By February 23, 2009

Garrity 1 watt Luxeon LED spotlight review

Let’s play a game. You’re sitting on the couch at home at night, watching television. Snap, the power goes out. Flip the light switch: nothing. You know there’s one flashlight in the house … but where did you put it? Was it in the kitchen pantry? Maybe in the nightstand upstairs in the master bedroom? Oh, that’s right … laundry room. You shuffle around in the dark, knocking stuff over, and find your flashlight.

Except that the batteries are dead, and now you have to wait in the dark for the power to come back on.

Most of us are reliant on artificial light for comfort, safety, and efficiency. Losing light sources during a night-time disruption of service can be an annoyance at best, and life threatening at worst. As such, I keep many different flashlights around the house. I do this to make sure that I have light in almost any room in case the power goes out, or if one of my flashlights go out I have a backup nearby.

You will understand my glee when Woot.com recently posted the Garrity 1 watt Luxeon LED spotlight on sale for $15. For two. Sure, the single, 1 watt LED wasn’t as impressive sounding as a cluster of them. The black and blue, green, or yellow plastic housing was pretty ugly, too. But I bought four of them for $35 shipped. Isn’t redundancy worth $35?

http://gallery.drfaulken.com/d/5729-2/IMG_8094.JPG

My order arrived nine days later via FedEx. I opened the box up, and was underwhelmed. The color scheme makes the product look really cheap. The spotlight feels fragile, but that is at least partially due to how light it is. For $35, I could spare to drop one on the floor from shoulder-height to see what happens. I was disappointed to see that the spotlights required four AA batteries. Not to fear, part of my preparedness plan is to keep a buttnest of batteries in the house. Later that night, I screwed the back of the spotlight off, put the batteries in, and walked outside to judge the spotlight’s beam width and reach.

The single 1 watt LED pushed a pencil of light all the way from my side door to the back corner of my fence well over 80 feet away. I followed Porter around the backyard, illuminating just in front of him. His little white-and-brown speckled paws reflected brightly under the beam. In a snap judgment I shined the light into the house behind mine, and I saw some furniture in his kitchen. That’s about 120 feet away, as our back yards butt up against each other. I felt guilty for high-beaming his house at midnight and turned the light off.

The unit is very lightweight, at least in comparison to other hand-held spotlights I’ve used. The last spotlight I used had D-cell batteries, but then again the candlepower was insane and you could seriously screw up someone’s vision with it. However, the light is more than adequate for scanning around the house during a power outage or finding my dogs in the back yard at night. The Garrity spotlight also has a wrist lanyard, which may be helpful when dealing in wet conditions.

The on-off switch is a trigger. You can either hold the trigger down, or pull it back sharply once to lock the trigger in the “on” position. Pulling the trigger again releases the trigger. I didn’t figure this out until I read a mini-write-up on Woot.com, and to me this is the best feature of the lamp. You can lock the trigger on and hang the lamp by the lanyard if you need to use both hands.

LEDs take much less power to operate than incandescent bulbs, and do not generate any discernible heat. That means the lamp can be safely run for a very long time. Estimates on Woot.com range from 40 – 50 hours on the four AAs. I am concerned about battery corrosion during non-use, but that could be said about any flashlight.

So, for about $8.75 shipped each, the Garrity 1 watt Luxeon LED spotlight was a great deal. It may not be good enough to take on a night fish or freeze deer on an illegal night poach, but it will get the job done with the power goes out. Sure beats groping around in the dark.

Unless she’s hot.

Recommended.

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3 Comments on "Garrity 1 watt Luxeon LED spotlight review"

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  1. Gremlin says:

    For emergency backup, use Lithium cells. Shelf life measured in decades. And did you drop the light?

  2. Starbuck says:

    A “buttnest” of batteries 🙂

  3. Configures says:

    1) Maglight is in the trunk of my car, where I can always find it.
    2) Candle in guest room, candle in hall closet, candle on wall sconce thing on main level, more candles and stone lantern near fireplace, + fireplace and (currently) 2 java logs. Matches in kitchen drawer under dish drain thing (several boxes bought at different times).

    But those Garrity spotlights do look handy, especially with the trigger feature you mention!