Of all cycling accidents in U.S. cities, 80% occur in the daytime. Although the incidence of these accidents is higher in the darker hours between 6 pm and 9 pm, it’s chilling to know that riding your bike can be fatal even in daylight.
Because let’s face it, a bike barely has the size or mass to compete with motorbikes and cars whose height might prevent their drivers from even noticing you. So, although you’re better able to see in daylight, that doesn’t necessarily mean on-looking vehicles will be able to spot you.
But by using the best daytime bike lights, you can increase the possibility of being seen. So here are our top picks to help you enhance your safety!
What We Will Cover
At a Glance: Top Daytime Bike Lights
In a hurry? Here’s a brief look at our top 8 daytime bike light picks.
1. Best Overall: LEZYNE Macro Drive Bicycle Light Set
300-lumen brightness, IPX7 waterproof rating, Wide Angle Optics at 270 degrees, strong yet lightweight aluminum construction.
2. Best Budget: Cycle Torch Night Owl USB Rechargeable Bike Light Set
200-lumen brightness, 360-degree lighting, IPX5 waterproof rating, dustproof, 20-40 hour battery life, USB rechargeable.
3. Best Front Daytime Bike Light: Cygolite Metro Bike Light
500-lumen brightness, wide-angle light, 1.5 to 150 hours battery life, 6 different light settings, USB rechargeable, special daytime setting.
4. Best Daytime Bike Brake Light: Cygolite Hotshot Pro
150-lumen brightness, tough plastic body, 6 different light settings, up to 210 hours battery life, USB rechargeable, tuned optics for a wider reach.
5. Best Budget Daytime Bike Tail Light: VASTFIRE Laser Tail Bike Light
Creates a wide riding zone, includes both LEDs and lasers, easily attachable, multiple light settings.
6. Best Water-Resistant Daytime Bike Tail Light: Cygolite Hotrod
50 / 90-lumen brightness, 6 light settings, 30-hour battery life, IP64 water-resistant, tough plastic construction.
7. Best MTB Daytime Bike Tail Light: Planet Bike Rojo 100 Bike Rear Tail Light
100-lumen brightness, 4 light settings, USB rechargeable, up to 15 hours of run time, multiple mounting options.
8. Best Smart Daytime Bike Light: Padonow Smart Bike Tail Light
Sensor-powered auto on/off, 180-degree visibility, ultra-bright setting, 12 – 30 hours battery life, IPX6 waterproof rating.
Best Daytime Bike Lights Reviews
With no further ado, let’s jump right into our reviews of the top bike lights for daytime use, selected based on brightness, ease of use, and durability.
1. LEZYNE Macro Drive 1300XXL & Strip Drive Pro Bicycle Light Set
Our first pick today is from Lezyne, a brand that, although young, has already made its mark in the lives of cyclists all over the world. The Macro Drive 1300XXL is a set consisting of pairs of both front and rear lights. Let’s start with the rear pair.
Fitted with Lezyne’s highly efficient Wide Angle Optics lens, this flashing rear light offers you visibility of up to an impressive 270 degrees. On a full charge, it can stay on for up to 53 hours. And most impressively, its LED lights emit a brightness of 300 lumens, which can literally save your life at nighttime or even on a gloomy day. What’s more, it has an IPX 7 waterproof rating, which makes it the ideal choice for serious cyclists who find themselves in rough terrains or unpredictable climates.
The front light is just as impressive. Constructed from CNC machine aluminum, this front light is clearly made to take a beating. But despite its sturdy build, it has a lightweight body which doesn’t interfere with the smoothness of your maneuvers.
But the user-friendliness of both lights is what made this pair stand out to us: by making them both rechargeable by USB, Lezyne has proven their concern for your convenience. However, it’s obvious that this is not the most affordable bike light set (and rightly so). We would suggest this only for those of you who are serious or professional cyclists.
2. Cycle Torch Night Owl USB Rechargeable Bike Light Set
Feeling upset that you might not be able to afford the best and brightest of bike lights? Well, you’ll be pleased to know that our highly affordable next pick is one of the best bike lights on Amazon… But how did it earn that reputation?
