Foggy weather and dark roads can make driving difficult, but your car's headlights are there to light the way. We'll explain the different types of headlights and their functions to help you better understand the options available for forward illumination.
Headlights: High and Low Beams
Headlights come in two types: high beams and low beams. High beams, or main or full beams, provide an intense, concentrated light with no glare control. They're perfect for use when you're driving alone on the road, but they can be too bright for other drivers if used in traffic.
Low beams, also called dipped or passing beams, provide adequate forward and lateral illumination without blinding other drivers with excessive glare. They're designed for use when other vehicles are present on the road.
Auxiliary Lights: Driving, Fog, and Cornering Lights
Driving Lights: Driving lights are auxiliary high-beam lights that provide intense, long-range light for better visibility. They're a great help on rally cars or vehicles traveling long distances on unlit roads. Regulations for driving lights vary by country, so it's essential to check local rules before installing them on your car.
Fog Lights: Fog lights help drivers see better in foggy, rainy, or snowy conditions. They're mounted low on the vehicle and produce a wide, flat beam of light that doesn't cause glare. While not always legally required, fog lights can be a helpful addition to your car for improved visibility in poor weather.
Cornering Lights: Cornering lights are designed to provide extra illumination when turning or changing lanes. They're activated along with your turn signals or when your steering wheel reaches a certain angle in the direction you're turning. While cornering lights have traditionally been prohibited under international regulations, recent changes now allow them as long as they only operate at speeds below 40 km/h (about 25 mph).
Spotlights: For police cars, emergency vehicles, and rally competitors, auxiliary spotlights are sometimes used. These swivel-mounted lights can be aimed in any direction by a handle inside the vehicle, providing extra illumination when needed.
Understanding the different types of forward illumination can help you make the best choice for your vehicle and driving conditions. Stay safe on the road by ensuring your car is equipped with the right headlights and auxiliary lights for your needs.
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