IIHS headlamp survey - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 1st, 16, 4:22 PM Thread Starter
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IIHS headlamp survey

The IIHS is usually no cheerleader for the auto industry and they are consistent with this latest report. I have not looked into this in any depth, but I am wondering how all these cars that comply with current Fed standards could be so varied.

New IIHS ratings show most headlights are lacking

And here is where I found the link above:

A Dim View: Only 1 Car Out Of 31 Is Deemed To Have 'Good' Headlights : The Two-Way : NPR
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 1st, 16, 6:44 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Everybody thinks HID is so damn good. But I just don't see it. (pun intended. )

Just because they illuminate the first 50 feet in front of you like daylight doesn't mean they throw light downrange any better. The article seems to say that's not the case. In fact, it just makes things far worse for the oncoming drivers when the surfaces are wet. Now you have massive glare from the road surface coming right at ya.
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 1st, 16, 7:30 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

It has been my experience that since sealed beam lights were replaced by the capsule lights with irregular shaped lenses covering them, auto lighting has really gone downhill. The lenses are shaped to fit the oddly shaped body of the car with no effort put into focusing the light on the road ahead of the cars. Most cars today put lots of light on the road down beside the front tires and out the side, but light the road poorly ahead of the vehicle.
My personal vehicles with the old rectangular sealed beams light the road far better than my vehicles with the newer distorted lens lights.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 1st, 16, 8:14 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Every vehicle made with plastic headlight lenses (which turn brown/grey when exposed to sunlight) should be recalled for new lenses that DON'T discolor.

Every vehicle made with headlights that look blue should be recalled for ANNOYANCE FACTOR. Those things are HATEFUL.

Every vehicle on the road that's been "modified" by installing blue-tint headlights should earn the driver a hundred-dollar fine.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 1st, 16, 8:32 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Years back, I was looking at a website to upgrade the lighting on my Passat and they asserted that "DOT" stands for "dark out there"
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 1st, 16, 9:00 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Quote:
Originally Posted by schurkey View Post
every vehicle made with plastic headlight lenses (which turn brown/grey when exposed to sunlight) should be recalled for new lenses that don't discolor.

Every vehicle made with headlights that look blue should be recalled for annoyance factor. Those things are hateful.

Every vehicle on the road that's been "modified" by installing blue-tint headlights should earn the driver a hundred-dollar fine.
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 11:50 AM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpete View Post
Years back, I was looking at a website to upgrade the lighting on my Passat and they asserted that "DOT" stands for "dark out there"

I never thought of it that way, but you might be right.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 1:01 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Saw TV coverage of this. Pathetic yellow beam of poorest rated car (BMW) made me wonder if test crew ran some w/ ignition off and low batteries.
Was any vertical aiming done? (Visible distance was emphasized in TV story.)
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 1:01 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary S View Post
It has been my experience that since sealed beam lights were replaced by the capsule lights with irregular shaped lenses covering them, auto lighting has really gone downhill. The lenses are shaped to fit the oddly shaped body of the car with no effort put into focusing the light on the road ahead of the cars. Most cars today put lots of light on the road down beside the front tires and out the side, but light the road poorly ahead of the vehicle.
My personal vehicles with the old rectangular sealed beams light the road far better than my vehicles with the newer distorted lens lights.
the "lense" is merely a cover for style and aerodynamics... all the focusing and aiming of the light is done by the shiny part behind the bulb.

but i agree: the old sealed beam lights do throw a better light if aimed properly and given enough power. the best hadlights i've ever had were the cheap 7" round halogen bulbs that were in my 71 Nova after i upgraded to a CS130 alternator.

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 1:02 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

I hate those bluish white lights.

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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 2:47 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

I have been hearing about the poor performance of those headlights since that late 90s when Chrysler used them on their LHS & Concorde sedans.

I have HID headlights on my Passat. They work well but probably emit that sort of bluish spectrum. They are self-levelling and also self-steering. Replacement cost is something you need to sit down for, but it isn't as bad as the cost for the lights on a Cadillac. I also have halogen fog lights on the car as well.

Here in Ontario they banned the retrofitting of aftermarket HID light kits because of the blinding of other traffic; only factory HID installations are legal.

Meanwhile...
I removed a full working set of T-3 headlights from my 67, boxed them up and replaced them with conventional halogen round lights. Big improvement, yet they aren't such a draw that relays should be installed. Been running them since 1992 on my Chevelle. I have no complaints about light pattern at all.

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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 4:05 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

I have a 2013 Tacoma and I have to say it has the brightest headlights of any vehicle I've ever had. They are not the blueish hid lights. Can't tell how many times I have been flashed the high beams by other drivers when I have only the lows on. Happens almost every time I drive it after dark. If I am on my game I can show them the real high beams. I'll bet that burns holes in their retinas. They sure make driving in the dark better. Doesn't have those annoying fog lights that truck owners like to use in addition to their regular lights. Just has the factory headlights.
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 4:30 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

I've been considering the Truck-lite 27270c for my '72. Expensive but supposed to be excellent and low power.




Anyone have any experience with these?

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 6:11 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Quote:
Originally Posted by blm View Post
I have a 2013 Tacoma and I have to say it has the brightest headlights of any vehicle I've ever had. They are not the blueish hid lights. Can't tell how many times I have been flashed the high beams by other drivers when I have only the lows on. Happens almost every time I drive it after dark. If I am on my game I can show them the real high beams. I'll bet that burns holes in their retinas. They sure make driving in the dark better.
Not for the other drivers.

Consider having your headlights aligned. It's not just a matter of brightness, it's also a matter of aiming.

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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old Apr 3rd, 16, 6:39 PM
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Re: IIHS headlamp survey

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schurkey View Post
Not for the other drivers.

Consider having your headlights aligned. It's not just a matter of brightness, it's also a matter of aiming.
They are aligned just fine. Been operating vehicles (licensed) for 43 years. I know the difference between headlights that are not aligned properly. They illuminate the road. Not the windshield of opposing traffic. They are just bright. Gets annoying being flashed by other drivers when not using the high beams. They are hitting me with their high beams which blinds me. Since having this vehicle, which is almost three years I can tell the difference between someone with bright bulbs, someone with their high beams on and someone with multiple aftermarket or factory installed fog lights. Problem is with other drivers that don't know the difference. I am one of the most knowledgeable and talented drivers on the road, and that's no bull.

Last edited by blm; Apr 3rd, 16 at 6:55 PM.
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