I’m pretty sure almost all of us has driven in the evening and encountered an incoming vehicle with high beams on. It’s perfectly understandable but sometimes, it’s really disturbing and you flick your high beam at the incoming vehicle as well to tell him that it’s too bright for you. But what are the instances when you should use your car’s headlight high beam? Let me share some of my experience and observations.
At night we should all turn our headlights on no matter what. For special conditions such as roads with no lamp posts, dark alleys, rural areas, open fields and so on, it is fine to use your high beam.
Even during the day, you can turn your headlights on and even put it on high beam. If there’s heavy rain or snow, it’s perfectly understandable to do so. It should alert incoming vehicles that you are there. But as caution, drive slower than normal so that you’ll have an easier time to react if anything happens.
Of course, not everyone has good eyesight. This is one of the reasons why there is a high beam in the first place. With high beam on, you have a much longer and wider range of vision and you’ll have more time to react to things that may come your way.
Here is another instance where you can use high beam. If you’re in a no blowing of horns zone such as schools, hospitals and churches, you can use your headlights to communicate with incoming traffic. Flick your car’s high beam to alert them that you are there or to tell them to proceed with caution as well.
If you wish to communicate with a far away vehicle for any reason, you can use your high beam. Light travels faster than sound and if the vehicle is really far away, he/she may not be able to hear your horn clearly or at all.
Use high beam with caution especially if you’re running at high speeds on a two-way road. High beams can distract incoming vehicles and there’s a possibility that it will lead to an accident especially if the incoming driver isn’t focused on the road. Their attention may shift directly to your high beam so be cautious. If you have high-powered headlights such as very bright HIDs, since it’s already that bright on low beam, come to think of it, you don’t really need to use high beam if it’s available.
Well, the bottom line is that it’s perfectly fine to use your headlight’s high beam. If you really need it then use it. Don’t worry too much about incoming vehicles it’s much more important to see what’s in front of you. You really can’t just pull over beside a car and tell them that you’re having difficulty driving. I’m pretty sure a lot of drivers would understand. But if you really do not need to, then don’t.
Wikipedia – Headlamp