MagLite LED 3-Cell D ST3D016
The MagLite LED 3-Cell D ST3D016 is the muscle car of flashlights: big, strong and made in the U.S.A. It's not fancy -- just impeccably well-made, with a super-bright LED beam (which easily adjusts from floodlight to spotlight) and anodized-aluminum body so tough that proud owners trade war stories about incredible disasters their trusty MagLites have survived. It can run 80 hours on three D batteries, and it's warranted for the life of the original owner.Buy for $25.75
Best mini flashlight
Mini MagLite Pro
It's just as tough and reliable as the bigger MagLite LED 3-Cell D ST3D016, but at 6.5 inches long and weighing just 4 ounces, the Mini MagLite Pro is easy to tote around, fitting easily into a pocket or bag. Its brilliant twist-to-focus LED beam reaches 150 yards into the distance. It can shine for two and a half hours on two AA batteries; the MagLite Mini Pro+
(Est. $24) is similar, but adds a low setting that lasts 27 hours.
Buy for $19.88
Streamlight 88031 Protac Tactical Flashlight 2L
Military-style tactical flashlights can cost hundreds of dollars, but the budget-friendlier Streamlight 88031 Protac Tactical Flashlight 2L earns plenty of respect from reviewers. Its blinding LED beam and strobe setting can disorient attackers, and its toothed bezel and tailpiece make this palm-sized flashlight a serious striking weapon. It's waterproof and can survive a 2-meter drop -- and it can also shine for 50 hours on low, when you simply need an ordinary flashlight.Buy for $44.89
Best rechargeable flashlight
MagLite MagCharger LED RL1019
Preferred by police for decades, the MagLite MagCharger LED RL1019 is basically the twin of the MagLite LED 3-Cell D ST3D016
(Est. $30) -- only you'll never have to buy batteries for it. The MagCharger rests in a powered charging cradle that plugs into your wall outlet or vehicle. It's just as hefty and bright as the 3-Cell, plus it adds power saving low and eco modes, as well as strobe and momentary beams for special situations.
Buy for $83.98
Cheap rechargeable flashlight (for example: SUNJACK CAMPLIGHT )Energizer Weather Ready Compact Rechargeable LED Light
Cheap flashlights are usually disappointingly dim and flimsy, but owners rave about the Energizer Weather Ready Compact Rechargeable LED Light. This pint-sized flashlight plugs directly into the wall, shines for 3.5 hours on high (longer on low), lights up automatically when the power goes out and never needs batteries. It's not as bright as the MagLite MagCharger LED RL1019
(Est. $85), but owners say that it's more than bright enough for most household uses.