Tips About Car Sidelights

When you are taking your driving lessons there are often issues that do not come up, or are not immediately apparent, during the time you spend with your instructor. While they will always take the time to explain anything that needs to explain, it always helps to have a resource available that can explain why certain aspects of your vehicle are important and what you need to do to ensure that you are using them correctly.

The lights on your car are often cause for confusion, and it’s a topic that we have covered before when it comes to how to use them when you are driving. However, today we will be looking at your car sidelights, including an explanation of their purpose and how you should use them properly.

What Are Sidelights

For many drivers, the term sidelights simply refers to the smaller lights at the front of the vehicle, but it also refers to the rear number plate lights at the back of the car. While you generally won’t need in the same way that you need headlights, as they are not bright enough to light your way when you are driving, that doesn’t mean that they are useless.

In fact, there are a number of situations where using your sidelights correctly is required to ensure the road stays safe, both for you and other drivers.

During Sunset and Sunrise

A lot of people fail to consider the importance of their sidelights when they are driving around sunset or sunrise. These are periods where the conditions are generally still light enough to see, but are also dark enough to cause issues for some road users.

While you don’t necessarily have to use your main headlights when driving in these conditions, it is considered good practice to turn your sidelights on to ensure that you car achieves the maximum levels of visibility during these odd conditions.

Furthermore, it is advised that people with darker vehicles consider turning their sidelights on a little earlier, just to be on the safe side.

When Parking

Many people don’t even consider their car’s lights when they are parking. After all, the car is in a stationary position so the driver no longer needs to worry about visibility. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t risks that need to be considered. After all, in areas with low visibility, a parked car can present an additional hazard in certain situations.

As such, the sidelights on your vehicle must be switched on if you are parking on a road or lay-by anywhere where the speed limit is above 30mph. This makes it much easier for other road users travelling at higher speeds to see your vehicle.

Furthermore, you must also switch them on whenever your vehicle is parked on the road when the weather conditions are foggy. This again helps your fellow road users to identify that a vehicle is nearby and that it is stationary, allowing them to take the appropriate action when driving to keep themselves and other road users safe.