directions
  • Time to recharge: two hours

Cateye pioneered the LED rear light revolution and continues to set the standard for dependability. With a maximum brightness of 50 lumens and 180-degree visibility, twin LED strips scroll through six settings.

Although it is aero seatpost compatible, the absence of angle correction is a nuisance.

The 30g weight restricts the maximum run time to one hour, but the two-hour recharge period is convenient for busy riders.

Exposure TraceR MK1 DayBright

Best road bike lights

The lamp comes with a two-year guarantee and weighs just 49g thanks to its metal body. BikeRadar

  • High-lumen output (75 lumens)
  • There are six different modes.

To get the most out of the battery’s power, you may choose between three continuous modes and three pulsating modes. On the highest 75-lumen brightness, the light should last about 3 hours 10 minutes.

The lamp comes with a two-year guarantee and weighs just 49g thanks to its metal body.

Cobber Knog Mid

Best road bike lights

The Cobber offers excellent side-to-side lighting. Alex Evans is a writer who lives in the United

  • Visibility is excellent. from the side.
  • There are many ways available.

The primary selling point of the Knog Cobber Mid rear light, as its name suggests, is side-on vision, which it delivers in spades.

Although the run duration on maximum power was somewhat shorter than Knog stated, it was still enough for a 75-lumen rear light at 1 hour 40 minutes.

There are eight basic modes, but if you want something more customized, you may use Knog’s Modemaker software to create your own settings.

Lezyne Zecto Drive Max

Best road bike lights

A 250-lumen daytime flash is the maximum output of eight modes.

  • For daytime jogging, a maximum flash setting of 250 lumens is available.
  • Very dependable

The ZDM is a bikepacking winner with a flexible clip attachment for straps or tubes, as well as a sturdy build. At a maximum brightness of 250 lumens, eight settings are available (9-hour run time). However, it is hefty (69g) and has restricted sideways vision.

Although there is no waterproof certification, we were able to wash it off without problem.

Moon Comet X-Pro

Best road bike lights

We were blown away by the Moon’s output. Alex Evans is a writer who lives in the United

  • Excellent visibility
  • There are many mounting solutions available.

The Comet X-Pro is easy to install and has a variety of mounting choices (including a seat rail mount, which is a great value at this price). It also impresses with its powerful output at maximum power.

Moon claimed a run time of 1 hour 30 minutes at full power, which is quite excellent given the amount of power on tap.

There’s no pulse mode, and it’s a bit difficult to operate on the go, but the X-Pro is a really handy rear light otherwise.


Our professional testers have ranked the best light kits for motorcycles in 2020.

  • £135 / $120 / €TBC / AU$236 for Cateye Rapid X3 rear lights with Cateye AMPP 800 front lights
  • Front and rear Lezyne Lite Drive 1000XL and Lezyne KTV Pro Drive 75 lights: AU$TBC / £95 / $95 / €TBC / €TBC
  • £105 / $105 / €105 / AU$180 Ravemen PR900 front and TR20 rear lights
  • £80 / $98 / €TBC / AU$135 for a Front and rear light kit for Blackburn Dayblazer 800 and 65
  • £86 / $96 / €TBC / AU$160 for the Guee Cob X light set and Guee Sol 800+ light set
  • Blinder Mob V Four Eyes with Knog PWR Rider 450: £98 / $110 / €113 / AU$150
  • Kryptonite Alley F-650 and R-50 Cob: £90, worldwide price will be determined.
  • Light & Motion Urban 900 Commuter Combo: £110, international pricing TBC
  • £135 / £120 / €118 / AU$213 Magicshine Allty 1000 front and Seemee 60 rear light

You may want to purchase a front and back light separately if you know precisely what you want. For many individuals, however, this is not the case. It’s difficult to resist the allure of a high-quality light system that addresses all of your lighting issues in one fell swoop.

