LED headlights
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Author Topic: LED headlights  (Read 1286 times)
Okay, maybe Mike Johnson is a competent parliamentarian.
Nathan
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« on: April 28, 2024, 01:24:06 PM »

Let's discuss. I'm sure we can all come up with a naïve argument that these things shouldn't be street-legal; I know multiple people who no longer feel safe driving at night because of how blinding they are if you're not in the car or truck or whatever that has them. So what gives? Is there some specific legal or regulatory reason why they have to be allowed, or is it just that nobody's bothered to put through a rule against them because they tend to be popular with car buyers in our antisocial and FYIGM-oriented age?
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brucejoel99
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« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2024, 01:44:27 PM »

100% all just because we're not serious on vehicle regulation, driver training, rules-of-the-road efficacy/enforcement, etc.:

New federal rules are supposed to prevent ever-brighter car headlights from blinding oncoming drivers while also improving visibility — but they'll take years or even decades to have an impact. [...]

Today's headlights are undeniably brighter than the warm, yellow glow of the halogen bulbs popular during the late 1980s and '90s.

Halogens are going away, replaced mostly by light-emitting diodes (LEDs), which last longer but are much whiter and brighter. [...]

Smarter, beam-shifting headlights — which can shine more light onto the road without the associated glare for oncoming cars — are on the way.

These advanced headlights have been in use abroad for years but became legal in the U.S. just last year.

It's the first major change for domestic headlight regulations since the 1960s, per Matt Brumbelow, headlight expert at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). [...]

These smart lights, known as Adaptive Driving Beam (ADB) headlights, use sensors to automatically change the shape, brightness and direction of their light without reducing drivers' visibility.

Some use a shutter system that shades part of the light beam, while others use a matrix-style system that can turn individual LEDs on and off as needed.

Yes, but: Automakers won't be mandated to install these advanced headlights — and even if they were, it would take decades to transition the country's entire fleet of 275 million-plus vehicles.

The U.S. opted not to match the light intensity of the European standard, so experts say they won't be as effective.

What they're saying: "It's just the latest in a long, long line of screwed-up lighting regs [that are] different — but not better — than the rest of the world's rules," Daniel Stern, chief editor of technical journal Driving Vision News, told Axios. [...]

Engineers "quietly tell us" that in some cases "styling trump(ed) everything" until watchdogs began casting a spotlight on poor headlight performance, Brumbelow says.

IIHS, an independent, nonprofit group funded by the insurance industry, said last week it will no longer allow vehicles with anything less than "acceptable" or "good" headlight performance to qualify as Top Safety Picks.

Only about 1 in 3 headlight systems tested on 2022 vehicles achieved a "good" rating. Still, that's an improvement from 2016, when only 1 in 31 midsize cars had "good" headlights. [...]

Automakers should be motivated to adopt the more advanced headlights so they can qualify for safety awards like the IIHS honors, which are often heralded in marketing campaigns.
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quesaisje
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« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2024, 03:56:19 PM »

This should be a pass/fail item in a vehicle's annual inspection, in states that have those laws.

Unfortunately, none of this matters without traffic enforcement. Somehow even states with strict inspection laws have vehicles on the roads that are blatantly out of compliance with noise, safety, and emissions standards. People even drive around without license plates.

I've had more than one long night drive that I put off until very early morning hours on account of this problem. But I also see people rolling coal sometimes, or driving outrageously loud vehicles, and somehow they get away with it. It's especially sad when you think about the law-abiding people who struggle to get to work or school because it would cost thousands of dollars to bring their vehicles into compliance with emissions standards.

