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Frequently Asked Questions

Placing an Order on LuminAID.com

I need help with my order!
  • We're sorry to hear that you're having difficulties with your order! Please contact us at orders@luminaid.com or fill out this  form with any questions and we will do our best to respond within one business day.

Do I have to pay sales tax?
  • Customers living in Texas and Illinois will have to pay Texas and Illinois state sales tax, but all other customers will not be charged sales tax. If you are an international customer, please be aware that you are responsible for any applicable customs/duties upon receiving your package from the US.
Do you offer wholesale pricing for group orders?
  • Wholesale pricing is available for orders of 24+ lights. Please contact us here for more information.

Shipping and returns
  • For shipping and warranty information please see our Shipping and Returns page, or email orders@luminaid.com. 



About Your Light

How big is a LuminAID light?
  • LuminAID lights vary in size. The best way to get a sense of the size is to look at the individual product images on the product pages or to watch the product videos. All our lights deflate to approximately 1" thick and inflate into different sized cube volumes. The PackLite Max USB is our largest lantern and inflates into a 6"x6"x6" cube.

How bright are LuminAID lights?
  • LuminAID lights vary in brightness and performance depending on which product you have. The standard unit of measurement for brightness is "lumens" and this is indicated on the individual product pages, or in a chart on the How it Works page. We measure the lumens of our lanterns by 3rd party testing centers.

What is my light made of?
  • LuminAID lights are made of durable material called TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane). This material is 100% PVC-free and phthalate-free. Each light contains a a high-efficiency monocrystalline solar panel, LED circuit, and a lithium-ion battery.

What is PVC and why is it important that the LuminAID lights are PVC-free?
  • PVC (polyvinyl chloride) is a type of halogenated plastic that contains two known human carcinogens: vinyl chloride and dioxin. These carcinogens are not only emitted in large quantities during production but on the plastic itself. Vinyl chloride is an essential component of PVC that is not used in any other plastic. Dioxin is a bioaccumulative substance that builds up over time in human bodies and emissions from PVC are higher than other plastics. As LuminAID lights are meant to be safe for the entire family and inflated with direct contact to the plastic valve, LuminAID Lab is happy to produce 100% PVC-free lights.

What is the difference between lumens and watts?
  • Lumens are a standard unit used for measuring brightness of lights, while watts are a unit for measuring the amount of electricity required to power an electrically-powered object. In lightbulbs, watts are used to signify how much energy is required to power the bulb. Therefore, more energy-efficient lightbulbs may use fewer watts to produce the same number of Lumens (brightness).

    As our LuminAID lights are solar-powered, and do not depend on an electrical grid, it is more relevant to provide the number of Lumens that our lights produce. That way, we may explain how bright the light they produce is, and how large of a space they can illuminate. Our PackLite 16 is our highest-performing light, and can easily illuminate a 10 x 10 sqft space at 65 lumens on its brightest setting. Many of our customers find it comparable with battery-powered lanterns, and easier to maintain.

Can I personalize or custom print my light?
  • Yes! We offer custom printing of corporate logos, designs, or instructions on the PackLite 16. This option is available for orders of 120+ units, and you can learn more here for pricing and further details.



Care and Usage

How do I adjust settings or turn my light on/off?
  • Each of our lights has a red power button below the solar panel. Press this button firmly to turn your light ON, cycle through brightness settings, and turn it OFF. This button is slightly inset to ensure that your light will not be turned on by accident and lose charge.

Is the LuminAID waterproof? Can I submerge it?
  • Yes, LuminAID lights are all waterproof and dustproof! They can be submerged up to 1 meter (FL 1 STANDARD IPX-67) and can float. With the PackLite Max, however, it is important to always ensure that USB charging input and the USB charging output ports are securely closed and covered when not in use. Do not expose the PackLite Max to water when it is charging via USB.

What temperatures can my light operate under?
  • LuminAID solar lights contain lithium-ion polymer batteries, similar to the battery inside most cell phones. The LuminAID light has two temperature ranges: 1. Temperature range to recharge in sun which is 32 degrees F to 113 degrees F and 2. Temperature range to turn on lantern which is -4 degrees F to 140 degrees F. Temperatures lower or higher than that can damage the battery and reduce overall battery life. To increase longevity of the battery, it is best to avoid recharging your light in temperatures below freezing. If you do need to use your product in sub-zero temperatures, we recommend recharging it when it is warmer and using the Medium or Low setting when in sub-zero temperatures to get the most run time hours out of your light before needing to recharge it again. If you need to recharge it and only have sub-zero temperatures, we recommend placing it in a sunny window or for a few hours each day during peak sun hours outside. It will take a few days longer to fully charge.

