Skip to main content

Securely reserve vehicles and apply for finance online from the comfort of your own home. Find Out More

A Startin Guide: Understanding Car Lighting Regulations in the UK

10 November 2023

Comprehensive Guide to Car Light Regulations

As responsible drivers, it's crucial to comprehend and adhere to the stringent regulations governing car lighting in the United Kingdom.

Beyond just illuminating the road, vehicle lights are integral to road safety, visibility, and compliance with legal requirements. Let's delve into the specifics to ensure a comprehensive understanding.

Daytime Use of Car Lights

Brake lights play a pivotal role in communicating a driver's actions to vehicles behind. They must activate when the foot brake is pressed, yet it's imperative not to use them continuously in stationary traffic, as it can cause unnecessary glare.

Regular checks to ensure their proper functioning are recommended to avoid penalties or accidents.

Since 2011, EU regulations mandate new vehicles to incorporate daytime running lights, which automatically switch on when the engine starts.

However, these only apply to headlights, requiring drivers to manually activate rear lights in dim lighting conditions.

Night time Car Light Regulations

Night time driving necessitates adequate lighting for clear vision without dazzling other road users.

The requirement to use dipped headlights after sunset, particularly in built-up areas and when approaching other vehicles or pedestrians, is crucial for safety and compliance.

When overtaking, maintaining dipped headlights until level with the other vehicle is essential, switching to main beam cautiously to prevent dazzling oncoming road users.

Windows and Windscreen Regulations

Ensuring optimal visibility through windows and windscreens is essential.

Compliance with government-mandated light transmission percentages through tinted windows is crucial to avoid policy invalidation and potential legal repercussions.

Maintaining a clean, crack-free windscreen is equally important, as cracks can cause MOT failure and might result in legal implications.

Also ensuring that your wipers aren't too worn and are clear the windscreen efficiently is key.

Brake Lights Safety Measures

Ensuring functional and clean brake lights is vital to avoid legal consequences and maintain road safety. Regular inspections and immediate replacement of faulty bulbs are imperative.

Hazard and Fog Lights Guidelines

Hazard Lights Usage

Hazard lights should only be activated when stationary, warning other drivers of obstructions or dangerous conditions. Exceptions exist for motorway or dual carriageway driving to alert drivers about upcoming hazards.

Fog Lights Use and Restrictions

Driving in fog reduces visibility significantly. While using fog lights is not a legal obligation, their usage is recommended for increased visibility, ensuring other drivers can see your vehicle. Nevertheless, their misuse during clear visibility is illegal and potentially dangerous.

By complying with these regulations, drivers not only ensure their safety but also adhere to legal requirements, thereby contributing to a secure and well-regulated driving environment.

Looking for an upgrade?

Sell your car today!

Get your car Winter Ready!

Book a Service