Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

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Thread: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

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    Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    "Add another item to the list of once-common features — including ashtrays, spare tires and turn-the-key ignition switches — disappearing from new cars: fog lamps.

    Several makers of luxury vehicles have quietly omitted the front fog lights from many of their latest models, including Audi, Cadillac, Lincoln, Mercedes-Benz and the new Genesis line from Hyundai. The trend is unlikely to stop there, as changes to high-end models inevitably filter down to mainstream cars and trucks.

    Those companies say their latest high-tech headlights make separate fog lamps unnecessary. There is scant independent research to verify such claims; the public-interest groups that test headlights, including Consumers Union and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, do not conduct tests of fog lights and do not take a position on their effectiveness.

    Nor do the federal safety regulators that issue standards for high- and low-beam headlights. In a statement, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said, “Fog lamps are considered supplemental equipment, which means there are no applicable federal requirements for these lamps other than they must not impair the effectiveness of the required lighting equipment.”


    Though fog is an isolated and somewhat regional and seasonal road hazard, it is particularly challenging for drivers. A 2014 report by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, looking at federal crash data on fatal crashes from 1990 to 2012 and police-reported crashes from 1990 to 2008, found that fog was a factor in nearly 20 percent of deadly multicar pileups involving 10 or more vehicles.

    Fog is especially prevalent in some regions, including much of the Southeast, northern New England, the Pacific Northwest and the Central Valley of California, and it forms most often in winter. Deadly multicar crashes generally occur when cars and trucks traveling at interstate speed drive into what is essentially a low-lying cloud and quickly lose visibility. Drivers may not see the slowed cars ahead until it is too late, with one vehicle crashing into the next, including huge tractor-trailers.

    Eleven people died in a pileup in January 2012 near Gainesville, Fla., a crash that was linked to a combination of smoke and fog. In November 2007, a chain-reaction crash of 108 vehicles in fog near Fresno, Calif., resulted in two deaths, as did a 60-car pileup in Wyoming in April 2015. On Jan. 31, nearly 50 cars piled up in fog-related crashes near Hanford, Calif.

    Lighting and safety experts caution that stand-alone front fog lights, which are usually set into the bumper close to the road, may be inadequate to prevent such horrific highway-speed crashes. But they can help drivers see road markings in fog at low speeds, perhaps keeping the car from hitting a tree or running into a ditch.

    High-beam headlights, designed to send light into the distance, are especially ineffective at penetrating the fog, as they reflect off the moisture in the air. But even low beams throw enough light into the fog curtain that the effect can be blinding rather than illuminating.

    Fog lamps are intended to provide an adjunct to the low beams. Because fog hovers close to the ground, the lamps are designed to shine down, illuminating the road beneath the fog. The top of the beam is cut off sharply so the light does not shine into the fog and reflect off it.

    Jennifer Stockburger, the director of operations at the auto test center of Consumer Reports, said that although her magazine routinely tests headlights as part of its auto evaluations, it does not concern itself with fog lamps, which are “just meant for that low light in front of the bumper.”"

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/29/a...av=bottom-well

    I'm a believer in auxiliary fog lights. They give some more peripheral vision in the dark and fog conditions, for when wildlife would most often enter the roadway and visibility is at it's lowest, giving more warning that something might walk out into the road before you could even sense it. I live in a rural area, but commute to an urban area, so my experience is probably different than urban or suburban drivers, though. My morning drive, before they plow the snow or salt the roads, before it is even remotely starting to get light out, is quite often very trying, due to widely varying adverse weather conditions, be it fog, rain or snow, or a combination of all three, in deep darkness.

    They go off when you hit the brights, I don't flashed that they are too bright for oncoming drivers, and I think I'm not happy to seem them being deleted, with seemingly no studies to prove them obsolescent.

    I don't have high end headlights, and I'm suspicious just how well the average high end headlight system compares to the enhancements offered by fog lights.

    Are fog lights redundant and unnecessary now, in your opinion?
    Last edited by Carbide; 07-02-2017 at 12:40 PM.

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    In realty, true fog lamps work best in fog when they are mounted higher on the vehicle and pointed on a downward angle. The popular placement of fog lamps was to mount them very low and it just doesn't work. The correct downward angle will light up the pavement instead of reflecting and lighting up the fog in front of you.

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    #3. Most "fog" lamps or "driving lights" are/were a bad joke.
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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    Quote Originally Posted by Neanderthal View Post
    #3. Most "fog" lamps or "driving lights" are/were a bad joke.
    +1
    From automotive lighting expert Daniel Stern:

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Stern Lighting
    "Many of today's vehicles have front fog lamps. What good are they? The quick and correct 2-word answer: Not much! Even good fog lamps, which are relatively rare, are of very limited use to most drivers. Fog lamps should be turned OFF almost all the time—to the extent that you forget the car has them, and the original bulbs last years and years because they're almost never used."

    "Almost all factory-installed or dealer-optional fog lamps, and a great many aftermarket units, are essentially useless for any purpose, especially for extremely demanding poor-weather driving. Many of them are too small to produce enough light to make a difference, produce beam patterns too narrow to help, lack a sufficiently-sharp cutoff, and throw too much glare light into the eyes of other drivers, no matter how they're aimed."
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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    Carbide,
    Maybe the makers should consider returning to cornering lamps, which were a GREAT help and which were actuated by the turn signal w/headlights on. They would do more than this stuff that people like to leave on, thinking they're getting more decibels of light when they're actually just contributing to globaloney warming by wasting the electrical fluid!

