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:

For more product tests and shopping tips: Click here to subscribe to HighYa’s YouTube channel.

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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117 Consumer Reviews for TacLight by Bell & Howell

Average Consumer Rating: 2.0
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 18 4 star: 8 3 star: 7 2 star: 10 1 star:  74
Bottom Line: 25% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 117
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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Garbage

    • Toronto, Ontario, Canada,
    • Jul 10, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I bought a TacLight Elite hoping to be able to use it on the job. Very poor construction. It barely pulls apart to reveal the lantern. There are two rubber friction rings in the sliding shaft. One ring broke, and the other popped out of its place. I tried putting the one intact ring back in its place, but after trying to reveal the lantern once it popped out again. So now the lantern is useless. It has to remain closed.

    As for the light itself; it’s okay - when it works. It flickers and shuts off constantly. If I drove over it with a toy truck, it would probably shatter. Don’t waste your money. It’s not worth $20.00.

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

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  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Defective TacLight

    • Los Angeles, CA,
    • Jun 26, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I bought one with one free, for as long as I pay for the cost of shipping of the second unit.

    The free one that I received was defective. I wonder if it's possible to be replaced.

    I would appreciate to hear from you.

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

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  • 6 out 6 people found this review helpful

    Waste of my money

    • Bronx, NY,
    • Jun 25, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I purchased this flashlight at the BJ's in Pelham Manor, New York. I loaded batteries and tested settings. It worked on first use. However, when I went to use it again only an hour later, it would only light on strobe setting, and I had to hold down button to keep it on. It is poorly made. If the price is too good, it's because the product is junk. Do not waste your money.

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

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Broken light

    • North Carolina,
    • Jun 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Ordered two TacLights, only one works, and I received no paid receipt within the package with contact information. No way of getting a refund, or a replacement product. What a rip off.

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

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  • 8 out 8 people found this review helpful

    Doesn't hold up like advertised

    • Texas,
    • May 27, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I got the TacLight for Christmas, and I love the brightness. But I accidentally dropped it in water, and now it won't work. The advertisement says it can be frozen, driven over, submerged in water and it'll still work. No, it won't.

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

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  • 6 out 6 people found this review helpful

    Rude customer service

    • Cape Coral, FL,
    • May 26, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I got my TacLights at the end of February, it is now the end of May and both lights are broken. The switch on both lights does not work unless you hold it in. I called customer service to get a replacement and was very surprised how rude that Keisha was. She made it seem like she was doing me a favor by sending me a replacement. I explained to her that I would be more than happy to send back the broken lights to prove that they didn't work. Again she got very rude and acted like I was trying to get something for nothing. I asked her if the lights had a lifetime warranty and she said yes. That's when I asked to speak to her supervisor. At this point, I was told that I would get new lights. We'll see if they show up.

    I have come to find that the people I spoke with are not Bell & Howell employees; they are a shipping company. Maybe a company with a reputation like Bell & Howell should do a little research on the companies they allow to represent them.

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

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Good equipment, bad description in ad

    • British Columbia, Canada,
    • May 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    In the ad, it shows two small lighters with a bonus of the flashlight. What we got was two large lighters and the flashlight. The lighter we wanted was the small one to put in pocket while on our motorcycle. Husband phoned the company and told them that we had gotten two large lighters, which are 7 inches long, and we wanted short. She informed us that we were only to get one large and one small. When we went to ship it back, it was going to cost $20 (CAN) to the states, but it was shipped from Canada. She said that she would ship us the smaller lighter and to keep what we had received. Soon thereafter we got the package, but it contained the LARGE lighter yet again. We now have three large lighters that will not fit in a pocket.

    The lighter on its own is wonderful and the flashlight will be wonderful in our travels as it has small to large beam with a strobe and SOS setting.

    So my issue is only with the description and the look.

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

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  • 7 out 7 people found this review helpful

    TacLight elite

    • Penticton, British Columbia, Canada,
    • May 12, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I bought the TacLight elite after I saw the commercial and decided to try it. What a disappointment this light has been. First off, the light uses three batteries every week, uses a ton of power to use. The second when I put it in lantern mode and attach it to something metal, it either goes back to the flashlight mode or just flickers the whole time. I would not recommend this light to anyone and seeing as it cost me $33 Canadian by the time it was shipped to me. This is also the second one I got as the first one did the same things and they replaced it. What a bummer this light is.

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

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Ok light

    • Kingsport, TN,
    • Apr 28, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Works as they say, no problems so far. Bright and clear beam. I haven't tried it much outside so not sure about waterproof any weather effects. We will update after the next camping trip. That will be a good test for battery life and weatherproofing. Looks well-made and sturdy, so I like it, so far so good. I can't say much else until I have had it longer.

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

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  • 6 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Not made by Bell & Howell

    These are simple, cheap Chinese flashlights that they put their name on. You can get a five-pack of these lights for under $20 under another brand name at Amazon. There also is a five-pack version that runs just as bright on a single AA battery too. Ordering from Bell & Howell, you might not ever get the light (they'll tell you it's out of stock, but keep your money), and they don't ever honor their warranty. You are better off getting it under another brand name that is a lot cheaper on Amazon.

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

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Junk TacLight!

    • Greencastle, IN,
    • Apr 27, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    These lights are JUNK. Someone needs to start a class action suit to get everyone's money back! Bell & Howell can afford it! The button is very lousy; I have had to fix it several times. Very frustrating to pay that much MONEY for junk!

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

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