This is also inspiring people to buy bigger vehicles. If you're among the shrinking minority of sedan drivers, the headlights from a lot of SUVs and pick-ups are pointed right in your line of sight. It's like everything else, people escalate to save themselves because they know that no one else is going to do anything. Sauve qui peut.
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DaleCooper
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« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2024, 04:03:36 PM »

I can't safely drive at night anymore because of these. It's disrupted my life considerably. I don't know what the legalese argument is, but they make the road much less safe.
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Ferguson97
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« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2024, 05:59:08 PM »

If we can make headlights a requirement, I don't see why we couldn't ban a specific kind of headlight.
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« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2024, 01:53:42 PM »

No one is here to make the pro-LED headlights argument because posting online requires the ability to read.
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VBM
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« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2024, 06:20:58 PM »
« Edited: May 10, 2024, 06:27:03 PM by VBM »

I don’t get why LED headlights and those modifications that make cars obnoxiously loud are still legal. They literally don’t benefit the driver in any way, and just annoy and sometimes even actively harm other drivers on the road. LED headlights can blind other drivers, which could obviously increase the chance of a collision happening. A car revving extremely loudly could distract other drivers and cause an accident. Here in Atlanta, there is an epidemic of people who love to drive extremely loudly very late at night. I literally can’t even sleep over at one of my friend’s apartment in Atlanta because there’s always people driving by extremely loudly at 3 in the morning. One of the things I hate most about this country is how obsessed a large part of the population is with their “right” to be obnoxious assholes
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MadmanMotley
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« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2024, 04:45:36 PM »

A large problem isn't the LEDs themselves (they can be any color or intensity), but poor implementation or installation. Oftentimes "modification" for vehicles is just throwing an LED bulb in, without proper alignment. LEDs can be done right (like smart headlights mentioned above), but just are not in most cases. I also think this also plays into the "I have to have a bigger car because other cars are bigger and I can't see/don't feel safe" effect. This also leads to taller cars, making it shine right in eyes of people driving appropriately sized vehicles.
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shua
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« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2024, 07:51:53 PM »

The lighting industry, with the encouragement & direction of government regulatory bodies, is focused on one thing above all else: efficiency. LEDs are more energy efficient per lumen and so are promoted for ostensible reasons of cost, energy conservation, and the assumption that more powerful lights leads to greater safety. Of course this amounts to having your cake and eating it too, since if you channeling that efficiency into brighter lights you aren't conserving anything. 
This means a neglect by industry and government of the physics of light and how it is processed by the eye. Intense bluish white light isn't easy for the eyes of animals and people to process and actually doesn't help them see well at night compared to the more subdued yellow/amber lights. More isn't always better because your eye has the ability to adapt to perceive things in lower light if it isn't thrown off by constant interruptions of harsh brightness.

here's an organization that is trying to seek a regulatory changes on LEDs in different ways: http://www.softlights.org/law-and-action/
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Steve from Lambeth
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« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2024, 02:30:35 AM »

here's an organization that is trying to seek a regulatory changes on LEDs in different ways: http://www.softlights.org/law-and-action/

Calling the Soft Lights Foundation an "organization" would be generous: it's largely being held up through the goodwill of one man, Mark Baker. Baker, the founder of the SLF, is an Oregonian (although he claimed to now be living in California in a court filing earlier this month) with autism who, as it eventually turned out, acquired PTSD from being exposed to LEDs and now cannot handle them to any degree.

The SLF presumably got its name because, when it started before COVID-19, it focused on LED lights being too cool. At some point in the summer of 2022, Baker worked out that his issue with LEDs was not that they were emitting white rather than yellow light, but that they instead emitted light from flat surfaces and were therefore extraordinarily bright. Around that time, he decided to flood almost every federal regulatory authority that looked like it had competency for LED regulation to create such regulations.

Baker has submitted letters to an Assembly member in California, a Congressman in Michigan and multiple statewide emergency vehicle regulatory authorities, but appears to have only taken three actions in Oregon: one ADA lawsuit of his own, assistance in another ADA suit, and a letter about emergency vehicle lights that predates his more recent wave. I am honestly surprised he has not gotten one of his associates in Washington state to draft and circulate an Initiative to the Legislature.
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DK_Mo82
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« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2024, 03:18:00 PM »

Yeah it getting bad out there, I cant always tell if car ahead of me has brights floods on or not, I get blinded and hope not to run into the deer.
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