Headlights

Headlights: Illuminating Discussion

When the American Automobile Association recently conducted tests to assess the performance of headlights found on vehicles sold in America, they found that halogen headlights (found on 80 percent of vehicles) do not illuminate the road ahead as well as high-intensity discharge (HID) and light-emitting diode (LED) lamps.

Of particular concern is the fact that halogen headlights in low-beam settings cannot keep pace with the speed of the vehicle. At 55 miles per hour, drivers need to see about 500 feet ahead to distinguish an object, react, and stop. However, most halogen headlights in low-beam mode project only 300 feet ahead. To compensate, drivers must use their high beams, but only one-third of drivers admit to doing so regularly.

TIP: According to the tests mentioned above, the low beams on high-intensity discharge lights illuminate up to 400 feet of the road, while their light-emitting diode counterparts provide up to 450 feet of illumination.

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Written by Maryann Croce

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