Why are some people's headlights so bright?

Sometimes when I'm driving at night, I feel like I'm being blinded by other driver's headlights. Why are some vehicle's headlights so bright?

Answer
“There are a few reasons why another vehicle’s headlights may be significantly brighter.
Many vehicle manufacturers and drivers now opt for LED headlights instead of the traditional halogen bulbs.
An LED bulb is typically brighter and lasts longer. The light that is emitted from an LED bulb is also a cooler tone compared to a warm yellow light from a traditional bulb. Because of the cooler light, many drivers feel they have increased visibility at night with an LED bulb.
As your eye is used to seeing a warmer, yellow light, a LED headlight can strain your eyes. Additionally, if a driver has installed an LED bulb themselves, their headlights may be positioned incorrectly. This could also be why you feel like some headlights are extremely bright.
Another reason could be that some drivers are driving with their brights on. It’s common for drivers to use their brights at night, so it could be possible that they don’t realize or don’t turn them off in time. This problem can happen all the time, especially when driving on the highway.
So here is what to do the next time it happens:
  • Don’t look directly at the light.
  • Look over to the right edge of your lane instead.
  • Don’t flash high beams back at them, then neither one of you will be able to see!
If the bright lights are behind you, flip your rearview mirror up. This will put your mirror in night mode and disperse the bright beams. The other option is to pull over and let them pass you. Remember, driving safely is your number one priority!
While insurance won’t pay upgrade your headlights to LED, your insurance will help in the event of an accident. It’s always a good idea to review your policy every six months to make sure you’re getting the best price on the coverage you want. If you’d like help with this, Jerry automatically reviews your policy every six months for you for free.”
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Emily Maracle
Answered on Sep 10, 2021
Emily Maracle is a car insurance specialist living in New York. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she has a degree in English Literature and a background in customer service. She enjoys cooking, gardening, and living sustainably. In the future, she can't wait to upgrade to a hybrid or electric car.
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