Dive lights are designed for various purposes. Before purchasing one, you have to identify first the nature of your dive and your reasons for using one.
The following are common scenarios where a dive light is necessary.
Spotting Marine Species
When you are diving in reefs and wrecks, you need light to illuminate crevices and holes in order to spot hidden marine life. This is one of your best scuba diving gear when you join fishing-for-lobster competitions or do spear fishing.
Communicating with Other Divers
Most technical divers use lights to communicate either passively or actively with their buddies. Passive communication involves making use of light to simply check the presence and condition of dive buddies. Active communication involves usage of light movements or signals to communicate concepts. These tools are especially important during night dives; conversing in low-visibility conditions using hand signals is, needless to say, not feasible.
A useful reminder when using lights to communicate: before the actual dive, buddy divers must discuss first what light movements to use and what each stands for.
Illuminating Dive Site
When night diving, you need to carry a dive light to gain awareness of what is happening in your surroundings. If you go for a deeper dive, it is important to know that certain wavelengths of light become ineffective the deeper you go. Bring a light that’s sufficient for the depth you’re planning to plumb.
Doing Underwater Photography and Videography
Taking photos in low-light environs without a flash will make your shots blurry. You may carry strobes or video lights to improve the quality of your photos. Moreover, remain still when taking photos of subjects swathed in darkness. To get perfect shots of wrecks, caves, marine life and corals, carry a complete set of primary and back-up lights in addition to the basic ones; these accessories are simply indispensable.
Dive lights come in various colors. During darker or night dives, a diver must carry a marker light. This tool is attached to one’s buoyancy compensator or tank valves. Marker lights are useful in locating a buddy or identifying who the dive guide/leader is. The leader must have a light of a different color from the rest of the group. With this strategy, he can easily count and locate his members. Aside from that benefit, the members will know exactly who to follow.
Additional Tip: What Dive Light to Use
You may consult your gear supplier or a scuba expert that you know. When you have already determined what type of dive you’re having, they can recommend the kind of light you need. Before actually using it, test it first.