There’s nothing quite like the sunset. Once the sun is down, you may find yourself a bit on edge. You just don’t want to drive at night. That’s your first clue that it may be time to update your vehicle and your driving habits to ensure you are keeping yourself safe on the road.
Here are a few key tips to help you to remain a safe driver on the road at night. No matter your age, these can benefit you any time you get behind the wheel when the sun is going down.
Drive Only When You Feel Safe Doing So
If you are uncomfortable driving in the dark, simply do not do it. There’s never a time when you should feel as if you have to do so. The problem may not be just a lack of seeing well, but also fear and anxiety. If you don’t feel comfortable behind the wheel, call for a service to pick you up or ask a friend. It’s always best to be safe.
Darken the Interior of Your Car
One of the most important things to recognize about driving at night is that the light inside the car is working against you. This is very true when there is a glare, such as from a wet surface. For this reason, you’ll want to dim the lights on the dashboard of your car and keep your interior overhead light off. By doing this, you also remove the reflections on the windshield. Within moments, your eyes are better able to focus, making it easier for you to drive.
Update Your Vehicle’s Lights
You may not realize that there are a variety of types of headlights on the market. Each is a bit different in terms of brightness. You also want to be sure you are choosing lights designed to create a large area of visibility. You may wish to try HID or Xenon lights, which are brighter than other products. LEDs are another option, which typically is a bit more expensive but better in terms of quality than typical halogen lights.
Get Your Windshield Wipers Ready
Before you hit the road at night, be ready for changing conditions including rain and fog. The use of a windshield wiper is going to be necessary in these cases. If the wiper is falling apart, not secured against the window itself, or dirty, it can make seeing difficult. Clean the wiper. If it needs to be replaced, purchase a quality product designed for the make and model of your car.
Be a Defensive Driver
Even if you are a bit tired, it is quite important to be ready for all conditions on roadways at night. It is a good idea to drive a bit slower, stay further away from other cars, and to be mindful of what’s happening along the roadway. If you are concerned about your safety and want better skills, enroll in a defensive driving course. Your auto insurance company can make some key recommendations for you.
Improve Your Own Vision
Many people begin to have trouble with their vision by the time they are in their 50s. If you have not done so, visit an eye doctor for an exam. You may benefit from nighttime driving glasses. These can help reduce glare and improve your ability to see on the roadways even on the darkest of nights.
Most importantly, stay alert. Recognize that driving at night is dangerous and requires more attention and focus on the road. This is the perfect time to turn off the radio to avoid distracted driving.