However, when purchasing a pair of lights, the danger is that one of the two (typically the rear) may fall short of expectations in contrast to the other, as manufacturers strive to keep costs low in order to meet a particular price point.

With that in mind, our professional testers have put to the test both sets of lights and individual lights from the same manufacturers that can be bought together for a comparable total price, assuming a budget of approximately £100.

Cateye AMPP 800 front and Cateye Rapid X3 rear lights

Best road bike lights

The Cateye AMPP 800 front and back lights, as well as the Cateye Rapid X3 rear lights, are excellent performers. Immediate Publication

  • Excellent build quality and performance
  • Mounting methods that are both safe and flexible
  • At full power, the front light produces 800 lumens and the back light produces 150 lumens.

The AMPP 800 and Rapid X3 simply add to Cateye’s well-deserved reputation for producing high-performing, high-quality lights in this category.

The AMPP 800 features a strong, broad beam, and the back light has a unique mechanism that utilizes two independent LEDs to allow you to flash and keep the light on at the same time.

Both may have somewhat longer run times at maximum power, but bigger batteries would naturally increase the size of the devices, so it’s a bit of a trade off.

The only minor drawback is the set’s rather expensive price, but it’s durable enough to offer excellent long-term value.

Front lights are Lezyne Lite Drive 1000XL, while rear lights are Lezyne KTV Pro Drive 75.

Best road bike lights

The Lezyne Lite Drive 1000XL front light and the Lezyne KTV Pro Drive 75 rear light are both very well-made. Immediate Publication

  • Excellent build quality and versatility in a light kit.
  • With good peripheral illumination, it is bright.
  • At full power, the front light produces 1,000 lumens and the back light produces 75 lumens.

The Lezyne Lite Drive 1000XL offers more than enough brightness and beam spread for cycling on dark roads, with 1,000 lumens at maximum power. At this wattage, you’ll get around 80 minutes of run time, but lowering it to the second highest output (500 lumens) gives you just under three hours of run time, which should be plenty for even the longest journey.

Its CNC-machined aluminum construction is also superb, and its IXP7 waterproof certification is a nice addition. The lights are easily added and removed thanks to the robust, rubber-band type mounting mechanism, but it is perhaps less secure than ratcheted or bolt attached alternatives.

At maximum brightness, the back light emits a meager 75 lumens, but it does provide an amazing 270 degrees of vision.

Ravemen PR900 and TR20 front and rear lights

Best road bike lights

The rear light of the Ravemen PR900 front and TR20 rear light kit falls short. Immediate Publication

  • Excellent front light with a unique design
  • The fee includes the use of a remote control.
  • At full power, the front light produces 900 lumens while the back light produces 20 lumens.

The PR900 front light is the true show-stealer in this package, with a unique dual lens design and enough wattage to ride on dark roads or even off-road.

The 900-lumen level is more of an emergency turbo boost mode, but the 800-lumen setting’s battery life is outstanding, with little over two hours of operating time. It also includes a USB connection, allowing you to utilize it as a power source for other devices (such as your phone, for example).

Unfortunately, the back light is less remarkable, with just 20 lumens of illumination and a short battery life. Because of its good mounting method, it’s easy and flexible, although there are brighter lights available at this price.

Blackburn Dayblazer 800 front and 65 rear light set

Best road bike lights

If you prefer to run lights throughout the day, this is a great match. Immediate Media / David Caudery

  • Tough and useful.
  • Set that is well-balanced
  • At full power, the front light produces 800 lumens and the back light produces 65 lumens.

Despite the fact that the Dayblazer 800 and 65 lights don’t win any awards for output or battery life, they make for a highly useful pair of commuting lights in reality.

Although the run time at maximum power isn’t the greatest in the class, both lights have more than enough power to withstand road commuting.

Both are made of durable materials and come with a limited lifetime guarantee, making them excellent buys.

