It is imperative that your target remains visible at all times; this is possible at night only with the aid of flashlights. There are several beneficial uses of flashlights which we will talk about later in the article, but for now, you must know that there is a mind-boggling range of variety in pistol lights. You can choose the best pistol light based on the lamp used, the batteries, the mount, the impact resistance etc. Thus, choosing the best Pistol Light or flashlight for your Glock is a herculean task. But don’t worry, we have you covered; by the end of the article, we will ensure that you knew enough about these lights and are in a position to choose the best pistol light in the market. Since the choice is so staggering we have reviewed seven of the best flashlight dominants, to make your task simpler.
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I. Understand Pistol Flashlight
Some basic understanding of the various components of the flashlight will be helpful in selecting the best pistol light.
1- Benefits of Having a Flashlight:
- Self-defense by blinding the attacker with a bright beam of light
- Aid in shooting in the dark by illuminating the target
- Helps to search for small objects stuck in the deep recesses of sofas and cupboards and attics (Never use pistol flashlight to do that).
- Helps provide light when there is a power outage
- Improves visibility of objects in the distance.
Nowadays firearms are fitted with pistol lights combined with a laser to help you shoot accurately even when you are not in a suitable position to shoot.
2- Features to look for buying the Best Pistol Light:
Here are listed a few features that must be present in flashlight used with pistols and Glocks.
A. Offset Gun Scope Flashlight Mount:
This mount is meant for placing the flashlight scope at the side of the weapon and not below it. This is very beneficial as it does not interfere with the usage of the gun. It, in fact, makes it easier to switch off and on as it is close to the thumb.
B. Quick Release Pistol Light:
A quick release pistol light is suitable for times when you have to mount your light really quickly. These are immensely popular and they are normally mounted in the front of the gun.
C. Pistol Mounted Flashlight with Tactical Laser:
This is a great combination as it not only illuminates the place but also guides you to shoot accurately. The only disadvantage is that one tends to become too lazy and looks out for the red laser dots and not focus on the instrument or the target. The laser is a waste in smoky and bright light conditions.
D. Remote Pressure Switch:
To be in complete control of illuminating the dark just with a touch of a button you must replace the tail cap switch with the remote pressure switch; this switch can be located anywhere you find comfortable. It will allow you to switch on and off the light at will.
E. Mounting System:
There are two types of pistol light mounts:
- Quick Release – This system is for those who prefer to take off and replace their lights really fast and do not like to operate with the flashlight mounted at all times.
- Screw on – In this system you can fix and forget about it. This is a more secure mode of mounting the light but you do not have the flexibility of removing it when not needed.
3. Pistol-Mounted Light or Handheld Flashlight?
Users are always confused on whether they should mount a flashlight or use a handheld light. Ideally, you need both because each mode has its own advantages and disadvantages. While the mounted light keeps your hands steady on the gun especially in combat situations where you need to be in full control and helps in getting an accurate shot it becomes a challenge with a handheld flashlight. The disadvantage of the mounted flashlight is that everything it is pointed at becomes a target. A good strategy is to use the FBI technique hold where in you identify the target using the handheld light first and then switch to the use of the mounted light.
4. Features of a Good Weapon Flash Light
Before purchasing any flashlight ensure that the product has the following features:
- Must Use good quality LED bulbs
- Decent Lumen number for brightness and intensity
- The beam of light reaches a long distance and has a bigger arch
- Easy to operate and assemble and unload
- A solid mounting system
- Glass must be impact resistant
- Shock resistance and water resistance
- Has batteries that are long-lasting and are easily available in the market.
5. What’s Lumens and How much do you Need:
Lumen (Units) is a measure of the intensity of the light emitted by a source. For example, if a single candle is 1 foot away from your face it is said to emit 1 lumen; if there are 1000 candles then 1000 lumen light is emitted. For guns used in self-defense 10-25 lumens will suffice.
For searching in the yard you require at least 100 lumens. Thus, the higher the lumen the more powerful the light and more expensive the light. The number of batteries required will also increase proportionately.
II. Top Seven Pistol Flash Lights Dominants
1st Dominants – Stream Light TLR-1 HL
Light TLR 1 HL is crafted from machined aluminum and has a weather resistant black anodized finish. It is easy to mount without any tools on any firearm that has Picatinny rail. The light has an LED that emits 800 lumens. It has 1.75 hours of running time.
- Easy to mount
- Shock and water resistant
- Ambidextrous switch.
- Too bright
- Battery life is limited.
Users have reviewed that this is one of the best pistol lights that is lightweight and easy to install.
2st Dominants – SureFire X300
One of the top contenders for the best pistol light, the X300 is manufactured from aerospace aluminum and has a Mil-Spec anodized finish for optimal durability. It is weatherproof. It displays a new mounting system with a T-slot that improves the speed of mounting a light onto any weapon of your choice.
- Durable construction
- Easy to mount
- Easy to replace batteries
- Suitable for most holsters
- Ambidextrous switch.
- Unit must be removed from mount to change batteries
- Using the switch needs practice.
All users believe that the light is really bright and illuminates the dark like no other, but for the hefty price, this is a winner.
