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.

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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.

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.

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to see or be seen

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!

vioo 100

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

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.

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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.


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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