10 Best Underwater Fishing Lights – Attract Fish Anywhere!

There are many underwater lights on the market, but they can be divided into two basic categories: permanently mounted lights and portable ones. Permanently mounted lights will normally be used on a dock or on the bow or stern of a boat.

Besides attracting fish, many users choose these lights because they make it easy to get around on the dock, help swimmers get aboard the boat at night, and they add to the beauty and safety of the dock or boat.

A major benefit of underwater lights is that they provide the needed illumination without attracting insects the way above-water lights do. Portable lights generally operate off a 12-volt trolling motor or car battery or on the boat’s 12 volt system.

They are meant to be carried aboard a boat or onto the dock and lowered into the water on a long cable. Portable lights are obviously very handy, but they are limited by battery life, and their durability may be affected by the light being pulled in and out of the water and generally banged around while fishing.

Best Underwater Fishing Light - Comparisons

How Do Fishing Lights Work?

The principle behind underwater fishing lights is the activation of the marine food chain. The most popular colored lights are green, but clear, red, and blue lights are commonly used as well. Green LED lights are the most effective because the short wavelength of green light lets it penetrate the water to greater distance than other colors on the spectrum.

Zooplankton and insects are attracted to the light and swim to the surface. Baitfish such as shad, minnows, shrimp, and squid then arrive in pursuit of the plankton. Then, predatory game fish soon follow, and the fishing fun begins.

When it comes to underwater fishing lights, there is a wide variety on the market today. Along with the two basic types mentioned above, you need to consider quality, brightness, functionality and, of course, cost.

We have sorted out the best of the best in a range of prices and feature packages. We present them here to make it easier for you to choose the best underwater fishing lightsthat will work for you.

Best Underwater Fishing Lights - Reviews

Green Glow Fish Attracting Dock Light

The Green Glow Dock Light is a permanently mounted 110-volt light system that works well for docks, boat lifts, and sea walls. It comes as a kit with a 50-foot heavy-duty marine-grade lamp cord, sealed 7,900 lumen high-intensity discharge bulb, bulb weight, vented power control box with 5 feet of power cable and a safe UL-approved GFCI plug, an automatic on/off photo cell, and all necessary mounting hardware and instructions.

This is a high-quality American made product and each light is hand-built. The bulb will last 4 to 5 years of nightly use, and it works well in salt water environments because barnacles and other marine organisms will not attach to the bulb.

The Green Glow will attract any species of fish while using very little electricity. Have a great time night fishing off the dock without being bothered by the bugs that typical above-water lightswould attract.

This light will not annoy the neighbors because the beam is focused to shine downward into the water. Take your boat out at night confident of finding your dock and having plenty of visibility to safely get the boat alongside when you come back in.

The Green Glow Dock Light is easy to mount and can be in use within the hour as long as you have a power source to your dock. For a permanent mount dock light, the Green Glow is the way to go.

What we liked

  • American-made quality
  • Very bright
  • Easy to install and economical to operate
  • Comes with a 1-year warranty

What we didn't like

  • Power cord could be longer
  • Replacement bulbs are costly
Lumitec 101320 SeaBlazeX Underwater Boat Light

On the other side of the permanent mount category are boat-mounted lights. As with dock lights, in this range we also found a clear leader in terms of quality, features, and function.

The SeaBlazeX boat light from Lumitec is a high-end product with regard to price, but you get what you pay for. Choose the best because when it comes to mounting something on your boat, you do not want to have to do it twice.

This light puts out 3000 lumens and runs on 12-24 volts DC. It draws only 5.0 Amps on a 12-volt system, or 2.5 Amps on 24 volts, so it is no problem to run it for several hours at anchor. We were impressed by the quality build of this Americanmade light.

The housing is solid marine-grade bronze alloy, with a crystalclear sealed lens. It’s also fun to use with its super-bright full-spectrum LED system that lets you cycle through colors continuously, or choose any color you like with quick toggle of the off/on switch.

 The light is dimmable so you can choose the brightness that works best. Besides attracting fish to the boat, the SeaBlazeX just plain looks awesome when you are cruising at night, swimming off the boat, or just sitting in the marina partying.

Doing a transom-mount with the light does require a ½-inch through-hole, so some skill and care is needed. It would also be easily possible to build a portable clamp-mount system even a shallow drop system for the SeaBlazeX, or. This is the top-selling boat mount LED in its class, and Lumitec is known for good customer service and support.

What we liked

  • Excellent quality and function
  • Compact unit with no external controls
  • Fun to play with – see how different colors affect the fish
  • Adds to boating safety

What we didn't like

  • Housing is not sealed for depth

Among portable drop lights, we liked the Green Lantern Maxx the best for its robust size and extreme brightness. At 25 inches in length, this fishing light has a 300 LED light module that puts out 10,000 lumens when attached to a well-charged battery. A 15-foot heavy-gage black marine cable brings power to the light, and it comes standard with a cigarette lighter power adapter along with the usual battery terminal clamps.

