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The Best Budget Tactical Flashlights to Save Your Money

Fact checked by Brain Bartell

best budget tactical flashlight

A tactical flashlight comes in handy for doing missions or outdoor activities in the dark. It can light up a dark room, focus on your target far away, or even disorient an attacker for self-defense. The good news is that you can get the best budget tactical flashlight under $50.

Anyone can use a tactical flashlight, whether you’re a hunter, hiker, or law enforcement personnel. It’s so compact that you can carry it in your pocket, bag, or even mount it to a rifle. Given the many options available today, here are a few factors to consider to choose the best one.

  • Lumen Output: It’s natural to look for a super bright flashlight to cover a large area and spotlight a target far away. For tactical flashlights at this price point, 500 lumens is good enough to give a long downrange reach. The best ones can even deliver as much as 1200 lumens.
  • Durable Construction: It might be difficult to find a durable flashlight for this price, but many hold up well in moderate impact and light rain. These flashlights are made of aircraft-grade aluminum with a hard anodized coating for extra durability.
  • Modes And Settings: For functionality, look for a tactical flashlight that offers multiple light modes with adjustable focus. Light modes like strobe and SOS can be pretty helpful for emergencies. An adjustable focus can narrow or widen the beam to spotlight a target or room.

There are still many things to look out for, so be sure to check them all in the buying guide below. If you want to know the best brands of budget tactical flashlights, here are my top recommendations.

List of Top 8 Budget Tactical Flashlight in the Market Reviews

1. Gearlight LED Tactical Flashlight S1000

S1000 is a compact tactical flashlight that never disappoints me in camping and other emergencies. It’s incredibly bright to see in the night clearly and fits just right in my pocket for easy access.

The adjustable focus is a helpful feature of this tactical pocket flashlight. I was pleased to use the narrow beam to spotlight a raccoon 1000 feet away. The wide beam also comes in handy when I want to survey the whole field at night.

In the best condition, this mini tactical flashlight can produce a maximum output of 1040 lumens. It also works in five different modes, including the strobe, which is my favorite to disorient my enemies. I can use this cheap EDC flashlight virtually in any weather conditions as it still works even when I soaked it in the rain or froze it in the cold.

This Gearlight version offers two flashlights and extra accessories, providing more value than other cheap flashlights of its price point. I like the pouches they came with because they serve well in protecting the flashlights for long-term use.

Besides, users can choose between three AAA batteries and a single rechargeable battery to power these powerful flashlights.

 Heads-up:  However, this small tactical flashlight doesn’t come with free batteries. It would have been perfect if I didn’t have to spend extra dollars for AAA batteries or a Lithium-ion battery.

 Pros: 
  • Compact to fit inside the pocket; suitable for any weather conditions
  • Adjustable focus goes from wide to narrow beam to light objects 1000 feet away
  • Can generate a maximum output of 1040 lumens
  • Built with five modes, including a strobe function for self-defense
  • Includes two flashlights, pouches, and other accessories
  • Can operate with three AAA batteries or a rechargeable batter
 Cons: 
  • Doesn’t come with free batteries
 Bottom Line:  Altogether, the Gearlight S1000 seems to be the most value tactical flashlight for this price point because it comes with two flashlights and extra accessories. This model is also extremely bright with five light modes and adjustable focus.

2. Anker Super Bright Tactical Flashlight, Bolder LC90

The Bolder LC90 is another inexpensive tactical flashlight to bring to hiking or camping. Everything becomes visible to users at night as the 900-lumen Cree LED can zoom trees as far as 1000 feet away and illuminate a cave about 660 feet wide.

This affordable tactical flashlight is quite hefty-something ideal for heavy-duty use. The aluminum body feels sturdy, and I love that it grips well even when my hand gets sweaty. I believe that the gaskets make this flashlight water-resistant, as shown with its IPX5 rating, making it reliable to use under the rain.