Guee Sol 800+ and Guee Cob X light set

Best road bike lights

The Guee arrangement made for a highly appealing commuting combination. Immediate Media / David Caudery

  • Set with a lot of value
  • The ambient light sensor extends the battery life.
  • At full power, the front light produces 800 lumens while the back light produces 25 lumens.

The Sol 800+ front light may seem unattractive, but its CNC-machined appearance conceals some clever internals.

The battery lasted two hours at full power and four hours at half power, according to our tests. The front light also has a smart ambient light sensor that adjusts the light’s brightness, which may assist to extend battery life while riding at dawn or dark.

Even though the back light only produces 25 lumens, it lasts for a full five hours on constant output.

Blinder Mob V Four Eyes and Knog PWR Rider 450

Best road bike lights

The light’s body is made of durable aluminum. Immediate Publication

  • Good rays
  • Customization possibilities and a power bank
  • At full power, the front light produces 450 lumens and the back light produces 44 lumens.

Knog’s PWR Rider 450 has two major selling points: you can use the front light as a power bank for other devices and you can customize the output modes through its ModeMaker software, which is always doing things a little differently than other manufacturers.

This is fantastic if you’re desperately trying to achieve the perfect mix of output and run time, but it’s unlikely to be a game changer for most people.

Both lights have a nice look, but having a smaller, more streamlined container means losing a little energy life. The front light lasts around two hours at full power, which is decent rather than spectacular considering it puts out 450 lumens.

When flashing, the rear light seems brighter than its 44 lumens indicate, making it an excellent choice for city riding.

Kryptonite R-50 Cob and Kryptonite Alley F-650

Best road bike lights

The single LED produces a circular beam with a brilliant spotlight in the center. Immediate Publication

  • Durable construction
  • It’s easy to use
  • At full power, the front light produces 650 lumens while the back light produces 50 lumens.

The Allez F-650 isn’t the brightest light on the market, but it has enough of power and battery life for road and city riding.

Our test light lasted far beyond the advertised two hours at maximum power, and it was still shining brightly half an hour later, albeit it had dimmed somewhat. Although peripheral vision isn’t as impressive as some of the other lights we tested, the build quality is outstanding.

The ratchet-style mounting mechanism works well, giving a solid and sturdy fit on all of the handlebars we tested it on.

The rear light was less popular with our tester, owing to its limited battery life (just over two hours at maximum power), but if that isn’t a deal breaker for you, it’s a perfectly competent rear light.

Light & Motion Urban 900 Commuter Combo

Best road bike lights

One major feature of Light & Motion’s lights is that they’re certified to US FL-1 standards. David Caudery / Immediate Media

  • Waterproof and durable
  • Good lighting around the edges
  • At full power, the front light produces 900 lumens while the back light produces 60 lumens.

Though a little on the pricey side, Light & Motion’s Urban 900 Commuter Combo does provide performance and build quality that’s good enough to just about justify this.

On maximum power, the front light lasted little over an hour and a half, which is good given its 900-lumen brightness, and lowering the wattage further clearly improves battery life. Because there is no flashing mode, the maximum running duration in ‘SafePulse’ mode is restricted to 12 hours, although this is unlikely to create any significant problems.

The back light has a good 60 lumen output, although it’s a bit more plasticky than the front light (though it is also certified to US FL-1 standards).

The mounting method for both lights is also a touch tricky, but altogether, it’s a nice bundle, even if the pricing is a little high.

Seemee 60 rear lights and Magicshine Allty 1000 front lights

Best road bike lights

The front light is a Magicshine Allty 1000, while the rear light is a Seemee 60. Immediate Publication

  • Front light that is both powerful and effective
  • Modes that have been carefully studied and have a reasonable run time
  • At full power, the front light produces 1,000 lumens while the back light produces 30 lumens.

Magicshine’s Allty 1000 front light is one of the brightest on test, with 1,000 lumens, and it doesn’t disappoint in real life — it’s got enough power to handle everything the road can throw at you, as well as some off-road riding.

