Driving Without Headlights On

Here in the Los Angeles area I see several cars every night driving without the headlights on. I think I figured out the problem: On newer cars the dash lights come on without headlights being on, making the driver think they’ve turned on their lights. What happened to the dash lights staying off until you actually turn on the headlights? Seems simple.

In at least some cars, the dashboard instruments are hard to see without being lit, even in the daytime.

The dash is electronic these days. They have to light up to display.

There is a green light on the dash that lit up to indicate that the headlight is on. But who looks at the dash these days when the phone is much more interesting


Yes an electronic dash, but one would think they could create some sort of indicator when it gets dark, to tell the dummy “Hey you don’t have your lights on!” And yes, there is a small indicator light to tell this, but many people don’t even see the bigger indicator light that says “Hey dummy, your brights are on!”

Ya can’t fix stupid :grin:

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I’m against driving at night without headlights.

Also, let’s hear it for motherhood and apple pies!

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I Watched a video for charger. U can turn on trim lights alone and than turn on headlights. It does not say if the rear running lights come on when u switch front trim lights on. I saw a charger the other day who had trim lights on front but nothing on rear

We need an electronic dope slap!

I was teaching a computer science class and I was explaining about becoming acquainted with a new piece of software. “Learn the essentials first so you can do the task you need to do”, I told my students. “After that, you can explore the extra features. It’s like driving a car. I know only four things about driving a car. I turn the wheel clockwise to go right, counterclockwise to go left, I step.on the rightmost pedal to make the car go and the left pedal to make it stop. Knowing these four essentials let’s me drive my car anyplace I want to go. My wife is the only one who knows how to work the heating and air conditioning and she freezes me in the summer and roasts me in the winter. My son has the radio set on a rock station at one hundred decibels and I don’t know how to change the station or turn down the volume. I have no idea how to turn on the headlights or windshield wipers, but those features are for wimps anyway”.
I thought I had made a good analogy until my wife, who was employed by the graduate office,came home one day and said,"I had one of your graduate students come into my office and saw your picture on my desk. He then asked: ‘Does your husband really drive a car without using the headlights or windshield wipers?’ "
I guess my analogy between driving a car and using a piece of computer software was lost on that student.


I do a fair amount of driving at night and I’ll never know how people manage to drive for any distance with no lights. Kinda like driving the wrong way on a one way street, IMHO. Thankfully, my Corolla has automatic headlights so I don’t have to worry. The only time I turn them on manually is when it’s not dark enough to trigger the headlights but too dark to see the speedometer and the parking lights suffice. The Mrs. turns the headlights on day or night. BTW, it’s also the law here in Misery that you have to have headlights on when the wipers are going.

Having driven in LA, I think the problem is the automatic headlight feature that many drivers use. They put it in auto and leave it there. But in LA, the streets are so well lit that the sensor may not think it is night. Their street lights are so bright in most places, you really don’t need headlights to see and in fact, you would not be able to see your headlight beams in the ambient light provided by the street lights.

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I drove a rental car last week. I searched for the switch for the lights until I noticed they had come on automatically.

Just drove a Ford conFusion rental car.
Had headlights on but realized the tail and clearance lights were not illuminated.
Had to turn the “dial” knob one more position.

What is the purpose of having headlights on withouthe tailights and amber lights on?
(Have seen manyehicles at night witho taillights on.)
Thank you.

I own older cars, so operating the headlights is easy. I recently rented a 2019 Corolla and I never could figure out how the headlight low beam/high beam worked. If I turned what looked to be the headlight switch to “on”, thinking maybe it had to be in that mode for the lo/high to work, the headlights went completely off … lol …

I’ve seen a number of such cars, and so far the only thing in common: they are American “big three” products.
Other than confusing drivers with allowing for headlights to be on with no other lights, the other dangerous thing they introduced was using the backup lights as “convenience lighting”, where car would have backup lights on for some time after is was shut down or after owner opened the door.
As a result, nobody seems to pay attention to backup lights anymore, so even if you are legitimately backing up, some cars run across next to you and pay no attention.
I’m shocked at these vehicles to be allowed on the public roads, but seems that neither oversight agencies, not politicians pay attention.

speak for yourself . . .

When I see backup lights . . . .whether I’m walking or driving . . . I take immediate notice :eyeglasses:


Like most cars you align the dash on the headlamp switch with the word “AUTO” or the headlight symbol. To switch on the high beams push the stalk forward. If equipped with auto high beam control leave the stalk in the high beam position and the high beams will switch on when there are no on coming headlights.

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Well, I do take a notice too, but then I regularly observe somebody rushing behind me when I CAREFULLY backup, most likely zipping through entire lot and not slowing down.
Per my observation, number of these idiots increased over last few years.

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