What made me love this low cost tactical flashlight is the free 18650 rechargeable battery included. Charging the battery is quite easy as an LED light changes from red to green to indicate the charging level, plus it only takes a few hours.

The battery life is also pretty long-lasting, as I was able to use the flashlight for around 6 hours in a medium-power setting.

Upon using it, I’m pleased to find five settings: high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS. All light modes work well, and I easily cycle through the modes using the push button. Everything seems to be of good quality as shown with the 18-month warranty.

 Heads-up:  However, this flashlight can get hot when used on the high setting, but it dissipates after a while.

 Pros: 
  • Can zoom far and wide with 900 lumens capacity
  • Built with a hefty aluminum body and a non-slip grip
  • IPX5 rated to be water-resistant; offers an 18-month warranty
  • Includes a free rechargeable battery that charges within a few hours
  • Easy to charge with the LED indicators and can run for 2.5 hours on high mode
  • Features five light modes and an easy-to-use push button
 Cons: 
  • Can get hot when used on the highest mode
 Bottom Line:  The Anker Bolder LC90 impresses with its solid construction and long warranty. There’s no need to buy extra batteries because the package already includes a rechargeable battery.

3. Gearlight S2000 LED Flashlight

Gearlight S2000 is a tactical flashlight under $30, which shows another excellent performance for its price. I discovered that the S2000 delivers high lumens, enough to light up a dark room.

This budget EDC flashlight is built to last with its outstanding water resistance in the rain, and it did survive when I performed a 10-foot drop test. I can feel the toughness of the military-grade aluminum with its heftiness. In addition, I like the texture because it’s nice to hold and not slippery at all.

The S2000 appears to be a midsize military tactical flashlight and doesn’t look like those weak little flashlights that fit in the purse. It looks powerful but still compact enough to store in my backpack. I also like that this budget LED flashlight can take rechargeable or conventional batteries.

The beam can go very narrow or very wide, depending on the zoom level I choose. I tested the flashlight out at night to spot an animal 900 feet away on full zoom. Conversely, it did a perfect job of lighting my entire front yard.

 Heads-up:  However, I have to cycle through all the modes to get to the one when I turn the light off.

 Pros: 
  • Produces a high lumens capacity- 1200 lumens to be price
  • Has a solid construction of military-grade aluminum with a nice grip
  • Water-resistant and passed the 10-feet drop
  • Looks powerful with its midsize body yet compact enough to fit in a backpack
  • Can work either with four AA batteries or a single rechargeable battery
  • Zoomable light can go wide and focus narrowly up to 900 feet away
 Cons: 
  • Requires cycling through all modes to get to the mode when turned off
 Bottom Line:  Overall, the Gearlight S2000 packs power with its midsize solid metal construction. It’s a good cheap tactical flashlight because it delivers a very bright 1200 lumens output.

4. Feyachi FL11-MB Tactical Flashlight

When I go night hunting, my favorite tactical flashlight to use is the Feyachi FL11-MB. I can mount this flashlight on my rifle and spot my prey about 550-600 feet away.

The FL11-MB is a tactical flashlight over 1000 lumens, producing 1200 lumens of bright white light, enough to disorient an enemy. I love the size of this one because I can barely notice the extra weight on my rifle. Best of all, it’s quick to mount to the standard Picatinny rail.

This flashlight is a tough model with aircraft-grade aluminum alloy. Together with the black anodized matte finish, the flashlight feels highly durable and looks aesthetically pleasing.

Furthermore, this flashlight is IP65 water-resistant. And I also noticed some waterproof O-rings, so I no longer doubt if it can work well evn in the rain.

This model is a good tactical flashlight for the money because it comes with free rechargeable batteries and a pressure switch. The batteries charge quickly, about three hours, and run up to four hours straight at high mode. I especially love the pressure switch because it’s dual-function (momentarily on/constant on) and easy to operate by one hand.

