Rear light recommendations?


I am looking to up my game in the rear light dept. Currently running a Giant brand rear red light with the strap to fasten to my seatpost.

I am very disappointed with the battery life. I can charge it till the cows come home and still only get 3-4 hours. I find that the old style with the watch batteries lasted way longer.

Any shout outs for a good rear light for road and gravel use? I do not need 11 different modes. Looking for something bright with good battery life, and I’d like something that lasts, not keen on replacing it every season.

Thanks all.

3 posts were merged into an existing topic: Recommendations Needed: Rear Light and Bell

For just a light, agreed.

But you should really get a Garmin Varia rear radar / light. I won’t ride without mine now.


@Power13 is spot on. Get a Varia Radar. They’re fantastic and I have the gen 1. It easily last 4 hours. That is the longest I go while training, but it still has a few hours left.


I second that recommendation - best bit of bike ‘tech’ I’ve bought in the last couple of years.

Bought the Gen2 a couple of months ago and have been super-impressed with battery life, how it’s slimline on the bike, nice and bright, changeable for different riding scenarios efficacy (it really does pick out cars well before you can hear them) and ease of use.

Works well with my Wahoo Bolt as well.



If you don’t need a radar function, an Exposure Blaze should be real good. I’ve got a couple of Exposure TraceR that have seen 5+ years of near daily use.


Admittedly I’ve only had this one a few months but so far I love it. Plenty bright, good battery life (I charge every 20 hours or so but have never ran it fully down). More flashing modes than you need with varying brightness.

LEZYNE Strip Drive Rear Light


+4 for the garmin varia. I’ve had mine for a little over a week now and won’t ride without it ever again.


+5 for the garmin varia. I don’t hear from one ear and can’t hear a car coming until it’s close enough. Problem solved with the varia. And. it’s a great light too.


Another +1 for the Varia.
The best invention ever and it works 100% of the time.

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Garmin Varia, I won’t ride without it either

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+6 for the Varia. But consider this–for my money, the most useful innovation in front and rear lights (after Varia, which was a true game-changer) has been “DAY FLASH.” Get day flash! The Varia has it (you have to manually set it each time you ride) and it has a couple advantages. One, you can see it better during the day (hence the name). Second, it drains the battery slowly. Day Flash on the Varia gives you 15 hours instead of 6 hours on solid red mode. I use a Lezyne Hecto Drive 500XL for the front, because it has…day flash. Man, that thing is bright! It provides 5:45 of day flash, again, more than most of the other modes and very, very visible.

Varia radar hands down.

Again, if you dont need a radar I would recommend Knog Plus - cheap, bright, last 40 hours (yes, forty) in econo flash and does the job for me. Plus it’s lasting - i washed mine by accident with my jersey (left in a pocket) and still works well.

Can’t complain - maybe except it does not have a radar (which must be great, i admit).

I really love my current tail light: Knog Blinder R70. Very bright and great battery life. IMO the Varia isn’t the best at being a really bright tail light. Buy it for the radar feature not the light.

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The Knog Blinder R70 is a fantastic, long lasting light (10+ hours on flash). If you don’t want to spend the $$ on the Garmin Varia, I highly recommend this one.

I have a first generation Varia and paired it with a Bontrager Flare RT. Bonus points for controlling lights from Garmin headunit (Varia lights off, really long battery life).

The second gen Varia is bright enough, I’ve seen it on the road. I’d use that as only rear light.

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I second the Bontrager rear light. a couple of years ago i saw some dudes with wicked bright rear lights during the day, and wondered what were those. Did some research and found that the Bontis were the best deal out there. They sync to the Garmin unit, are rather inexpensive (but not cheap), and have decent battery time, say, 10 hours approx. The best part is those lights are super visible during day time (I call them them “daytime lights”), and I have noticed a significant difference in the way cars approach me - well, they actually see me now. I don’t leave the house without that light. Best part is you can check its battery charge on the Garmin unit, and it communicates when the light is running low on juice. Totally worth it for a 1/3 of Garmin Varia price.

Bontrager Flare RT is so bright I usually run it in night mode even in the blindingly bright days of a California summer. On group rides I forgot it’s flashing and a quick couple of button presses on Garmin to set it to steady mode.

This is one area where I concede superiority to Garmin over Wahoo…it would be nice to control my lights from my Roam.

I ran my 820 in the fall last year once we were riding w/ lights in the fall, but I really hated the unit.