View Full Version : Lights for checking the house

July 14, 2006, 12:21 AM
This may sound stupid,but I would appreciate yall helping me to understand.When yall talk about hearing noises in or aroud your house,or a suspected BG,why do yall always talk about carying a flashlight or light mounted on a gun,why not turn all the lights on in the house.The reason I ask is because,can using a light in the dark help you.And If you turn the house lights on can it pose a threat to your own safty.

July 14, 2006, 01:17 AM
Its not a stupid question. Go to the bathroom in the middle of the night and flick on the light and see what happens.

July 14, 2006, 01:22 AM
you mean when your eyes arent ajusted to the lights,one more thing wouldn't adrinalline wake you up,I imagine if the house is being robbed and you wake up it will set you in a different state of mind than if u are getting up to use the head under a normal siuation.

July 14, 2006, 01:55 AM
I agree with you about the adrenaline, etc. I don't understand the guys on here who talk about fumbling for the gun on their nightstand half-asleep in the middle of the night. Everytime I've been startled awake at night I was A-W-A-K-E! But back to your original question - the reason why I wouldn't flick the lights on is because of the time it would take for my eyes to adjust. When I make a trip to the head in the middle of the night, I'm plenty awake, but when I flick on the light, my eyes clamp shut faster than a... ah... blink of an eye ;) and it takes several seconds for my eyes to adjust. That's not something I want to have happen if I'm standing 10 feet from a burglar in my house in the middle of the night.

July 14, 2006, 07:20 AM
I keep a black 4 cell maglite in my dresser set on wide spread beam. If it's good enough for the cops it's good enough for me.

July 14, 2006, 09:09 AM
You also know your own houses interior much better than any BG would. If its dark, you know where the furniture is, you know where you leave your shoes, you know where that little foot stool is located ect.. All things that will give you SOME advantage IN THE DARK. Then when you flick on that 200 million :D candle power, burn a hole in your eyes if you look at it flashlight. He won't be able to see ANYTHING but moving spots, again to your favor!!

First choice though is to secure your family in one spot (if possible), call the cops! Cover the room/areas entrance from cover (again if possible). Keep the lights lowered or better yet off. If they get through your door, lay that light beam square in their face. Then you do whatever you think is needed to be done..

Be safe...

Glenn E. Meyer
July 14, 2006, 10:26 AM
About the dark adaptation - interesting issue. I did an experiment once. I woke up to go the bathroom - which I did - as moonlight through the windows was sufficient. I was perfectly dark adapted. So, I sez - hey, let's try out the Surefire 9P we keep by the arsenal for late night zombies.

Thus, I go into the walk in closet and shut the door - as not to disturb others. I trigger the light and am blinded by a blazing image of shirts and pants and suitcases and assorted closet crap. Both a BG and moi, would have been discombobulated for a few seconds.

I keep a E2E now and it isn't that blinding but will light up sufficiently to see. So if you have a superlight and are really dark adapted, the bad guy might be blinded for a bit - but so might you.

July 14, 2006, 10:57 AM
So, Glenn, were you discombobulated by the light or the mess? :D

I have a Surefire next to the bed. I carried it in my purse for awhile, but the little quick-on button on the back got pushed down inadvertently and drained that very expensive little battery. So it lives on my nightstand. I use it because in the dark the BG will have HIS sight blinded for a few seconds and I won't.

I would agree about knowing your house. You should be able to walk your house in total darkness and know where you are. And if you don't turn on the lights, the BG won't know what's where, where the kids usually leave their skateboards (who needs claymores when you have sloppy kids???) or that spot near the laundry room where the basket of dirty laundry is sitting. I've frequently thought that my dogs and my guns are less likely to do in a bad guy than my kids' mess.


July 14, 2006, 05:30 PM
I carried it in my purse for awhile, but the little quick-on button on the back got pushed down inadvertently and drained that very expensive little battery.

Being an adherent to the carrying a flashlight is always good school of thought, I propose four suggestions that will help you:

1. Twist the end of the light to the 'lockout' position. This is Surefire's way of making a 'feature' out of the fact that you're just backing the switch off far enough that it no longer works the light.

2. Get a 'clickie' tailcap for your light from Surefire (or other sources). This will be harder to inadvertantly engage as the pressure switch is guarded by a big rubber rim.

3. The CR123 batteries don't necessarily need to be expensive. I buy mine from http://www.amondotech.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWCATS&Category=241 for $1 per battery instead of $8 per pair at Wal-Mart.

4. Investigate http://www.pentagonlight.com/. The ones I've handled are comparable to Surefire's products, but still cheaper. I find it telling that the USAF (at least locally) has switched from Surefire's to Pentagonlight.