 Heads-up:  However, the product came without instructions on how to mount the pressure switch. I recommend customers use some electrical tape to fix the switch on the firearm.

 Pros: 
  • Can produce a blinding light of 1200 lumens up to 550-600 feet away
  • Lightweight and easy to mount to any standard Picatinny rail
  • Built with tough aircraft-grade aluminum with black anodized finish
  • Water-resistant with IP65 rating and O-rings
  • Includes rechargeable batteries that charge for three hours and run for four hours
  • Has a pressure switch with two functions: constant on and momentary on
 Cons: 
  • No instructions on how to mount the pressure switch
 Bottom Line:  Altogether, the Feyachi FL11-MB is a good tactical flashlight under $50. This model already comes with free rechargeable batteries, a pressure switch, and an offset mount.

5. Fyland Tactical Flashlights

I saved a few dollars with this Fyland Tactical Flashlight. This handheld tactical flashlight includes everything I need to mount it on my rifle and two 18650 rechargeable batteries.

The best part is that the batteries come already charged for use the flashlight right away. Also, I love the M-Lok mount because it’s very lightweight and saves up valuable rail space.

With the 6061T aluminum material, this light feels very solid in my hold. For rugged use, it features adequate water resistance under the rain.

There’s a high amount of versatility built-in with this product. I can use the rear on/off button or the pressure switch to operate the flashlight. Users can mount the pressure switch just anywhere on the rail.

The craftsmanship is quite neat on this one. I found no signs of damage on the O-rings, and the light has surpassed my expectations. I can light a target at 328 feet away without a problem, plus the 1200 lumens brightness creates a good hotspot with a splash that provides significant coverage with a profound center beam.

 Heads-up:  Again, this one didn’t come with any adhesive to attach the remote switch. I solved this problem with a simple zip tie.

 Pros: 
  • Includes essential mounting accessories, like the lightweight M-Lok mount
  • Has already charged rechargeable batteries
  • Made of water-resistant 6061T aluminum material and neat O-rings
  • Two options to use the flashlight- pressure switch and rear on/off button
  • Can light a target as far as 328 feet with a maximum output of 1200 lumens
  • Sufficient coverage to create a hotspot with a profound center beam
 Cons: 
  • Comes without any adhesive type product to mount the pressure switch
 Bottom Line:  Altogether, the Fyland Tactical Flashlights can be good companions for any rifle to light up a target. They can be mounted into the rifle without adding extra weight.

6. Feyachi FL14 Mlok Flashlight

Instead of a Picatinny rail, the Feyachi FL14 uses the M-Lok system. Such a design makes its construction more lightweight than the Feyachi FL11-MB.

Just like the predecessor, the FL14 produces 1200 lumens of white light with an aircraft-grade aluminum body. There are also O-rings to keep the flashlight watertight and a black anodized matte finish to fight corrosion. I’m not afraid to get this flashlight wet because it has an IP65 rating.

This particular Feyachi model also comes with two 18650 rechargeable batteries and a battery charger. The battery life seems to be longer than I expected, and the quality of light doesn’t wane even when the battery is a bit low.

Additionally, the remote pressure switch seems useful to turn the flashlight on/off quickly.

The unique feature of this flashlight is the M-Lok bracket. Thankfully, the package comes with screws and all necessary hardware to mount the flashlight easily. I also find the aggressive glass breaker nose pretty handy when breaking a window for emergencies.

 Heads-up:  However, the M-Lok mount lacks the durability that the Picatinny rail delivers, which can be a little lacking during heavy-duty use.

 Pros: 
  • Uses a lightweight M-Lok rail to mount the flashlight onto the rifle
  • Gives out 1200 lumens of white light capacity
  • Built with durable aircraft-grade aluminum with watertight O-rings
  • IP65 rating for water resistance and black anodized finish to fight corrosion
  • Includes long-lasting rechargeable batteries, charger, and pressure switch
  • Designed with an aggressive glass breaker for emergencies
 Cons: 
  • M-lok feels a little frail compared to Picatinny rail
 Bottom Line:  All in all, the Feyachi FL14 works well for light use situations. The M-Lok system is very lightweight that it won’t add any weight to the rifle.

