Looking for a keychain flashlight to add to your EDC? In this article, we’ll share our top recommendations.
When it comes to everyday carry items, a keychain flashlight can be invaluable. In my opinion, it’s second only to a great pocket knife. The ability to see what you’re doing allows you to be more efficient and effective.
Whether you’re changing a tire, searching for something you dropped, or watching your step across a dimly lit sidewalk, having a high-quality keychain flashlight on your keyring will come in handy.
The problem is that finding the best keychain flashlight isn’t all that straightforward.
There are plenty of low-quality products available that look great but aren’t worth their price. Also, some of the high-quality products that do pass as keychain flashlights are so bulky, you might as well carry a mid-sized light.
This guide will help you choose the best keychain flashlight for your needs. From inexpensive models to higher-end torches, the products on this list offer good value and functionality. They’re also extremely compact — an important factor when choosing the best keychain flashlight.
Short on time? Here are our top three picks for the best keychain flashlights you can buy right now:
Read on for more info and the complete list…
Things to Consider
There are tons of flashlights on the market with different features and power ratings, and it’s hard to know what features are important or what you need from your flashlight.
Before you start shopping through all of the flashlights on the market, check out these considerations. You should be familiar with them so you can make an informed decision about which light you choose.
The flashlight you choose could have a lot to do with the battery type. There are essentially two types: rechargeable and replaceable.
Rechargeable flashlights can be very handy. In most cases, you can plug a USB cord into your flashlight to give your rechargeable battery a boost — a real convenience if you have a power source available. They usually recharge completely in under two hours.
If your replaceable battery dies, you need to have a spare on hand to get your flashlight back up and running, but you don’t need a charger and power source. That makes these flashlights great for camping, hiking, and emergencies.
Most keychain flashlights with replaceable batteries use AAA or small button-type batteries, which are tiny and really easy to keep on hand.
Size is a significant factor when choosing the best keychain flashlight. A bulky flashlight will cause your pocket to bulge and can even make getting your keys out of your pockets a hassle.
Look for a flashlight that’s short in length (under 3 inches) and thin in diameter (under .75 inches) for the easiest and most comfortable carrying.
Your keychain flashlight’s power output is important. While most guys don’t need an incredibly bright flashlight, your light does need to be bright enough to work for your needs.
A good general output is between 100 to 300 lumens, though you can find ultra-bright keychain flashlights with double that output.
The Best Keychain Flashlights
Whether you’re looking for an exceptionally bright flashlight, a USB-rechargeable model, or just a tiny light that you can forget about until you need it, there’s a keychain flashlight on this list for you.
You won’t find much mention about weight as these are all very light (none of them are over 2 ounces). You also won’t find any larger, boxier keychain flashlights on this list.
They’re too large to fit in most guys’ front pockets, especially when sharing the space with a vehicle key fob.
1. RoxyVon Aurora A1
Guys looking for a small, bright, dependable flashlight should check out the RoxyVon Aurora A1. This compact flashlight produces a ton of light, but it won’t break the bank. It measures just under 2.5 inches long and .6 inches wide.
The A1 uses a CREE XP-G3 S5 LED and has a built-in rechargeable lithium polymer battery. The battery recharges in 90 minutes using the included USB cord. The A1 also has a side-mounted push-button on/off switch that also cycles through its modes.
- Super bright, 650-lumen output
- Rugged design
- USB charging
- Short runtime on high setting
The case is stainless steel, and it comes in black, gray, or military green. It’s also water-resistant, so you can use it in the rain if needed.
The Aurora A1 has five light settings to choose from, ultra-low, low, medium, high, and strobe. The high setting produces a very impressive 650 lumens.
The only issue you’ll find is that on its maximum setting, the A1 will only run for a few minutes before you need to recharge it.
2. SureFire Titan Ultra-Compact LED Keychain Light
If you’re searching for a keychain flashlight from a company with a great reputation for high-quality products, check out the SureFire Titan Ultra-Compact LED Keychain Light.
This high-end LED model features nickel-plated, brass-bodied construction with an aluminum and polymer core, making it incredibly tough and reliable.
- Bright output
- Wide beam of light
The Titan has a lot going for it. It’s compact, measuring 3.4 inches long, and weighs just two ounces. It also comes with a rechargeable AAA NiMH battery (though you will have to buy a charger separately).
It produces up to 300 lumens on high, but it also has medium and low modes that produce 75 and 15 lumens, respectively. You can swap through those modes with the twist-style on/off switch.
One of the best features of the SureFire is its wide beam of light, allowing you to maintain better situational awareness in poorly lit areas. The only real downside is that it’s an expensive light to throw on your keychain.
3. LUXPRO LP130
Finding an inexpensive keychain flashlight that’s dependable and has a respectable output can be a challenge. The LUXPRO LP130 is extremely affordable and produces enough light to be useful in a pinch.
The LP130 is fairly compact, measuring just 2.25 inches and just a bit over .75 inches thick. It comes with four LR44 batteries, features a tail cap on/off switch, and produces up to 40 lumens of power.
- Super affordable
- Respectable output
- Not rechargeable
- No switchable modes
While 40 lumens might not seem like a lot, you can slide the head of the LP130 forward to focus the beam, providing plenty of light for most uses.
When you consider the LP130’s price point, it’s hard to complain much. If there are areas where the LP130 falls short, they would be the batteries and the lack of switchable modes. However, adding rechargeable batteries and adjustable outputs would bump this light up in price quite a bit.
