There are hundreds of cave dive lights available on the market and picking out the best is almost always a daunting task. This quick guide will help you find the right recreational cave dive light and offer insights on how to use them effectively. No matter what you are using them for, there are two essential things to consider when shopping for dive lights: the types of batteries used and the light type.
Dive Light Technologies
Cave dive lights are built with either LED (light emitting diode), HID (high intensity discharge), or Xenon (incandescent) lights. Xenon dive lights are less expensive and produce a warmer tone of light to create more natural colors as compared to the bluish colors of HID and LED lights. HID and LED dive lights are three to five times brighter than Xenon bulbs and consume less power. LED lights provide higher power efficiencies and are the most popular kind of dive lights used within the diving arena. The Light & Motion Sola Photo 1200 would be an ideal choice for beginners.
Rechargeable vs. Disposable Batteries
In this category, traditional alkaline batteries are the most popular but have two main setbacks: a lower battery life and reduced performance. Lithium batteries are excellent disposable batteries and although they cost more they can be recycled. Disposable batteries only work best for occasional divers. The Big Blue VTL3100P dive light has rechargeable battery cells and would be the best choice for frequent divers. Rechargeable batteries save you from the added cost of replacing batteries frequently.
It is also worth noting that there are new dive lights integrated with lithium batteries. They provide immense light, a higher power per volume and last longer. There are only a handful of these lithium handheld lights. Since only the factory can recharge the battery, there is no risk of flooding. Replacing the batteries at the factory might require extra fees. Finally, when not in use, always remember to keep the rechargeable batteries charged in order for them to have a longer shelf-life.