    Quote Originally Posted by gkr778 View Post
    +1
    From automotive lighting expert Daniel Stern:
    Guy is obviously a genius.
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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    Quote Originally Posted by gkr778 View Post
    +1
    From automotive lighting expert Daniel Stern:
    precisely

    They are nothing but a fashion accessory

    Here's a tip manufacturers

    Just make headlights better
    Who the hell approved this abomination? Hidden Content

    I bet it was some dumbarse in Detroit Hidden Content

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    A fascinating turn-about; only a year- 2 years ago if a luxury car appeared without fog lamps it was widely chided for being & looking cheap.
    A widespread aesthetic / subjective comment; nothing to do with functionality.

    I accept the functional non-necessity with today's headlights.... but what to do with the aesthetic of the gaping black plastic meshed holes adorning so many cars today??
    How will observers KNOW if you have a luxury car without that blazing sign?

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    Quote Originally Posted by 09W View Post
    A fascinating turn-about; only a year- 2 years ago if a luxury car appeared without fog lamps it was widely chided for being & looking cheap.
    A widespread aesthetic / subjective comment; nothing to do with functionality.

    I accept the functional non-necessity with today's headlights.... but what to do with the aesthetic of the gaping black plastic meshed holes adorning so many cars today??
    How will observers KNOW if you have a luxury car without that blazing sign?
    I've noticed a lot of mfrs. have turned to having them only as a dealer installed option to fill that gawdawful black slab down there.

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    There's no accounting for taste, but I can say that without a doubt, the fog lights I have, mounted low in the fascia, shine under the fog bank, provide more and better positioned light than the low beams alone provide, and the high beams are useless in fog, mist, drizzle and sparkly light snow.

    I think most of the cars that did have them are now losing the real estate down there to air intakes for engine cooling.

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    I know in Canada "CMVSS" standards say a MAX of 2 SETS white forward facing lamps and I would assume these "L E D signature" lighting being employed by LUX cars may count as a set of lamps making the FOG lights illegal

    and old truckers always wanted the fog lamps as LOW to the ground to maximize the angle from the light beam and the drivers eye sight
    and turn the HEADLIGHTS OFF during FOG conditions

    IMHO as far as them going away I do not mind as for most companies it was a way to make a mid/lower trim model look like a CHEAP model in a way to "force" you into a higher level
    Last edited by richmond2000; 07-02-2017 at 10:20 PM.

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    Quote Originally Posted by richmond2000 View Post
    I know in Canada "CMVSS" standards say a MAX of 2 SETS white forward facing lamps and I would assume these "L E D signature" lighting being employed by LUX cars may count as a set of lamps making the FOG lights illegal

    and old truckers always wanted the fog lamps as LOW to the ground to maximize the angle from the light beam and the drivers eye sight
    and turn the HEADLIGHTS OFF during FOG conditions

    IMHO as far as them going away I do not mind as for most companies it was a way to make a mid/lower trim model look like a CHEAP model in a way to "force" you into a higher level


    DRL's are just that

    DAYTIME running lights


    Why would you want headlights and the DRL's on at the same time?

    That's what pisses me off about fog lights wankers have them on all the time foggy or not and all they do is dazzle you especially when its raining

    DRL's are another problem altogether

    LIke people driving off with no headlights on at night wondering why everyone is flashing them and honking their horns
    Who the hell approved this abomination? Hidden Content

    I bet it was some dumbarse in Detroit Hidden Content

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    The Mercedes I used to own had separate after market fog lights fitted and they worked really well, the problem was I seldom got to use them as I lived in the city. Most people don't seem to ever get their lights adjusted so most fog lights I see are next to useless.

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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    Quote Originally Posted by 09W View Post
    A fascinating turn-about; only a year- 2 years ago if a luxury car appeared without fog lamps it was widely chided for being & looking cheap.
    A widespread aesthetic / subjective comment; nothing to do with functionality.

    I accept the functional non-necessity with today's headlights.... but what to do with the aesthetic of the gaping black plastic meshed holes adorning so many cars today??
    How will observers KNOW if you have a luxury car without that blazing sign?
    This great news for GM; soon all companies will be sport gaping black plastic slabs, and it'll be just considered normal.
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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    LED "rope lights" are all the rage today, they are the modern day fog light, and unlike fog lights, have zero functional benefit for the driver.
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    Re: Why Fog Lamps Are Starting to Disappear

    Fog lights in fog are as useful as a box of rocks. They are and always have been nothing but a fashion statement. They are for pickup trucks to drive around in and blind people in cars. They are for people in cars to look cool. They are marketing equipment for the manufacturers to charge more money for the option. I have noticed their disappearance and for one am glad. All they did was ruin the amount the driver can see illuminated in the distance as it was so bright right in front of the car that your eyes will adjust to that brightness...

    And as for the comments about slabs of plastic on vehicles that don't offer them... If the car isn't designed to have fog lights then there will be less of a need for these "I didn't spring for the fog lights" look. Instead we will have slabs of plastic where we didn't spring for the equally useless, but cool looking, dots or tubes of signature lights.

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