As a remodeler, I’m constantly working in dark places: attics, crawl spaces, and just about anywhere in winter when work starts before sunrise. I can get usually get by with a work light and a flashlight, because the area lighting is already there or has been taken care of by the electricians. Here are a couple of lights I’ve been using lately.
Powersmith 2000 Lumen Work Light
For task lighting in a poorly lit corner of a room, I’ve been testing out the new Powersmith 20 Watt, 2000 lumen LED work light. It looks just like a traditional halogen light but because it’s an LED, it doesn’t have any of halogen’s downsides like scorching heat or fragile bulbs. It’s advertised as having 2000 lumens, which, according to the manufacturer, is comparable to a 100-Watt bulb. My old halogens are brighter, but I’ve found the Powersmith emits more than enough light for me to work.
The Powersmith comes on a little stand and has all of the same up/down, side-to-side pivots of a halogen, all controlled with tightening knobs. It comes with a 5-foot cord attached, which is about two feet shorter than I’d prefer. But I usually have an extension around, so that’s hardly a problem.
The one downside to the Powersmith is the price. At $40, it’s more than twice the cost of a brighter halogen that can be purchased for about $15 at the local box store. Personally, I’m fine paying the additional cost. Just knowing that I’ll never have to change a bulb or smell a burning moth makes it worthwhile for me.
The light I tested is a new model that’s about to come out. But Powersmith makes others that put out more or less light than the model in this story.
Powersmith 2000 Specs
Power: 120 volt AC
Output: 2000 lumens
Tilt: 30 degrees down, 90 degrees up
Spotlight Shifter 3.0
In addition to a work light, I keep a flashlight on hand—particularly when meeting with clients or headed to an attic or unfinished basement. I’ve tried countless models and I’ve settled on the Spotlight Shifter 3.0 as my favorite.
I like it because it puts out a lot of light and is simple to use. The on button is at the rear cap and is slightly recessed, so it’s less likely to turn on in my pocket. Over the years, I’ve drained down the batteries of countless side-button models.
The Spotlight is very bright and can project light over 600 feet, according to the manufacturer. It also has a smooth twisting focus that goes from a pinpoint spotlight to a nice even wide angle. When I hold the light 3 feet from a wall at the widest setting, it can project a beam over four feet wide.
The base of the handle, by the on button, has a rounded-over octagon shape. This makes the light easy to hold between my teeth when I’m wedged in a crawl space.
The Spotlight has three modes: high, low, and strobe. These can be toggled through with quick hits of the button. Each time the light is turned on, it starts with the brightest setting - the one I use the most—which is nice because I don’t have to constantly scroll through the modes to get the one I want.
The Spotlight is powered by three AAA batteries.
Spotlight Shifter 3.0
Power: 3 AAA batteries
Output: 200 lumens
Flood to spot ratio: 12:1
Modes: high, low, strobe
Price: $60 (list); $32 (web)