July 14, 2006, 07:17 PM
limbaughfan, . . .

Our house has 7 rooms downstairs, . . . 2 of which no one could move in while in the dark and not make more noise than a skeleton sliding down a tin roof.

Four of the other 5 have very carefully positioned night lights (the green ones that never need the bulb changed mostly) and after just a little practice, . . . I can get up in the darkest of the dark nights, . . . slip thru the house totally unknown to anyone downstairs.

It has taken some practice, . . . trial and error, . . . but I don't need a light to find the bg, . . . and he'll never know I am there.

In all reality, . . . plan # 1 is not go out to find him, . . . he would hear me calling the 911 operator from my bedroom on my cell phone, . . . with the intention being to let him know if he wants to boogey out now, . . . he has a chance.

What happens after that, . . . will all depend on what he does next. But you can rest assured that I will know for sure where he is, . . . and he can only guess where me and my arsenal are.

May God bless,

July 15, 2006, 02:55 AM
In my house, there's just enough streetlight creeping in through my blinds that I would have no trouble seeing the bag guy...but what I'm going to need my surefire for is seeing his hands after I have him at gunpoint.

July 15, 2006, 12:07 PM
One thing I do when setting up a domicile for interior defense is install motion sensors on a light in every room but the bedroom(s) This puts the BG(s) in the light and the GG(s) in the dark, which is one of the few times it is good to be in the dark. :D

There are drawbacks to this, granted, in that you will be lit in each area, should you decide/need to clear the house by yourself. However, Gathering in the saferoom and waiting for the police to clear for you is still the safest way. Not as exciting, perhaps, but certainly wisest.


July 15, 2006, 03:19 PM
Of the two minimags lites, one has the red l filter the other has the orange.
The minimizes glare to the side an increases my peripferal vission.
Have in those dark corners of teh house the neon nightlite for removing cover.
The fire zone is from the top of steps to bottom as you have to turn corner from livving room or entry foyer to go up the steps.
With me and the laidback hammer of a 20" 12ga. Win97 waiting at the top!

July 17, 2006, 09:47 AM
Call me odd, but I usually don't keep my house in total darkness, even when asleep. I typically leave the stove/ventahood light on 24/7 (uses a fluorescent bulb) and a fluorescent light in the back hallway (where our dogs have their "relief" pads). In my bedroom, I keep a blue lava light on as a "navigation light".

The brighter lights are furthest away from the master bedroom. That way anyone entering will have less "night vision" than I will, and said intruder will make a better silhouette than I.

I keep a Black & Decker Stormlight near my bed w/ a Streamlight Scorpion as a backup. The Stormlight puts out a good amount of "working" light, and the battery packs last quite awhile.

July 17, 2006, 10:55 AM
I sleep with several handguns in different locations I can reach and a 1,000,000 cp spotlight- the kind people use to blind deer while poaching. I would not go hunting in the event of criminal entry, but would hole up in the bedroom. Response time for the police where I live is too long to be a factor when the chips are down.

July 18, 2006, 10:16 AM
In all reality, . . . plan # 1 is not go out to find him, . . . he would hear me calling the 911 operator from my bedroom on my cell phone, . . . with the intention being to let him know if he wants to boogey out now, . . . he has a chance.

Like Dwight55 said, I wouldn't be going out looking for a fight even in my own house. Barricade yourself and your family in a defensive position and call law enforcement to clear the house if you believe someone's there. It's a heck of a lot easier (and safer) to guard one door with a shotgun than it is to check every room, closet, and hiding place in your house. Are you really going to look in every place large enough for a small assailant to hide every time you hear a noise in the night?

If you don't really believe someone's there roll over and go back to sleep. That's what I do, anyway. When I do "check the house" it has always been unarmed and just a cursory sweep so my wife will let me go back to sleep.

July 18, 2006, 10:55 AM
Our house is U-shaped with a hallway between the MBR and my older son and daughter's bedroom. Our infant still sleeps with us.

This necessitates that I leave the MBR to ensure that my older kids are not in harm's way in order and to get them to our room.

I just rely on my own training and background to get to them. While I am doing this, my wife is to barricade herself in the master closet with her 9mm and the phone to call 911. We have codes and phrases to avoid her shooting me, we have lines of fire understood, and we have trouble/comprimise codes we use as well.

However, having said all this: I grab a duty belt with everything I need on it, including illumination tools, magazines, etc. Lights are to stay OFF so I can use the dark to my advantage. Nobody knows my house like I do in the dark...so I have a huge advantage.