This fishing light is also American made and comes with a 60-day unlimited warranty. It is rated for 50,000 hours of continuous use. These usage ratings are based on the specifications for the LED units themselves, and whether the housing can stand up to that much use remains to be seen.

One weak point we saw with this light was the plastic used for the housing. It could stand to be heavier grade, particularly for use in deep drops where considerable water pressure can cause bending and flexing.

On the upside, the cable entry seal on this light is reinforced at the flex point and looks like it will hold up better than some other lights out there. If you are going to drop a light in the water, it might as well be a big and bright one—that is why we chose the Green Lantern Maxx as top among the portable underwater fishing lights.

What we liked

  • Big and bright with 300 LEDs
  • Salt-water resistant sealant on the caps
  • Cigarette lighter adapter included

What we didn't like

  • Tube should be made from heavier gauge plastic

The Nebo 180 LED fishing light comes from a Texas-based company, and it immediately struck us with its heavy build and reinforced end caps. Given that it is produced by a specialty flashlight manufacturer, we expected quality, and this light met those expectations and backed them with a 1-year warranty.

The weighted 10-inch light unit is hung on a 15-foot heavy duty marine power cable. The light module has 180 LED units and is very bright at 1,250 lumens of output on a fully-charged 12volt power supply.

The cable entry point on this light is reinforced and well-sealed, and the unit kept the water out on our test. The plastic tube material and end cap rubber on this light were of heavier gauge than on many of the other lights we have tested. We did not especially like the battery clamps though as they were of the light-duty style.

On the plus side, a 15-Amp protection fuse is built in on the positive clamp. The Nebo light was our favorite among compact submersible lights. Although the price point is high, the build quality, warranty, and great customer service make this light a good value.

What we liked

  • Good overall build
  • Very bright
  • Good warranty and customer service

What we didn't like

  • Light-duty battery clamps
Goture 180 LED 12V Submersible Fishing Light

The Goture Submersible Fishing Light uses the design that is standard for most of the compact portable fishing lights. A plastic tube holding lead weights and an LED SMD module is attached to a 16-foot drop cable—a simple and effective system as long as the unit is sealed well.

The Goture light looks good from that aspect, with heavy rubber end caps that fit the tube tightly. Unlike a lot of the other lights we looked at, this manufacturer provides a depth rating on the unit. It is rated to keep a seal down to 24 feet, and in our testing, it did so.

Note that when users report fogging or mist in a light, it is often condensation of moisture in the air sealed into the light that will occur when the light is dropped into cold water, but that does not indicate leakage.

The replaceable 5-sided light module has 36 LEDs to the side and puts out 900 lumens on a 0.9-Amp power draw.And while this light is only about 4 inches long, is surprisingly bright. In fact, it was almost blinding, so to preserve night vision, it is better to drop the light in the water first and then turn it on.

The light could be seen even 8 feet down in murky water. The lights are available in green, white, and blue colors. We liked the compact size and light weight of this light, but it would have been nice to see it come with a longer drop cord and a cigarette lighter adapter. Still, it is a heavily-built light that offers good quality at a low price point.

What we liked

  • A robust build in a compact form 
  • Very bright for its size
  • Heavy-duty power cable

What we didn't like

  • Cable entry on the cap is vulnerable to flex wear and leaking
Samdo IP68 12V LED Underwater Fishing Light

The Samdo IP68 LED Underwater Light offersgood value for the money and comes in 5 different colors: green, red, violet, blue, and white. As with the other drop lights, a weighted, the sealed tube containing the LED light unit is attached to a 16-footheavy-duty drop cable.

Clamps let you attach the cable to a 12-volt battery. This type of light can be used in both fresh and salt water, and it will work with most species of game fish as well as shrimp, squid, and crab. It is also useful for lighting fish ponds or as a dock light. 

This light has an efficient design, with 180 SMD super bright LED lights arrayed on a 5-sided module to give 360 degrees of illumination. At 8 Watts of power, it draws only 0.9 Amps to produce 1080 lumens.

This low power-consumption rate lets you run the light about 8 times longer than a comparable halogen bulb. The LED system is surprisingly bright while producing far less heat than incandescent or vapor lights, making this light much easier to handle out of the water. 

The manufacturers of this light claim a durability of thousands of hours of continuous use. This may be true of the LEDs themselves, but we questioned the durability of the housing.

The entry point of the cable into the upper housing seal will undergo a lot of flexing, and it seemed like it needed better sealing. Other than that, the Samdo is a nice, bright light at a price point that will allow you to keep several colors on hand.

What we liked

  • Good value for the money
  • Bright LED system
  • Multiple applications
  • Very simple to use

What we didn't like

  • Cable entry seal has potential for leakage

The Amarine Deep Drop Underwater Light is a nice little unit that has many features we liked. Itsoverall build is strong, and at only 7 inches in length, storage is easy. The housing is tough enough to prevent breakage under most use conditions.

The LEDs are arranged in pairs, allowing for a 6-sided light module with 180 LEDs that put out 1,000 lumens at 0.9 Amps of power consumption. The light module is rated for 50,000 continuous hours and is also replaceable.

