Best Camping Lanterns

Camping Lanterns - Reviews & Guides For 2020

Our Top Camping Lanterns

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Camping Lanterns buying guide

To ensure proper safety while camping, you should invest in proper lighting. The camping lanterns provide an efficient solution to tackle the darkness in the night time.

You should make sure that the light is capable enough to provide a certain amount of brightness so that all the things in the environment are visible. Having a handle lantern can make many things comfortable.

All you need to do is select a suitable lantern. You may think choosing a torch is a piece of cake. But you will be surprised to know that you need to consider a handful of elements before selecting a suitable option for your expedition.

Referring to a buying guide provides all the necessary information on several factors that alter the performance and usability of the product. Also, you get to know about specific vital points that are necessary to deem about while selecting the best product.

But before starting with the guide, let us first get into a brief product introduction.

What do you mean by camping lanterns? Why is it different from the headlamp?

When you are camping outdoors, you should never forget to carry a camping lantern that will help you stay safe from wildlife, and you will not get lost in the dark forest as well.

Now, a camping lantern differs from a headlamp in terms of output. Headlamps emit the light in a particular direction. So, they are not capable of lighting up your surroundings. But usually, people camp in a larger area, and it will be challenging to narrow down the darkness just with your car's headlights.

These lanterns also come up with a dimming effect. They will be able to reduce the strength of light if the light source increases. Unlike the lanterns, headlamps can focus on a targeted area, which may harm your eyes.

However, headlamps will help you to see straight ahead. Lanterns are suitable for lighting up your surroundings, but when you are camping outside, you will need both a camping lantern and headlamp to keep wildlife away from you.

Another critical point is that unlike headlamps, the lanterns do not create much heat, so there will be less chance of burning your hand.

Why should you read a buying guide before selecting a suitable camping lamp?

With so many details to ponder, selecting a suitable outdoor torch can be a little confusing. There are many brands available that outshine each other with different features. However, you should know that everything that glitters too much is not necessarily pure gold.

A buying guide presents in-depth detail on significant characteristics of the product that aid you in sorting out the best option for yourself. With the necessary details about different elements, you can quickly judge the actual worth of the product.

So without any further delay, let us dive into the comprehensive guide.

Types of camping lanterns

Battery-powered

As LED technology has become very reasonable now, battery-powered outdoor lamps are on high demand, and their popularity is increasing day by day.

Fuel-powered

Different types of fuel-powered lanterns are available such as –

  1. Propane

Propane-powered lamps have high popularity, and it is equally significant in these present days. The main reason behind its popularity is that you can control the light as you want and sometimes, it can be bright like the sun.

  1. Butane

These lanterns are not very useful for cold weather, so many people prefer not to have them. They have self-igniting features, and they are also equipped with fuel canisters, which are not available in propane operated lamps.

  1. Kerosene

Although kerosene lanterns are considered old-school, they perform very well. They are a little bit heavier because of the metal and heavy glass lens construction. Nevertheless, you can have great control over the light so you can easily depend on these lanterns.

Wind ups

These lanterns have a special crank system, which helps to charge the battery. It will power the LED lights effectively. The best thing about these lanterns is they are always full of power.

Solar

Solar operated lanterns are very helpful because they are very environment-friendly. They are rechargeable, but it will be a big problem during cloudy days.

Things to deem about while selecting an appropriate Camping Lanterns

  1. Size and weight

Usually, it is considered that the output of the camping lanterns directly depends on the size and weight of the lamps.

Smaller lamps have a lower light output, so they are ideal for the backpackers. They also do not have much weight, and thus they are very easy to carry. You will need a low output for different purposes like a trailside meal or reading books inside the tent.

However, the more giant lanterns are a little heavier. They are very appropriate for lighting up the big campground and thus create an ambiance of festivity.

You must also check the weight of the power source besides the weight of the lanterns. It will help you to determine the overall weight.

  1. Ease of use

You can use outdoor lanterns very easily. Especially, the electric models are incredibly convenient to use and maintain.

In general, the gas lights take a little more time for lighting up, but once you get used to the lanterns, it will be nothing difficult to use these lanterns.

Moreover, you should look for a lantern that is easy to carry. It is also essential to check whether you can replace the battery easily or not.

Also, you should make sure that you do not go through any hassles while refilling the fuel.

  1. Batteries

When you are about to buy the camping lanterns, you should pay attention to the cell type in the first place.

Some lanterns are operated by lithium and alkaline batteries. However, these are not adequate for all options.

If you are looking for a rechargeable battery, you can go for the lithium-ion batteries which can be recharged using a standard device.