Shawn Dodson
July 18, 2006, 11:03 AM
Suggest you look into Radio Shack's inexpensive "plug 'n power" system. It consists of a small controller console that you can put on your nightstand which permits you to remotely activate lights in your home. The console sends commands to energize "plug 'n power" outlets or switches. I use this system in my house. With the push of a button or two, it allows me to remotely illuminate areas outside my bedroom, as well as outside. This way I can remain concealed in the dark while I investigate suspicious activity.

Go to www.radioshack.com and search for "plug 'n power."

Glenn E. Meyer
July 18, 2006, 01:44 PM
One thing, we have an alarm trigger upstairs such that if I truly think that the house is worth exploring with a gun ( note - that is a not the best idea as compared to staying put) - I'm pressing the panic button and taking the chance on a false alarm.

Then hunker down with the 105 mm!

July 18, 2006, 04:21 PM
Glenn, are you in a city where you will be fined for a false alarm? You may be able to avoid a fine in the situation you described. It is not considered a false alarm in many cities when you "request" that police attend by deliberately setting it off. False alarms are generally determined to be "false" when the cause of the alarm had nothing to do with your security and well-being. OTOH, it would be another story if you got sloppy and didn't disarm the system in time after you came home from shopping with the wife.

July 19, 2006, 11:26 PM
Best results in this situation are using a bright gun mounted light or flashlight.
As stated before, you know your house,they don't (we hope) If you turn the light on them especially in the face, they can't see squat. But DON'T HOLD THE LIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU!!! Sometimes the crazy ones will shoot at the light.
If you flip the lights on in the house, it's a game of who recovers their vision first,that could get you hurt, or dead.
Next, for my own use, I use a 12 gauge short shotgun with a wood buttstock for home defense with #6 shot shells. You really don't have to aim precisely and more often than not, the sound of racking one into the chamber will make em' change their mind.And if you have to that stock will leave a mark they'll remember.
Plus if you live in a apartment as I do, you don't have to worry about penetrating someone elses home.
I know there's many here excellent with a pistol or revolver but in my case I'm not trained enough to use them to my advantage so I prefer the shotgun.
I also practice with it al lot from shoulder to hip shooting so I am very familiar with it. I also know where it's point of impact is related to the light mounted on it. And I can hold it out to my side and shoot it one handed for the crazies that like to shoot at the light.
This is just my humble opinion.

Glenn E. Meyer
July 20, 2006, 09:16 AM
Not really worked about a fine, if I can avoid a possible fight. We don't get fined here unless you screw up quite a bit. I think triggering the alarm as you said you heard something amiss would be quite defensible.

Of course - one can alway use my Chachunk grenade - it plays repeated shotgun rackings and you toss it out when you hear the bad guys as we all know that it will scare away crooks.


July 20, 2006, 06:24 PM
Doubletaptap, . . .

I'm not sure I understood your post about using a 12 ga shotgun in an apartment and not worrying about it penetrating a wall.

If I understood what you wrote, . . . y'all must have different apartments there than we have in Ohio. Here, a lot of the walls are 5/8 drywall on one side, . . . 5/8 drywall on the other side, . . . and if there is anything in the middle, . . . ain't nothing more than some cheap yellow insulation.

All of my 12 ga shotguns will shoot through that wall, . . . with plenty enough force on the other side to kill anyone unfortunate enough to be in the way. And it'll do it with any load of bird shot or buck shot you want to use.

Don't get me wrong, . . . I'm not chewing on you, . . . just hoping you check and see what those walls are made of before you think about uncorking that 12 ga inside the apt.

May God bless,

July 21, 2006, 02:03 AM
One thing I'm surprised nobody mentioned was that when the lights are on inside the house you can't see very clearly out the windows into your yard where it's dark. Leave the lights off and you can see much more clearly who or what is prowling around out there, besides not alerting anybody with ill intentions that you are observing.

July 21, 2006, 07:48 AM
I leave enough dim lights on in my house to just barely see if I have too. Being an electrician, I installed under cabinet lights, dimmer switches, and night lights throughout the house and leave them on at night too see if I have too. I also have outdoor flood lights on every side of my house and garage that can be turned on from 3 locations in the house that light my yard like the midday sun. Overkill??? Maybe.:rolleyes:

Anthony Terry
July 23, 2006, 02:25 AM
arent we a bunch or paranoid people!:D i always keep all the lights off in the house. ive only had to wigg out a few times. always false alarms so far. i just reach over and grab the glock and lat there quiet. turn the laser on and stick it to my bed where it cant be seen. wait to see if a see movement from the streetlight glare in the back door.

July 23, 2006, 08:57 AM
My bedroom is at the end of a hall. I have an open converted garage at the other end of the hall. I always leave the lights on in that room, as it provides enough light to get around, and also backlights anything that might appear in the hall. The end of the hall where my room is is in complete shadow, so its pretty hard to see in my direction.