Are you having trouble driving at night because of the brightness of oncoming headlights? Don’t worry, and you’re not alone. Many drivers find it difficult to see in situations where extremely bright headlights are coming towards them.
It can be really frustrating, especially if you’re trying to get somewhere. In this post, we’ll give you some tips on how to deal with bright headlights.
When driving on the open road, the last thing you want to worry about is being blinded by oncoming headlights. While there’s not much you can do to prevent other drivers from using their high beams, there are a few ways to protect yourself.
By following these tips, you can reduce the amount of glare from oncoming headlights and maintain safer driving conditions. Here are a few tips on how to deal with this issue.
6 Drawbacks of Bright Headlights
Bright headlights can be a major cause of “glare” for oncoming traffic. Glare occurs when a light source is too bright and shining directly into the eyes, which causes eyestrain and temporary blindness.
These temporary effects can cause drivers to not see hazards in the road ahead because they are distracted by their inability to see.
2. Inability to See
The brightness of the lights shines directly into the eyes and causes temporary blindness within drivers that may cause them not to see hazards, pedestrians, or other cars on the road ahead. This could lead to a car accident, causing injury or even death.
When a light source is too bright, it causes discomfort to those exposed to the brightness. For example, driving a car at night and having bright headlights behind you can cause a driver inconvenience and discomfort over time as they are constantly looking in their rearview mirror because of how bright the headlights behind them are.
4. Unintentional Blindness
If the light is so bright, it shines directly into a driver’s eyes, and they may unintentionally become blinded by the light.
This can be dangerous because not only can it cause distractions because of not being able to see and for other drivers on the road who are exposed to the glare or imitation of brightness.
5. Risk of Distraction While Driving
If a driver is constantly looking back and forth from their rearview mirror due to bright headlights behind them, it can be an unintended distraction while driving.
This unintentional distraction caused by the headlights could lead drivers to potentially crash and become involved in car accidents, causing injuries or even death.
6. Eye Strain and Headaches
Bright lights shining directly into the eyes can cause eyestrain and headaches. This may not appear to be a major drawback for driving at night, but it can become inconvenient over time and cause discomfort to the driver.
10 Solutions on How to Deal With Bright Headlights
1. Don’t Expect a Miracle
Expectations can lead to disappointment. The world is full of bright headlights, and all you can do is accept that.
Instead of expecting an easy fix, enjoy your journey as it comes. Be ready to slow down for those still blinded by the light, but don’t expect them to be able to see in time.
2. Install a Light Shield
Some cars come with a light shield installed from the factory, but most don’t. So when you’re shopping for a new car, consider finding one that does have a light shield already installed.
Though they cost extra to purchase and install, they can be extremely helpful in reducing glare from oncoming traffic.
3. Apply Rain-X to Your Windshield
Rain-X is a hydrophobic solution, meaning it strongly repels water. It can also be used to create a barrier of air between bright headlights and your eyes.
In the dry climate where I live, this method works quite well for many drivers, but if you live in a humid area or rainy season, you may find it less helpful.
4. Drop Your Tinted Windows a Little Bit
Not only does tinting your windows reduce glare for you, but it can also help reduce how much light enters the cabin of your vehicle.
The more light that comes in through the front windshield, the brighter everything, including headlights appears from behind the wheel.
5. Take Care of Your Eyes
People who get plenty of Vitamin A in their diets are less likely to experience night blindness. However, when it comes to bright headlights, the best course of action is usually to ignore them and let your eyes adjust naturally.
If you often find yourself being blinded by bright headlights, schedule an appointment with your eye doctor.
6. Replace Your Headlights
If you’ve tried every tip in the book, your car’s headlights are probably on their last legs. If you can’t see anything at night, then it’s time to start looking into new headlights for your car or truck.
Though light shields and Rain-X can help extend the lifespan of your lights, the best way to deal with bright headlights is not to have them be a problem.
7. Invest in an Auto-Darkening Filter
Auto-darkening lenses will darken your windshield instantly whenever they sense oncoming headlights. Though this can seem like cheating, it isn’t against any laws and has been proven to work well for many drivers.
Many of these filters offer variable darkening, so if you find yourself driving in the rain or at night without much bright headlight activity, you can keep your windshield light and clear.
8. Limit Your Speed
Even if you have a tinted windshield or auto-darkening filter, it’s best to avoid blinding other drivers with your headlights if you can. This means driving slower, but it’s better for you and all other road users if you do it.
Also, consider that the closer you are to oncoming traffic, the more challenging time they have seen past your bright headlights reflecting off their windshield.
9. Get a Pair of Sunglasses
When driving at night, the best pair of sunglasses you can own are polarized lenses. They cost more than regular tinted or clear glasses but offer better glare protection.
If you love driving at night and don’t want to invest in an auto-darkening filter, these can be a very economical way to go.
10. Leave Your High Beams On
This is a dangerous option, though, as it could cause someone to pull out in front of you. It’s also illegal and won’t look good on your driving record if you’re ever pulled over for using them improperly.
Luckily some newer cars offer automatic high beams that only activate briefly when they sense an obstruction on the road.
This is done with a thermal sensor that can tell the difference between raindrops and oncoming cars, so it’s much safer than leaving your high beams on all night.
Some Helpful Tips and Suggestions
1. A tinted visor or window film is a cheap and effective way of blocking out headlight glare. Preferred colors are dark green, blue, and gray.
A cheaper alternative would be to use black electrical tape to cover the offending lights in question.
2. Keep your headlights clean! Dirty lenses will intensify any light entering your eyes, making matters worse. Cleaning your lights with soap and water will do just fine.
3. When you park, try not to let your car face oncoming headlights if at all possible. If you need to back into a spot, pull as far forward as you can first so that the brightness of the headlight diminishes before it reaches your eyes.
4. One way of reducing the glare without utilizing any of your car’s lights is to close one eye, keeping it closed until you are past the brightness. Switch eyes as soon as the oncoming headlights have passed you by.
5. It may be helpful to temporarily disable your brights whenever possible so that you can enjoy seeing everything within your field of vision.
Your high beams make things brighter, which allows you to see better. However, it also makes other cars on the road less visible and increases the risk of accidents.
6. Avoid looking directly into headlights whenever possible by not focusing on them (this is difficult for some people). Instead, try to look off into the distance slightly or at least not directly ahead of you.
If in the car, don’t stare straight in front of you. Instead, turn your head slightly to one side or another so that the lights are not coming straight into your eyes.
Is It Illiegal to Have Too Bright Headlights?
It is illegal to have vehicle headlights that are too bright under certain circumstances. In most states, it’s not a legal requirement of the headlight bulbs themselves but a safety issue due to the angle and height of the lights on the front of your car.
Any lights above a certain height or aimed in any direction other than straight ahead could potentially distract other drivers, which is a big safety risk.
The laws regarding headlight brightness can vary from state to state. For example, in some states, your headlights must be able to cut through the darkness when you drive over the hill or in a heavily shaded area on roadways.
In other areas, it’s illegal for headlights to appear any brighter than the average lit business, which is usually around 2,500-3,000 lumens.
Headlights are becoming brighter and more common on the road, which can be a problem for drivers who are sensitive to light. However, there are a few ways to deal with this issue.
One way is to wear sunglasses while driving in the evening or at night. This will help reduce the amount of light that enters your eyes.
Another option is to use a visor or sunshade in your car. This will help shield your eyes from the bright headlights of other cars.
After reading this blog post on how to deal with bright headlights, we hope you can drive more safely at night and reduce the amount of light that shines into your car.
Have you tried any of these techniques? Let us know in the comments below!