The dark time: How technology in cars helps drivers at night

A car is driving on the road at night in the forest.

Probably one of the most frightening and dramatic experiences in these latitudes is passing an accident scene in the dark where a large moose lies dying on the road. A crumpled car lies next to it. With a shudder you think, “what happened to the driver?” In Sweden, there are over 60 000 wildlife accidents per year, with hundreds of drivers and passengers injured and a few fatalities. The forest is the animals’ natural home and they can cope well with the darkness, but for you as a driver it is not so easy. Lives are at stake and what can make the biggest difference is what car lights you have and how you take care of them.

Horned elk in winter forest snowing tranquility generated by artificial intelligence


Technological developments help drivers

Car lighting is an area where technology has really progressed, helping drivers to get around more safely and comfortably even during the dark season. After all, it’s not just about wildlife accidents, although they are the most common accidents outside cities, but also about pedestrians, cyclists, obstacles on the road or simply staying on the road.

Of course, in the early days of motoring, ordinary light bulbs were used, and they were not very effective at illuminating in the dark and had to be changed frequently. In the early 1960s, halogen lamps revolutionized car lighting technology. Later, other technologies, such as xenon inserts, and in the early 2000s, LEDs. LED lamps are much more efficient than previous lamps, and have a much longer lifespan. The latest in car lighting is laser headlights.


Choosing the right car lights

Have you thought about what kind of lighting you have on your car? Or are you about to buy a new car and can take car lighting into account? Are you thinking of supplementing the original car lighting with additional headlights, or is it possible to put more efficient lamps in the headlights?

These are relevant and reasonable questions, especially considering the risks of driving at night and how much more pleasant it is to drive with good lighting. Headlights that illuminate the road for the longest possible distance, and also make switching between low and high beam comfortable for both you and oncoming drivers. Many would say that the use of LED and xenon headlights is the best option today.

The car is driving on the road at night in the forest, generative Al.

It is exciting to see how far the development will go, and how bright and far the lights will be able to shine before circumstances set a limit. Of course, things like glare, environmental impact and the cost of the technology must be weighed against the benefits – making your driving as comfortable and safe as possible.


Improve your car lighting today

Is there anything you can do today? As we have seen, it is certainly worth the effort, and as opposed to buying a new car with the best possible lighting technology, or buying expensive additional headlights, there are a few things you can do without much effort.

Firstly, check that all the lights in your car really work. That means both low and high beam. Also, make sure that the light height is set correctly (many cars have the ability to adjust the light height, for example if you are towing a caravan or a trailer and the headlights start to shine upwards). Of course, make sure to check all the lights in your car, such as reverse lights, indicators and brake lights.

The second thing you can do is to have the best possible lights in your car. If you have a slightly older car, it may still be possible to choose lamps with better performance and a longer lifespan. This will cost a bit more, but it will make your night-time driving safer, and you won’t have to change the bulbs as often. It’s also a pretty good idea to keep extra lights in your car, right? If a light breaks while you’re out on a long drive in the winter night, you’ll be glad you were smart enough to get some extra lights. By the way, it is possible to convert to LED headlights if they are not original. However, it’s not as easy as changing an incandescent bulb, so make sure you know how to do it for your car model.

Finally, a third tip, which affects both the appearance of the car and the performance of the car lights. It is to properly clean the headlights from dirt and hard coatings.

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