For off-roading trucks, auxiliary lights are considered necessary upgrades to keep you safe on the trail. When you go off-road at night, the biggest challenge you need to overcome is the darkness. For this reason, auxiliary lights are a necessity in the off-roading community.
What are auxiliary lights?
Auxiliary lights provide additional illumination when you’re driving off-road since stock lights won’t give you enough visibility in pitch-black darkness. There are four types of auxiliary lights, namely: driving lights, fog lights, round lights, and flood lights. Each category has its own particular beam pattern, which is used depending on the application.
1. Driving lights
Unlike LED emergency lights such as LED tow truck light bars, driving lights are used with your vehicle’s stock lights to help you see further in the distance. The beam pattern for this type of auxiliary light is pencil-style and long-range, which makes it the best kind of light for seeing into long distances. In off-roading, this type of light can help you see objects down the path much easier, which will help you avoid obstacles when you’re driving in the night.
2. Fog lights
As the name suggests, fog lights are used to see in bad weather conditions, such as fog, rain, or mist. Fog lights have a spread-out beam pattern that illuminates the path right in front of your vehicle, making it an indispensable auxiliary light for off-roading. If you don’t have fog lights and you drive off-road in the fog or rain, you will have a hard time avoiding obstacles down the path.
3. Round lights
Round lights provide the most powerful illumination among all the options on this list. They are usually placed in the front of a vehicle or on overhead roof racks to illuminate a large area around the car.
4. Flood lights
Flood lights are essential if you plan to camp or do other outdoor activities while off-roading. This type of auxiliary light is usually mounted on top of the vehicle to give light to a wide area surrounding the vehicle. However, it’s not recommended that you use these lights while driving–only turn them on when you’re camping, setting up your trailer, unloading your car, etc.
Why should you have auxiliary lights?
Even the brightest stock lights can only do so much for illuminating the trail in total darkness. If you’re going off-road, having auxiliary lights will provide you with the amount of light you need in order to navigate the path safely. Otherwise, you may end up driving into a ditch or colliding into something you didn’t see because you only had stock lights.
What are the different types of light sources?
When it comes to the quality and efficiency of auxiliary lights, you have to consider what type of bulb they use:
- Halogen. These lights are relatively cheap. However, they emit a lot of heat and have a shorter lifespan.
- LED. Perhaps the best type of light when it comes to efficiency, LED lights can last long but are generally more expensive.
- HID. These lights offer more visibility but have less natural fade and more glare.
Before you go off-roading, make sure you have extra illumination to give you enough visibility in the nighttime. Refer to this guide when you want to buy auxiliary lights for your vehicle, so you know you’re making the right choice.