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Best Longboard Lights 2020 | LED Lights for Safer Riding

The importance of the lights on a longboard is rivaled only by a certified helmet and protective gear when it comes to safety if you plan on riding yours after dark. Traveling the premature sunsets of an early fall or experiencing a year ‘round 6 PM sundown along the equator; no matter, most probably know the struggle. Many looking to own a longboard should also consider the probability of riding it after dark, as doing otherwise would be dangerous. In this article, I have taken my time writing a comprehensive list of what I consider to be some of the top picks on the market. Don’t let me bore you down; Instead, let’s start the list off with a bang! What are the results?

What are the best lights for longboards?

The best headlight and tail lights truly are the “Shred lights SL-200”. They’re bright, have a battery life rivaling many of the competitors, are shock- and vibration proof and are easy to install and remove to boot. As such, they can be mounted on almost any board. I’d be remiss to mention that the lights are water-resistant (IP65). All this, available at a fair price!

shredlights sl 200

Why Using Longboard Lights?

Arguably, collisions with cars are one of the bigger hazards for a longboarder. This is something that should be taken into serious consideration when stepping onto our board. The prospect of getting injured by this kind of accident is very high. These odds of crashes heighten substantially were we to top off the ride with dusky scenery and inadequate lights. That’s why it’s important we bring awareness to car drivers of our presence on the roads, particularly during nightfall. Of course, this is something we can do.

In traffic can longboarding be likened to bicycle crashes, as there is more empirical data in this field in comparison. Most cases of bicycles getting hit by a car is a result of a driver not noticing the cyclist before it’s too late to react. This commonly involves a left-turning car (or, in the case for you living in countries with left-hand traffic, the opposite) simply not seeing an oncoming cyclist from around the corner. Another common occurrence in right-hand traffic is when a driver making a right turn doesn’t see the cyclist behind coming around the other corner, resulting in an accident.

longboard lights circle

Therefore, logically, awareness is key. You need to stay visible from front and back and even more favorably, from a 360-degree view (more on this later). Longboarding isn’t common enough in most places yet to be instinctively on a driver’s radar. As such, it isn’t uncommon for poor lighting along the ground (as opposed to bicycles, which usually keep lights higher up) to go unnoticed. This makes it all the more crucial to ensure that your lights are adequate.

Best Longboard Lights

Shredlighs SL-200

These lights are an improvement of a similar model, giving these lights x3 bigger battery than their predecessor. The Shredlights SL200 can be mounted on almost any type of board, can be removed without tools and can be charged without being removed from the board. With up to 200 lumens and up to 150h battery life, these lights can boast with stellar reviews and ratings. On top of this, these lights are water-resistant with an IP65 rating. As such, it can be argued you get the bang for your bucks when purchasing these.

You can check them out over at their website. I have managed to obtain a discount code for my audience. If you check out with the discount code “DANIEL10” you get 10% off your purchase!

Max Brightness200 lumens
Max Battery Life150 hrs max
Weight50 grams
Water Resistance Rating IP65
Recharge time2 hrs
Warranty90 days
Price $99
Link to Websiteshredlights.com/SL-200

Pros and Cons

Pros:
+ very bright
+ easily removable
+ versatile – mountable almost any board
+ water-resistant
+ long battery life
Cons
– Pricey

Serfas Thunderbolt Lights

These lights come with several different options for brightness and flashing. They offer up to 90 lumens and are charged via USB. It is worth noting that some customers report a low battery life, perhaps worsened by the fact that these lights don’t have a system in place to inform you when they’re running low. That means that they can simply go dark while riding. You can unknowingly surrender your visibility from behind or suddenly lose your much-needed ability to see as a result. It doesn’t sound ideal and can, in fact, be very dangerous.

Check out the headlights here and taillights here on Amazon.