Usually, alkaline batteries do not work appropriately in sub-zero temperatures, so it is recommended to keep your batteries inside the sleeping bag or inner pocket when using the alkaline setup. It will help you to protect the battery from cold, and it will not get drained quickly.

  1. Weather condition

It is very crucial to check the weather conditions in the area where you are camping in advance.

For example, you should go for a fuel-burning lantern for cold weather. They work better than electric lamps when it comes to lower temperatures. So you must decide the model accordingly to make sure it will perform well in colder conditions.

Besides, you can go for the lanterns which are equipped with lithium batteries or lithium-ion batteries. Alkaline batteries are commonly used for battery-powered lights, but these batteries will also work compatibly in colder weather.

You can also remove the alkaline batteries and keep them in your pocket when you are in a cold area. It will help to protect the battery from getting drained. Moreover, it will be warm so you can use them easily when you need to light up your campsite.

  1. Lumens

Lumens are used to measure the light output of the camping lanterns, which means higher lumens are required for brighter light. Some lanterns are measured inside, and some are measured from the outer side.

You will find some models of brighter having different brightness levels so that they do not consume much energy.

Commonly, the lanterns have a lumen range anywhere between 150 and 350. In a normal situation, 100 lumens will serve your purposes.

But you should always remember that design and optics have a significant impact on the brightness of the lamp. It will mostly depend on the set up that you are using to put the light.

Lumens within 100 are useful for brightening up your tent. If you want to light up the tent side, you should go for at least 200 lumens. For the campsite soiree, you will need more than 300 lumens.

  1. Fuel type

  1. Electric lanterns

Electric camping lanterns are designed with the LED bulb, which can be powered by using an electronically powered device. They are different from the other types of lamps because of their weight, size, and power source.

Electric lanterns can have rechargeable batteries, alkaline batteries, or any external source of power.

The rechargeable batteries have two variants. Either they are fully packed and sealed, or they are replaceable. You can charge these batteries by directly plugging into an electric power source, or you just need to remove the cells for charging.

Alkaline batteries are not so expensive but reliable. You can take them out quickly when they run out of juice. However, they can be turned into rechargeable packs effectively.

Electric lanterns work in an excellent way as they are durable and long-lasting. They are also lightweight and safe so that you can use any model without any issues.

  1. Gas-powered lanterns

If you are after more light and weight is not the priority for you, it will be better to choose a gas-powered torch. Typically, propane and liquid fuel are used in the gas lanterns.

Though lanterns operated by liquid fuel are a little more expensive and heavier, they can work the best when it comes to brightness. They are able to light up the campground completely, and you are allowed to control the light output according to needs.

However, you must be careful when refilling the fuel. You will also need to pump for pressuring the gas, which can be inconvenient sometimes.

Propane lanterns are easy to use, but they are not as bright as the liquid fuel lamps.

Both of these lanterns have mantles that are required for the production of light. So, you should keep some extra mantles when you are going camping.

  1. Durability

The durability of the camping lanterns is an essential factor that you must consider before buying one. Most of the lamps are durable and sturdy. As they are specifically made to be used outdoors, they are able to withstand any kind of wear and tear.

When you are choosing a camping lantern, you should always select the durable materials. It ensures that your lamp will last long without any replacement.

In addition, you must check the waterproofing feature of the lanterns. Having a waterproof lamp means that it has higher durability. There are some models available that can be used inside water, but they do not get damaged quickly.

  1. Light adjustability

You should control the light properly, so the intensity of the beam does not feel too much or too less. Some battery-powered lanterns are equipped with a single on/off button, which is there for adjusting the brightness. You are not allowed to go beyond that.

Also, there are many models that come with additional control so you can adjust the lamp brightness according to your needs. These lanterns are designed with an adjustable knob; otherwise, they have different preset settings.

As mentioned, mantles are very important for fuel lanterns. You will see some models which have two mantles. It will help you to get different brightness exactly how you want it.

  1. Run time

Checking the run time of the camping lamps is very important. Run time determines the time a lantern can provide light just with a single charge.

Therefore, run time is mainly applicable for battery operated lanterns. But it is also used for fuel-burning lamps like propane lanterns and more.

For battery-powered models, run time is promotional to battery life. If a camp lantern has a longer run time, it will definitely run longer after a single charge.

You must get the best quality camp lantern that ensures the highest run time so you can use them without having any troubles.

  1. Portability

You should consider the portability of the lanterns before you buy it. The portability of a camping lantern is determined by its weight.

