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Mar 25th, 2012
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Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) #5552307 01/19/15 09:34 PM
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Kingfisher77 Offline OP
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I purchased a CT-50 flashlight for $49.99 from Academy in Austin before Christmas. I did not have a chance to use it until after Christmas during my final hunt of rifle season. I hunt in Coke County, and it was very, very cold that particular week.

It was so cold, in fact, that the light wouldn't work. Seriously, the light will not work when it is cold and this is known to the engineers at Coleman (see below).

I turned on the light right at sunset...tracking a downed deer and the light lasted for about 15 minutes. Just enough time to find the deer and load it on to the ranger. When I returned to camp, I tried to turn the light back on, and it was dead. Hmm.

I emailed Coleman USA customer service, and to their credit they did email me back, but they will not stand behind their product. In short, they cannot offer a refund because it is a "battery issue", offered a replacement and admitted that it would likely not "improve performance" as the replacement light still will not work in cold weather.

Think about everyone that has purchased one of these lights that may be depending on it for emergencies. At the time that it died, it was the only light that I had on me.

There should be some sort of warning on the packaging about the light not working in cold weather, and coleman USA should stand behind their products.

Seriously...people hunt and camp when it is very, very cold. I was floored when they admitted yes the light, even if replaced will not work in the cold, and no we are not going to offer a refund.

$50 is the price point where I expect a decent light. BTW, every off brand, "cheap" light in our camp worked that night.


Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5552394 01/19/15 10:19 PM
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Next, they'll tell us that it only works in daylight.


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Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5552409 01/19/15 10:24 PM
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I think I'm disappointed more than I am surprised.

There's a mid 70's coleman stove and glass lantern in my dad's attic and I'll bet that they both still work.

In this era, it's likely that coleman outsources pretty much everything related to manufacturing and most "name brand" flashlights are all made in the same factory in China.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5552423 01/19/15 10:36 PM
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I think you are reading that wrong but I could be mistaken. I don't read it to say their product is faulty but that very cold conditions robs batteries of performance which does happen. Think about it..... the batteries went dead....light still worked but the batteries were drained.

http://chemistry.about.com/od/howthingsworkfaqs/f/coldbattery.htm



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Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5552428 01/19/15 10:42 PM
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That's the way I read it, but if that is the case, why not have something on the packaging letting the customer know that the light will only work for a few minutes in cold weather?

That light drained those batteries in 15 minutes, tops, could have been less time than that. I literally put the batteries in about 3:00 that evening on my way to the stand.

I would have purchased a different light if I had known that the battery issue would prevent it from working in the cold.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5552431 01/19/15 10:45 PM
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We also had 3 or 4 "cheap" lights, they all worked the entire week that we were there.

Reading product reviews online ( I know, I know...anyone can say anything) it appears as though several customers have had the same issue with this particular light, but not with others in the price range.

Just want to make sure that nobody takes a night drive in icy conditions using this as the only light in their vehicle.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5552443 01/19/15 10:51 PM
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This guy (see screen shot) had the exact same experience, exact same response from Coleman, and elected to flame them on their Facebook page.

I am not going to go that far, but when called out publicity it appears that they will do the right thing:

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5554357 01/20/15 09:50 PM
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Academy has a 60 day return policy, don't they?


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Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: QuitShootinYoungBucks] #5554402 01/20/15 10:31 PM
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Originally Posted By: QuitShootinYoungBucks
Academy has a 60 day return policy, don't they?


This


Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5554416 01/20/15 10:42 PM
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The way that I read the return policy is that I can only exchange for the same merchandise...which will have the same issue.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5554419 01/20/15 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted By: Kingfisher77
The way that I read the return policy is that I can only exchange for the same merchandise...which will have the same issue.


Not if you take it back to any Academy store.


Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5554423 01/20/15 10:48 PM
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Good to know, I have the receipt, I'll give it a shot.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5554575 01/21/15 12:32 AM
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For what its worth I was in Coke county during that same time period and my new Iphone couldn't handle the cold either. Fully charged battery and it would shut down after about an hour outside and I couldn't get it to come back on until I took it inside the trailer.

$50 flash light should work in the cold though. Buy a $50 Streamlight and you wont be sorry!

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Pope&Young] #5554623 01/21/15 12:54 AM
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Originally Posted By: Pope&Young
Originally Posted By: Kingfisher77
The way that I read the return policy is that I can only exchange for the same merchandise...which will have the same issue.


Not if you take it back to any Academy store.


