Jun 04, 2023

These LED Shop Lights Give You the Best Visibility in Your Shed — And Save Energy All the While

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If you use your garage, basement, or toolshed to tackle DIY projects, you know that lighting your workspace can be a major headache. Dedicated workshop lights, which typically hang from the ceiling and use bright, wide-casting bulbs, ensure that you can work accurately and safely.

Shop lights are especially important when performing intricate or unwieldy tasks, like woodworking or tuning up your car. Plus, with the right lights, you’ll have a much easier time finding that dropped screw or fastener.

If you’re currently using incandescent or fluorescent bulbs, it's probably time for an upgrade to LED shop lights. These high-powered bulbs provide brighter light and a less energy-intensive way to light your shop compared to traditional bulbs, plus their lifespans are significantly longer—typically over 50,000 hours. They also make less heat than incandescent bulbs, and typically don't make a noticeable humming sound—ideal for focusing on your project.

We used our shop experience to find the best LED shop lights on the market, so you can use your workspace without worrying about pesky shadows or hard-to-replace overhead bulbs.

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The most important thing to consider when choosing your LED shop lights is how they’re going to be installed. Most shop lights are designed to hang from the ceiling, above head height and directly over the workspace to reduce shadows. Some sit flush with the wall or ceiling.

If you’re lighting an entire garage or larger room, as opposed to a targeted space like a workbench, buy enough lights to situate them several feet apart, but close enough to reduce shadows between lamps. When it comes to brightness, aim for around 3,000 lumens per light for maximum visibility in your workspace.

Install your lights within reach of an outlet or, if you want a cleaner look, you can wire them yourself. (This can be a much bigger task, though, and might require an electrician's help.) While the majority of these lights include wall anchors for securing them to the ceiling, they usually aren't the highest quality, so we recommend buying some quality self-drilling drywall anchors to make sure your lights stay put even if they get knocked around on occasion. That said, most LED shop lights are lightweight.

Some LED shop lights come with adjustable arms for shedding light on various work areas. Other features you might want to look for include dimming, portability, and diffusing lenses.

We selected the best LED shop lights based on the quality of the hardware, ease of installation, usability, and extra features like dimmers and adjustable arms. We did our best to include a variety of shop light styles, including the typical long, flat lights, as well as thin LED "stick" lights that take up minimal room but still produce an impressive amount of light. We prioritized kits with multiple units, so you can customize the layout and number of lights to fit your work area.

You can mount these four-foot LED shop lights flush to the ceiling, with anchors and screws, or suspended from chains, with the included ceiling hooks. That means installation is extremely flexible, and at less than five pounds each, getting these lights set up is no big deal.

Our favorite feature of these lights is that they link together so you don't need a separate power source for each light bar. Each unit's 4.8-inch power cord makes this daisy-chain design even more convenient. These lights produce 4,000 lumen each and have an effective 240-degree beam spread. Their five-year warranty is a nice perk as well.

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5000K LED Utility Shop Lights


These LED lights are a great fit for anyone who wants more flexibility than fixed tube lights can offer. They’re actually composed of four separate light panels per light, each of which independently adjusts from zero to 90 degrees. You can precisely customize the angles before installation, which is great for shining light on an odd corner or specific work area.

The lights fit right into an existing light socket in your ceiling, screwing in like any light bulb. They produce a bright 8,000 lumens each, and the aluminum body makes them a bit more durable than plastic models.

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80W Ultra Bright Garage/Shop Lights


In addition to plugging into an extension cord or wall outlet, these lights can be hardwired into a wall switch, making them great for those looking for a low-profile lighting setup. This kit isn't the cheapest option on the market, but you do receive 10 individual lights, each an impressive eight feet long.

If you want to make them even longer, you can simply connect them together end-to-end. With each tube producing 9,000 lumens, these lights pack impressive illumination into a small package. All mounting hardware is included as well, making this a cost-effective option for bigger work spaces.

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LED Shop Light


This six-pack of LED shop lights includes all the mounting hardware you need to hang them from your shop or garage ceiling, whether you want to mount them or suspend them from chains.

We’re big fans of the classic pull-chain on/off switch, as well as the heavy-duty five-foot power cords on these shop lights. This model is also Energy Star-certified, so you know that it uses 90% less energy than standard bulbs. Its impressive seven-year warranty is longer than most other competitors, and its LED tubes are designed to last for 50,000 hours without fail.

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LED Shop Lights 6-Pack


We always appreciate additional safety features, which is why we’re such big fans of this light and its handy safety line, which connects the light to the mounting ring. If, for any reason, the connection between the light and mounting hardware fails, this line prevents the light from falling and potentially injuring anyone below.

The light is also IP65-rated, ensuring that it can withstand low-pressure jets of water as well as condensation, making it well-suited for humid workshops. Its 120-degree beam angle covers a wide area, and the unit itself comes with a five-year warranty. For bright, heavy-duty shop lights, these are the best pick.

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High Bay Commercial Shop Lights


The fan-shaped design of this LED light features four double-hinged wings, allowing for total customization when it comes to angling your light source. You can fold the wings up towards the ceiling and still achieve full, floor-to-ceiling coverage — something that other lights just can't do.

You can install it by screwing the base into an existing light socket, so installation is about as easy as it comes. The budget-friendly price is definitely a nice benefit, but keep in mind that this kit only includes one unit, unlike our other picks that usually come with two, four, or six lights in a pack.

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8-Leaf LED Garage Light


We’re big fans of these simple LED lights, which feature a three-sided lens to diffuse light evenly across the room and classic chrome pull chains for activation. The heavy-duty power cord is nice and long—44 inches, to be exact—and makes this a convenient plug-and-play model for those shop owners who don't have much installation or DIY experience.

These produce 7,000 lumens per light, and function effectively in temperatures as low as -4 degrees, making them well-suited for use in a garage or standalone workshop.

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Utility LED Shop Light


Even though it's shorter than most of the options we have on our list, this light is great for workbenches because it's considerably wider and focuses a ton of light on a small area.

At less than two feet long and 17.3 inches wide, this LED light is also easier to install than longer, thinner options that can be awkward to position. Plus, it's designed for two types of mounting—either suspended from chains or attached directly to the ceiling.

Rated to stand up to temperatures from -4 to 120 degrees and boasting a 100,000-hour lifespan, this durable light should last you quite a while.

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Condor LED Shop Lights


The compact size of this Dewenwils LED shop light makes it a convenient and effective option for those who prefer something a bit more portable in their shop. The 15-foot power cord should provide the portability you need to reposition it wherever you like, whether that's above your workbench or under a car hood.

It also features a retractable hook and a strong magnet, so you can hang or mount it practically anywhere. Thanks to the integrated outlet, it can also double as an extension cord.

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Hanging LED Workshop Light


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