You should not go for any model which is extremely heavy. Also, make sure that the lantern you are choosing has a large handle that will support you to carry the light.

It is suggested to check these features properly. Otherwise, it will not be able to entertain your purposes.


  1. Type of usage

Another important consideration that you should make is to specify the type of usage. When you are planning to buy a lantern, you should decide the purpose of whether you want to light your campground, or you just have some non-camping needs.

As these lanterns are mainly made for camping, you will not get any satisfactory results if you start to use them indoors for an alternative source of life.

On the other hand, you can consider these lights for emergency lighting so you can protect yourself from any kind of unexpected or stressful situations.

  1. Price

When you go to buy a camping lantern, you will find a wide range of prices. What you need to do is to choose the best model having all the essential features that come within your budget.

There are some camping lamps that comes with a price range of $10. Similarly, you can get other models which have a price of more than $100.

Simply put, you can get the best quality battery-powered lantern models within $50. It will not only withstand wear and gear effectively but also help you the best for backpacking and camping.

  1. Additional accessories

The camping lanterns are one of the essential camping gear which can support you in the best possible way while you are in an emergency situation.

Therefore, lanterns with some additional features ensure better functionality. Most of the models are designed with additional features to make sure that you can use them efficiently.

Some lanterns are available in the market with a big on/off switch. Because of the bigger switch, you can quickly turn on the light when you are camping in a dark forest.

Moreover, these lanterns have hanging hooks so that you can keep them safe. Built-in legs and flashlight modes are also beneficial for these lanterns.

If the lantern is designed with a stale base, it will be easier for you to put it anywhere you want without worrying about any accident. A strong and sturdy handle is vital to hold and carry the lantern effortlessly.

There are some models, including solar lanterns, which have the capacity to charge other devices like mobile phones, tablets, etc.

Some lanterns which run on rechargeable batteries offer you a USB charging facility. They are available with a 1.5V USB port that helps you to plug the cable when you need to charge your smartphones and other electronic devices.

  1. Other features

If a camping lantern has a hook, loop, or clip, it will come handy to use. It will help you to hang the lantern from a pole, tree, or inside the tent. Hanging the light inside the tent will allow you to read books when resting inside your tent.

Easy and straightforward buttons are equally important, which will help you turn on the light quickly during emergencies. Small knobs mean you will keep on fiddling in the darkness, which can cause frustration after a certain point of time.

Some camping lanterns have additional legs that are wide and adjustable, so they ensure the lamps' stability to a great extent. You can put the torch on uneven terrain, and there will be a big possibility to set up the light creatively to enhance the festive mood.

You can buy a lantern which can be collapsed easily to transport, and some models also have a flashlight mode to help you in a risky situation.

  1. Number of campers

Many people overlook their team size while choosing the camping lanterns, but you must know that the number of your team members has a significant impact on the performance of your lamp. When you are going with a substantial troop, you should buy a powerful enough lamp to emit light brightly.

For a large number of people, you will need a single source that can light up the entire surroundings. If you put the lantern in the middle, it will be able to illuminate correctly. Therefore, you should choose a bigger model.

In case you like to play cards or chat all night long without sleeping, it will be wise to have a powerful and bright lantern that brightens up the campsite and protects you from wildlife and other hazards.

FAQs

1. How safe is a camping lantern?

A camping lantern is a very safe equipment nowadays. It is all because they have become electric which operates on LED bulbs. The best part of these is that there is a minimum risk of accidents or any other issues.

2. What are the steps to maintain a Camping Lantern?

Mainly, Camping Lanterns need to be wiped after every use. Other than that, there is least maintenance in terms of electric lanterns as they come with removable batteries. Even in the case of the light bulb, you will have to replace it.

3. What is the cleaning process for camping lanterns?

There are a few steps to be followed for an effective cleaning process of any dirt:

1. Clean the base dirt: You need to clean its base by detaching the lens and maintaining it to not get damaged.

2. Clear the interior of the lens: You should wipe out each lens so that general cleaning can be done after disassembling it.

Remember: You must always keep the lantern dry after wiping it with a dry cloth.

4. What are the steps to use a lantern?

Lanterns are of 2 types namely:

1. Electric: All you need to do is flip a switch, and it will be turned on/off.

2. Fuel-based: Once you are done pouring the fuel, you just need to create pressure in the lantern and then light a matchstick/lighter to start it.

Final Verdict

We have presented an extensive guide on camping lanterns that incorporates critical pointers with which you can quickly sort out the best option. Add a suitable lamp to your pack, and you are all set for your outdoor expedition.

Go through the guide and make an informed decision.

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