This light comes with a 20-foot cable, a bit longer than some of the other lights in this price range. It also features a cigarette lighter power adapter—this eliminates the need to carry an extra battery as long as your boat has a lighter. It also expands the usability of the light, making it great for emergency lighting, a vehicle trouble light, or a camping light.

An AC adapter will let you run the light on household current as well. This is a greatall-around light at a very economical price point. The only downside we saw was the cable entry point—the design is similar on many of these lights, and it looks prone to leakage after repeated flexing motions of the cable.

What we liked

  • Six-sided light stick seems very bright
  • Comes with a long cord
  • Cigarette lighter adapter included

What we didn't like

  • Cable entry seal has potential for leakage
Amarine-made Green Night Fishing Light

This ultra-compact light by Amarine-made crosses the categories of boat-mount and deep-drop lights. As a drop light, it has the advantage of reduced exposure to leakage by having only one sealed end. Or, because it has a flat base, it can be mounted on the transom of a boat with a small through-hole. The5-sided light module with 42 SMD super bright LED units puts out 1260 lumens on only 0.8 Amps of power. The small size of this light makes it easy to store, and it is very resistant to breakage.

The light comes with 19 feet of cord and standard battery terminal clamps, and is sealed to IP8 standards. The light is rated for 50,000 hours of continuous use, and the module is replaceable. This Amarine-made light is built heavy-duty and comes in at a great price point for boat-mounted lights.

What we liked

  • Ultra compact
  • Well-sealed
  • Can be hull-mounted

What we didn't like

  • Manufacturer gives no depth rating
Green LED Light Lure

Another style of portable light and one of the most economical and versatile ways to put some light into your night fishing is using a lighted lure. The Green LED night fishing lure can be used in any fresh or saltwater fishing situation and it works that same way that any fishing light does—by attracting the small bait fish that game fish feed on.

There are several advantages to lighted lures and, depending on the target species, many fishermen prefer them.For one thing, you won’t need an external power supply with a lighted lure.

The sealed unit has a coin cell battery inside, and the rechargeable batteries can provide up to 30 hours of use between charges. The lure is also very sturdy and will hold a watertight seal more easily than a large light tube.

These lures can be used on deep drops down to 2,000 feet, making them useful in cases where fishermen would normally use chemical glow tubes (for example when fishing for striped bass or swordfish that feed at night). Another benefit of the lighted lure is that multiple lures can be chained together.

Lighted lures can be dropped on independent lines to work as attractors, or tied into the main fishing line above the bait. They are very useful items, and even if you choose a submersible light stick as your primary fishing light, we recommend having a couple of LED night fishing lures in your tackle box as well.

What we liked

  • Study, simple, and versatile
  • Capable of deep drops
  • Very inexpensive

What we didn't like

  • Quality can vary a lot by unit
SUPERNIGHT High Density Green LED Light

We wanted to include an LED light strip in our review to highlight another fishing light strategy that is popular with some fishermen. This flexible, self-adhesive strip comes in 16-foot lengths and is powered by leads at the end of the strip that attach to any 12-volt battery. Strip lighting gives you a lot of light for the money, with 600 3528 SMD LED units on a 16-foot strip. Power consumption is very low in relation to the LED count, as a strip only draws 5 Amps, yet it will produce very bright light when properly installed. In fact, some fishermen install the light strip on a dimmer switch setup because 600 LEDs equals a lot of light output.

One way to use strip lighting is to attach the strip along the length of your boat just below the gunwale. This will attract bait fish all around the boat. It is also a way to provide light to help with handling lines and gear and improve safety for night boating without drawing insects. Another method for strip lighting is to weight the end of the strip and drop it down into the water as an underwater light.

LED strip lighting is very versatile and useful as well as being one of the least expensive types of fishing lights out there. Grabbing a reel of strip light LEDs to have around the boat is a no-brainer.

What we liked

  • Very inexpensive
  • Very bright
  • No problems with leaks
  • Many creative uses

What we didn't like

  • Can be tricky to stick to the boat hull
  • Need to use caution to avoid damage anywhere along the strip

Shedding the Light on Underwater Fishing Lights

When you begin shopping for the best underwater fishing light, the first thing you notice is that many share the same basic design—an SMD LED light module and some weight contained within a plastic tube that has rubber or silicone caps on each end, with one of the caps being penetrated by the drop cord.

Until manufacturers start bringing some product innovation online, the primary factor to distinguish one light from other will be the quality of the materials used and the build. Of course, keeping something well-sealed under even shallow water is tricky, and that is where build quality will make all the difference.

As you learn more about underwater fishing lights, you will find that many fisherman reinforce their lights with silicone seal or extra o-rings, depending on the type of light it is. The best way to find a light that will last in your fishing conditions is to research and shop carefully.

Most importantly, talk to other fishermen who enjoy going out at night—if possible, get in touch with shrimpers, sword fishermen, and squid boat hands who make their living on the night water.

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David Valle

I started this blog to provide advanced material, guiding you towards a better and more comfortable fishing experience. I deliver more than fishing gear guides, and motivate people to hit the water!