Burn out Brake Lights

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Old 09 Feb 2009, 10:02 pm   #1 (permalink)
Mark
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Default Burn out Brake Lights

I had a close call this morning, something I fear may be happening to a lot
of people these days. I was in traffic in the freeway when I realized the
minivan in front of me was slowing down. Problem was it only had about half
of the center-mounted brake light that worked. All the rest were burned
out, and with the salt and road scum on the back of the van the light that
was on was barely visible. Of course it would have been my fault - its rare
you can hit someone from behind and not get charged with ACD.

Over the past few years I've notice a lot of cars have burned out brake
lights. Stop at just about any busy intersection and you can often see at
least one car with a light out. Are the bulb manufacturers making cheaper
bulbs these days or are people just less concerned about the upkeep on their
cars?

Oh, and while my car probably would have been banged up had I hit the van,
my Camry and its airbag probably would have protected me, no telling about
the woman in the van and the small child she had un-restrained in the front
seat.

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Old 10 Feb 2009, 07:43 am   #2 (permalink)
ransley
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights

On Feb 9, 10:02*pm, "Mark" <m...@nospam.com> wrote:
> I had a close call this morning, something I fear may be happening to a lot
> of people these days. *I was in traffic in the freeway when I realized the
> minivan in front of me was slowing down. *Problem was it only had abouthalf
> of the center-mounted brake light that worked. *All the rest were burned
> out, and with the salt and road scum on the back of the van the light that
> was on was barely visible. *Of course it would have been my fault - itsrare
> you can hit someone from behind and not get charged with ACD.
>
> Over the past few years I've notice a lot of cars have burned out brake
> lights. *Stop at just about any busy intersection and you can often seeat
> least one car with a light out. *Are the bulb manufacturers making cheaper
> bulbs these days or are people just less concerned about the upkeep on their
> cars?
>
> Oh, and while my car probably would have been banged up had I hit the van,
> my Camry and its airbag probably would have protected me, no telling about
> the woman in the van and the small child she had un-restrained in the front
> seat.


If you hit him he might have been charged as well, you might get off.
Keep your camera in your car. Its laziness to not check for bad
lights, and he probably has a dash warning light that has been on for
years for bulb failure.
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Old 10 Feb 2009, 12:05 pm   #3 (permalink)
Leftie
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights

ransley wrote:
> On Feb 9, 10:02 pm, "Mark" <m...@nospam.com> wrote:
>> I had a close call this morning, something I fear may be happening to a lot
>> of people these days. I was in traffic in the freeway when I realized the
>> minivan in front of me was slowing down. Problem was it only had about half
>> of the center-mounted brake light that worked. All the rest were burned
>> out, and with the salt and road scum on the back of the van the light that
>> was on was barely visible. Of course it would have been my fault - its rare
>> you can hit someone from behind and not get charged with ACD.
>>
>> Over the past few years I've notice a lot of cars have burned out brake
>> lights. Stop at just about any busy intersection and you can often see at
>> least one car with a light out. Are the bulb manufacturers making cheaper
>> bulbs these days or are people just less concerned about the upkeep on their
>> cars?


(...)

There are a lot of cheap Chinese bulbs out there, and overall
quality is down. People are also less likely to spot burned out lights
that they can't see themselves, like brake and backup lights. It's long
past time for LED brake and marker lights.
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Old 10 Feb 2009, 02:02 pm   #4 (permalink)
Mark A
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights

"Leftie" <No@Thanks.net> wrote in message
news:_tikl.17827$1Z5.2901@newsfe10.iad...
> ransley wrote:
> There are a lot of cheap Chinese bulbs out there, and overall quality
> is down. People are also less likely to spot burned out lights that they
> can't see themselves, like brake and backup lights. It's long past time
> for LED brake and marker lights.


A lot of new cars already have LED lights that last almost forever.

My 98 Camry had a warning light on the dash when the any bulbs were burned
out including rear deck brake light. I replaced it with a Sylvania long life
bulb (slightly higher voltage rating that doesn't burn quite as bright).


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Old 10 Feb 2009, 06:27 pm   #5 (permalink)
westom1@gmail.com
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights

On Feb 10, 1:05*pm, Leftie <N...@Thanks.net> wrote:
> * * There are a lot of cheap Chinese bulbs out there, and overall
> quality is down.


The OP did not mention the manufacturer of that vehicle without
brake lights. I have long noted the same problems. Those failures
are more common on vehicles that, for example, are poor at voltage
regulation - ie some GM products. Same cars also go through batteries
faster.

Never had a single brake light or tail light fail ever on my cars -
most everyone owned for over 12 years. 12 years indicates that I
don't drive cars designed by cost controlling business school
graduates.

Meanwhile, many superior vehicles have long had warning lights on
the dashboard to warn of missing brake lights - ie that Camry. When
you buy a car on price (ie a Chevy), then costs increase. Brake light
bulbs are only one example why. I have often cautioned drivers of
their missing brake lights. I usually ask the age of that vehicle.
Brake light failure is common among GM products less than five years
old. No acceptable reason for brake lights to every fail in the first
100,000 miles. But then some vehicles are designed by cost
accountants - not by car guys.

