October 18, 2020

What Flashlights Do Police Use: The Duty Gear You Should Have

From the brightness to the make, you should understand every bit of it. This article answers the most popular question of what flashlights do police use.

If you are a police officer or wanting to be one, you know that there are certain standards and specifications of your duty gear. Hence, if you’ll ask what flashlights do police use, there are a lot of recommended products. Primarily, this article will discuss the things you need to know about your duty flashlight. Then, towards the end, a few products will be introduced for you to have an idea.

How Many Lumens Do Police Flashlights Have?

Police flashlights should be bright. If you can secure the brightest flashlight, the better. The brightness is indicated in lumens. This is the measure of the total output of the flashlight. While there are flashlights with 10 or 15 Lumens ratings, for police use, this could be very low. So, what about an LED headlamp with around 50 to 100 Lumens?

While every police department has different suppliers, most police flashlights should have at least 120 Lumens of light output. It needs to be bright enough, so anything less than 120 Lumens isn’t acceptable. Small flashlights and pocket flashlights should have around 120 to 300 Lumens. However, some pocket flashlights can go up 1200 Lumens.

Larger flashlights used by cops have around 4000 Lumens. Yet, there’s also a disadvantage of having a super bright flashlight. If the exterior casing is plastic, it’ll melt because the flashlight will become very hot. Make sure that the flashlight has a military-grade aluminum casing. Or, if it’s too bright, sometimes the battery will only last for a few minutes. So, these are the things that you also have to consider.

Types of Flashlights

You don’t need to freak out if you are required to get best AA flashlight. Actually, if you want to be a police officer, all your gear will be provided. But, if you really have to choose a flashlight to be used, local and online stores offer some police and law enforcement flashlights. You may check a good flashlight from the following types:

Tactical Flashlights

Police flashlights are also called tactical flashlights. These are used in combination with firearms. When the police personnel needs to search on dark areas to find their suspect, this is the most suitable flashlight they should use. Most tactical flashlights have blinding bright light, shock-resistance, water-resistance, and lightweight.

Duty Flashlights

For normal days when law enforcement needs to work at night, they have duty flashlights. These are bright, durable and long-lasting. This will help police during night shifts.

Weapon Lights or Handgun Flashlights

This type of flashlight can be mounted to a long gun or a handgun. It will allow the police to illuminate the target, at the same time, point the firearm steadily. This is very useful when you are in a situation where there is gunfire in a dark and unfamiliar environment.

Spotlights (on Police Cars)

This is very useful to see who is inside the suspect vehicle. Older models have halogen spotlights, which are not very bright. But, now, they use CREE LED, very bright light so police officers can see through tinted cars. At least, they can see what’s going on in a nearly blackout car.

Headlamps flashlights

As the name suggests, these flashlights are meant to be worn on the head. It’s great for rescue operations wherein they need to use both of their hands. This will help the officers do their job in the most demanding situations.

Police Flashlights Should Also Have the Following:

All types of police flashlights need to be bright enough for dark environments. They should be bright, but not very bright to the point that it can burn or cook an egg. Just bright enough to illuminate dark places to search for suspects or rescue people. Aside from the brightness, police flashlights should also be:


Police officers can’t control the situation that they might be in. So, it’s very important that in any situation, you are ready. You won’t hesitate to rescue during the rain, swim through the flood or go after a runaway suspect in the middle of a rainy night.

Rugged Construction, Yet Lightweight

Your primary focus is to keep the peace and order and to help those who need it. You should have a reliable flashlight. When you have a heavy flashlight you can’t perform your duty efficiently.

Type of Batteries

There are two types of batteries — disposable and rechargeable. It’s better to choose rechargeable over disposable because it is cost-effective in the long run.


This type of light has a longer lifespan and they are very durable compared to incandescent bulbs. They are very energy-efficient, so don’t need to bring all the extra batteries or bulb replacement.

Recommended Flashlights for Police Officers

While there are so many flashlights for law enforcement personnel, the best are usually coming from Klarus, Fenix, SureFire, Streamlight, and ArmyTek. The most popular tactical flashlight is the Streamlight ProTac HLX Dual Fuel with rechargeable Li-ion battery, three lighting modes, and strobe mode.

If you want a zoomable light beam, the most recommended is the J5 Tactical V1-Pro 300 . It can emit light over two football fields when needed. It can also be energy-efficient for its three different modes of use — high, low and strobe.

Lastly, the Armytek Barracuda Pro V2 with high-intensity CREE XHP35 LED is the ultimate flashlight to be used when chasing after a suspect. It can emit up to 1500 Lumens and up to 2,624 feet beam distance. With up to nine output light levels, plus two strobe modes, you can be an effective officer.

This YouTube video will give you 10 tactical and survival flashlights that are also very useful as police flashlight:


Now, you have the idea of some qualities, considerations and recommended flashlights for police officers. Additionally, you already know what flashlights police use and how to select them. When you are …