Imagine driving on the road, and it starts raining or snowing badly. But you can’t halt your car because you’re in a haste to reach where you’re going. You will want to use your car headlights right?
Gladly, you don’t have to be in a pressing situation before learning about when you should use your low beams and when you shouldn’t.
This article will save you from this and related dilemmas at no cost, just read it.
When to Use Low Beam Headlights
Now that you know what a low beam light is about, the next important thing is to know when you should use them.
Some headlight manufacturers include their manual information about when to use low and high beams.
These are the best times when you should use your low beam lights:
01. Bad Weather
It has been observed that many drivers don’t know the proper application of headlights. That is, they don’t use low beams and high beams properly.
During bad weather such as fog, heavy rain, and rainfall. A driver may think using a high beam will improve his or her vision.
However, it won’t, it would rather compound the problem. Low beams are the right choice of headlights in bad weather conditions.
This video will teach you how low beams improve vision in bad weather.
You should use your low beams while you’re driving in the dark. Rather than making the road brighter, too much light leads to poor clarity in the darkness.
You can observe this at home by lighting an opaque can with a torchlight. Use a low beam and a high beam torchlight respectively.
You’ll observe that the low beam torchlight will allow you to see the inside of the can more clearly.
If you use high beams while driving at night, it will block other cars from seeing clearly or lead cause road accidents. Therefore, Dimmed light is the go-to option while driving in the dark.
Twilight is the light observed in the sky 30 minutes before the sun rises and 30 minutes after sunset.
Driving during twilight may be difficult if you don’t know the proper use of headlights.
Many drivers believe that headlights should only be turned on when driving at night.
However, some countries have already mandated that headlights should be turned on at sunset and sunrise.
This is because vision becomes obstructed at this moment. It is best to use low beams when driving during twilight.
04. Poor Visibility Condition
Many factors responsible for poor visibility while driving includes city traffic, twisty roads, hilly roads, and other conditions.
City Traffic, hills, and twisty roads may disturb your vision while driving.
You only see the obstacles, so it’s necessary to turn off your low beam headlights to aid your viability.
What is Low Beam?
A low beam headlight means a reduced volume of lightning. The quality of a low beam is that it is dim, dip, and has a short-range radiance.
This means that the low beam doesn’t reach objects or distances that are very far from the car. Cars headlights are usually on a low beam while driving.
But the driver may have to make the light brighter in certain situations. Another name for a low beam light is “dipped beam light”.
The word ” dipped” is about car headlights and it indicates something that is lowered.
A low beam is often used by vehicles during the night else there is a need to switch to a high beam.
Low beams are essential at night because they make other drivers see you while driving, and this will make driving in the dark comfortable and less dangerous.
What is the Main Goal of Low Beams?
Low beam lights serve a lot of purposes and are the most frequently used while driving. Low beams are directed towards the floor.
Low beams also ensure better illumination during bad weather constraints, twilight, darkness, night driving, and poor visibility.
However, low beams’ primary purpose is to ensure road safety. Using low beams will make other drivers see the road well.
High beams may disturb drivers’ vision. Using high beams in a situation where it’s not appropriate may lead to road accidents.
Dirt on the headlights may disturb the functions of the beam. So, it’s important to always clean your headlights to maximize their purpose.
Here is a “Do it Yourself” method to clean your car headlights:
- Get a bottle of coke and a spray bottle
- Open the bottle of coke and spill the content into the spray bottle
- Spray the coke on the car headlights and leave for about 20-40 minutes
- Then wipe off the coke from the headlight with a clean cloth
- Then, your car headlight is shining. Bingo!
Low Beam Headlights Vs High Beam Headlights
Car users must understand the dissimilarities in the functions of low beam (dimmed) headlights and high beam (brighter) headlights.
Drivers should not just switch between high and low without knowing their appropriate usage.
Both low beams and high beams have different functions and thus different utilities.
01. Low beams are used in bad weather constraints and they cover a shorter length.
For instance, if it starts to rain heavily or snow while you are driving, the best thing to do is to switch to a low beam.
Also, you should use low beams while you’re driving at night on the road unless you’re driving at a very fast speed.
It will allow you to see the road clearly and also help other road users.
Use low beams when there is twilight (before sunrise or after sunset) and poor visibility conditions caused by hilly roads, twisty roads, and city traffic.