Specs

Max Brightness200 lumens
Max Battery Life150 hrs max
Weight50 grams
Water Resistance Rating IP65
Recharge time2 hrs
Warranty90 days
Price $99
Link to Websiteshredlights.com/SL-200

Pros and cons

Pros
+ several birghtness options
+ relatively cheap
+ very versatile
Cons
– Potentially low battery life
– No indicator with low battery
– Some users report straps tearing occasionally
– Mini rather than micro USB

Illume V2 Light

The Illume V2 Light is a redesign of the lights from the company GenexDesign. The founder, Sam Wiewel, is an active member of the e-board community. While the lights are made to be mounted onto the e-board, these will also work well on your longboard. With up to 320 lumens, these are powerful lights that can be seen from as far as a mile away. They are adjustable vertically, to boot. With overwhelmingly positive reviews, these are occasionally out of stock. Sam offers a lifetime warranty on the lights, so if your 3D printable mounters break, he’ll replace them free of charge. You can check them out here on Etsy.

Specs

Max Brightness320 lumens – headlight
168 lumens – taillight
Max Battery Life8 hrs max – headlight
6 hrs max – taillight
Weight50 grams
Water Resistance Rating IPX5 – headlight
IPX4 – taillight
Recharge timeless than 1 hr
WarrantyLifetime on Mount
Price $59
Link to EtsyILLume V2 E-board Light

Pros and cons

Pros
+ Lifetime warranty on mount
+ Quick charging
+ Different lighting modes
+ very bright
+ Adjustable elevation to lights
Cons
– Often out of stock

Alternative Longboard Lighting Possibilities

Lights on Backpack

There are alternative ways to make sure you stay visible during the dark. One of the ways is to keep lights on your backpack while riding. This is an excellent way to make you more visible as you get light higher up on your body, hence making the chances of a driver noticing you higher than if you simply kept lights along your feet.

Shredlights Backpack Single Pack Lights are available in white and red. They have a multitude of settings, including 200 lumens, are charged with a micro USB and have a long battery time once charged. All this and they’re designed specially to simply clamp onto your backpack. These lights are backed by overwhelmingly positive reviews to be used by nightfall to improve your visibility! These can be found here over on their website.

shredlight sl-200 on backpack

Lights on Helmet

Installing lights on helmets is a relatively cheap way to make yourself visible. You don’t have to buy a new LED helmet and can instead install lights directly onto the helmet you already own. These lights allow you to light up the way you are looking towards, rather than the way your body or board is facing. Sometimes, this can be surprisingly handy!

Shredlights Helmet Single Pack Lights are a great option to light up your way by installing them onto your helmet. These lights have up to 150 hours of battery time per charging, come in red and white and can be adjusted to suit your needed brightness. These lights have up to 200 lumens, are easily installed and removed. It also is water-resistant, with an IP65 rating. With stellar reviews, this light is a versatile option and recommended to ensure safety and visibility. As usual, they can be found over here on their website.

shredlights sl-200 on helmet

LED Vest

LED vests can give you 360-degree visibility. While the vests can be used for runners and cyclists, these are amazing to make sure you stay visible to other members of traffic at all times. These vests are commonly weatherproof and have sown in reflective material to further improve your visibility. Their minimalist structure makes them wearable on top of heavier clothing and their multi-colored LED and flash options are additions that can help further Check out a recommended option here.

led vest

LED Helmets

Lumos Helmet

The Lumos helmet has white LED lights on the front side and red ones on the back. With heightened visibility, you’ll be safer on your ride. These lights are designed with acceleration meters and as such, they will indicate when you’re braking. On top of this, you can signal your planned direction with the lights on the helmets. These have overwhelmingly positive reviews by customers and the helmet can be found here on Amazon.

lumos helmet

Torch Helmet

Like the Lumos, Torch has integrated white and red LED lights in front and back respectively, this helmet will heighten your visibility. You can find these here on Amazon.

torch t2 helmet

LED Armband

A LED-armband is another way to increase your visibility. These are an affordable option available in many designs and colors. Great for skaters and runners alike, this is an exceptional addition. One armband that’s popular among many customers is this one.

LED armband

Special Flashlights

A normal flashlight or runner’s flashlight can be excellent to light your way while on a longboard. A runner’s flashlight can be angled 24 degrees for the best effect.

