What is An Adaptive Headlight?
Headlights are one of the most important tools on your vehicle today, especially when driving at night. A good set of lights lets you see where you're going and makes others aware of your presence. Headlights aren't perfect, though. Standard headlights handle some driving conditions poorly, leaving you with impaired vision. This is what adaptive headlights are for. These advanced headlights deliver light at more angles as you drive, allowing you to see pedestrians and other unlit obstacles sooner when cornering and in other driving conditions. If you can, get a vehicle equipped with adaptive headlights; doing so can help you stay safer while driving at night.
What Are Adaptive Headlights?
An adaptive front lighting system is simply a set of lights that swivel in the direction of your steering wheel. If it's clear that you're turning left, the lights will angle slightly to the left as well. This might sound basic, but it improves your vision while cornering and can help keep you safer in many different driving situations. There will almost always be obstacles around roads that aren't lit up. Having lights that let you see those obstacles sooner keeps you safer and helps you become a more thoughtful and effective driver. The lights only adjust their angle by about 15 degrees, but that minor adjustment offers major benefits. Most of these modern headlights also include superior bulbs that are brighter and offer a clearer level of light compared to older headlights.
Adaptive Headlights are Mostly Available in Newer Cars
Adaptive headlights are still a newer technology available on a limited number of vehicles. These swiveling lights aren't mandatory on cars just yet, which means you'll need to purchase a newer vehicle with a high-end feature package or a newer luxury car to get the feature. Along with advanced headlights, you'll get many other impressive features with your new car purchase. If you buy a car for these advanced lights, look for features like adaptive headlights, an AFS, swiveling lights, or something that mentions lights that adapt as you drive.
What Does AFS Mean in a Car?
AFS stands for adaptive front light system and is another name for adaptive headlights. If you are considering a new vehicle purchase with AFS, you are considering a vehicle with adaptive headlights.
Adaptive Headlights Are Not Self-Activating High Beams
Some new vehicles come equipped with self-activating high beams today. These cars watch for headlights from other cars and activate your high beams whenever lights aren't present. This feature is a powerful one, as well, and it enables you to drive with the brightest lights possible at all times while simultaneously avoiding blinding other drivers. However, this tech is unreliable, and many car owners report problems with it. Headlights frequently start strobing, making it difficult for other drivers to operate their vehicles safely. This technology is very different from adaptive headlights, and you should look for self-activating high beams or a feature described similarly to that if that's the feature you're seeking.
How to Use Adaptive Headlights Effectively
Adaptive headlights are simple and don't require many adjustments compared to standard lights. To get the best value from these lights, slow down as you approach a corner and look at the curve for any obstacles. What was once dim will now be illuminated. You'll naturally see more obstacles in your path than you did before; make sure you're going slow enough to react to them safely, and you'll enjoy a safer driving experience overall.
Just like with standard headlights, you should only have your high beams on when other drivers aren't traveling in your direction, and you should use your low beams whenever other drivers are within range of your light beams. A set of swiveling lights won't save the eyes of other drivers if you leave your high beams on, so be respectful and remember to turn them off and on as you travel down the road for optimal vision and safety throughout your trip.
You should always remain cautious while driving at night, and if you take things slowly, you'll feel more confident about staying safe and avoiding most obstacles while driving at night.
Should You Buy a New Vehicle Just for Adaptive Headlights?
Many people enjoy the increased vision provided by adaptive headlights, but you will have to decide whether the feature is worth purchasing a newer luxury vehicle or not. Most older cars, even those that are a few years old, won't come with this technology. If you cannot afford the latest vehicle with adaptive lights or don't believe the upgrade is worth the price, you can choose a used vehicle with powerful lights that will give you the best experience in your price range.
Look closely at the type of lights equipped on the car you're interested in, and verify that the lights are bright and function well. You should also look at the other safety features that come with the car, check the car history report for any accidents, and look at the vehicle's maintenance history. By doing these things, you get important details about the vehicle you're thinking of purchasing. Use this information to help you choose a car you'll enjoy using for years.
Adaptive Headlights Can Help Improve Driving Safety
Modern vehicles are coming equipped with impressive technologies that make driving safer. Headlights have been receiving constant upgrades for the past few decades, and adaptive headlights are just another one of those upgrades. Nighttime driving is difficult to do safely, and as each new advancement is released, things get a bit simpler.
If you drive at night regularly, you should consider a vehicle with adaptive headlights or at least a car equipped with the highest quality light bulbs you can get. Invest in your vehicle's lighting system; you'll drive more safely in different conditions. Adaptive lights are one of the upgrades that make a real difference in your ability to drive safely. If you can get a vehicle with this upgrade, you should. However, you'll have to decide whether the technological enhancements are worth it before purchasing a new or luxury vehicle.
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