The Allty 1000 lasted just under two hours in testing even at maximum power, which was remarkable, but the battery life didn’t quite match the promised four hours at the second highest level (500 lumens).

Its Garmin mount compatibility expands mounting possibilities significantly, however our tester discovered that the mount supplied with our test device had a tiny, irritating amount of play.

The Seemee 60 is also a good rear light. Its primary gimmick is a system of internal sensors that can detect when you’re abruptly slowing down and emit a “frenzy of flashes” at a higher brightness to alert other road users.


What to look for when purchasing a commuter or road light set

Lumens

Best road bike lights

A real lumen bazooka, lighting the road or path, may be one of the most powerful lights. Ian Linton is a British actor.

Lumens are the measurement unit for the total quantity of light emitted by a source.

Since a result, the number of lumens offered by a light is often the most important feature, as a higher number implies that the light will be brighter.

Cyclists cycling in lighted metropolitan areas who don’t need lights to illuminate the road ahead may just need a unit with a few hundred lumens, but that won’t be adequate if they go into dark roads or trails, therefore something more powerful is required.

200 lumens should enough for urban transportation. For cycling on dark roads, we recommend a front light with at least 400 lumens.

But don’t be misled into believing that a light’s lumen rating is the only thing that counts. A super-bright light with just enough battery power to provide that headline number for half an hour isn’t going to be very helpful, especially if you’ll be using the most powerful setting for long periods of time.

To select the best light for your riding style, be sure to examine the stated battery life at all of the different power settings.

LEDs

Thankfully, the filament bulb is no longer in use. Cree LEDs are used in almost all of today’s high-end front lights, since they provide greater brightness, flexibility, less heat, a longer life, and are smaller.

COB LEDs are currently used in the majority of rear lights. COB stands for ‘chip on board,’ which refers to a single module made up of numerous LED chips. They generate less heat, are brighter, and available in a variety of colors — but keep in mind that most counties need a red rear light.

Life of the battery

Best road bike lights

The majority of road lights are all-in-one devices with a built-in battery, while more powerful lights often have a separate battery. Alex Evans is a writer who lives in the United

Unlike mountain bike lights, which often utilize specialized external battery packs, road bike and commuting lights typically use internal batteries, thus there will always be a trade-off between power, battery life, and light size.

A more powerful light with a longer battery life, for example, will need a physically bigger battery, increasing the total size of the device.

This isn’t really an issue in and of itself, but many road riders don’t want anything too big to detract from their bike’s elegant appearance or clutter the handlebar. Similarly, some commuters may prefer lights that can be quickly packed into a work bag.

Others, particularly those who bike on dark roads or who like lengthy rides and commutes, will need a bigger light with greater lumens and battery capacity.

What about lights that are powered by a dynamo?

Lauf Anywhere Weekend Warrior Edition

Battery-free illumination is provided via dynamo hubs, such as the SONdelux shown. Andy Lloyd is a writer who lives in the United

Lauf Anywhere Weekend Warrior Edition

One of our favorite dynamo lights is the Exposure Revo. Andy Lloyd is a writer who lives in the United

This tutorial exclusively covers battery-powered lights, as observant readers will note.

Dynamo lights, which are often powered by a generator hub fitted into a wheel, are a popular choice for touring and town cycles, and for good reason. They have an unlimited run duration and typically have high-quality optics in the lights.

They do, however, require a substantial financial and research commitment, and covering both systems would be beyond the scope of this book.

Beam pattern and balance

When purchasing a set of lights, it’s also a good idea to think about the front-to-back balance.

Because its function involves illuminating dark roads and bike lanes, the front light will nearly always have much greater wattage. While most rear lights don’t have the same brightness output as front lights, the standard is just as essential.

Because the primary purpose of a rear light is to help make you visible to other road users, it must have enough brightness and battery life to survive the duration of whatever trip you’re on while also being strong enough for other road users to see it from a reasonable distance.

Some lights are now marketed for use throughout the day, with the proper brightness and flash patterns to assist you stay visible in strong sunlight and low light.