4. OLIGHT i1R EOS
The OLIGHT i1R EOS is an excellent choice for guys looking for a tiny keychain flashlight that’s easy to keep on hand and even easier to keep charged.
The i1R EOS does a lot of things well. It’s so tiny that you’re likely to forget you even have it in your pocket. It measures only 1.73 inches long and just over .5 inches thick, and it weighs less than half an ounce.
- Super compact
- Rechargeable batteries
- Only two modes
- Low run time
It comes with a built-in rechargeable battery and a USB charger. You can switch between 150 lumens and 5 lumens with the twist on/off switch.
While the i1R does produce up to 150 lumens, it doesn’t last long. You’ll only have about five minutes on full power, though you can reduce the output for a 6-hour run time.
It would be nice to have a choice somewhere in between 150 and 5 lumens for a bit of a longer run time with a little less output.
5. Nite Ize Radiant 100
If you’re looking for a traditional-style keychain flashlight, the Radiant 100 is certainly worth checking into. This AAA battery-powered flashlight features a simple, traditional flashlight design, making battery changes and use easy and straightforward.
The Radiant 100 measures 2.75 inches long and .63 inches thick, so carrying it around in your pocket shouldn’t be an issue. It produces up to 100 lumens of light, and it has both high and low modes. It has a twist on/off switch in the head and an integrated anchor ring on the tail cap.
- Simple design
- Comes with locking carabiner
- Doesn’t use an LED bulb
It also comes with a locking carabiner, allowing you to attach and remove this flashlight easily.
The only real downside is that the Nite Ize doesn’t use an LED bulb. While it does have a 1-hour runtime on high, it would probably run longer with a more energy-efficient LED.
6. Streamlight Nano Light
By far, the smallest keychain flashlight on our list is the Streamlight Nano Light. It measures just 1.47 inches long and just barely over .5 inches thick, making it a tiny yet handy addition to your keychain.
The Nano may be tiny, but it does have some nice features. Streamlight uses aircraft-grade aluminum for the construction. It features a twist on/off switch that’s easy to use one-handed, thanks to the non-rotating snap that Streamlight includes in the package.
- Miniscule dimensions
- Not rechargeable
- Low output
It uses four alkaline button batteries (LR41) and will run for up to eight hours. It features a white LED bulb with a 100,000-hour life expectancy.
The Nano produces 10 lumens of light, which isn’t exactly groundbreaking. Also, you can’t recharge it. But, that’s not really where the Nano excels. It’s this keychain flashlight’s tiny size that makes it so handy and useful.
7. Nite Ize Radiant Squeeze Light
The Nite Ize Radiant Squeeze Light is a great choice if you need to keep a small light on your keychain for illuminating door locks and car handles.
This tiny light comes on an S-style carabiner that allows you to clip it to your keys, backpack, or even a jacket zipper.
The Nite Ize is a simple light. It has a one-hand operable squeeze switch and runs on two 3V button-style batteries. It produces 4.2 lumens of light, with a runtime of up to 10 hours. It uses an efficient and long-last white LED bulb as well.
- Compact enough to fit on any keychain
- Good battery life
- Low output
Squeeze lights will rarely blow you away with their output, so the 4.2 lumens that the Radiant produces is acceptable. It won’t help you navigate paths or sidewalks, but that’s not what it’s for. With that said, a little more power would be great.
8. Nitecore TIKI LE
The Nitecore TIKI LE is worth checking into if you’re looking for a keychain flashlight with plenty of output and runtime, as well as some extra features. This light measures just 2.16 inches long and barely over .5 inches thick, making it a great size for carrying on a keychain.
The TIKI LE produces a lot of light (up to 300 lumens) while also emitting blue and red flashing LEDs for safety. It also runs longer than most other keychain flashlights with its 40-hour run time. When your 40 hours do run out, you can recharge the TIKI LE with the included USB cord.
- High output
- Long runtime
- Large on/off button can activate in your pocket
The TIKI LE has a large side-mounted on-off switch that allows you to cycle through the four lighting modes. The issue is that the switch is large. It’s possible that something could press the switch in your pocket, draining your battery life.
9. Fenix E15 EDC Flashlight
The Fenix E15 EDC Flashlight is a great choice if you’re looking for an affordable rechargeable keychain flashlight with plenty of light output. This flashlight uses a CREE XP-G2 R5 white LED and a rechargeable ARB-L16 battery to produce up to 450 lumens. It has a twist on/off switch and four different brightness levels.
Fenix designed the E15 to be tough, using aircraft-grade aluminum for its construction. It measures 2.6 inches long, .7 inches thick at the tail, and .9 inches thick at the head. While the ruggedness is appreciated, this flashlight’s thickness makes it a bit bulky in the pocket.
- USB rechargeable
- High output
- A bit bulky
- You need to remove the battery to charge it
The ARB-L16 battery that the E15 comes with is rechargeable, but there’s no provision for recharging it while it’s inside the flashlight. Instead, you have to remove the battery to plug the included USB cord in for recharging.
Hopefully, you’ve learned that choosing the best keychain flashlight doesn’t have to be a complicated ordeal. It comes down to a few simple points; size, output, and budget.
If you’re in the market for a top-notch keychain flashlight, the SureFire Titan will serve you well. If you’d prefer to save some cash but still need plenty of light, the Fenix E15 or RoxyVon Aurora A1 both offer function at great prices.
Regardless of the flashlight you choose to go with, you’ll be glad you have it on hand when you need it.