For starters, this highly affordable set includes lights for both the rear and front of your bike. Both of these lights are easily rechargeable by USB and offer 360 degrees of light protection even in the daytime. Furthermore, despite the low price of this set, all of its components are made water-resistant with an IPX5 rating. And it’s dustproof too, so don’t be afraid to go off-road.
What’s best about this set is that it has been optimized for user experience. Thanks to its universal fit, each of the lights can be attached to or removed from any bike in seconds. It’s ultra-lightweight, too, at only 80 grams combined. This also makes it a good choice for use with kids’ scooters or even strollers.
All that being said, we would not recommend this set for those of you who use your bikes heavily and frequently in unsafe climate and road conditions. This is not due to the performance of the lights but because of their brightness, which, although high at 200 lumens, might cause problems. However, all things considered, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better pair of lights at this incredible price.
3. Cygolite Metro Bike Light
If you’re into bike gear, you have no doubt come across the brand Cygolite. The Metro is one of their most popular offerings, and it’s easy to see why. This highly efficient front bike light is one of the most powerful you will find optimized for daytime use, thanks to its staggering 500-lumen brightness. You can imagine the efficiency of this even more in the nighttime when it will be able to clear a wide path far ahead of you.
In order to maximize visibility, the daytime mode of this light is set to 600 lumens in flashing mode. You also have the option to activate the Steady Pulse mode, which in rainy conditions is even more effective.
We’re quite impressed with the battery life of this light, which is 1.5 hours at the highest setting and 150 hours in the lowest setting (Walking). Of course, you know best which light setting is most suited to your needs in a situation. And don’t worry, you can easily charge this thing with the included USB cable. However, do note that this model is not waterproof, although it does have a durable body.
4. Cygolite Hotshot Pro– 150 Lumen Bike Tail Light
Looking for a reliable and durable tail light that is built to weather numerous biking conditions and offer full brightness at all hours of the day? Our second Cygolite selection offers just that and is without a doubt one of the best deals you’ll find in mid-range bike tail lights.
Made from durable plastic, this red tail light is built for endurance and versatility. It offers 6 different light settings with various brightness and flash speed configurations to ensure you’re safe in all conditions. Most impressively, this little guy can last you for up to 210 hours on a single charge in constant mode, offering 150 lumens of brightness.
This light is, of course, rechargeable via USB. Although we wish that the light setting feature was less time-consuming, that’s not a significant inconvenience. And, due to its versatility, it also doubles as one of the best bike brake lights in both day and nighttime use.
5. VASTFIRE Laser Tail Bike Light
For those of you concerned with bike safety at all hours of the day, this dual light pack from Vastfire will surely stand out. This long LED tail light features a slim profile that is not only easy to install but enhances your bike’s aesthetics.
Starting off, this pack of daytime lights contains two units, one for the front and the other for the rear. For riders who are constantly on the go, a dual lighting system can ensure road safety by a large margin.
What we really love about this set, though, is that not only are you receiving a strip of LEDs but also lasers! Yes, you read that right. Particularly useful at night, the lasers project a safe distance zone around your bike so that oncoming vehicles can maintain the right distance and avoid collisions.
Both the LED and the laser systems come with multiple lighting modes to suit your own set of preferences. This allows you to tweak the settings according to the time of the day or the environmental conditions. This dual lighting system is also quite versatile as it can be attached to almost any bike frame, scooter, helmet, or handlebar with the help of 2 included rubber straps. All in all, this could easily grab the title of the best rear bike light for daytime on a budget.
6. Cygolite Hotrod – 90 Lumen Bike Tail Light
If the bike you’re using has a slim profile, then this next tail light will complement its aesthetics and functionality just right. Let’s not forget that our main focus point is daytime safety, but a little bonus on aesthetics can’t hurt.
The Hotrod from Cygolite is a thin and long-tail light that goes right under your seat. It comes in two different brightness variants at 50 lumens and 90 lumens. However, to ensure safe riding, we would suggest you choose the 90-lumen model as it is far brighter and will do a better job of highlighting your presence on the road.
