While you can't avoid driving in the dark, once the sun goes down, it instantly becomes more dangerous to navigate any type of terrain. Impaired vision, unexpected distractions, and poor visibility are just a few things that make nighttime driving difficult. The good news is, you can modify your vehicle to increase safety and reduce the risk of accidents.
Ditch lights are one such modification. Keep reading to discover what they are, who they will benefit, and how to choose the right ditch lights for your particular application.
What Are Ditch Lights?
Ditch lights are small lights (usually around 3 inches) mounted on the hood of a truck or car, closest to the windshield.
Low-profile ditch lights face 45° out from the front of the vehicle and provide increased side illumination. The beam pattern of most LED ditch lights increases your peripheral vision, letting you see the side of the road, slope of a hill, or ditch much better.
Spot ditch lights provide a more narrow beam pattern and shine farther forward than flood ditch lights, which provide a wider beam pattern to allow for more peripheral.
Who Can Benefit from Ditch Lights?
Ditch lights are not intended for use on traditional roads and highways as they may distract passing vehicles. Instead, they're most often used on off-road vehicles and commercial trucks.
Are you a truck owner that likes to get dirty, go mudding, or explore the world beyond the double-yellow line? Off-roading is a popular hobby of thrill-seekers and outdoor lovers.
At night, it can be difficult to navigate dark and narrow trails. Overgrown brush and unclear pathways make it hard to stay on course.
Ditch lights can help by illuminating the surrounding areas and guiding you through especially dark, narrow trails.
Back Country Driving
If you decide to take your ditch lights on the road, they're best used on dark, back-country roads without a lot of traffic.
Low-profile ditch lights can help you spot wildlife or other hazards and important road signs, reducing the risk of putting you and your passenger in harms way.
Even commercial company trucks can benefit from LED ditch lights.
Delivery trucks need extra visibility when navigating narrow driveways and loading docks in the evening. Ditch lights not only improve the driver's vantage point but make it easier for other cars to spot the truck.
Choosing the Best Ditch Lights
Not all ditch lights are created equal. The two most popular types are spot and flood, both of which Element carriers.
Lights equipped with a wide-angle flood pattern give you the most usable light, with some expanding as wide as 120°. This drastically improves your peripheral vision at night.
Spot pattern ditch lights only cast light about 60° wide but shine much further straight ahead. This helps you see far distances in the dark, eliminating the element of surprise.
Don't Fear the Dark
Just because your field of vision is decreased at night doesn't mean you should stay off the trails. Don't let darkness keep you from running your commercial business or enjoy life off the asphalt.
Ditch lights help illuminate roads, trails, and driveways for both commercial and personal vehicles.
At Element LED we pride ourselves on using technology, engineering, and innovation to deliver low-voltage lighting solutions across North America.
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