When should you dip your headlights?
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When should you dip your headlights?

How far should dipped headlights shine?

Dipped headlights on almost any car illuminate the road at a distance of 30 – 50 meters.

Are dipped headlights the same as headlights?

Dipped beam headlamp is a lighting device designed to illuminate the road in front of the vehicle. The lighting parameters of the dipped beam headlights are selected so as to ensure the visibility of the road ahead by 50-60 meters and safe passing on a relatively narrow road without dazzling oncoming drivers.
High beam headlamp is a lighting device designed to illuminate the road in front of the vehicle in the absence of oncoming traffic. The main beam provides illumination of the road and shoulder at a distance of 100-150 meters, creating a bright, flat light beam of relatively high strength (minimum requirements).

European Commission Daytime Running Light Regulation

The Road Vehicles Lighting Regulations in UK

The dipped headlights, as well as the high beam, are switched on at night, in tunnels and in low visibility. In the afternoon we turn on the near or DRL.

In most parts of the world, the use of low-beam headlamps is compulsory both day and night. This was done primarily to increase the visibility of the car for other road users.

On the map below, countries in which the use of dipped headlights during daytime is advisory are shown in green, and in purple it is mandatory.

dipped headlights

The use of fog lamps with reduced emission and reduced dimensions as daytime running lights is prohibited.

Austria
Dipped headlights must be used at night. In the daytime, the dipped headlights should be switched on in case of limited visibility (fog, rain, snow). The fog lights can be used in dense fog, heavy rain and snow.

Belgium
Obligation to use dipped headlights at night, in built-up areas. In the daytime, the dipped headlights should be switched on in case of limited visibility (fog, rain, snow). Motorcyclist headlights must be on all year round. The use of fog lights is permitted in dense fog, heavy snow or rain. Fog lights can be used alone or with low or high beam. The use of rear fog lamps is permitted up to a visibility of 100 m.

Great Britain
Commitment to the use of parking lights in well-lit communities, from dusk to dawn. In undeveloped or built-up, but poorly lit areas, you must use dipped headlights or road lights. Foreign drivers are obliged to adjust the lights of their cars to left-hand traffic.

Hungary
Dipped headlights should be used in built-up areas at night and during the day when visibility is limited. Outside the village, you must use the dipped headlights throughout the year, both day and night, as well as on highways. Fine – 10,000 HUF (28 €)

Germany
Mandatory use of dipped headlights in case of poor visibility due to weather conditions. It is generally recommended to drive with the headlights on for 24 hours. Fog lights can be used when visibility is limited to 50 m. Low beam should be used in tunnels. It is forbidden to drive with the side lights on.

Spain
When driving on a motorway, use low beam headlights, even if it is well lit. It is allowed to use parking lights at night, in built-up areas and on roads with single-lane traffic (provided that the road is properly illuminated). Dipped beam in tunnels is required. Fog lights are a must in bad weather. If there are no fog lights, use the low beam and side lights at the same time.

Italy
Obligation to use dipped headlights or daytime running lights both day and night outside built-up areas, as well as when driving through a tunnel. Each vehicle must have white or yellow lights in front and red lights in the rear of the vehicle. Rear fog lights can only be used if visibility is limited to 50 m.Fine 38 €

Luxembourg
In built-up areas, when driving at night, as well as when driving through tunnels, be sure to use the dipped headlights. The recommended use of daytime running lights is within 24 hours. In conditions of limited visibility (for example, up to 100 m), dipped headlights should be used.

Netherlands
Obligation to use dipped headlights at night and during the day only when visibility is limited by weather conditions. Night traffic with parking lights is prohibited.

Norway
Dipped headlights must be used all year round, both day and night. Fog lights can only be used in conjunction with low beam.

Portugal
Obligation to use dipped headlights at night, in populated areas; during the day – only if visibility is limited by weather conditions. When crossing tunnels and the IP5 road (main road and the Aveiro / Vilar Formoso junction) on the border with Spain, the dipped headlights must be used. The rear license plate must be illuminated.

Romania
Low beam headlamps must be used in open areas throughout the year, both day and night. In settlements, it is imperative to use the dipped headlights at night, and during the day – only with limited visibility (fog, rain, snow).

Slovakia
Dipped headlights must be used all year round, both day and night. Fog lights can be used in cases of limited visibility (fog, rain, snow).

Slovenia
Obligation to use dipped headlights in open areas throughout the year, both day and night. Fog lights can be used with visibility up to 50 m.

Finland
Dipped headlights must be used all year round, both day and night. Fog lights are optional and are permitted

France
In undeveloped areas, it is recommended to use the dipped beam both day and night.

Croatia
Dipped headlights must be used at night, and during the day only when visibility is limited (fog, rain, snow). In winter, from the last Sunday in October to the last Sunday in March, the use of light is compulsory for 24 hours.

How dipped headlights help to avoid accidents?

dipped headlights

When driving within the city limits, it is far from always possible to notice other vehicles in front of you in time and make one or another maneuver to avoid collision with it. Statistics show that this happens for various reasons, ranging from excessive tiredness of drivers, and ending with their carelessness, which can lead to trouble.

If they saw the headlights in front of them, they would quickly react to the situation and make the right decision in time. In other words, the dipped headlights are a kind of signal for other road users that one of the cars is somewhere near them. Also, at dusk or in poor visibility, cars with their headlights on become much more visible.

Dipped headlights: disadvantages

The main disadvantage here is only one – the premature wear of the lighting equipment itself and the additional load on the battery, which obviously does not extend its service life. Nevertheless, it has been proven that the included headlights help prevent serious accidents, which means that all the shortcomings are leveled, in other words, they cease to be significant against this background.

The statistics also show a decrease in the number of road accidents involving trucks after it became mandatory to drive during the day with the headlights on. And since this simple solution helps to make cargo transportation the safest, the existing rules should never be ignored.

What is a dipped headlight?

Turn the outermost ring of the steering column switch lever 1 to the position where the mark 2 is aligned with the corresponding symbol. The corresponding warning lamp on the instrument panel will light up.

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By Vinceslav

Journalist, writer. I write articles and reviews on equipment such as cars, computers, games. Worked for 6 years in the auto and auto parts business. And all my life I have been engaged in computer technology.

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