How Headlights Work in The Vehicles and What You Should Know About Automatic Headlights

The chief objective of emergency warning lighting is to be able to have a view what is around you, and to make you seen to others. By putting lights at the corner of the car, it maximizes the visibility and lets others see where the edges of your car.

By providing the headlights as far apart as possible it gives better illumination. There have been cars with continuous lights across the back. And some with 3rd headlights which focus in the direction you are turning as well as including fog lights etc, to increase light output. But the basic light at all corners is the simplest and most effective way of obtaining a visible car which light up or illuminates the road ahead.

So as the vehicle approaches you can judge its width. If you have a car with no headlights is standing at the center line anyone can easily perceive that it is a motorcycle and not a car. The same can happen with the rears, if a car is stopped or parked on a dark country road. If one of the tail light is broken it would mean that half the car is not in showcase and this can increase risk of accident for vehicles heading towards it.

Generally people tend to resemble as two headlights in front of the car into faces with the headlights as the eyes. Cars have two tail lights to keep things symmetric with the headlight.

How do automatic headlights work?

The automatic headlamps are programmed and actuated through a photoelectric sensor which is embedded in to the instrument panel. The sensor is located at the base of the windshield under the defogger grill. The function of sensor is either fixed by the auto manufacturer or by the driver itself. These sensors are initiated by the lighting conditions at sun rise or night fall. These sensors detect ambient light conditions of rainy weather or dusk and dawn, so they actuated headlights accordingly. The headlights may take time up to five minutes to switch off after the engine has been turned off.

Driver can pass on the functions of the automatic headlamps by operating the light switch or some other device in the car provided through designing of automotive. If the driver leaves the lights on, a reminder chime will ring so the driver can turn them off. The system will activate the lights when a car is driven in an enclosure such as parking garage. The headlamp off delay is twenty seconds. After turning the engine off driver can move the light switch from “auto” to “headlamps” and back to auto again.

Basic old implementation turn the headlights on at dark and off at rises. Modern cars equipped with automatic headlights, use sensors to detect the amount of exterior light (This helped to turn the lights on during tunnels) or when daylight is decreased due to any reason.

Most cars have automatic headlights connected through the ignition switches. If light levels are low while driver starts the car, the headlights turn on automatically, when he switches off the key, the system turn off the lights.

However, there are some limitations to automatic headlights. Sometimes they do not turn on or take time in turning on during heavy rain or fog, as the light sensor still detects some light. Automatic headlights do not rapidly turn on in case of sudden darkness, like if the vehicle drives through a tunnel.

According to the survey there are 1 in 10 vehicles invisible to other drivers in fog or heavy rain during the day. Headlights must be used at night or during the day when visibility is significantly reduced. Drivers mostly say that they drive with sidelights only when visibility is poor during the day and use headlights at night.

Now a day new cars are normally installed with dedicated daytime running lights (DRL) to the front. Bright enough that they can be seen clearly in daylight, these are too bright to be used at night so will go off automatically when headlights and sidelights are switched on. Here are some guidelines that everybody should keep in mind while driving:

Every car driver must use headlights at night except on a road with lit street lighting and sidelights must be between sunset and sunrise.  Also we must use headlights when visibility is seriously reduced.

We should use dipped headlights at night in built- up areas or in dull daytime weather to ensure you can be seen. Keep headlights dipper on when overtaking until you are level with the other vehicle. When visibility is reduced significantly we must use front and rear fog lights in addition with headlights but it must be switch off when visibility improves. If we need to park our vehicle at road site due to some emergency or for something to repair in our car, we can use parking lights to avoid accidents and provide our visibility to other road users so that they can be attentive while approaching towards us.

Hence automatic headlamps are a modern convenience in many of today’s cars. They eliminate the need for the drivers to manually switch on or off the headlamps in most driving situations. There may be different name of automatic headlamp options in the car but they all serve as same function for the driver. Their secondary feature is to set one automatic headlamp option apart from the others.

The automatic headlights are also known as intelligent lights since it has ability to recognize darkness so light sensors are sufficient to do this. This is similar to the one which were used to adjust smart phone’s screen brightness. Automatic headlights are one of the essential safety systems that every vehicle should have.