7. DefendTek Gun Flashlight, DT-M1C

The DefendTek DT-M1C is an excellent weapon light that seems to fit every pistol with a Picatinny rail and most rifles with rails. This model fits nicely on my SD9VE, and I like that it doesn’t get in the way of easy engagement.

I just love the design, especially the quick-release mount mechanism, because it makes the flashlight easy to slip into the rail without screws. I’m pleased that the spring for the quick mount is durable. Thankfully, the light comes installed with a battery for quick use and a tactical bezel to give me an advantage for self-defense.

Surprisingly, this gun flashlight seems to be built with a pretty aircraft-grade solid aluminum material. I tried to perform a torture test, and this flashlight survived after a 10-feet drop on my hardwood floor. It also can handle numerous recoils after several rounds on my PT11 G2 pistol.

The 300 lumens output seems bright enough to light up my dark room. Also, I find the two light modes very helpful in emergencies. The steady mode makes it easy to find, while the strobe setting can disorient an intruder.

 Heads-up:  However, the battery that came with the light isn’t rechargeable.

 Pros: 
  • Can fit on most pistols and rifles with rails unobtrusively
  • The quick-release mount is easy to use with a strong spring for durability
  • Includes a free battery and is designed with a bezel for self-defense
  • Crafted of strong aircraft-grade aluminum
  • Can withstand a 10-foot drop and recoils
  • Delivers 300 lumens and two light modes (strobe and steady)
 Cons: 
  • Free battery isn’t rechargeable
 Bottom Line:  Altogether, the DefendTek DT-M1C makes a durable night light for pistols and long guns with rails. It’s easy to mount and rugged to withstand impact for several rounds in the range or hunting.

8. MA3TY Tactical Flashlight

This MA3TY Tactical Flashlight is another perfect night light for hunting. I like the extra accessories that come with the package.

I can fit the Picatinny mount to any typical rail system, and I like that it feels solid enough to hold the flashlight on a rifle. There’s a lot of versatility using this flashlight due to the pressure switch or the end cap. I prefer to use this function because it’s easier to change between momentary or steady light modes.

This flashlight is ready to use as it already includes a rechargeable battery and charger. I can use the flashlight for up to six hours when it is fully charged, peaking at 1200 lumens brightness. I also like the O-ring seal near the battery compartment because it helps keep the moisture out.

The durable construction is another fascinating feature of this flashlight. The aluminum alloy is coated with a hard-anodized finish to fight corrosion. Also, the light can help me spotlight my target more easily as the narrow beam can reach as far as 600 feet.

 Heads-up:  However, just like my other problems with mounted flashlights, this model didn’t provide any adhesive to attach the switch pad onto the rifle.

 Pros: 
  • Plenty of accessories, including a solid Picatinny rail for mounting
  • Versatile to use- can choose between a switch pad or the end cap
  • Comes with a charger and battery that runs for six hours
  • Offers two light modes-momentary and steady- at 1200 lumens capacity
  • Built with an O-ring seal for water protection and sturdy aluminum alloy
  • Coated with a hard anodized finish for durability; the beam can reach 600 feet
 Cons: 
  • Doesn’t come with glue to fix the switch pad onto the rifle
 Bottom Line:  Overall, the MA3TY Tactical Flashlight serves its purpose well in lighting targets for night hunting or other activities. This flashlight sits tight on most rail systems.

What to Look for When Buying Budget Tactical Flashlight

budget-edc-flashlight

A good budget tactical flashlight is easy to find if you know what right features to look for. Here are the factors to consider when buying a tactical flashlight under budget.

