As all semi-truck drivers know, semi-truck light bars are a crucial piece of equipment you just can’t leave the parking lot without. After all, safety on the road has always got to be the number one priority, no questions asked. The reasons why are a-plenty, but suffice it to say that a chunk of your mileage will be covered at night, meaning you’ll have to be super observant and careful about how you handle your vehicle. Not to mention just how massive semis can be! Heck, just seeing one can strike fear into the hearts of inexperienced drivers, so you better have those light bars signaling that your metal behemoth is in front or behind them.
But we’re not here to discuss timid hearts and high-testosterone metal beasts that are semi-trucks, no. Our focus is on finding the right light bars for semi trucks and explaining some of the key differences between different types of them to help you make up your mind should you decide to purchase a new set. We’ll look into what makes them all unique and what makes them the right choice based on your needs and preferences. Enough chit-chat; let’s get this show on the road!
1. Rear and Mudflap Light Bars
The uninitiated might find these types of light bars a mere toy, something you put up to make sure you stand out from the crowd. But that could not be further from the truth. These bad boys might look cool as all hell, but they do have a purpose, too — a very important purpose. As we’ve already mentioned, driving at night is serious business, so you’ll wanna make sure you’re visible from all angles, at all times, to everyone!
And it’s not just the darkness you have to worry about. What about snow, rain, fog, hail, and God knows what else? What about sand and all sorts of debris, depending on where you live and work? A hell of a lot of accidents can be avoided with a bit of precaution, so it never hurts to take a few extra steps to keep the roads well-lit and safe for everyone. Keep in mind, though, that a strobe light bar for semi trucks might not always be the best option if you’re mounting it at the rear, especially in snowy areas. Why? Well, simply put, lots of drivers report they are too blinding and disorienting, so you might be better off opting for good old LED lights instead.
2. LED Strip Light Bars
Okay, we know what you’re thinking: “LED strip bars? Those aren’t light bars at all!” You may have a point, technically speaking, but LED strips play essentially the same role as any other type of light bars. Yup, you put them up, turn them on, and they shine bright and pretty to let everyone know there’s a gargantuan semi making its way down the road (i.e., making sure everyone is prepared and on alert).
Their pros? Well, for one, LED lights are way brighter than strobe lights for trucks, so you’ll be extra visible at night. And you know what extra visibility means? That’s right — extra safety. What else? They draw fewer amps, so you’ll be saving on power as well. Not to mention they work in pretty much every kind of environment, so you won’t have to worry about giving people headaches and dazzling them as you would with strobes.
3. Emergency Light Bars
We’ve saved emergency light bars for last, but they’re probably what most folks think of when they think of vehicle lights. How could they not, though? We’re so used to seeing them on police cars, fire trucks, ambulances, and all sorts of construction and farm machinery that we can’t imagine such vehicles without them. A really handy feature of these kinds of rooftop light bars is that you can often remove them and put them back on as needed, meaning you can have full control of your vehicle’s visibility and make sure you can alert any coming drivers of danger on the road should an accident happen.
These are traditionally truck strobe lights, but LEDs are just as popular nowadays and for a good number of reasons (which we’ve mentioned above). However, what truly sets lights of this type apart, be they LED or strobe lights, is that they are often mandatory. That is, the government sometimes demands you mount rooftop lights on vehicles of a certain size, and there’s not much you can do to circumvent these laws.
Legalities are also why semis typically come with rooftop lights preinstalled. However, the bulbs you get are more often than not insufficient, and while they do meet the industry standards, they are just not good enough compared to more heavy-duty models you can purchase and install yourself, be it strobe lights for trucks or LED bars. Doing so is highly recommended for everyone who spends a lot of time on the road, especially in harsh, unforgivable conditions that demand more caution.
As you can see, there are more than enough options to choose from when it comes to light bars for semi trucks, but the thing is that they all ultimately serve the same purpose — ensuring safety for the driver and everyone else alike. Your choice might be difficult, especially if you’re on a budget, but all that matters is that you take at least some time to make sure your vehicle is properly equipped and safe to handle, both for your sake and for the sake of all other traffic participants. Strobe lights, LED bars, traditional bulbs — the choice is up to you, and it will depend on your needs and preferences, so take everything we’ve said into consideration and rest assured that you’re making the right decision. See you on the road!
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