About TacLight by Bell & Howell

It’s true that you can’t have too many flashlights around, since they come in handy in so many situations. The problem is that most flashlights aren’t built to withstand regular use, often leaving you with a broken product that’s a waste of money.

Not with TacLight by Bell & Howell, though. The company claims that this tactical flashlight is similar to those used by “elite military units,” featuring a compact and lightweight design, along with key features like a knurling surface and strike ring for good grip, tail tap switch, aircraft grade aluminum casing, precision optics, and five preset modes.

The TacLight is so strong that it promises to work when frozen in ice, and even when sitting in boiling water. Not only this, but TacLight vows to be 22X brighter than regular flashlights, capable of being seen from up to two nautical miles away, and its bulb will last up to 100,000 hours!

Reading all of this, is seems like Bell & Howell’s TacLight might come in handy in a lot of instances, including camping, hunting, emergency situations, and more. But is it necessarily a unique product? Will it provide a solid level of value? Let’s start answering your questions by addressing tactical flashlights in general.

What Is a Tactical Flashlight? What Makes a Good One?

As the name implies, a tactical flashlight is generally intended to be used in tactical situations; e.g. during an emergency where your life might be in danger. Due to their compact design and bright output, tactical flashlights are designed to be used alongside firearms, allowing you to quickly sweep an area and check for combatants, and to blind/stun one if encountered.

According to Popular Mechanics though, a tactical flashlight is just as much about light and hardware quality as it is about brightness:

“Compared to conventional flashlights, tactical lights deliver more light from a more compact, lighter package. A conventional flashlight with two D batteries and a standard bulb puts out about 15 to 20 lumens. A tactical light cranks out a minimum of 60 lumens of solid beam with no holes or dark spots.” Note: In some instances, tactical flashlights can put out 1,000+ lumens.

Tactical lights get their blinding ability from a high-pressure xenon-filled bulb with a tungsten filament. Power comes from a pair of 3-volt AA lithium batteries instead of conventional 1.5-volt cells. … The 6 volts of juice burns the filament hotter and whiter than that in a conventional flashlight.”

To this extent, we’re not told how many lumens TacLight puts out, what kind of bulb it features, or what kind of batteries it uses. Other important features we’re not told about are TacLight’s beam distance, impact resistance, water resistance level, and more.

We are told that TacLight’s bulb can last up to 100,000 hours, although this is generally the standard run time for most LED bulbs, and doesn’t appear to be unique to TacLight.

Taking all of this together, we can see that a tactical flashlight involves not just a special design, but also a very specific set of features, many of which we’re not informed about for TacLight. Do we know much more about the competition?

Bell & Howell’s TacLight vs. Other Tactical Flashlights

Comparatively, if you shop for tactical flashlights online, you’ll generally find that all of these specifications are clearly listed. After all, they’re the primary criteria when shopping for tactical flashlights.

You’ll also find overall dimensions, weight, whether or not they can be attached to a weapon, product certifications (if any), primary material, and country of origin.

Now, the one area where TacLight stacks up well against the competition is price. But does this mean it’s a good value?

How Much Does TacLight Cost?

One Bell & Howell TacLight is priced at $19.99 plus free S&H. During checkout, you can order a second flashlight for an additional $10 S&H.

Regardless of how many your order, Bell & Howell offers a 30-day refund policy and lifetime guarantee on all TacLights, less S&H charges. If you ordered the BOGO offer, this means you’ll end up losing more in S&H charges than you’ll get back as a refund.

Still want to request a refund? You’ll need to call customer service at 877-415-4824.

​TacLight by Bell & Howell Test

We thoroughly tested the Bell & Howell’s TacLight to see if it delivers on its claims. To find out everything we experienced, be sure to watch the video below:

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Is Bell & Howell’s TacLight Your Best Option?

Based on the pictures on their website, TacLight seems to look the part when it comes to tactical flashlight design. But as we outlined above, a true tactical flashlight is also defined by high quality and feature set, much of which we’re not told about TacLight.

Also, while it might look similar to flashlights used by “elite military units,” the company doesn’t provide any evidence that TacLight—specifically—is used by the military, law enforcement, or fire rescue. And other than “regular flashlights,” we’re not told exactly what TacLight is 22X brighter than.

