229 of 242 people found the following review helpful
Super bright flashlight at a very low cost -- replace with alkaline batteries ONLY!,
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This review is from: Streamlight 73001 Nano Light Miniature Keychain LED Flashlight, Black (Tools & Home Improvement)
I've needed a small flashlight for quite a while, as our backdoor is not well lit. I thought I would get a small single AAA flashlight, and found a very bright one for just under $50 (Fenix-made). However, after reading the reviews on this one, I decided I couldn't go wrong with trying the Nanolight.
This light may only be a 10+ lumen, single-LED light, but it is brighter than a 9 LED light we bought at a hardware store (for $2) that requires 3 AA batteries. Amazingly, this is so small that it is barely half the length of my thumb and more thin than any point on my pinky finger. It has a nice clip that fastens it to your keychain in a snap.
I bought one for myself and my wife, and we use it in place of any light in our car.
With new LED technologies just around the corner, why pay more for other, expensive LED lights when you can get this for so little and choose to upgrade later if needed?
We will be buying a lot of Nanolights for Christmas later this year. It is water-resistant, powerful, and always there when you need it without taking up room in your pocket.
There are two drawbacks. One is replacing the four tiny alkaline batteries (using the same size hearing aids use). Fortunately, the cells are pretty cheap and the light is supposed to last up to 8 hours on a set. The second drawback is that the light has a real tendency to fall apart the more it is used. However, there is a fix for this. Simply put Teflon tape on the threads.. This will keep it waterproof while assuring the bezel can't easily work itself loose.
Once you get it, you will wonder how you got along without it.
UPDATE: I've found out that the hearing aid batteries that work in this light are zinc-air batteries. They work, but they require access to air, which means when the batteries exhaust the air in the waterproof casing, they stop working. You need to unscrew the top and let it set for a minute or two to get the full charge back.
Please search Amazon for bulk LR41 batteries--you will find them so inexpensive that any concerns about availability or pricing for replacements will fade away. These are alkaline batteries, so you won't have the problem I mention above.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 10, 2011 7:32:13 PM PST
Sherman A. Thompson says:
good comment about letting the batteries get air periodically. I might drill a tiny air hole in mine (with the batteries out, of course) since I don't expect it to get wet.
In reply to an earlier post on Sep 20, 2012 4:14:18 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 20, 2012 4:16:39 AM PDT
A Reader says:
Just bought this lite-- cannot get it to come on. Very hard to turn. I will try the exposure to air trick. It is TINY! I got it to replace a single AAA light by Coast that is much longer. It too unscrews too easily, but the real problem is the push-button switch that comes on in my pocket and I finally notice it when I feel how warm it gets when left on. These very bright lites do produce heat, but the LED versions do not get hot enuff to burn skin, like the older technology.
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 22, 2013 2:16:40 PM PST
I bought some of those cheap tiny keychain lights at the flea market for $1.50 to 1.99 that have the light and a laser in them. They use the LR41 tiny batteries, which I despise. I had same problem with the push button engaging in the pocket and also the ends unscrewing.
My solution was to take some electric tape and cut it in half (length-wise), then I wrapped it around the flashlight until it was even to the height of the buttons. I put a strip on both sides of the buttons protecting from accidental activation. Its a tiny bit of an inconvenience pressing my thumb between the two bulges of tape to actually press the button, I might have put a bit too much tape on, but it works for me. So, in 3 months, I have not had to change the battery which was going dead every 2 weeks.
I also put a strip of electric tape around the end cap and that solved the falling apart problem. Use a good 3M electric tape so you can stretch it a bit as you install it.
My keychain lights endure a lot of abuse in the pocket or just hanging off my belt loop while I crawl in ceilings and tight spaces, so if this solution works for me, I hope it will work for you.
Unfortunately, as far as this nano light goes, for this price, I need a light that uses a aa or aaa battery that I can substitute with an eneloop rechargeable and never buy a battery again, so my search goes on.
Posted on Dec 12, 2013 11:19:49 PM PST
Kyle Bass says:
There's a reason zinc-air batteries are used in hearing aids. Use alkaline or silver oxide batteries. They'll save you money and hassle in the long run.
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2016 4:20:40 AM PST
Be of Good Cheer says:
The manufacturer replacement batteries are alkaline batteries (LR41 in this size).
Silver oxide (SR41 in this size) has a bit higher voltage (brighter), and should last longer in use, although its shelf life can be shorter (five years vs up to ten; but not all alkaline batteries have shelf lives above five years; and within the shelf life, alkaline batteries being made more cheaply are often more likely to leak). The lifetime difference should be minor, but alkalines will gradually lose voltage (brightness), while silver oxide batteries will have more constant voltage (brightness) until near the end and suddenly run out. The warning of a gradual dimming isn't so useful with LEDs, because the color remains the same, so one might not notice quickly; so for a tiny flashlight, the silver oxide's performance might be more useful.
Zinc air batteries (PR41 in this size) would have the problems described, have a slightly lower voltage (dimmer), a lower shelf life (two years?) and once activated, may run down fairly rapidly even if not used (although that might be less of a problem in an airtight container?). They have to be "activated" (remove the tab that covers the air hole, wait two minutes before putting in). Since they also use air as a component, they have a higher energy density, meaning more run time if used up before they run down naturally.
I'd favor the SR41's. Silver oxide may be a bit more expensive, but in this tiny size, that shouldn't be much of a difference. Most products tend to come with the slightly cheaper alkaline batteries unless they really need the performance of silver oxide batteries (for example, light meters need consistent voltage to be accurate). Rarely, there might be products where the top voltage is a limitation, and the LR41 should _not_ be replaced with an SR41; but I can't think of an example.
Whichever you get, look for a reliable brand with expiration dates, and a trustworthy supplier. There are a lot of cheap knock-off batteries out there that don't consistently perform nearly as well, and are more likely to leak.
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