- What are parking lights?
- Why do you need parking lighting
- Types of side lights
- Parking lights and daytime running lights: what's the difference?
- Faults or how to replace the dimension
- Traffic rules
- Advantages and disadvantages of lamp sizes
Not a single car moving on the road can be called safe if it was difficult to see. Moreover, regardless of how well and efficiently his systems work. Lighting devices are used to indicate traffic on the roads.
Consider side lights: why are they needed if every car has a main light? Are there any restrictions on using custom backlighting?
What are parking lights?
This is part of the vehicle's lighting. According to the traffic rules, each car must be equipped with a small backlight in the front, rear and on each side. A small light bulb is installed in the optics, as well as on the sides (more often in the area of the front fenders, and in the case of trucks - along the entire body).
The laws of all countries oblige all owners to turn on this lighting when it gets dark. As soon as the driver turns on the light switch (daytime running lights or the main dipped), the dimensions of the car, located along the perimeter of the body, automatically start to glow.
Why do you need parking lighting
The included dimension draws the attention of other motorists to the fact that a car has stopped at the curb or in the parking lot. Another important function of such lighting is to indicate the side dimensions of a truck so that nearby vehicles can clearly see the size of the container or trailer.
Parking lights are used only with the onset of darkness or during the day, when the outlines of the car are poorly visible (fog), since the lamp included in the lantern device has low power. Even if the motorist turns on the backlight during the day, other participants will not see it. By the way, this is a common reason why the battery runs out.
Illumination of the front and rear dimensions is included in the design of the optics. So, the front light will be equipped with a lamp that will have white light, and the rear light will have a red one.
The side lights are always yellow. Most cars have a white light bulb in the socket, but the color of the backlight housing determines its glow. However, there are car models in which each headlight is white, but the bulbs glow in accordance with the type of signal provided by the manufacturer:
- Turn and side lighting - yellow glow;
- Rear optics - red glow with the exception of turn signals in some models, as well as a reversing lamp;
- Front optics - white except for the turn signals.
Types of side lights
When the driver moves on the highway, by the light signal seen from another car, he can easily determine its position. In this case, manufacturers have equipped vehicles with lighting that meets world standards.
Here are the types of side lights that will help you determine what position on the road a stopped car takes with the headlights off.
Front parking lights
Weak white light bulbs installed in headlights have different names. For some it is a backlight, for others it is a parking light. Whatever they are called, they always have to comply with the standard. The front dimensions are always white so that other road users can understand that the car is in the direction of traffic. If in the dark or when the road is poorly visible due to bad weather, the car is parked on the side of the road, the driver must turn on this backlight.
Rear parking lights
This illumination is located in the design of the taillights. Their glow should always be red. Thanks to this, other drivers will understand that the car is stationary in the direction of travel. In this case, the front dimensions will be visible in the rear-view mirror. When the red lights are on at a stationary car, you need to go around it with a slightly greater lateral distance. The reason for this is that the driver of that car may not see the moving vehicle (he is in the blind spot or simply through inattention) and open the door.
Side marker lights
These lights determine the size of the vehicle and also help to identify it when neither the front nor the rear light is visible (for example, at an intersection). Most often, these bulbs glow with a yellow light. However, there are also car models in which this element is blue. Another purpose of the side dimensions is to help the vehicles going behind to determine whether it is possible to overtake or not. In this case, only the rear light will be visible, and the front light will be much worse.
Parking lights and daytime running lights: what's the difference?
If the dimensions must be left active during a stop, then daytime running gears are needed to mark the car while driving, even during the day. Neither the first nor the second category of illumination is an alternative to low beam at night.
If in the evening or during bad weather, a road safety officer stops a vehicle that is running only on dimensions, the driver will be fined. You can move either on DRL, or with the headlights on in the low beam mode. Dimensions are used in case of parking and not to conserve battery power while the vehicle is in motion.
The design of all cars is equipped by default with position or parking lights. As for the running lights, in some models they are not used at all, but they can be taken out near the headlights and connected through a separate button or together with the car backlight.
Faults or how to replace the dimension
In total, there are two types of malfunctions due to which the gauge stops glowing:
- Lamp burned out;
- Lost contact.
True, there is one more reason - the battery is dead, but in this case the car will not start at all without improvised means.
Replacing the light bulb or checking the contacts will depend on the car model. In some cases, the driver just needs to open the trunk or the hood - and he got access to the headlight module. On many modern cars, the procedure is so complicated that even for an elementary replacement of a light bulb, you need to go to a service station, because you have to disassemble almost half of the front end.
The United States was the first to include mandatory use of headlights in traffic regulations. The changes took effect in the 68th year of the last century. At the same time, such a regulation appeared in the legislation of Canada. If the driver ignored these instructions, he was entitled to a fine.
Moreover, these instructions concerned any type of mechanical means. Since the introduction of these changes, the number of accidents on the road has been reduced by almost half.
If the car stops on the side of the road in the dark, be sure to leave the dimensions included. The rules do not prohibit the use of additional lights, such as running lights. The main thing is that the car is clearly seen by other road users.
Side light color
As for the front dimensions, they should always be white. The hind ones are fundamentally red. As for the side ones, the driver can use yellow, orange or blue light bulbs. Such harsh restrictions are not a whim of law enforcement agencies. It's just that the inconsistency in the lighting of the car confuses other road users. Especially if the driver "tunes" the front optics and installs red bulbs in it.
Although the details of the use of parking lights are not strictly regulated in many rules (there is no separate penalty for each violation), the driver may receive a warning or a receipt for payment for violation of the rules in such situations:
- The car is parked on the side of the road in the dark, passengers are sitting in it, but the dimensions do not glow;
- The headlights are so dirty that it is difficult to see their glow;
- Driving in poor visibility exclusively on dimensions.
Someone may regard strict rules in the use of auto illumination as an infringement of self-expression. In fact, this is done solely for the sake of traffic safety.
Advantages and disadvantages of lamp sizes
So, the side dimensions can be not only yellow, but also blue. Since vehicles equipped with such illumination are slightly different from standard cars, lamp dimensions are becoming increasingly popular.
In addition to originality, such bulbs glow brighter and consume much less energy than spiral counterparts. In addition, they are not afraid of temperature extremes and have a long working life.
It is not forbidden to install them, but they have a couple of disadvantages - sometimes their polarity does not correspond to the polarity of the car's on-board system. Their cost is higher than that of standard lamps, although their resource compensates for this disadvantage. In some cases, it is not possible to install these elements due to the inconsistency of the base.
Some more details regarding side lights are in the following video: