Why do you drive with your lights on during the day?

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Submitted by Oxford on June 5, 2009 - 1:14am

I've noticed, over the past year or so, that a ton of folks drive with their lights on during the day.

I am talking about 50% or more of you folks are lighting up.

Don't believe it? Look in your rear view mirror the next time you are cruising down I-5 during the day. And I am not talking about overcast days, evening's fading light or rain. I'm talking full on, blue sky, California sunshine. There they are -- a brigade of cars with their headlights beaming.

Now I bet some of you Piggs are in those cars. So whatup? Why do you do that?

OX
...sees the light and wonders why

Submitted by flu on June 5, 2009 - 6:25am.

On some cars, it's not intentional. Some cars have daylight running lights and they automatically stay on. It's suppose to make oncoming traffic more aware of your presence.

Some manufacturers don't do the full light treatment during the day, but just turn on an auxilary light. BMW uses "angel eyes"

Audi's started employing the LED's "evil look".

I'm sure a few people probably mucked with these types of auxilary lights to keep them running in daylight, just because they look cool (never understood why though)

Submitted by SDWranglers on June 5, 2009 - 6:59am.

While it's true that many cars now come standard with DRLs, some of us actually mannually turn them on, me being one fo them. I have been turning on my lights mannually for at least 20 years.

Studies have been done that seem to indicate having DRLs improve safety.

Here's a link to wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daytime_run...

and here's what it said about them in the US.

General Motors, interested in reducing the build variations of cars for the North American market, began lobbying the DOT (United States Department of Transportation) to permit DRLs in the United States shortly after Canada required them. A prolonged regulatory battle was fought, with the DOT objecting on grounds of potential safety drawbacks and glare issues. Eventually, however, these objections were set aside and DRLs of the same types allowed in Canada (save for fog lamp DRLs) were legalized but not mandated effective with the 1995 model year. General Motors immediately equipped most (and, in following years, all) of its vehicles with DRLs beginning with the Chevrolet Corsica. Saab, Volkswagen, Volvo, Suzuki and Subaru gradually introduced DRLs in the U.S. market beginning in 1995. In recent years, Lexus has installed high-beam or turn signal based DRLs on US models. Some Toyota models come with DRLs as standard or optional equipment, and with a driver-controllable on/off switch. Starting in the 2006 model year, Honda began equipping their U.S. models with DRLs, mostly by reduced-intensity operation of the high beam headlamps.

Public reaction to DRLs, generally neutral to positive in Canada, is decidedly mixed in the U.S. Thousands of complaints regarding glare from DRLs were lodged with the DOT shortly after DRLs were permitted on cars, and there was also concern that headlamp-based DRLs reduce the conspicuity of motorcycles, and that DRLs based on front turn signals introduce ambiguity into the turn signal system. In 1997, in response to these complaints and after measuring actual DRL intensity well above the 7,000 cd limit on vehicles in use, DOT proposed changes to the DRL specification that would have capped axial intensity at 1,500 candelas, a level nearly identical to the European 1,200 cd and identical to the initially-proposed Canadian limit. During the open comment period, thousands of public comments were received by DOT in support of lowering the intensity (or advocating the complete elimination of DRLs from U.S. roads). Automaker sentiment generally ran along predictable lines, with European automakers experienced at complying with European DRL requirements voicing no objection to the proposal, and North American automakers vociferously repeating the same objections they raised in response to Canada's initial proposal. The DOT proposal for DRL intensity reduction was rescinded in 2004.

Submitted by Oxford on June 5, 2009 - 8:21am.

Ahhh, I see. Another evil government plot!!! I knew it! Thanks for illuminating me on this subject.

Ox
...enlightened

Submitted by XBoxBoy on June 5, 2009 - 8:52am.

I believe for motorcycles it is required in the state of CA to have your light on.

Submitted by peterb on June 5, 2009 - 9:13am.

The older I get, the more it makes sense. We old people cant see too well.

Submitted by afx114 on June 5, 2009 - 9:17am.

They are kinda useless in the city, but out in the country they are nice because you see the oncoming cars earlier than you would have without the lights.

Submitted by AN on June 5, 2009 - 9:42am.

afx114 wrote:
They are kinda useless in the city, but out in the country they are nice because you see the oncoming cars earlier than you would have without the lights.

True, but car company can't afford to make customized feature based on local. It's cheaper for them to just implement DRL in all of their vehicle to reduce the cost of material.

