Do you do most of your riding in the mornings and evenings? If so then you’ve probably already noticed that the days are getting shorter. Check out our top tips for getting the right lights for your bike to make sure you’re fully prepared.
If you’re going to be riding in low light, it’s really important that you can see where you’re going and that other people can see you. This isn’t just for night time – in the rain, fog, or just evenings and early mornings, it’s best to make sure that you’re well lit.
- Can you see where you’re going?
Are you going to be riding in areas without street lights? If so, you’ll need something powerful enough to light the road ahead. Look for a light that’s bright enough to see the road ahead clearly, but also has a good beam pattern that will let you see to the sides of the road – without blinding oncoming drivers!
- Can everyone see you?
When it comes to lights for being seen, you’ll need a red rear light and a white one on the front of your bike. A good idea is to have a constant light and a flashing one (one of each type at the front and rear) to help catch the eye and make sure everyone knows where you are.
- How long are you going to be out for?
There’s nothing worse than being out in the dark and having your batteries run out. If you’re not prepared, it can either mean a taxi ride or a very long walk Check that your lights have enough battery life to last as long as you’re planning to go out, and then some – you never know when you might have to stop for a puncture or diversion. As a backup, carry some extra small lights, just in case. They don’t take up much room and can really get you out of a pinch.
- Go the extra mile
Once you’ve got your front and rear lights sorted, have a think about other ways you can be seen. How about from the side? Use some reflective tape, tyres with reflective sidewalls or lights with a wide spread to help out here. Reflective areas on your hands and feet can also make a big difference when it comes to being seen out on the road!
- Going off-road?
If you’re planning on going off-road, there are a few other challenges. You’ll probably need more light with a wider spread at the front, to light the trail ahead and any obstacles. Lots of riders also attach a light to their helmets, so they can still see if they’re looking in a different direction to where the handlebars are pointing!
Having the right lighting setup can make riding in dark or low light conditions much safer, and can help you keep going through the darker months. It can also give you the peace of mind to get out there and keep racking up the miles when the sun goes down!