Nick Bolton? He seems to be a fairly well-known fitness model, and doesn’t appear to have served in the military or have personally used TacLight.

Admittedly, it might seem like we’re coming down a little hard on TacLight, but our goal is to make sure you have a complete picture of any product before handing over your hard-earned money, including any potential concerns. Given this, we’re definitely not saying that TacLight isn’t a quality product or that you shouldn’t purchase one—only that, just because TacLight is priced lower than much of the competition, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll provide a better value.

On top of this, when you add TacLight’s steep, non-refundable S&H charges to the mix, it might make sense to weigh all your options before placing an order.

What did you think of TacLight’s performance? Would you consider it on par with tactical flashlights from other companies? Give us the details by writing your review below!

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73 Customer Reviews for TacLight by Bell & Howell

Average Customer Rating: 2.1
Rating Snapshot:
5 stars: 13 4 stars: 6 3 stars: 3 2 stars: 5 1 stars: 46
Bottom Line: 27% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 73
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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Sad

    It is very slow; I am not sure where it is coming from. It has been about a month.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 4 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Chinese junk

    It worked well when I put the batteries in, but then the cat knocked it off the end table and now it doesn't work.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 9 out 11 people found this review helpful

    Piece of JUNK

    This is a piece of JUNK.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 11 out 12 people found this review helpful

    Just OK

    • Illinois,
    • Mar 8, 2017

    I bought this from local retail store six months ago. It was great (bright white, zoom focus, etc.), but 3-4 months in and with rather little use, it seemed to lose something. I put in new good batteries and got the same thing; it's just not as bright as it was before.

    It came with a plastic tube, which is for fitting different batteries. Instead of three AAA's, you use two 3-volt cells, which are usually used in older-style cameras. This gives a noticeably better performance (usually) but is still not as brilliant as when it started.

    I guess it's not bad yet, but disappointing.

    The last $18 similar-type of "cheapo" product I got on eBay, the lamp element fell off its mount and I almost blinded myself seeing if I could remount it (hahaha)!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 15 out 15 people found this review helpful

    Too good to be true!

    I'm not getting what I expected for my order (two for $19.99). The flashlight is small and not as bright as what it seems on TV.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 6 out 10 people found this review helpful

    B and H tactical flashlight

    This is an excellent flashlight that certainly outperforms others I have, and lives up to the advertised hype.

    It should be noted that it uses a COB LED, and these are relatively new in the retail field, so longer use may be required for the full endorsement. I bought it directly from a local retailer, therefore, had no delivery problems.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 15 out 16 people found this review helpful

    Can't remain on same mode

    So far the light works fairly well. I like to use the brightest mode but can't remain in that mode. I have to go through all the modes to return to the brightest mode. Believe me, I've tried everything!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 7 people found this review helpful

    How does it turn off?

    I found the lantern to be an excellent buy, but my only question is how do I turn it off? If it doesn't turn off, how long do the batteries last?

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 10 out 14 people found this review helpful

    Well beyond slow

    I ordered several of the lanterns as Christmas gifts on December 4th. I finally received the lanterns on or right around January 11th minus any paperwork or receipt, except for the small folded instruction sheet.

    Over a month wait for items that were likely ordered as Christmas gifts, and no notice of shipping time estimates. That is unbelievably slow shipping with online orders in this high-speed digital age. I guess I can use them as gifts next year?

    Also, I think the design would be much better with some kind of a central hanging hook instead of these two big, awkward rectangular metal ring loops. The lights need to placed very high in a room to prevent eye level glare. What can you hang these two big, rectangular rings on?

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 7 out 12 people found this review helpful

    Bought mine in the As Seen on TV section of a local store

    • Covington, GA,
    • Jan 26, 2017

    I am very pleased with this flashlight. I really did not think it would live up to its claims, but it did. I purchased mine in the As Seen on TV section of a local store, so I didn't experience the problems with shipping that other people have described.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 12 out 15 people found this review helpful

    Still waiting

    • McKinney, TX,
    • Jan 25, 2017

    I placed an order for the hands-free TacLight (the one that fits on your head) after seeing the commercial on TV. This is the same company that advertisers the regular B&H TacLight.

    I ordered the lights on October 29th, 2016 It's now January 12, 2017, and I am still waiting on the lights!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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