Bob Vila Radio: Flashlights Get a Little Flashy

Like so many other technologies, flashlights have improved dramatically in recent years. Here's what you need to know now.

If you’re in the dark about some of the latest advancements in flashlight technology, here’s a quick summary.

LED vs Fluorescent Flashlights

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Listen to BOB VILA ON NEW FLASHLIGHT TECHNOLOGY or read the text below:

For years, flashlights relied on bulky D-size batteries and bulbs with filaments. Today, two newer types of flashlight are gaining popularity—light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and fluorescents.

With no filament to burn out, LEDs are powered by tiny semi-conductors. Compared to traditional bulbs, LEDs draw a only a minuscule amount of power. That means they last much longer than the bulbs to which you’re likely accustomed.

Fluorescent lights are especially popular in lantern-type products. Thanks to their elongated shape, these fluorescents put out a lot of light and do a good job of illuminating larger areas—say, your dining room during a power outage. Fluorescents do take a lot of power, though, so you’ll want to keep plenty of batteries on hand.

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