Car detailers who perform paint correction will need to inspect the paint carefully to see how much and how aggressive to polish the vehicle in order to remove the imperfections in the paint. Therefore, if you ever need to inspect the paint on your car, you may want to invest in an inspection light.
Inspection lights provide a beam of light that is concentrated in order to check for flaws in the paint. The best thing about this Coast G20 inspection light is that it is extremely compact and costs very little amount of money (about $10 at the time of this post.) The downside to this however, is that it is a small beam of light and it is best used for the occasional inspection.
The Coast G20 is actually called a penlight and is sized as such. It is operated via the power button on the top of the light. It also has a clip that you can clip to your clothing. The pen material looks of high quality and feels great in the hand.
The penlight is decently bright, however it is very concentrated. If you are relatively close to the paint surface you’re looking at, it can be very bright. However, as you move away from the surface, the light begins to get larger but it also becomes more dim.
The light is pretty decent at spotting scratches and swirl marks when you’re either in the shade or indoors. If you’re trying to use this light out in the sun, there’s almost no point as you won’t be able to see the light very well. It’s best used when you don’t have sun shining on the paint surface that you’re looking at.
I’ve used the Coast G20 Penlight for both auto body work and car detailing. While painting, you need to check for paint coverage. If you don’t have direct sunlight, it’s hard to identify any light spots that require more paint. I’ve tried using this penlight and it does not do much for illuminating areas that might have light paint. This penlight is simply too small and weak for this purpose.
For car detailing, it has some limited use. If you’re detailing your entire vehicle and you need to inspect for paint defects, this inspection light would not be ideal as it would just take too long to inspect the whole car with such a small inspection light.
If you’re trying to inspect a particular area of the paint or just need something compact that you can carry around in your pocket for use on the occasional inspection, this pen will do just that. Personally, I’d carry this pen around if I knew I needed to focus on a particular section of the car to check for paint defects. However, if I needed to inspect the whole vehicle, I’d opt for a more powerful Scangrip or similarly-powered inspection light instead.