Submitted by AK on June 5, 2009 - 10:48am.

"Lighting up" in daytime has a small but measurable effect on fuel economy, and reduces the life span of your headlight bulbs ... which can lead to them crapping out at night when you actually need them.

Submitted by SanDiegoDave on June 5, 2009 - 11:21am.

The daytime lights aren't for you to see the road, they're for other people to see you.

I'm fully in support of DRL. People are too irresponsible to even turn their headlights on during rain, dusk, fog and other hazardous condition (even in the middle of the night - I see it all the time). The auto DRL are the only way to keep these people from smashing into someone.

And on a somewhat related topic, why doesn't the police department ever ticket people for burned out brake lights? I don't think a day goes by that I don't see someone whose brake lights are burned out. Often all three lights! Insane.

Submitted by flu on June 5, 2009 - 11:28am.

AK wrote:
"Lighting up" in daytime has a small but measurable effect on fuel economy, and reduces the life span of your headlight bulbs ... which can lead to them crapping out at night when you actually need them.

LED lighting usually takes a long long time before they crap out. Also, a lot of the auxilary lights use a different bulb from the main driving bulb. Lastly, with the exception of Xenon discharge bulbs, halogen bulbs are pretty cheap to change $5-10.

Submitted by ibjames on June 5, 2009 - 11:29am.

yeah, my jetta used to go through bulbs all the time, so I disabled the DRL, my current car doesn't have them..

Submitted by flu on June 5, 2009 - 11:29am.

SanDiegoDave wrote:
The daytime lights aren't for you to see the road, they're for other people to see you.

I'm fully in support of DRL. People are too irresponsible to even turn their headlights on during rain, dusk, fog and other hazardous condition (even in the middle of the night - I see it all the time). The auto DRL are the only way to keep these people from smashing into someone.

And on a somewhat related topic, why doesn't the police department ever ticket people for burned out brake lights? I don't think a day goes by that I don't see someone whose brake lights are burned out. Often all three lights! Insane.

Most people don't know there light bulbs are burned out except some german cars that have a warning lamp to indicate that. (How often do you check your own brake lights tosee that they are working). And police do ticket people for burnt out bulbs during the holidays err i mean revenue collecting seasons.

Submitted by AK on June 5, 2009 - 2:12pm.

Yeah plenty of people neglect to turn on their headlights in hazardous conditions. But I think that's a result of too many "safety" features in modern cars! Think about it ... if you have daytime running lamps AND automatic dash illumination, you have no unambiguous visual cues to remind you to turn on your headlights! You can still see the instrument panel, and there's just enough light ahead so you can kinda see the road.

I noticed the automatic dash illumination thing when I was a teenager in my friend's 1985 Grand Am. Made it impossible to convince him that he'd forgotten to turn on the headlights. The other problem was that the steering wheel blocked the view of the speedometer between 30 mph and 80 mph due to crappy design. Likewise made it impossible to convince him that he had to slow down on winding roads.

Submitted by jamsvet on June 5, 2009 - 11:07pm.

I don't mind DRLs as much as I do people who buy a car and turn on their fog lamps. When they turn the car back in 24 or 36 months later, the dealer turns the fog lamps off. Why they don't have to be reset every time the vehicle is started is beyond me.

Submitted by LAAFTERHOURS on June 6, 2009 - 8:08am.

Bc my car automatically has them on.

Submitted by CafeMoto on June 6, 2009 - 8:25am.

I have unintentionally cut a few innocent people off because I didn't see them and I think I get cut off every day driving through PB, now I drive with my lights on in an effort to help others see me and believe it helps. Wife doesn't do it and I let her drive her way as I am not insistent about it. I was rear-ended 8 years ago and I still remember what a b*tch that experience was, lol!

Submitted by Blissful Ignoramus on June 6, 2009 - 2:58pm.

I am currently living in Italy, and I am happy for the daytime running lights. Anything that even slightly increases the chance that some nut passing on a blind turn at 140 kph sees me coming the other way, I am all for it.

Submitted by paramount on June 6, 2009 - 11:42pm.

I think DRL's help truckers see cars in their low visibility spots as well.

Submitted by RichardJamesEsquire on June 7, 2009 - 1:32pm.

Was just in rural western WA, 2 lane hwys, overcast and dim. Dark colored cars do not stand out. It is way safer.

Uh the fog lights, the jokers driving around blinding us with the fog lights makes me want to rewire my car. Rewired to flash the high beams+ fog lights.

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