Beginners Guide to EDC Tactical Flashlights

Most of us know that a EDC Tactical Flashlight is an important tool to own. The last thing any of us want is to be stuck in the dark without a light!

If you have ever begun a search for a tactical flashlight then you are most likely aware that there are many many choices. This can make picking one a little overwhelming, how do you choose which one is best?

  • Do you need the brightest tactical flashlight possible?
  • How many lumens do you need?
  • What is a lumen?
  • What size is to big to be considered a everyday carry tactical flashlight?
  • Which size is to small to be effective?
  • What brands are reliable and worthy of your hard earned dollars?

EDC Tactical Flashlights are one of the best everyday carry items you can have. A tactical flashlight should be tough and durable, you want one that will take a beating and keep on going strong. Carrying a tactical flashlight with you everyday is the ultimate insurance policy against being stranded in the darkness during a survival or emergency situation, power outage, hunting or camping trip.

Tactical Flashlight Basics

Tactical flashlights have long been a must have tool for emergency service personnel, military personnel and outdoor adventure seekers.

What should you be looking for in a EDC Tactical Flashlight? The quality and light output (lumen’s) is the number one requirement that is often looked at. However, for a tactical flashlight to be considered a top tactical flashlight in my book it needs much more then brightness.

Basic Factors to be a Top Tactical Flashlight…

  • Water and Damage Resistant
  • Multiple Lighting Modes
  • Shock Absorbent
  • Lightweight
  • Long Lasting Battery Life
  • Durable and Reliable

The demands of a tactical flashlight are strenuous and demanding if you don’t carry a reliable flashlight then why carry one at all.

You can learn more about EDC gear here – What Are Everyday Carry Items?

What are Lumen’s

In basic term’s lumen are the measure of visible light to the human eye from a light source. The higher the lumen rating then the brighter the light will appear.

Is Lumen output everything, absolutely not. Do not let Lumen count go to your head, first off having a super bright flashlight is really only an important factor in certain situations. Something like a search and rescue type situation or maybe some type of extended overnight outdoor adventure.

A high lumen number is something worth considering but a high lumen count with a cheap reflector won’t perform better then a lower lumen count with a great reflector. So remember a quality tactical flashlight with a lower lumen count will almost always perform better then a cheap flashlight with a higher lumen count.

Don’t just grab a flashlight because it has the highest lumen’s, remember their are multiple factors you should consider when picking out a tactical flashlight.

EDC Tactical Flashlight Features – What you should be looking for in a tactical flashlight

The point of everyday carry flashlights is to work when you need it. To provide light for you in a storm, natural disaster, camping, an emergency situation, power outage or maybe just a flat tire in the middle of the night. In any environment possible a good tactical flashlight needs to be able to manage any situation and more.

The most important decision to consider will be how you intend to use it and then to find the functions to help you with that.

For instance, will your flashlight be mostly used for general everyday use situations then you should be looking for long LED life tactical flashlights and a rechargeable battery would also be beneficial. Maybe you are looking for a flashlight for your overnight camping trips, then you will want one that is battery powered with a higher lumen count and multiple functions in case of an emergency like SOS capable.

The next question will be where are you going to use your flashlight?

Emergency service personnel such as police officers or military operators will have ever changing environments and factors to consider. They will need a tactical flashlight with high grade aluminum strength and reliability that is impact resistance, tough and water resistant.

Outdoor adventure seekers, hunters, preppers, and survivalists will likely need a flashlight with similar means and reliability. The point of a tactical flashlight is to help us when we need it during unforgiving and unpredictable situations.

Take into account your personal use for your tactical flashlight you may need a few different options. One that is good for EDC might not be the one you want for your bug-out-bag and vice versa you may want to keep another high lumen flashlight for your vehicle. 