This, Academy is good about returns. Good luck

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: JCB] #5554808 01/21/15 02:47 AM
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Originally Posted By: JCB


$50 flash light should work in the cold though. Buy a $50 Streamlight and you wont be sorry!


Absolutely. I use $7 LED headlamps that work fine for hours on end in -15. My LED maglites will work for >8 hours at -25 and that is using standard alkaline batteries, not lithiums. I was on an emergency call out replacing a pump last weekend at -15 and my maglite was on for over 4 hours straight and that was batteries that were at least 6 months old that had already been used multiple times.


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Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5561768 01/24/15 03:08 PM
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Happy ending, returned to Academy for a full refund.

I'm going to do my homework and find a great "all weather" light for next season.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5561899 01/24/15 04:55 PM
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I've found that Academy and Walmart are good accepting returns...having the receipt almost guarantees you an exchange, credit, or cash back. I must admit that if its so cold the flashlight doesn't work, I'm probably heading for the house!


"The surest sign that there is intelligent life elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us."
Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: deedeetaylor] #5567381 01/27/15 06:48 PM
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I wouldn't hold Coleman responsible for this issue. Alkaline batteries are notoriously bad in extreme heat and cold temps. This is why all my outdoors/hunting/camping flashlights run on CR123 lithium batteries.

Your light would've worked just fine if you'd used lithium AA batteries in it. Prepare to be disappointed again with ANY light you use in that kind of cold if you're running alkalines in it.

Either way, glad you ended up happy and whole.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5567485 01/27/15 07:40 PM
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I agree, I'll know next time to use lithium batteries.

However, I do feel that it's worth noting that we had 3 cheap lights in camp, 2 with alkaline batteries and they all worked.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5567516 01/27/15 07:58 PM
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Originally Posted By: Kingfisher77

However, I do feel that it's worth noting that we had 3 cheap lights in camp, 2 with alkaline batteries and they all worked.


Now that's something to consider. I would've compared the brands of batteries. It's possible the batteries that came in the light were mass produced cheaply, whereas the other lights may have had better Energizer or Duracell batteries in them.

In my opinion, the best bang for the buck flashlight out there is the Surefire G2X Pro in yellow. You'll never lose it, it has high and low mode, runs on CR123 batteries, is only around $50 online, and comes with an unconditional lifetime warranty if anything ever were to go wrong.

Last edited by clandr1; 01/27/15 07:58 PM.
Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5567559 01/27/15 08:28 PM
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another vote for SureFire

all worked in sub freezing ,,,, as in 19F

but , they use CR123 or Lithium rechargeable

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5568571 01/28/15 06:39 AM
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Both of our ct-50 and 70 work fine in freezing cold and rainy weather.

Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5572438 01/30/15 05:00 AM
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Ive got the same light, got it around Christmas. I haven't had any issues with my light and using regular energizer batteries, they last a very long time. The only issue I have had is that the battery carriage has broken in two places but Im still able to get it into the light and it works fine. Ive used it out when its been in the 20's and haven't had a problem with it working.


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Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5572535 01/30/15 08:58 AM
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I generally don't consider much that says "Coleman" on it unless it's a lantern. Just the fact they have to be called out publicly before getting a response from "Taylor at Coleman" is a red flag to me. From the posts, it looks like this has been an issue since at least 2013.

I'll stay away and warn others off as well. OP, good post.


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Re: Buyer beware - Coleman CT-50 (with response from Coleman USA) [Re: Kingfisher77] #5572700 01/30/15 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted By: Kingfisher77
.. BTW, every off brand, "cheap" light in our camp worked that night....

Which is why it's silly to spend more than $20 on a (standard) flashlight ;
there is only $6 cost of materials in a hp LED flashlight, including a LiPo battery (18650- rechargeable),
and they are ALL (emitters, batteries) made in asia anyway, regardless of what brand your buy.

I now have about 6 flashlights (cheap UltraFire WF-502B w/18650 shipped for $10 straight from china) that have been serving me well for the last 3 years for what ONE would have cost. Never had a battery run completely run out ( still run for 10-15 min slowly dimming) at any temp, and best part, I haven't spent more than 2min ever 'looking for that dang flashlight' or batteries. If you're still using lights with throw-away batteries and haven't experienced what 18650's offer, then your are seriously old-school; you might as well be carrying a tar-pitch torch around, heh heh heh. Imagine a laptop or iphone running on AA's - silly, right? You can get these 18650's nearly free by tearing apart a 'modern' laptop battery (that no longer 'holds a charge') - usually only 1 cell of the 4 or 6 will be bad. I have 6 lights and about 20 batteries now - haven't had a battery die yet . . .

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