Range and periphery illumination should be balanced in both front and rear lights. A highly-focused beam is excellent for illuminating the road in front of you for rapid riding, but it’s also essential that some of it radiates out towards the periphery for seeing dangers and allowing road users coming from various angles to see you better.

Systems for mounting

Best road bike lights

It’s also important thinking about how the light attaches to the bike. Alex Evans is a writer who lives in the United

In an ideal world, you’d be able to have a mounting system that’s dead easy to set up and take down, completely secure, and endlessly lasting… However, in practice, those different traits are typically combined in some way.

Heavy-duty rubber bands and specific grooves on the lamp mount are used in the most basic installations. These systems have the benefit of being very fast and simple to install and remove, as well as being adaptable to various kinds and sizes of handlebars, seatposts, and other components.

When the lights aren’t installed to the bike, though, it’s simple to misplace these elastic bands, and they’re more vulnerable to movement over uneven terrain. They’re also more prone to deteriorate and ultimately break than a solid mount over time.

Solid plastic or metal mounting systems that clip on to the handlebars and are fastened with bolts tend to provide considerably better security and long-term durability on rough routes.

However, installing or removing these kinds of mounts may be a considerably more complex procedure, needing a specialized tool in certain cases (such as a small hex key).

Typically, manufacturers will try to alleviate this difficulty by making the light unit detachable from the actual mount (so you can easily carry the light unit with you after locking up your bike), however not all lights provide this feature, so check before you purchase.

Other characteristics

Waterproofing is essential, especially if you bike often in inclement weather. The IP Code is a measure of protection against water and dust intrusion. A product with an IP4 rating can withstand splashing water for up to 30 minutes, whereas an IP7 device will withstand 30 minutes of immersion in water.

Some front lights not only power their own LEDs, but also include USB connections for charging phones or GPS devices, which is very helpful for long-distance cyclists.

In the past, the different bike lights available on the market used to be pretty straightforward in terms of the features they offered, but things aren’t that simple anymore. There are now a wide range of different lights, each designed with a specific purpose in mind.. Read more about best road bike lights and let us know what you think.

{“@context”:”https://schema.org”,”@type”:”FAQPage”,”mainEntity”:[{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”How many lumens do I need for a rear bike light?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:”
The lumens of a rear bike light are dependent on the size of the light, how far it is from your eyes, and what youre trying to illuminate. For example, if youre riding at night and want to see where youre going, youll need a lot more lumens than if youre just riding around in broad daylight.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”What is the best tail light for bike?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:”
There is no best tail light for bike. Tail lights are designed to be mounted on the back of a bicycle and provide illumination in the event that you need it.”}},{“@type”:”Question”,”name”:”How bright should a bike tail light be?”,”acceptedAnswer”:{“@type”:”Answer”,”text”:”
A bike tail light should be bright enough to allow you to see the road clearly. This is typically a minimum of 50 lumens, but can vary depending on your riding conditions.”}}]}

Frequently Asked Questions

How many lumens do I need for a rear bike light?

The lumens of a rear bike light are dependent on the size of the light, how far it is from your eyes, and what youre trying to illuminate. For example, if youre riding at night and want to see where youre going, youll need a lot more lumens than if youre just riding around in broad daylight.

What is the best tail light for bike?

There is no best tail light for bike. Tail lights are designed to be mounted on the back of a bicycle and provide illumination in the event that you need it.

How bright should a bike tail light be?

A bike tail light should be bright enough to allow you to see the road clearly. This is typically a minimum of 50 lumens, but can vary depending on your riding conditions.

Related Tags

This article broadly covered the following related topics:

  • best bike lights for commuting
  • best bike lights for night riding
  • best bike lights review
  • best bike lights 2018
  • best bicycle lights for night riding
Previous articleBest bike boxes and bike bags
Next articleBest chain breaker tool 2021 | 6 of the best rated & reviewed by our experts