Your headlights are off!

Messages
1,606
Location
Oahu, Hawaii
As I told someone as I pulled to the side of a brand new Ford Escape because the taillights were off. The dash was brightly lit up and the headlights (kinda dim) are on as if the owner knew the headlights were on! I'm appalled on why a newer car would have the dash and headlights on but the taillights off.
 
Messages
36,475
Location
ME
They like backlit dashes that are always on. Friend's vibe does this. Said vibe also came with a photocell for auto-headlights, as the dash was no indicator of if the lights were on, and it had DRLs too. We wound up disabling that photocell when he'd flash his headlights going under a bridge (against his will) and trucks would pull in front, etc. So this Escape was in "day" mode through some failure.
 
Messages
15,418
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
I have seen a lot of newer cars with the taillamps off even with headlamps on. I first noticed it on a Bently, but then have seen a lot of Prius with their taillamps off as well.
 
Messages
258
Location
Western NY
My wife has a 2010 Fusion. I'm always driving around in the dark with no headlights because the dash is so brightly lit! (we've got good street lighting here so I don't notice)
 
Messages
1,502
Location
Ohio
My Honda has the dash lit all the time, but thankfully the high beam indicator glows dimly when the DRLs are on to remind you the headlights are off. If you don't see the green headlight indicator, that's also a clue the headlights are off.
 
Messages
2,408
Location
CA
DRL is not the same as the headlights on; even if it's the same bulb. Please don't confuse the two. The dash is lit brighter when lights are off as it expects you are in the daylight so you need full brightness. It should dim when the lights are on (often adjustable). If this confuses you, turn in your competent driver's card and switch to a car that has automatic headlights.
 
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Messages
1,520
Location
Dacono, CO
Originally Posted By: raytseng
If this confuses you, turn in your competent driver's card and switch to a car that has automatic headlights.
Unfortunately the problem isn't us, it's the other morons on the road with us, that are driving without headlights, at night. I can't get them to turn on their headlights, so how do you expect me to be able to convince them that they need to buy a different vehicle? BC.
 

gathermewool

Site Donor
Messages
8,927
Location
New England
Just because you can see us, doesn't mean we can see you, guy in the dark Altima driving in my blind spot at dusk in the rain... There is no excuse for not knowing whether your lights are on. I haven't personally driven a vehicle that doesn't display a small icon on the instrument cluster indicating that the low-beams headlights are on.
 
Messages
8,859
Location
Texas
Originally Posted By: wirelessF
As I told someone as I pulled to the side of a brand new Ford Escape because the taillights were off. The dash was brightly lit up and the headlights (kinda dim) are on as if the owner knew the headlights were on! I'm appalled on why a newer car would have the dash and headlights on but the taillights off.
Yep, back-lit dashes and daytime-running-lights kinda remove a lot of driver 'cues' that the headlamps aren't actually on. I see more people driving without headlights now than I have in my previous 30 years of driving. And I've done it myself- the backlit dash is one thing I really hate about my wife's Grand Cherokee. Sure, it looks great and its easy on the eyes, both day and night. But I'm not "programmed" to look for a little green headlight icon to tell me that the lights are on, I'm "programmed" that when the dash is lighte, the headlamps are lighted.
 
Messages
11,385
Location
Florida, Cape Coral
One of the problems with daylight running lights is that the tail lights are not on. Drivers can assume they have lights on when only the DL running lights are on. Ed
 

Nick1994

$50 Site Donor
Messages
13,319
Location
Phoenix, AZ
Yeah my car doesn't light up the dash unless you flip the switch on to turn on the tail lights, headlights are always on. I too see lots of Prius' without tail lights on in pitch black outside. Even my grandmas 02' Trailblazer has automatic headlights and tail lights.
 
Messages
1,909
Location
Tracy, CA
My Safari has DLR's and a light sensor on the dash to turn the headlights on automatically. The only time I touch the headlight switch is when I have the wipers on during the day (state law). The older Astros/Safaris had a headlight on indicator but they did away with it some time around 2000. The only way I can confirm that the headlights are on from the driver's seat is to see if the CD player slot is lit. Now if the light in the CD player burns out.....
 
Messages
778
Location
Southeast Michigan
Originally Posted By: Bladecutter
Originally Posted By: raytseng
If this confuses you, turn in your competent driver's card and switch to a car that has automatic headlights.
Unfortunately the problem isn't us, it's the other morons on the road with us, that are driving without headlights, at night. I can't get them to turn on their headlights, so how do you expect me to be able to convince them that they need to buy a different vehicle? BC.
I took raytseng's 'you' as the royal you, fwiw...
 
Messages
14,505
Location
Top of Virginia
I'm in the camp who believes that there is no excuse for not knowing that your headlamps are off. Even if streets are well-lit, you have no street sign reflectivity if your forward lighting is off, and this is something that I believe an observant driver should notice. If you pull up behind a vehicle at a signal light, you should be able to tell immediately if your headlamps are off (no light reflecting back at you) or if your DRLs are on (the whole back of the car is awash with a dull light with no cutoff). I have significantly restricted my night driving because of the number of people who drive lights-out at night. It's just not worth it to me. I've personally observed two collisions where one car pulled out into or in front of another car without lights on.
 
Messages
6,367
Location
Midwest
I simply turn them on every time I get into a vehicle. Not only am I more visible in daylight, I don't have to remember to turn them on if it's gloomy or rainy. When we were in Texas last week I was quite surprised at the number of people who didn't have their headlights on when it started to get dark, or first thing in the morning when the sun had just begun to light the sky in the morning.
 
Messages
8,859
Location
Texas
We should also do away with street lighting. You never see people driving without headlights at night in areas where there are no street lights, because they realize they actually can't see without their headlights. I'm only partly joking- what is the point of lighting up streets like its daytime? Sure, do it where there are lots of pedestrians, but urban freeways? No reason. It wastes a bazillion kilowatt-hours of energy every night, and it ruins the night sky.
 
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