What to do about headlight glare when driving at night

In recent years, many a motorist has noticed how much more glare they encounter on the road at night than they used to. The headlights that are now standard in many vehicles can be a catch-22. Drivers of vehicles equipped with LED lights often find the road in front of them is much more illuminated thant it was in the days when auto manufacturers built cars and trucks with incandescent lights. However, the bright light emitted by LED headlights can increase glare for oncoming motorists, making the roads more dangerous for all.

Headlight glare has long been a problem for many drivers. In fact, as far back as 2001 the Highway Traffic and Safety Administration sought input from the public regarding headlight glare. A subsequent report noted that the issue compelled more responses than any other safety concern, and it's likely that a similar request would generate an even greater response today.

LED lights might be a problem for millions of motorists, but the efficiency and longevity of these lights makes it unlikely that auto manufacturers will shift to an alternative light source anytime soon. Until that time comes, drivers can try these strategies to combat glare when driving at night.

· Avoid looking directly at oncoming headlights. It's important that drivers keep their eyes on the road at all times, but they should be able to do so without staring directly at oncoming lights. In North America, where oncoming traffic is always on the left, drivers can slightly shift their focus to the right as lights are oncoming. Doing so should allow them to keep their eyes on the road without staring directly into oncoming lights.

· Purchase night driving glasses. Drivers can consider night driving glasses if they're having a lot of trouble with glare. Such glasses differ depending on the manufacturer, but they're generally intended to reduce glare and reflections from headlights and street lamps.

· Investigate wiper blades. Glare from oncoming headlights contribute to visibility problems when driving at night, and old wiper blades can exacerbate those problems. Old wiper blades can be compromised by a buildup of dirt and often wear down over time. When coupled with glare, this can significantly reduce visibility at night. Each manufacturer is different, but Ford recommends replacing wiper blades once every 12 months.

· Clean the interior of your windshield. A dirty windshield interior also can exacerbate glare. Grit and dirt build up inside of a vehicle over time, and they can accumulate on the windshield just as easily as they do in a cup holder, on an armrest or on the dashboard. Various products are designed specifically for cleaning interior windshields, and these could help reduce glare at night.

Glare can make nighttime driving very difficult. Fortunately, drivers can take many steps to reduce glare from oncoming headlights.


The Drummer and The Wright County Journal Press

PO Box 159
108 Central Ave.
Buffalo MN 55313


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