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While turning on car headlights may sound the simplest thing in the world, it could easily become difficult—and a potentially dangerous situation—when you're driving a car that is new to you and have to find them in a hurry.
Whether you're renting a car on vacation or borrowing a friend’s car for a road trip, there are some guidelines to help you turn the headlights on.
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Manually turn the headlights on
Step 1: Find the headlight controls. The position of the headlight controls varies between vehicles, but they are most frequently in one of two spots. Look for a headlight icon on either a control arm attached to the left side of the steering wheel.
If it is not there, then look for a panel beneath the dashboard to the left of the steering wheel. In rare instances, the headlight controls are in the center dashboard control panel.
Step 2: Determine the type of mechanism on the controls. There are two prime types of headlight controls: dials and toggle switches. Dials turn in an arched or circular motion while toggle switches press on and off on a button.
Step 3: Turn the control to the "on" position. If you have a dial headlight control, rotate the dial until it lines up with the headlight icon and the lights come on.
If you have a toggle switch control, simply press the toggle’s side that is in the up position to the down position.
How to turn on automatic headlights
Step 1: Turn the key in the ignition to start the engine. Many cars have automatic headlights that illuminate whenever the engine is running. In this case, simply start your car.
Step 2: Look for the lights to turn on. You may wish to periodically check that both headlights are on by placing your car in Park with the engine running and stepping outside to the front of your car to see if both headlights shine.
If one of them does not, it may need a new bulb or replacement.
Be sure you use the proper headlight setting while you drive. Only use your bright lights when there is no oncoming traffic. A blue headlight icon usually illuminates on your dash when the bright lights are engaged.
Although there are fewer vehicles on the road at night, it is the most dangerous time of day to drive due to poor visibility and increased glare from other cars.
Your headlights are essential to night driving safety or any other time it is difficult to see. You should also regularly check that both headlights are in good working order, and make sure you clean your headlights.
After all, they not only help you to see where you are going, but they also make your car visible to other vehicles on the road.
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