Are Your Headlights up to Snuff?
Most Vehicle Headlights Aren’t Good Enough
Are you experiencing difficulty when driving at night? Well, you’re really not alone because it is definitely harder to see at night, and that makes driving more challenging during these darker hours.
Still, you shouldn’t automatically conclude that finding it extra difficult to drive at night is normal, especially if you know for a fact that your eyesight is perfectly fine. Similarly, you shouldn’t immediately conclude that your problem with driving in the dark is caused by your poor eyesight. Believe it or not, there’s a bigger chance that you’re finding it hard to see at night because something’s wrong with your headlights and not your eyes.
Headlights were rated and the results were unsatisfactory
Based on the findings of a study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) released earlier this year, most new cars have ineffective headlights. Consequently, drivers are not getting the light they need to see the road clearly and safely avoid obstacles ahead.
According to the IIHS, among the vehicles they tested for headlight effectiveness, only one earned a rating of ‘good’, the Toyota Prius v. Eleven earned a rating of ‘acceptable’ , nine received a rating of ‘marginal’ and ten received a rating of ‘poor’ due to ‘unacceptable glare’. And it didn’t matter if the cars were using LED, HID (high-intensity discharge) or halogen technology.
The best and the worst
Considering that the cars tested were newer models, the results of the study are truly disappointing. If it’s just a matter of aesthetics, it’s much more forgivable. But since the impact is on safety, it’s quite disturbing.
What makes it even worse is the fact that luxury cars did not perform any better than regular cars. You would think that for its steep cost, its features should be superior. And then you find out that it’s just the opposite.
Who would have thought that the lowest rating would be given to a luxury car? Specifically, it’s the BMW 3-Series which received the worst score. Apparently, with the headlights of the said car, you’d have to be driving at the speed of 35 miles per hour or slower, otherwise, you won’t be able to stop in time to avoid hitting an obstacle on the road.
In contrast, if you were driving a Toyota Prius v which received the best rating among the group of cars tested because of its LED lights and high beams, you can travel safely for up to 70 miles per hour and still have enough braking time to steer clear of an obstacle.
The results of the study show that regardless of how bright your headlights are and what type of technology is used (older halogen or newer LED), it will not matter if your lights are not mounted and aimed properly. Moreover, the high price of your car is not a guarantee that you’ll have the best headlights around.
Because having sufficient light is crucial in accident prevention, just like the IIHS, we too hope that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will use the study done as a basis for improving standards on vehicle headlight performance. Better yet, we hope car makers will voluntarily take corrective steps to ensure that they install their headlights in the most optimal way possible.
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Here at Big Sky Collision Center, we make sure to take care of you after your accident. Our staff takes ownership of the work that they do, which means your vehicle is restored to factory safety standards. You receive a vehicle that looks as though it was never damaged, and there are no hidden problems that will pop up down the road!
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