Torch Warning

Around a year ago I posted this post about my new head torch.  The light’s fantastic My new head torch seemed incredible bright and good value for money so I thought I’d share it with you.

I’ve now discovered there are some issues with these torches you should know about.  I recently tried to charge the torch from the12v power source in my car, the one that used to power the cigarette lighter when people used to smoke.  It’s the first time I’d tried to do that as usually charge the torch from mains power in my house.  After charging the torch for just under an hour I found it to be completely dead and I suspect that the circuits have been burnt so the torch is destined for the bin.  a friend of mine had exactly the same experience, so I don’t think the problem is isolated to that torch.

A bit of research on the net revealed that, in some cases, the batteries on these torches can explode whilst they are being charged.  One feature I read said that the problem is relate to folk overcharging the batteries, especially if you leave them on overnight.  This source maintained that, even if completely discharged, that batteries should require a maximum of six hours charge.

I think that it’s likely that these batteries can over heat and, rather than exploding like a bomb, there is a risk that they might smoulder and give off toxic fumes.  Obviously this is serious if you are in a confined space.

Other sources were very enthusiastic about these torches saying they work well and not relating any problems.  It perhaps comes down to that old idiom, ‘If it looks too good to be true it probably is.’

These torches are very cheap for the amount of light they produce but they are perhaps not manufactured to as high safety standards as much more expensive torches.  You get what you pay for.  If you buy one just don’t charge it in the 12 volt socket of you vehicle and never leave it on charge overnight unattended.  I suspect you could have many years of happy use provided you are careful with them.

I’d be interested to hear of anyone who has used similar torches. Did you have problems?

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3 thoughts on “Torch Warning

  1. I don’t know what you used for a charger, if it was a generic or specifically made for the headlamp, but a bit of a warning. I came across this when charging my phone (before smartphones), and the tech told me that generic chargers do not have circuitry to detect when a unit has reached full charge, thus it can easily overcharge the batteries and, possibly, burn out the circuitry. He seriously warned me against using the generic chargers for more than a few hours, with the understanding that the unit will probably not be fully charged, but better safe than sorry.

    • Hi Mike, That sounds like good advice. The charger I used wasn’t generic, it was supplied with the device but I suspect the 12 volt car charger didn’t have the circuitry to detect a full charge and that may well be the problem.

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