Can I recycle my LuminAID light?
  • LuminAID lights are made out of completely recyclable parts. You can recycle a LuminAID anywhere that cell phones, digital cameras, or iPods are accepted for recycling (ex: Home Depot).

Why is my light not lasting very long?
  • LuminAID lights have multiple brightness settings and each setting has a corresponding run time. The low and flashing settings have the longest run times. If you are recharging on an overcast day or did not have enough sun to fully recharge the battery, we recommend using the Low or Medium setting in order to maximize the run time. For more details on run times for each setting, the individual product pages list the run times in hours. Some LuminAID lights have Turbo mode which is the brightest mode. This mode is perfect for those moments when you need the brightest lantern possible for things like task work or emergencies. Turbo mode has the shortest run time because the LEDs are extremely bright. If you press the power button once more to cycle to High mode, you will have roughly 2X the run time as the Turbo mode.

What happens if my light doesn't turn on?
  • There are a few possible reasons why it may not be turning on. The most likely reason is that it needs to be recharged. Below are a few steps to see if this may be the issue. After going through these steps, if it still isn't working after recharging, please email us at orders@luminaid.com or fill out this form here. 1. Hold the product outside in the sun with the solar panel facing the sun and check to see if the red LED on the front of the product shines red. This indicates that it is recharging. 2. If the red LED is turning on, find a sunny spot outside and leave the product outside in direct sun for a full 2 days (in order to top off the battery and completely recharge it). Windows block light, so it is important to put it outside and avoid shady areas. If the red LED is not turning on in the sun or the product still does not turn on after recharging, please email orders@luminaid.com. We have a worry-free 1-Year Warranty and want to make sure all our customers are happy with their lights.



Inflating your light

Why do my lights inflate?
  • LuminAID's patented inflatable LED technology was designed to create a lightweight, portable lantern that could pack down flat for easy storage and charging, and then inflate to diffuse the bright the LEDs. The diffuse, glare-free lighting is great for lighting up a tent, reading at night, or taking on a walk to light up your path. The inflatable component of the LuminAID invention also responds to the distribution challenges of humanitarian aid organizations. 50 PackLite 16 lanterns fit in the same space as 10 traditional flashlights, reducing shipping costs and improving portability for often hard-to-reach communities in need of light.

How do I inflate my LuminAID light?
  • LuminAID lights have inflatable air valves. Simply bite or pinch the base of the valve while inflating to open the airway and allow air to flow in. The valves are partially open to make it easier to inflate and deflate quickly. Over time, the valve will become more flexible, and the inflating and deflating process will be easier.



Charging your light

How do I charge my light?
  • LuminAID lights all have a high-efficiency monocrystalline solar panel that recharges the built-in battery when exposed to direct sun. To recharge your light, place the light in direct, outdoor sun with the solar panel facing the sun. Windows block light and signicantly slow down charging. For optimum charging, place the light outside in an area away from shadows or shade. Charge times vary depending on time of year, location, and product. For detailed information, refer to the Charging section on the How it Works page.

How do I know if my LuminAID light is recharging?
  • All LuminAID lights have a red LED on the front of the product that is the solar indicator. The solar indicator shines red when the solar panel is exposed to light and keeps shining red even when the battery is fully charged. It only stops shining red when the solar panel is no longer exposed to light. You can test this by covering the solar panel and you will see the solar indicator LED stop shining red. The solar indicator is extremely sensitive because of the high quality solar panel and you may see it glowing red even when the solar panel is not in direct sun. For example, you may see that the solar indicator shines red when you hold the LuminAID light near a window or an ambient light source. Even though the solar indicator may be red, this does not mean the solar panel is picking up enough sunlight to fully recharge the battery. To ensure the solar panel is recharging the battery, place your LuminAID light outside in direct, outdoor sun away from shaded areas.

Can I recharge it in a window or on cloudy days? What about the winter?
  • The LuminAID will charge on overcast or cloudy days, but you'll see the most efficient charging times with direct sun. Windows block light and signicantly slow down charging. For optimum charging, place the light outside in an area away from shadows or shade. Charge times vary depending on time of year, location, and product. In the winter, you will see slower run times because the sun is not as strong and there are fewer hours available for direct sun. For detailed information, refer to the Charging section on the How it Works page.

Is the battery replaceable?
  • The battery does not need to be replaced as it is easily recharged by the solar panel on the front of the light. The lithium-ion polymer battery is built to be long-lasting and is high-performing for 1000+ recharges. It performs at 100% for 500+ recharges and at 90% performance for another 500+ recharges for a total of 1,000+ recharges at high performance. Our worry-free warranty lasts for one year after purchase but our lights are made to last for 5+ years of use.