02. High beams are used to cover a longer length than short beams and they point directly in a parallel way.
High beam headlights are more intense and brighter.
You should use a high beam when you’re driving in a remote area with no lights and there are no cars around.
Also, use a high beam when you are driving very fast to avoid colliding with other cars.
Importance of Switching to Low Beams When Necessary
01. Avoid Road Accidents
Switching to low beams when necessary helps to prevent road accidents. It allows drivers to see other cars on the road and ease car movement.
One of the causes of road accidents during night driving is the wrong use of car headlights.
If you don’t use car headlights while driving in the dark, you’re exposing yourself to a big danger.
02. Mandatory in Certain Countries
In some countries, it is mandatory to use a low beam while driving even if it is not the best option for the situation.
And failure to comply might lead to prosecution by the country’s police.
Different countries have different rules and regulations to ensure road safety, it is a driver’s responsibility to find out the rules of his or her country.
03. Clear Vision
Generally, using a low beam light enables you to see other drivers clearly and also allows other drivers to see you.
High beams point directly towards the eyes of other drivers and result in a reflection that disturbs their sight.
04. Makes Driving Easier
Switching to low beam when necessary makes driving easier, especially driving during the night, in bad weather conditions, twilight, and low visibility.
This is why some countries mandate drivers to use low beams while driving on the road.
FAQs That People Also Ask
Is it True That When Driving in Fog You Should Use Your Low Beams?
It’s not advisable to drive in a foggy condition because fog causes obscurity in the clouds.
The driver won’t be able to see farther and may hit other cars on the road. However, if the situation demands that you must drive in the fog.
Hence, you should use low beams when you’re driving. Low beams will help you see the road more clearly than the high beam.
High beam headlights point towards the direction of the fog and lead to reflections that will disturb the vision of the driver.
The fog gets thicker when you use a high beam light while driving in a foggy condition.
Which Headlight Bulbs are Used for Low Beams?
The headlight bulbs that are used for low beams are:
a) Single or One Filament
Single filament bulbs have two bulbs. One bulb will be for the low beam while the other one will be for the high beam.
When you need to use a low beam, you will be on it and you can turn it off when you no longer need it.
You will also repeat this process when you’re using a high beam.
b) Dual or Double Filament
Dual or double filament bulb is a bulb that has two filaments in a single bulb.
One filament will work the low beam while the second filament will work for the high beam.
When the filament with lowered intensity is switched on, the bulb does the low beam function.
But when filament of higher intensity is turned on, the bulbs will function as a high beam.
If a vehicle does not have separate headlights elements for high and low beams on each side, it indicates that dual filaments bulbs should be used.
Are Daytime Running Lights The Same as Low Beams?
Daytime running lights are not the equivalent to full headlights, that is, low and high beam headlights.
But many people often mix them up with each other. The lights are not very bright and don’t illuminate ahead.
They are also not as white as the LED Daytime running lights are suitable for driving on the highways during the daytime and they aid the visibility of the driver bulb’s headlights.
However, low beam headlights are much different. Low beams are suitable for driving in certain situations like darkness, bad weather, hilly roads, etc.
They illuminate the road ahead and make other drivers notice your car easily.
Click here to watch the video on the difference between daytime running lights and low beam headlights.
How to Identify Low Beam Headlights?
As a driver, how do you identify where your low beam headlights are on the dashboard? Headlights are Turned “on and off” with the control board.
Different cars have different control boards. Some are under the dashboard and some are beside the dashboards, it all depends on the factory that makes them.
The headlights are off by default, so you have to look for the “on” button for low beams and turn it on.
To know if you’ve correctly turned on your low beam headlights, you can try doing this. Park your car in front of a wall, then turn on your low beam headlight.
If the light is pointing downward, it means you’re using a low beam headlight.
But if it points in a parallel way towards the building, you’re using a high beam.
In conclusion, as a driver or car user, it is important to know when you should use your low beams and high beams.
It will save you a lot of headaches. Low beams usually reach a shorter length and are used in a situation like bad weather conditions, twilight, poor visibility, and when driving in the dark.
While High beam headlights reach much farther distances and are used in secluded areas or while driving at a very fast speed.
Drivers need to understand when to alternate between low beams and high beams.