Preppers: Are You Stockpiling Chemlights?
Kevin Felts 12.18.17
If there is one item in my prepping gear stockpile that I wonder about, it has to be the chemlights. What exact niche does it fill?
Someone may say, “Kevin, chemlights are great for, well, you know, light.” What could be any easier than open, bend, shake, and you have light for several hours. Here is the issue: they are somewhat expensive, and they are disposable. Chemlights are a “use once and discard” product, which makes them less-than-ideal. Then there is the reliability issue. How are chemlights tested to make sure they will work when needed?
Let’s say you wanted an emergency light for the vehicle.
Which would you choose:
- Flashlight that uses AA batteries, with lithium batteries.
Energizer Ultimate Lithium are supposed to hold power for 20 years. The batteries can be checked at any time, just by turning the light on. If you wanted something with a little more juice, get a flashlight that uses 123 batteries, such as a Surefire.
How would you test a chemlight to make sure it will work when needed? Chances are it will work, but there is no way to test it.
Something the chemlight does better than a flashlight is area lighting. Power goes down, break out a chemlight, and the room is lit up with no fire hazard.
After years of trying, I have been unable to find a role for chemlights, mostly because my flashlights use rechargeable batteries. When the power goes out, such as after Hurricane Harvey, a solar panel is used to recharge LED lanterns.
LED lanterns provide the same area lighting effect as a chemlight, but they’re rechargeable and share the chemlight benefit of not posing a fire hazard.
The main issue I have with chemlights is that it’s difficult to spend money on a disposable product, when there are so many reusable and rechargeable lights on the market.