Additionally, the light features 6 different modes to choose from according to the needs of the situation. Each mode is designed for specific purposes which allow you to enhance your visibility during both night and day times. While most lighting modes are common such as the steady pulse and low flashes, this one features a daylight high flash mode. This is programmed to give you 30 hours of battery life while constantly flashing brightly during the daytime.
As with all bike components, even your lights will face harsh weathering conditions. Cygolite has kept that in mind, integrating a tight sealing around the body to make the unit IP64 water-resistant. This is further enhanced by the tough plastic construction that also bolsters durability. If you usually ride in particularly dark areas, though, we would suggest going for a light with a higher lumen rating.
7. Planet Bike Rojo 100 Bike Rear Tail Light
The Rojo 100 bike tail light from Planet Bike is one that has been made with the needs of the serious biker in mind. From the design to its features, this tail light is one that promises to ensure your safe journey.
To begin with, let’s talk about the powerful 100 lumen LED. Given how bright the red is, you are bound to be noticed by oncoming traffic from as far as up to a mile. And while it packs so much power, the unit itself is quite compact and doesn’t ruin the aesthetics of your bike. Although, of course, as it is specifically a daytime bike light, it’s probably best not to use it in the darker hours, particularly on low-lit roads.
Moreover, Planet Bike has programmed four different lighting modes that optimize battery life. If you want a constant red light without any pulses, you can choose the steady mode. For a flashing lighting sequence, you can choose the pulse or courtesy mode. Keep in mind that the steady mode consumes the most battery power because the light remains on the entire time.
Furthermore, the fourth light setting is called the turbo mode, which we love. It is particularly programmed to accompany you on long bike rides, providing up to 15 hours of run time. So if you spend most of your time riding to the mountaintop with your bike, you know which tail light to pick.
8. Padonow Smart Bike Tail Light
Finishing off our list of great daytime bike lights, we have this excellent tail light from Padonow. Made from super strong and long-enduring aluminum, it is the perfect visibility attachment for any bike type.
For starters, the compact circular tail body features a high lumen COB LED. Not only does this provide high visibility, but it also comes with a daytime strobe function specifically for daytime riding! The combination of these two features doubly ensures your safety whenever you’re out and about on your bike.
What’s more, the manufacturers have integrated a truly impressive auto on/off function that senses movements to turn the light on. When paired with the daylight strobe feature, this is undoubtedly the best smart bike tail light on the market. The sensors are constantly on alert for any sort of vibration, upon which the device can detect whether the bike is moving or not.
With the purchase of any components for a bike, you will need to take into account its durability. The Padonow tail light packs a USB rechargeable battery which can give up to 30+ hours of use. Also, this tiny device has an IPX6 waterproof construction that keeps it functioning through heavy storms.
You may also love to Read: Top 6 Best Bicycle Helmet Mirror Reviews
FAQ About Best Daytime Bike Lights
1. Why is it necessary to use bike lights in the daytime?
Ans: While you’re using natural daylight to see ahead of you, your daytime light allows other vehicles to see you… and consequently, avoid accidentally hitting you.
2. Am I legally required to have daytime bike lights?
Ans: No, by law, you’re only required to have front lights and rear lights. However, a daytime bike light is necessary for your own safety.
3. Where should I attach my daytime bike light?
Ans: The best way to ensure you’re seen is to attach the bike light on your handlebar or pedal (the latter depends on how fast you ride). Some people also like to strap lights directly onto their legs. Helmet mounting is an option, but that increases your range of vision rather than outward visibility.
4. How can I weatherproof my daytime bike light?
Ans: So as not to hinder the light from shining, it must be protected from water and dust. So it’s suggested to go for a light that comes with an IP (ingress protection) rating of at least 6.
5. What is the difference between a constant and flashing light?
Ans: While constant lights stay on after being activated, flashing one’s pulse intermittently (60 to 240 times per minute). Some cyclists use both for increased safety.
After much research and analysis, the 8 best daytime bike lights featured here cater to the individual needs of every kind of biker. But whether you’re a professional aiming for a premium light set like the LEZYNE Macro Drive 1300XXL or a commuter looking for a reliable rear light like the Cygolite Hotrod, never underestimate the importance of daytime visibility. Good luck, and stay safe!