One I recommend highly has 300 lumens and lasts 5-6h and even up to 12h in strobe light. It can be found here on Amazon.

flashlight

Underglow Effect

With an underglow deck, LED strips mounted to the underside of your deck, you can make your longboard more visible in the dark. Check out the price here on Amazon.

underglow leds on longboard

Check out my ultimate guide on the best and safest longboard helmets!

best and safest longboard helmets

What to Consider Before Buying Longboard Lights?

When you are thinking of buying lights, you’ll have to figure out if you want to see or be seen. Ideally, it’d be both. It’s important to see the ground in front of you, as even a small rock could cause an accident or make the ride a very tedious task during the dark. For that, you need bright, clear lights in front of you. 

To be seen, you’ll need warm tail lights to avoid being bumped from behind by a bicycle or car. Besides these tail lights, there are other things that you can use to heighten your visibility. I’ll go through some of these options in this article.

  • Which Lights Should We Use? There are many options on the market for us if we look into the variety of bicycle- scooter- and skating lights. Bike lights have been available for decades and companies have had all this time to innovate and evolve them to fit specific requirements. Unfortunately, the majority of bike light doesn’t have proper mounting and shockproof abilities to be used on longboards. Fortunately, some companies have designed special lights for different kinds of skateboards and longboards! The most popular type is “Shred Lights”. However, “ILLume” and “Koowheel” manufacture board lights that work for longboards as well.
  • Brightness: Headlights are an essential item for every vehicle which is driven at night, while other lights will come in handy to make sure you stay visible from other angles. Many of us have had the misfortune of experiencing firsthand that while riding at great speeds, say downhill, even a small rock or pothole can end in an accident. Dangers that are easily avoided go unnoticed without headlights, so it’s important to keep our path well lit.
  • Lightweight: When picking your lighting option, we will want ones that aren’t heavy or bulky. We should look for something small, compact and light that doesn’t add much to the weight of our board.
  • Waterproof / Water-resistant: You don’t want weather getting in the way of your everyday life. If you ride your board to work or to the shops, it’s highly probable that you’ll want to ride it while the roads are wet sometimes. As such, the lights you are planning to use should be water-resistant or, preferably, waterproof. With the IP standard, it’s possible to check the water-resistance of your lights.
  • Vibration-proof: While this may seem like a small detail at first glance, your lights should be vibration- and shock-proof. Because uneven pavement can cause vibrations, electronic parts should be devised to mitigate them interfering further. On top of this, the lights should be shock-proof.
  • Easy to Install and Remove: Having lights that are easy to remove and install alleviates the issue of having them stolen, whether it be on the bike or on your longboard. Most people don’t steal, but sadly it can happen if you want to lock your ride outdoors. Disregarding the fact that one can still forget the lights, having easily removable and attachable parts hinders them from being stolen. Simply take them with you instead.
  • Battery: To have lights while skating during dark is handy. Normally a light battery with a good size will last for at least a few nightly rides before draining. Most of these lights can be charged with a standard USB cable.
  • Quality – Brand Reputation: It’s not a good idea to go cheap while buying lights. Get the best-guaranteed bang for your buck by buying head- and taillights from reliable, quality brands.
  • Price: The price range for longboard lights varies greatly, from cheap, dollar value bicycle lights to those costing more than 100 dollars. Headlights that are water-resistant, shock-proof and pack some genuine brightness are generally a little more pricey. However, the quality you tend to get from these devices is worth the price.

Conclusion

From what I have found, the best headlight and tail lights truly are the “Shred lights SL-200”. However, there are many options when it comes to ensuring your safety by increasing your visibility. With everything from affordable options such as LED Armbands and strap-on helmet or backpack lights, all the way to industry-standard board lights and LED helmets, the possibilities are near limitless. Hence, I suggest we proceeding in conquering the quest for more efficient, hazardless travel!

Final Thoughts

In this article, I’ve gone through and explained varying means of lighting solutions made available. I’m sure we all know it’s important to keep our path well lit and our person visible during nightfall both for our own safety and for those around us. Thank you for taking the time to read my article! If you feel that I perhaps have neglected to mention an option for lighting, then please don’t hesitate to let me know in the comments below or via my email or through other options that may be found at your disposal. Please do forward your feedback and suggestions if you are so inclined.

Now I’d like to hear from you in a comment left below;

What solutions for illumination do you prefer?

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