You need them to see when you're driving at night. You need them to warn others who are driving behind you. You need them to see inside your vehicle.
We’re talking about the different lights on your car. You may not give them much thought, but your vehicle lights are an important safety feature. So, how do you maintain, choose, and replace your headlights, taillights and interior lights? We have some tips for you.
Types of Car Lights
Also known as headlamps, headlights are the lights attached to the front of your vehicle that light the road ahead. Headlights alert others you are there in the dark, but they also make you more visible to other drivers regardless of the time of day.
Why are they so important? Half of all traffic fatalities happen in the dark, despite only 25 percent of traveling at night, according to the U.S. Highway Traffic Safety Administration
The lights that are mounted to the rear of your vehicle are called taillights. The purpose of taillights is to indicate to other drivers who are behind what you’re doing, whether it’s turning, braking, stopping, or backing up.
When you have your hazard lights flashing, this makes you more visible in traffic and alerts drivers around you to proceed with caution. By paying attention to the messages your taillights are sending, drivers who are behind you can better predict your next move on the road.
The lights that illuminate the inside of your vehicle, whether the front or the back, or even the trunk, are called interior lights. These lights make it easier to see inside your vehicle in the dark.
How to Choose New Lights
Before you go shopping for new lights for your car, whether headlights, taillights, or interior lights, it’s best to read your owner’s manual to find the right kind and size of light that you need to replace. Interior lights are best chosen based on your vehicle's manufacturer’s recommendations.
Different kinds of exterior lights include:
- Tungsten filament lights – give cars the older, yellowish, classic look
- Xenon high-intensity discharge lights – give a bluish hue to lights and burn brighter for better visibility
- Halogen lights – common lights that burn brighter for better visibility
How to Change Lights
You don’t want to be caught with broken headlights or taillights, so remember to check your lights for an outage and change them as soon as possible.
Nowadays, the best way to know how to change your lights is to consult your owner’s manual. Your vehicle has its own unique light requirements, and manuals usually give simple instructions. Another easy fix is to take your car into a local oil lube station, and they will change your lights for a fee.
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