bike light

How to choose the right bike light

Read our guide to find out how to choose the right bike lights before your next night ride! We break it down simply for you.

Did you know that it is mandatory in Singapore to have lights on your bicycle when riding in the dark? 

Even if it isn't, it's probably a good idea to increase your visibility as much as possible, especially when riding on the road! 

Here's a guide for beginners to choosing the right light for your bike when you embark for your next night cycling session.

lux and lumens

1. Lux and lumens

Lux and lumens are the units of measurement for the brightness of a light source.

- Lumens is a measurement of the overall brightness of the light, from all directions.

- Lux is the measurement of intensity of light on a given surface area.

bike light

2. To see or be seen?

You will need to think about the type of riding as well as where you will be cycling.

Are you riding at high speed or at a leisurely pace? Will it be well-lit or dark where you're cycling?

If you're riding at a low speed and it is well-lit, you will mostly just need to be seen by other motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.

So you can prioritise lightweight or low cost versus brightness.

However, if you intend to ride fast, and will be in dark areas, you will want to invest in a light that can help you see where you're going, but costs more or is slightly bulkier.

3. Lights to be seen with

Lights to be seen with generally put out between 5 - 15 lumens.

The intensity (lux) is not measured, as overall brightness from all directions is more important to fulfill this function.

With a lower output, the LED and batteries used can be of lower capacity, so such lights tend to be more accessibly priced, such as the VIOO 100.

Check out the chart below for the detailed stats of each light in our range!

lights for being seen

Our recommendation: elops clip 900

POWERFUL rechargeable, two-tone visibility bike light that clips on anywhere, whether on the cyclist or on the bike,  to BE SEEN day and night.

How to Choose the Right Bike Light
How to Choose the Right Bike Light

Versatile & convenient

Visibility: 17 to -56 lumens Visible from 180° in continuous or flashing mode.

Long-lasting: White boost 3h White eco 7h White flash 6h Red continuous 4h Red flash 9h

Versatility: WHITE or RED 5 modes Clip / elastic mount / self-adhesive mount

Waterproof: IPX 4: withstands spray and heavy, persistent rain.

Lightweight: 57 g. Take it everywhere with you.

4. Lights to see with

Lights to see with are rated based on their intensity in Lux.

Bike lights from Decathlon start at 10 Lux and go all the way to 40 Lux, as seen in the chart below.

Lights that meet French & German road requirements have a more focused beam to avoid glare for oncoming road users.

Thus they tend to have slightly higher Lux ratings for a given power output.

lights to see

Our recommendation: elops ST920

The powerful USB-powered SL920 LED bike light is a powerful set of front and back LED lights that allow you to see ahead at a fast pace, and be seen from 360°. The lights are recharged via USB and used for your commutes and road bike rides! Easily attaches to your bike's handlebars or seatpost.

See what our users have to say:
"For brightness, this is one of the best yet visible from far."
- Chrisrobin, Singapore

How to Choose the Right Bike Light
How to Choose the Right Bike Light

Powerful & versatile

Visual Efficiency
Effective at a fast pace: 40 lux, 300 lumens and wide beam.

Up to 300 lumens at the front and 25 lumens at the back to be seen from 360°.

Between 2 hours 20 and 11 hours of battery life depending on the mode.

3 modes to suit your needs: power, eco and flash.

IPX 4: withstands spray and heavy, persistent rain.

cl 900

5. Rear lights

With all this talk about lux and lumens, it's easy to forget that we also need rear lights to make sure we can be seen by motorists and other cyclists from behind.

As rear lights are only for being seen, they are rated by lumens and tend to output between 5  - 15 lumens.

Our recommendation: Elops RL510

Rechargeable (USB) non-flashing LED rear bike light . Made in France. Rear light certified for use on public roads in France and Germany (one of the strictest standards).

How to Choose the Right Bike Light
How to Choose the Right Bike Light

Security on and off the bike

Power: 3 lumens Visible from 220° Continuous mode. Certified for road use

Continuous mode 8 hrs. No flashing mode. Rechargeable via USB.

Elastic band for the seat tube + clip for your helmet & other kit

IPX 4: withstands spray and heavy, persistent rain.

light 500 usb

6. Power source: battery-operated or rechargeable?

As technology advances and the cost of high-capacity rechargeable batteries comes down, USB rechargeable lights are becoming more and more commonplace.

However, depending on where you intend to ride, and accessibility to a charging point, you might also want to consider old-fashioned coin battery operated lights.

Another benefit of battery lights is that you can quickly swap them out mid-ride unlike USB lights where you would need time to recharge, even if you had the foresight of bringing a powerbank.

Our recommendation: elops st 110 set

Our design teams created this battery powered front and rear bike light set so you can SEE and BE SEEN. Uses standard AA and AAA batteries for easy replacement.

See what our users have to say:
"Uses batteries which you can buy at shops while cycling if the batteries go flat. Light rain does not affect it. Good product."
- Norami, Singapore

How to Choose the Right Bike Light
How to Choose the Right Bike Light

Easy-to-replace batteries

Visual efficiency: 25 lux and 15 lux (ECO mode) Narrow beam Effective at low speeds

Visibility: Power: 3 lumens (rear) Visible from 220° from behind

Long-lasting: Front fixed: 33 hours Front fixed ECO: 44 hours Rear fixed: 102 hours

Versatility: WHITE (2 modes) and RED (1 mode) Universal elastic mount

Waterproof: IPX 4 rating - withstands spray and heavy, persistent rain.

Discover our bikes lights collection

That concludes our guide on choosing a suitable bike light for your specific type of riding. 

We hope you found this beginner's guide useful, and if you need any more tips or advice, feel free to check out our Cycling Sports Advice below!

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