How to Buy a Flashlight on eBay

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How to Buy a Flashlight on eBay

Flashlights are used by many different people. Whilst they are used in a professional capacity by those who work in dark conditions, they are also available for those who wish to use them in a more recreational sense, such as camping or caving, as well for those who need them for domestic situations.

There are many different forms of flashlight (or torch,, as they are commonly referred to) obtainable on auction sites much like eBay. There are flashlights available with different types of bulb and therefore shine and varying strengths. The power of a flashlight is measured by the range at which it can transmit light. This range is known as the ‘Lumen’ of the torch. The lumen of the flashlight may also depend on the size of the torch, as well as the type of battery that it uses.

Flashlight Bulb Types

The bulb of the flashlight that is being purchased is of a high importance. The bulb firstly determines the price of the flashlight. More importantly, however, the type of bulb used plays a major role in determining the strength of the flashlight. There are a number of main types of bulb used and they are listed and detailed in the table below: 

LED Bulbs

LED (which stands for Light Emitting Diode) light bulbs are commonly used in flashlights that are smaller than most other flashlights. The way that they are made means that they are relatively more powerful in comparison to other types of bulb, too. LED bulbs also tend to have good running times and are considered to be very efficient. Furthermore, due to their nature, LED flashlight bulbs are much more robust and react better to shock than the more fragile types of bulb. This is down to the fact that they often tend to be permanently fitted and cannot be replaced. A drawback of LED bulbs is that they can become fairly warm during periods of extended use. In terms of their range, some LED bulbs can reach up to 100 Lumens, an impressive range when their size is taken into consideration. 

Incandescent Bulbs

Incandescent bulbs are very similar in design to household bulbs in the way that the bulb is made from glass and contains a filament. One of the advantages of a purchasing a flashlight that uses incandescent lamps is that the owner can easily and affordably replace them. Whilst some incandescent bulbs will use gases such as argon or krypton, better performing flashlight lamps will make use of halogen. Those flashlight lamps and bulbs that contain halogen often have improved length and efficiency and come highly recommended. Most incandescent bulbs that are purchased for use in domestic situations or for recreational purposes can differ in their range, but come as standard as having a range of 900 Lumens. On the other hand, there are much smaller flashlights, such as key ring or pocket flashlights that, when using incandescent bulbs, only produce between 1 and 2 Lumens.

High Intensity Discharge Bulbs

High Intensity Discharge flashlights (often abbreviated and commonly referred to as HID flashlights) are a form of gas discharge lamp. They are widely appreciated and used due to the fact that they tend to be more efficient than the likes of incandescent bulbs. They are more efficient in the sense that they are able to produce a higher amount of light, whilst also using similar levels of electricity. Another advantage of high intensity discharge flashlight bulbs is that they are much more robust than those made from glass, as well as being considerably longer lasting. The range of high intensity discharge bulbs is also greater than the other types available on the market. They can reach up to 3000 Lumens. Because of this, flashlights that use this type of lamp or bulb tend to be higher on the price scale than the other types available.

Flashlight Materials

As well as the differing types of flashlight containing different types of bulb and lamp, the material used for the outer shell of the flashlight can also differ a lot. Again, in a similar fashion to the type of bulb or lamp used, the material of the flashlight can often determine the situations and circumstances it is best suited for. One material may only be suitable for a certain situation. Here are the main materials used in the outer shell of a flashlight:


There are many plastic flashlights available on auction sites such as eBay. The advantages of using plastic as a material for flashlights are multitudinous. First of all, plastic is cheap for manufacturers to buy and use and is therefore less expensive than other materials for the customer to purchase. It is also light, meaning that flashlights made of plastic are easy to carry in comparison to other materials. Plastic flashlights are also fairly robust. Flashlights made of plastic also tend to come in a variety of colours and designs.


Flashlights made from metal are also popularly purchased. They tend to be more robust than the likes of plastic flashlights and for this reason they are widely appreciated. On the other hand, flashlights that are made from metal are often a lot heavier than those made from plastic, as well as being higher on the price scale. In saying this, smaller, metal flashlights can be found on the likes of eBay for reasonable and sensible prices. Metal flashlights tend to be used by those wishing for a sturdier and less prone to damage flashlight.


There are also flashlights available that have an outer shell made from rubber. These flashlights tend to have a plastic shell with a rubber casing. This rubber casing means that the torch is not easily damaged when dropped, and it also retains the same lightweight attributes that come with owning a plastic flashlight. Rubber flashlights are also often found to be particularly resistant to water and there are specially designed flashlights that are made to be waterproof for the likes of divers and cavers.

Additional Flashlight Features

There are also other specialised features available for flashlights. These features may make the difference between prices, as well as suitability. Here are some of the more popular features available on flashlights:

Adjustable Focus: There are some flashlights available with an adjustable focus.. This means that the light from the flashlight can be centralised or widened, whichever most suits the user. This adaptability makes flashlights with adjustable focuses widely appreciated, if not relatively higher priced than those without this function.

Waterproof:Waterproof flashlights are readily available on the likes of eBay. Whilst there are some flashlights that can be used underwater, there are those that may only have a certain level of water resistance. These are often made with rubber cased outer shells and are widely used amongst campers who may encounter damp conditions.

Rechargeable: There are also flashlights that contain rechargeable batteries. These are appreciated by those who do not wish to repeatedly purchase new batteries. If buying a rechargeable flashlight,, be sure to check that a charger is included in the transaction, especially if buying a used flashlight.

Keyring Flashlights:Keyring flashlights are extremely popular. They make use of small LED bulbs and are often plastic. Flashlights of this nature are widely appreciated for their usefulness and convenience in comparison to their size. They are widely available on the likes of eBay at affordable prices.


Consequently, the way to buy a flashlight is by knowing what options are available on the market, alongside knowing what is most suitable for personal requirements. By understanding what flashlight would be most appropriate, one can then use the likes of eBay and its amenities to find a flashlight at a reasonable price.

Furthermore, when it comes to buying flashlights,, one should always remember to find out the type of battery that the flashlight requires, so as to know which ones to purchase. This is especially true as often batteries are not included in the transaction. One should also be aware of the size, the range, and the recommended use of the flashlight to ensure that it is used practically and efficiently.

Finally, one should take note of both PayPal and eBay’s terms and conditions before committing to the transaction. 

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