When diving at night scuba divers should always be carrying certain items besides their standard kit, a signaling device, and 3 lights are key for safety.
The diver’s primary light is usually on the wrist, turned on at the beginning of the dive and the brightest of them all.
The second is a backup smaller, usually cheaper in your BCD pocket or clipped-on. The last one is the light that many divers neglect but should really have for safety.
This light serves two very important purposes. When you are on the surface, the marker light makes you visible to boats and other divers. Underwater the tank marker light helps you to find each other.
As with all scuba gear, all products are not created equal. There are different tank markers for different situations and environments.
We have done all the hard work for you and made a list for you to be able to choose the tank light that is most suited for your diving needs.
This is a very convenient diving marker light for the price. It is very simple to use and you just a twist it to turn it off and on (there is no button).
It is very lightweight and the clip lets you attach it with ease. The light is not extremely bright which is nice to not blind your dive buddies but if you are looking for a really bright light I would think about a different one.
- Dimensions: 3.39 x 2.05 x 0.91 inches
- Material: plastic
- Weight: 10 grams.
- Depth rated: 500 feet
- Powered by a single CR123 battery
This dive marker is easy to clip onto tanks, belts, straps, and other locations. It also comes in a handful of colors including red, blue, green, and rainbow.
This light is low output so it is not distracting or blinding to other divers. The marker runs on 2 coin cell batteries, so it is not rechargeable. These batteries will give you around 72 hours without changing batteries.
- 1200 lumen LED light
- Power Source: 2x CR2032 batteries.
- Maximum Depth: 100m/ 330ft
- Weight: 23g
- Color Options: : Red, Blue, and Green.
The XS Scuba LED Glowstick is made with a long-lasting LED bulb for high visibility. This glow stick comes with a lanyard, batteries, a spare cylinder valve O-ring, and a break-away kit. The SS cable lanyard secures the SS clip keeps to keep the light secure and the mounting strap makes it easy to mount to your first stage.
- 360-degree LED light
- Depth rated: 500 feet
- Integrated weight system with up to 10 lbs of weight capacity
- Dimensions: 7.5 x 4 x 1 inches
- Weight: 11 grams
What exactly are scuba tank marker lights?
Tank marker lights are just small waterproof lights that are on the backside of the diver to show other divers or boats that you are there.
Underwater, scuba divers use these lights to help find each other at night or in water with poor visibility.
On the surface, they are used to help boat drivers find you again at night or in rainy conditions.
These lights come in a plethora of colors from your standard white and red to yellow, blue, or even green.
Tank lights are not meant to be your primary source of light so don’t worry about blinding divers around them.
They come in two varieties of single-use disposable glow sticks, which do not offer a lot of visibility compared to other tank marker lights and are also bad for the environment.
The other type of light is a small waterproof light/beacon, these run on batteries and hopefully, you are using rechargeable batteries.
Why do I need a tank marker light?
Whether you are diving at night, in low visibility, in a cave, or wreck, you want to be seen by other divers in case of an emergency.
While scuba diving is relatively safe, accidents do happen and you want to be prepared. It is recommended that you attach a scuba marker light so that you can be found and find your dive buddy at all times.
At some dive sites, there are a lot of other divers and boats, and the lights/beacons will let be found easier and differentiate you from the rest of the dives.
If an emergency situation was to occur, these safety lights can help you find divers in distress. F
or peace of mind and to lower stress just have one, they are cheap and when taken care of will last a long time.
Types of Bulbs
There are three main different types of bulbs for tank markers; incandescent, HID (high-intensity discharge), and LED (light emitting diode) Bulbs.
Some older-style dive lights still use incandescent bulbs but this is rare as these lights require a large battery. The HID bulbs also need a large battery pack and the bulbs are expensive.
Almost all dive lights now are LED as they only take a small amount of energy and generate a lot of light. They also have features like indicators to tell you how much battery you have left, different power settings, and rechargeable batteries.
Most dive lights show output in lumens. The higher the number the lumens the brighter it is in general, so 1000-lumen would be brighter than 800-lumen.
Tank Marker Features
There are some features that you want to have for your tank marker.
- A sturdy case that is water and pressure-proof.
- An easy-to-use switch to turn the light on and off.
- Watertight o-ring seals.
- Reliable clip or fastening system.
- Rechargeable batteries systems
- Multiple power modes
How to care for your tank marker light
To keep your scuba tank marker in working order and to prevent flooding you will need to maintain it and take care of it.
Here are a few tips:
- Rinse your dive light in fresh after each dive.
- Dry before storing
- Take out the batteries before storing them to avoid corrosion.
- Check and lubricate the o-rings before and after each dive.
- Store in a safe place.