Consider This:

  • Lumen Count – remember high lumen can possibly mean a more expensive light, but it may be lacking in other features that are important. High output also will be hard on battery life which unless you choose a rechargeable battery is something you should consider.
  • Strength and Durability – Simple put in my view a flashlight should be tough as nails and you should not except anything less. Get one that is of military grade anodized aluminum they are durable and corrosion resistant.
  • Size – A good everyday carry tactical flashlight is compact and easily pocket portable. They are meant to conceal and store  anywhere easily like a backpack, pockets, vehicle, bug-out-bag. Generally 4 – 7 inches in length and about 3/4 inch to 1 and a half inch around in diameter. Getting one with a pocket clip for easy portability is a good option.
  • Water Resistance – I opt for a water resistant flashlight for all my flashlights, except maybe the one on my nightstand. It doesn’t matter what your environment or location is every tactical flashlight should be some level of water resistant. Ipx6 or Ipx7 is what you should try to get. These are water resistant ratings.
  • LED – Don’t get a tactical flashlight that is not LED its not worth your money!

Why You Would Benefit from Having a Tactical Flashlight


Tactical flashlights provide a great means of personal self-defense. With many lights having a high lumen output you can easily thwart and disorient a would be attacker with the strobe lighting mode as well as a high to medium direct beam.

Many of the best tactical flashlights have a bezeled rim known as a crenellated bezel at the head of the flashlight which would be an excellent weapon in hand to hand combat. Check out the Elzetta A313 Alpha 1 at Amazon, Elzetta’s are the one of the best tactical flashlights money can buy.

Survival and Emergency  Situations

Whether it be a power outage or a blizzard, earthquake, terrorist attack,  or your just lost in the woods or one of many other possible scenarios the need for light is a must in darkness and uncertainty.

The ability to illuminate a tough situation can be the difference between success or failure. It can be paramount to have light in the face of darkness.

Keeping more then one tactical flashlight is a good idea because being prepared is usually the difference when it comes to survival. I recommend having one flashlight for your EDC (everyday carry) and then one for your bug-out-bag and one for keeping in your vehicle maybe two.

I like to keep a tactical flashlight in my glove box and a large bright torch light like the Anker Bolder LC90 stored under my backseat you can’t be to prepared!


Whether to see or be seen the point of a flashlight is to light up the darkness.

A tactical flashlight is meant for almost any job. Through multi-function capabilities like high lumen output, multiple mode lighting, easy operation and extreme durability and toughness.

The ability to zoom in and zoom out with direct beam and have different modes for self-defense like strobe light and rescue with SOS. The importance of having a tactical flashlight can help in multiple scenarios and situations which you may find yourself in at any moment.

Emergency Responder / Military Operators

Where your life and the life of others can depend on the reliability of the tools and equipment you choose to use a tactical flashlight is no different.

Military and emergency responders need flashlights that are durable, powerful, reliable, lightweight and tough a quality tactical flashlight is just that.

Tactical operators need a high powered and long-lasting flashlight. Combat and emergency situations need every advantage especially when heading into the darkness. Many tactical flashlights are also easily mountable on a gun and can be detached quickly for hand use if and when needed.

Best Tactical Flashlight Options

The best tactical flashlight options are what make a quality tactical flashlight a viable choice for almost any scenario. The best tactical flashlights need to be reliable and capable of working every-time you need it.

  • It should be built with durability and performance in mind
  • It should produce high quality and powerful light output
  • It should offer multiple modes of operation and ease of use
  • It should be constructed of lightweight, strong and hard-wearing materials
  • It should be generally smaller in size for easy carrying
  • It Must be water resistant, shock absorbent, impact resistant


Sourcing a tactical flashlight is not hard at all there are many available choices to decide from. Think a little bit about what you plan to use your tactical flashlight for, general everyday use, bug-out-bag, to keep in your vehicle for emergency’s or maybe camping, hunting, or survival situations.

Follow some of the tips and information in this article to help choose the tactical flashlight for your needs. Something to remember the flashlight next to your bed doesn’t need to be fancy a good budget one will do wonderfully. This is the tactical flashlight I keep on my nightstand Uoline Portable Tactical LED Flashlight from Amazon super affordable and it has worked great!

For your everyday carry I recommend spending a little more and find one with all the best features and a warranty that you can count on. Price and quality generally go hand in hand when it comes to a good tactical flashlight.

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