Lumens And Lighting

Lumen determines the maximum light output of a flashlight. The higher the figure, the brighter the light and greater the power consumption, it seems. Given today’s LED lighting technology, 500 is already enough to throw a good downrange reach.

The top-rated tactical flashlights should offer different lumen output settings, like high and low, to suit different applications and conserve battery power. Strobe comes in handy to confuse an attacker, while SOS can be helpful to get attention during emergencies.

When choosing flashlights by lumens, consider how far the light can go or the beam distance. Most flashlights of this price can light as far as 1000 feet away. The runtime of the flashlight on the highest setting is another factor to consider.

You’ll want a tactical flashlight that can deliver a high lumen capacity for a long period of time and offers multiple options for operation. The focus should be adjustable so you can change the beam pattern from wide to narrow.

Construction

For this type of flashlight, you’ll want something more compact and lightweight. Look for a black finish to appear more tactical for nighttime missions. You’ll never know when it’s going to rain, so find a flashlight that’s water-resistant for uninterrupted work or fun.

Plastic lenses tend to be more versatile, but they’re not as durable as those that are scratch-resistant. For the body, aircraft-grade aluminum is on par with several types of steel in terms of strength. Make sure that the flashlight has a moderate impact resistance to withstand accidental blows.

For self-defense purposes, look for a bezel to strike a window or your opponent. This textured edge can also tell if your flashlight is still working when set on its face, allowing you to shut it off to save energy.

Price And Warranty

When we say budget, it means affordable. You can have a good tactical flashlight under 100. Others even cost under $30 but still deliver exceptional performance.

At this price point, getting a warranty is already a big bonus. It gives me peace of mind to have a long money-back guarantee because I can return the flashlight whenever it’s defective. A long warranty also serves as a good indicator of good quality.

Batteries And Other Accessories

Actually, batteries will matter a lot when it comes to performance. You want a long-lasting battery that cuts down the cost. Most tactical flashlights use AAA/AA disposable batteries, rechargeable batteries, or take both interchangeably.

Rechargeable batteries allow you to save the cost of buying disposable batteries, but they need to be charged for several hours frequently. They’re cost-effective, but their performance might not be as consistent as disposable batteries.

Many flashlights of this price point offer a lot of accessories to make them more valuable. They include a lanyard to hang around the neck or wrist. Others offer a separate switch pad to add versatility to the operation and a rail mount to fix the flashlight on the rifle or gun.

Between the Picatinny rail and M-Lok system, the former tends to be more heavy-duty while the latter seems to be lighter.

Are Budget Tactical Flashlights Worth It

inexpensive-tactical-flashlight

Yes, they’re worth it because many of them already come with great features to deliver a satisfactory performance.

They can deliver a maximum lumen output of 1200 with multiple light modes and a long beam distance as far as 1000 feet. Also, the construction seems to be durable enough to endure the light rain and moderate impact.

What Is a Good Affordable Flashlight

A good affordable flashlight should have an output of at least 500 lumens with multiple modes to suit different applications.

You should go with ones made of aircraft-grade aluminum to ensure durability and water-resistant to keep the moisture out.

Also, the focus should be adjustable from wide to narrow beams to light a target from far away.

How Many Lumens Do You Need to Blind an Attacker

About 300 lumens is enough to momentarily blind an attacker and get away from danger to a safe distance. Anything above 300 lumens will make the deed probably a little faster.

Conclusion

Now, everyone can own a good tactical flashlight without spending hundreds of dollars. The best budget tactical flashlight isn’t only cheap but also built of superior quality that’s almost at par with the more expensive ones. My top choice is the Gearlight S1000 because it’s packed with great features, like high lumens, multiple light modes, and an adjustable focus.

If you want to use a flashlight out of the box, the Anker Bolder LC90 might be a suitable alternative as it offers a free rechargeable battery. The Gearlight S2000 is also a nice upgrade if you want higher lumen output.

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