Does the vehicle use orange (amber) turn signals? If not, another
failure directly traceable to wrong people doing the design. Cost
controllers install red rear turn signals. Cars designed by car guys
are orange - essential to human safety. It ain't the Chinese. More
often, American finance people doing hardware design make unnecessary
failures acceptable that result even in brake lights failing
prematurely. Only myths would blame Chinese.
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Old 11 Feb 2009, 07:33 pm   #6 (permalink)
Ralph Mowery
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights


"Mark" <mwl@nospam.com> wrote in message
news:O%6kl.3408$g63.2421@newsfe11.iad...
>I had a close call this morning, something I fear may be happening to a lot
>of people these days. I was in traffic in the freeway when I realized the
>minivan in front of me was slowing down. Problem was it only had about
>half of the center-mounted brake light that worked. All the rest were
>burned out, and with the salt and road scum on the back of the van the
>light that was on was barely visible. Of course it would have been my
>fault - its rare you can hit someone from behind and not get charged with
>ACD.
>


You may be charged, but depending on the state you are in, it may be partly
the blame of the other driver. That is for not keeping the lights burning.
My son was cited because he failed to signal a turn far enough away from
where he was turning and was hit from behind.
That was in North Carolina about 20 years ago.


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Old 11 Feb 2009, 07:48 pm   #7 (permalink)
Winston
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights

Ralph Mowery wrote:

(...)

> You may be charged, but depending on the state you are in, it may be partly
> the blame of the other driver. That is for not keeping the lights burning.
> My son was cited because he failed to signal a turn far enough away from
> where he was turning and was hit from behind.
> That was in North Carolina about 20 years ago.


So the following driver didn't see your son's *car*.
How could that driver hope to see the tiny little blinker light?

Inquiring minds want to know.

--Winston


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I'm still waiting for another sublime, transcendent flash of adequacy.
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Old 11 Feb 2009, 08:13 pm   #8 (permalink)
Ralph Mowery
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights


"Winston" <Winston@bigbrother.net> wrote in message
news:gmvv5p01gu@news7.newsguy.com...
> Ralph Mowery wrote:
>
> (...)
>
>> You may be charged, but depending on the state you are in, it may be
>> partly the blame of the other driver. That is for not keeping the lights
>> burning. My son was cited because he failed to signal a turn far enough
>> away from where he was turning and was hit from behind.
>> That was in North Carolina about 20 years ago.

>
> So the following driver didn't see your son's *car*.
> How could that driver hope to see the tiny little blinker light?
>
> Inquiring minds want to know.
>
> --Winston


That is one of the laws of the state. I don't recall how far it is,but you
are suspose to signal atleast so far before you turn. Failing to do that
puts the driver at least 1 % at fault and you have to pay to fix your own
car.


When I was a teenager a car infront of me was making a left turn and I was
stopped behind him. A car hit me from behind several seconds later (it was
a 35 mph zone). The driver said I should have been giving a turn signal and
I said I should not give a signal as I was not turning but the car in front
was turning. The policeman did not cite the driver that hit me in the back
for whatever reason.


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Old 11 Feb 2009, 11:47 pm   #9 (permalink)
Winston
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Default Re: Burn out Brake Lights

Ralph Mowery wrote:
> "Winston" <Winston@bigbrother.net> wrote in message
> news:gmvv5p01gu@news7.newsguy.com...
>> Ralph Mowery wrote:
>>
>> (...)
>>
>>> You may be charged, but depending on the state you are in, it may be
>>> partly the blame of the other driver. That is for not keeping the lights
>>> burning. My son was cited because he failed to signal a turn far enough
>>> away from where he was turning and was hit from behind.
>>> That was in North Carolina about 20 years ago.

>> So the following driver didn't see your son's *car*.
>> How could that driver hope to see the tiny little blinker light?
>>
>> Inquiring minds want to know.
>>
>> --Winston

>
> That is one of the laws of the state. I don't recall how far it is,but you
> are suspose to signal atleast so far before you turn. Failing to do that
> puts the driver at least 1 % at fault and you have to pay to fix your own
> car.


I guess law isn't always logical.
If I'm driving behind a car, I feel obligated to avoid hitting him.
Seems like a minimum level of responsibility to me.

> When I was a teenager a car infront of me was making a left turn and I was
> stopped behind him. A car hit me from behind several seconds later (it was
> a 35 mph zone). The driver said I should have been giving a turn signal and
> I said I should not give a signal as I was not turning but the car in front
> was turning. The policeman did not cite the driver that hit me in the back
> for whatever reason.


Driver was a fellow cop's family member? <-- Rhetorical question.

--Winston


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I'm still waiting for another sublime, transcendent flash of adequacy.
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