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How Do I Choose a Diving Light? | We Give You the Best Tips

diving lights

A good diving light is an essential tool for any diver. It also opens the door to night dives, cavern diving, and why not? technical diving.

As we descend, the light spectrums of the different colors are lost through the water: first red, orange, yellow, yellow, green, violet, and, finally, blue.

A divers’ flashlight will illuminate your way, and everything will recover the lost colors.

But if there is one type of diving where the flashlight is a must, it is night diving.

A good scuba diving light is what you need when you are preparing yourself to enjoy a night dive. That’s obvious. What is not so obvious is the correct way to use the scuba diving light. The goal is not only to get the most out of the experience but also to enjoy it safely. For this reason, in this article, we have collected a series of tips that we are sure will be of interest to you.

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1. Do I Need a Dive Light? The Importance of a Scuba Diving Light for Night Diving

We could compare a night dive to Las Vegas.

Nevada City would not be the same without the lights illuminating its night. Scuba diving lights have the same effect as the neon lights have there. At night, your scuba diving light will transform the underwater world and let you discover the marine animals that come out to play dressed in vibrant colors.

Although you can watch rays and sharks during the day, they prefer to hunt at night, parrotfish lock themselves in a bubble, coral opens their polyps to feed, lobsters come out of hiding in search of food, octopuses swim freely, and plankton is bioluminescent. But you will not be able to see any of this without your scuba dive light.

At this colorful party, the first thing you think about is your Go Pro, don’t you? However, if this is the first time you do a night dive, our advice is: to relax. The most important thing is to acquire the necessary skills to use the scuba diving light while controlling your buoyancy.


2. How To Use Your Scuba Dive Light Properly?

If the ambiance is dark while you are preparing yourself to dive, and you cannot see well, use an ordinary flashlight. You will leave it on the surface before diving. Remember that your scuba divers’ flashlight battery has a limited life span, and you don’t want to waste it prematurely.

Turn on your scuba diving light just before you jump and remember to protect it if you are going to make your entrance with a giant stride or by dropping back from the boat. Don’t forget to check that it is still lit before you descend.

During the dive, avoid aiming at animals and people directly. You can blind your buddies or scare animals. Do not use the center of the beam. It would be better if you light with the dimmest part.

In shallow water and on clear nights, it is often possible to enjoy the bioluminescence of plankton. To be able to do this, occasionally cover your scuba diving flashlight. In this way, your eyes will adjust to the ambient light, and you will be able to appreciate this phenomenon.

Turning your scuba diving light on and off constantly increases the chance of it malfunctioning, so don’t do this.

Use your flashlight for diving to make signals during night dives, so focus the light beam to illuminate your hands.

If you want to draw your dive buddy ‘s attention to something, then focus your scuba diving light within the area illuminated by your buddy’s lamp. Chances are he or she will be looking in that direction. A slow circle will indicate that you want to ask if everything is OK. However, if you move the flashlight quickly back and forth, it means there is a problem. Aim for what you want your buddies to look at after you catch their attention in this way.

3. Underwater Flashlight Items to Consider

Your head flashlight for diving or main lamp is an essential tool during night diving, so choose it carefully.

– Consider the beam of light must be consistent and adequate for night diving. You have to see where you are going. The beam angle is the one that will give you a wider field of view, ideal for shallow or concentrated recreational diving. It will allow you to see farther and is ideal for cave or wreck diving.

– Look for a diver flashlight whose intensity is adjustable. Bear in mind that animals can run away from too intense light beams. The lighting modes will allow you to adapt the intensity. Your dive light should have at least 3 or 4 different ones.

– Reflectors are more recommended than spotlights.  With them, you can cover a larger area with a soft and uniform light.

– Make sure that the batteries last long enough to keep your diving light on for the entire duration of the dive. We recommend the rechargeable ones. You will be coherent with nature and you will also save money.

– Look for dive lights that you can switch on easily. It’s easier to turn on and off with a click than it is to turn the lens cover.

– Scuba diving lights have negative buoyancy, so if you don’t want to lose yours, make sure it has a lanyard to attach it to your wrist. Look for non-slip handles.

– Type of bulb. There are different types of halogen bulbs, Xenon, HID, Tungsten, and LED. The ones that consume less battery with a powerful illumination are the LED.

– Do not forget to consider the diving depth before buying your flashlight. If you exceed the maximum depth, the water tightness of the dive flashlight can fail.

The bulbs can have red, blue, or white light. The latter is the one that offers a more natural vision of the tonalities.

Another important piece of advice is: never forget to include a secondary dive light in your night dive gear. If your main lamp fails, you will have to resort to it. Therefore, it is not a luxury. Remember, if this happens, it is time to finish the dive.

Look for a good secondary quality lamp as well. A reliable and smaller scuba diving light is the best option in this case.  It should be small enough to keep in your BCD. For example, the scuba diving light you use to see into the cavities during daytime dives would be an excellent choice.

Warning lights are also important during night dives. Their goal is not so you can see better, but that others can see you. Chemical light sticks are an excellent option though there are also warning lights with rechargeable batteries.

You now know how to use a dive light during a night dive. Tell us, where do you plan to do the next one?

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4. FAQ

4.1. How bright should a dive light be?

The number of lumens determines the brightness.

The more lumens the dive light has, the brighter it is.

Your diving light should have a medium brightness. Too much may drive away marine life.


4.2. How Many Lumens Do I Need for A Dive Light?

The number of lumens will depend on whether you dive in the water with high or low visibility. It will also depend on whether you dive at night or in daylight.

Two hundred lumens for recreational daytime diving in clear water should be enough. You may need between 500 and 1000 lumens in cloudy water and at night.


4.3. What Is the Brightest Underwater Flashlight?

The brightest Underwater Flashlight in 2022 has 80,000 lumens of cool white LED and 75,000 lumens of neutral white LEDs


4.4. What is the primary Dive light?

It is the dive light you use during the entire dive. The secondary dive light is a backup light in case the primary underwater flashlight fails.