3rd Dominants – StreamLight TLR-4 Light with Laser
Another name to reckon with the flashlight industry, the StreamLight TLR 4 is a combination of light and laser. It is very durable as it is manufactured from impact resistant polymer and uses Borofloat high-temperature glass lens. It uses C4 lithium batteries for its LED light. You can choose between three modes of lighting.
- Impact resistant
- Ambidextrous switch
- Single-handed snap-on mounting system
- Three-mode selector switch
- Suitable even for full sized guns.
- Tends to get stuck in fabric
- Bulky for smaller guns.
It is considered to be an ideal combination of light and laser and real value for money.
4th Dominants – Streamlight TLR-3
A lightweight impact resistant polymer based flashlight, the TLR-3 is designed to fit most compact and subcompact handguns. It is lightweight and uses C4 lithium batteries to produce 125 lumens. It is waterproof up to 1 meter. It is really simple and quick to attach and detach the rail clamp.
- Correct amount of brightness
- Easy access to the on/off switch
- Comes with several rail keys and is compatible with various rails including Picatinny
- Suitable for most holsters.
- Instructions are not clear.
It is considered to be a very affordable and excellent choice of flashlight that is solid and durable with a powerful light.
5th Dominants – InForce APL
This is one brand that gives some form of competition to the major names in the field. The Inforce APL has the capacity to emit 200 lumens of white light; it uses the CR123A lithium battery and can be used for one and a half hours. Unlike the other models, this product uses the paddle style switch and gives you complete control just with the motion of your fingers. There is a shut off feature which can be activated during travel and prevent any accidental switching of the light and draining of battery.
- Affordable pricing
- Ergonomic design
- Compact and lightweight
- Energy conserving shutoff feature
- Secure mounting
- Reasonable lighting.
- Battery drains rapidly
- Durability is a matter of concern.
Users like the price, the easy ability to mount the light and the simple and easy access to the controls though the battery life is a concern.
6th Dominants – StreamLight TLR-6
It is one of the most suited pistol lights for the smallest of guns. Like all of StreamLight products the TLR 6 is well constructed and made from the durable polymer. This tactical pistol mount flashlight has a light and laser combination which can be accessed in three modes – only laser, dual mode and only light. The battery shuts off automatically after 10 minutes. The product is water, impact and shock resistant. It uses C4 LED bulbs for illumination.
- Water, shock and impact resistant
- Has three operational modes
- Auto-off battery for conserving battery charge
- Batteries can be replaced without removing the light from the unit
- Poor quality laser.
Customers like the durable lightweight nature and believe it is value for money.
7th Dominants – Aimkon P10S
An affordable pistol light that is almost two times brighter than several other models, the P10S is a lightweight pistol light powered by a single CR23 lithium battery. It has 500 lumens and has a strobe feature which can blind any intruder or attacker. It is one of the brightest lights in the list.
- Quick release mount for speedy assembly
- Does not require tools for mounting
- Really bright
- Can be used in self-defense.
- On/off button is of poor quality and the button turns on when the gun is left on its side.
The users feel the pistol light is decently priced and works fairly well but for the faulty on/off button.
III. Features to select the best pistol light
As is evident, all the products listed above are really good and worth considering. In case, you are still unable to decide keep the following features in mind. Choose a product that is made from a durable material like the polymer. Next, pay attention to the lighting department and choose only LED bulbs; the higher the lumen the brighter the light and the farther the reach. The product must be easy to operate and available within your budget.
IV. 5 Easy, Simple & Safe Steps to Install Your Weapon Flash Light
Mounting the flashlight is a very simple and quick process but you need to follow certain precautions and adhere to a few rules.
- Safety First: Do not mount, upgrade, clean or repair your weapon without unloading the ammunition.
- Clean the Rail: It is paramount that the rail is clean and free of any dust and debris; use sterile alcohol to clean the area and allow it to dry.
- Install the Battery Into the Flashlight: It is crucial that you load the battery into the flashlight before you mount it on the pistol.
- Preparing the Mounting: Using an Allen wrench place the flashlight mount in the front of the rail and wrench it firmly but not too tightly.
- Attaching the Flashlight: Loosen the mount a little and position the flashlight in the desired area before tightening the mount again. Always remember to not overly tighten the mount.
Maintain the flashlight regularly using clean patches, all purpose gun cleaning solvent, and lubricating oil.
V. CR123A Lithium Batteries Pack
You need a reliable source of power for your mounted flashlight. Lithium batteries are an ideal choice for gadgets that consume more power. They have low self-discharge, require no maintenance and are available in various types to suit particular energy needs. The disadvantage with this batteries is that they cannot be overcharged and they are expensive.
The most popular brands in pistol lights are SureFire & Streamlight. Though in this section we have covered exclusively the mounted gun light if you are confident you can also use a handheld flashlight with a scoop mount. You must exercise caution when you use the mounted flashlight because anything you focus on becomes a target. If you want a flashlight for pure illumination purpose buy a good grade handheld flashlight that can have multipurpose uses.
Is there any topic that you need clarification on or any brands that require mention? Do not hesitate to pen your thoughts in the comments section below.