For this product review of the GoalZero Torch 250, I was pleasantly surprised at the versatility, durability, and power of this device. In the past month, I’ve had the opportunity to use it on a family camping trip, some evening outdoor work, and a recent power outage. In all of these uses, the product exceeded my expectations.
I received our GoalZero Torch 250 just days before we left on a camping trip to Fundy National Park. The cabin (O-Tentik) that we rented had no electricity and the Torch 250 was perfect for lighting up this large room for our family of 6. The red LED lighting was also great for lighting up the walking path and maintaining ‘night vision’ on evening treks to the bathrooms!
We used the spotlight for wildlife spotting on evening drives along the Cabot Trail and this performed as good as any of the much larger DC plug-in spotlights that we’ve used in the past.
GoalZero did an excellent job of making this device extremely versatile! The beveled edges of the Torch 250 allow for optimal solar charging angles if you want to lay this on your car’s dashboard for an afternoon charge; the metal clips that fold down nicely into the flashlight’s end are ideal for hanging the light on hooks, doorknobs; a nail, or other locations to put out light where you need it; and the wrap-around floodlight LEDs put out light in multiple directions and really does an excellent job of illuminating large areas.
The charging handle is well made and has a magnet inside the handle that allows it to snap snuggly into place on the side of the light. The charging cord is located in a recessed channel along the opposite side with rubber edges that allow the cord and USB plug to stay tightly attached to the light when you're not charging it.
The blue LED lights will illuminate when the light is in use, showing use the available battery life. The lights will also blink when charging which is a handy indicator when determining if the solar panel is charging the battery.
On our recent trip, we used the GoalZero Torch 250’s charging port multiple times as the kid’s passed it around the car to charge their phones. This ‘kept the peace’ on what is usually a fight for using our mini-van's single DC port.
When we came home from our trip, we noticed a broken step on our deck (no break for Dad?!), so I grabbed the Torch 250, saw, wood and cordless drill and repaired the broken tread. It was so nice to have a bright light illuminating the work area without having to run an extension cord!
For charging, the USB cord is the fastest method…by far. While the solar panel and hand crank are great charging options, when the USB charger is not feasible, you’re not likely to get a full charge from either of these options. I put the Torch 250 on our dashboard during a recent 8-hour car drive and it charged the battery approximately 25-30% (added 1 blue LED light).
At home, we have the Yeti 1250 that is charged by a few roof-mounted solar panels. I’ve used the Yeti’s output USB ports to charge the Torch 250 in the evening and it’s worked out great! I’m a new customer to the GoalZero product line, but from what I’ve seen so far…I’m a fan! I’ve also read a lot about the humanitarian aid and product deployment that GoalZero does for many poor communities around the globe, making me want to support their company all the more!
In summary, the GoalZero Torch 250 is a high-quality product that over-delivers! I expect to get many years of use out of it on future adventures. Its versatility and ability to light-up and charge in any environment makes it a terrific addition to anyone’s adventure or camping list.