How long will a full charge last in my light?
  • All LuminAID lights use a lithium-ion polymer rechargeable battery, similar to the battery in most cell phones. Once fully charged, the battery will hold a majority of its charge and light up after over a year of being in storage. Like all rechargeable batteries, it does lose a small percentage of charge over time when it is in storage and not being used. In order to ensure the product is fully charged when you need it, we recommend that you recharge the light in direct sun every 6-8 months.

How long does a LuminAID light hold a charge in storage?
  • LuminAID lights contain a lithium-ion polymer rechargeable battery, similar to the battery in most cell phones. Once fully charged, the battery will hold a majority of its charge and light up after over a year of being in storage. Like all rechargeable batteries, it does lose a small percentage of charge over time when it is in storage and not being used. In order to ensure the product is fully charged when you need it, we recommend that you recharge the light in direct sun every few months.

What's that red LED on the front of my LuminAID light?
  • All LuminAID lights have a red LED on the front of the product that is the solar indicator. The solar indicator shines red when the solar panel is exposed to light and keeps shining red even what the battery is fully charged. It only stops shining red when the solar panel is no longer exposed to light. You can test this by covering the solar panel and you will see the solar indicator LED stop shining red. The solar indicator is extremely sensitive because of the high quality solar panel and you may see it glowing red even when the solar panel is not in direct sun. For example, you may see that the solar indicator shines red when you hold the LuminAID light near a window or an ambient light source. Even though the solar indicator may be red, this does not mean the solar panel is picking up enough sunlight to fully recharge the battery. To ensure the solar panel is recharging the battery, place your LuminAID light outside in direct, outdoor sun away from shaded areas.

How do the green charging indicator LEDs work?
  • The PackLite Spectra, Nova, and Max USB all have a battery charge indicator button that allows you to see the percent charge of the battery. The battery charge indicator LEDs are programmed to light up when the battery is within a specified voltage range. The voltage ranges are divided into four segments that correspond to approximately 20-25% charge increments. Because it is a voltage range of approximately 20-25%, run times may vary even if two units indicate the same battery level. The battery has built-in overcharge protection so it cannot overcharge. The product can continue to charge even when all 4 green LEDs light up.

My product has a micro-USB input. What should I use to recharge it?
  • Some versions of LuminAID lights have a 5V micro-USB input port. This port is waterproof and is located near the solar panel on the front of the product under a white cap. We include a red micro-USB to USB charging cord that you can use to recharge it. Simply plug in the micro-USB end into the port on the LuminAID light and plug the USB end of the cord into your computer or a 5V USB wall outlet adapter. You can use the same wall adapter that came with your phone.



Making an Impact

How can I support LuminAID's Give Light Mission?
  • Making light accessible for all is what drives LuminAID forward. Our Give Light program allows you to join our mission and get involved by helping sponsor safe, solar rechargeable lanterns for those in need. By purchasing a Give Light Get Light package, you not only receive one PackLite 16 in the mail, but also sponsor a LuminAID lantern for a family without safe and dependable access to light. On the Give Light Get Light purchasing page, you can choose to send the sponsored light to one of our featured charitable causes, or "Allocate as Needed." The allocate as needed stock allows us to work with smaller organizations and causes with pressing need but limited resources. This way, we are able to partner with a range of impactful causes and broaden our positive global impact. You can read about one such project here. A little light goes a long way: children can study after dark, improving their long-term educational prospects; communities reduce harmful fumes, high costs, and fire risk associated with kerosene lamps; families left vulnerable by natural disasters report increased feelings of safety and security; and medical teams are able to shine a light on much-need care to remote areas.

What comes in a Give Light, Get Light package?
  • When you purchase the Give Light, Get Light package, your order will include one LuminAID PackLite 16 light for you and one LuminAID light donated in your name to a person in need. You will be able to choose which charity you would like your sponsored light to go to. When you receive your order in the mail, it will contain your LuminAID light and a confirmation card with the name of the charity that received your sponsored light.

    If you would like to select a PackLite Spectra for your Give Light Get Light package, you can add a sponsored light onto your PackLite Spectra purchase for $10. You would then receive a PackLite Spectra in the mail, and would sponsor one LuminAID light for a family in need.

Do you have a special program for Peace Corps volunteers?
  • Yes! We love working with the dedicated individuals who bring change through the Peace Corps. We offer special discounts for Peace Corps volunteers, and are always looking for volunteers to distribute lights in the field. Please fill out our contact form here, or read more about our Peace Corps volunteers here.



Other

How can I contact you via phone?
  • Our team works hard to respond to inquiries within 48 hours. Our contact form is the quickest and most efficient way for our team to provide you with the best service; however, if you prefer us to give you a call, please send us a short explanation on this form of the issue and your phone number, and we'll give you a call within 1 business day.

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