Kate Taylor
Digital Content Manager

See other accessory reviews written by Kate Taylor

If you're looking for a combined torch and camping lantern, read our Practical Caravan review of the Halfords Advanced LED Spotlight Lantern 588899

Overview

We tested the Halfords Advanced LED Spotlight Lantern (Product number Halfords 588899), which is powered by a rechargeable Lithium ion battery. 

This is not the first camping light in the line-up to double up as a torch but, unlike the Kampa Zebedee, you certainly won’t fit the Halfords Advanced LED Spotlight in your pocket. On the other hand, the torch — which serves as a base when it is in lantern mode — is incredibly bright, and provides a far better spread of illumination than the little Kampa Zebedee. 

The lantern end of the Halfords camping light relies on six LEDs and a clever conical reflector to produce a reasonable amount of light. It includes other essential lantern features, such as a handle and a hook. The internal battery will let you run it for around 11 hours in lantern mode. Mains and 12V chargers are supplied.

Full charge gives 2.5 hours if you use it as a spotlight or 11 hours lantern power. There is a hanging hook on the handle, so that you can easily suspend it from your awning poles or a tree branch. It will come in handy at home, too, because you could hang it up in a shed or garage or the banister rails in case of a power cut!

So what's that slightly comical looking lime green appendage on the side? That is the dual position grip handle, a very useful addition to the camping light which means that you can direct the spotlight beam, using it as a torch. It's pretty useful to have a lantern that you can use in torch mode to light the way to the campsite washblock, through woodlands, or take it with you on any walks after dark, for instance for that last-thing-at-night dog walk. This could be a good camping light to buy so that you can see and be seen safely on the way to the local pub, especially if the route takes you along lovely country lanes that are typically unlit at night.

The other battery-powered camping lights we tested were the Outwell Carnelian 400 Lantern, from £24.99 (our Practical Caravan camping lantern test winner), Outwell Morion, £11.50, the Kampa Zebedee, from £4.99, Powerplus 3 in 1, from £21.99, Vango 24 LED Lantern, from £29, Gelert 7W Lantern, from £13.50, Gelert 7W Rechargeable Remote Controlled Lantern, from £19.99, and Vango Light Barrel, from £32.50. So you can see that the Halfords Advanced LED Spotlight (588899), £19.99 reviewed here, is in the medium price range.

For traditionalists in the camping and caravanning world, we have also reviewed one camping light powered by a little butane gas canister. The SunnCamp Lantern, £10.99, delivered very bright light, but of course it does make a hissing noise and needs good ventilation if you're using it indoors, even if it's in a zipped up tent or awning, so that you can avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.

Most of the camping lights we've reviewed are all-electric and make the most of a small amount of electricity by using LEDs and fluorescent tubes. 

You can see our Practical Caravan reviews of more camping lights and other camping equipment online as well as in the magazine. Have a browse through our product tests before deciding what camping accessories to buy for your caravan holidays.

Technical specs

Brightness 120 lumens
Beam distance180 metres
Time as spotlight2.5 hours
Time as lantern11 hours
Battery life6 hours

Verdict

The Halfords Advanced LED Spotlight Lantern (588899) not the most attractive camping light we tested, but it's in the medium price range and works as both a torch and a lantern. It will do the job, but it only gives out 120 lumens of light. We still prefer the Outwell Carnelian 400 Lantern, which gives out 400 lumens of light, more than three times as much!

Conclusion

Pros

  • It comes with both mains and 12V chargers for the rechargeable batteries
  • It lasts for up to 11 hours
  • It is both a camping torch and a lantern
  • Provides good illumination

Cons

  • It's bulky to take to the pub with you after dark
  • The grip handle appendage looks comical
  • Only gives 120 lumens
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