Fog lights -- almost totally useless or is it just me?

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by Johnny Cakes, Dec 12, 2020.

  1. Johnny Cakes

    Johnny Cakes Senior Member

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    Are the fog lights almost totally useless on this car? There is a tiny difference but almost imperceptible.

    Anyone do any mods to improve them as fog lights or, even better, as general headlights?
     
  2. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    It's not just you.
    Fog lights don't do much useful.......even in real FOG.

    WAY back when......the low beam lights were pretty weak and yellow......adding the low mounted fogs did more good than now. The improved light output of the "regular" headlights makes for more reflection and dispersion in the fog, creating a blinding curtain right in front of you.
     
  3. Pluggo

    Pluggo Senior Member

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    Not you, they're useless. I haven't driven in enough fog or snow to try them- and if it's snowing that hard, you don't belong on the road.
     
  4. Johnny Cakes

    Johnny Cakes Senior Member

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    Thanks for the replies.

    Too bad there is not a mod where we could replace with high-watt lamps that would light the road.
     
  5. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    You don't understand.
    When the fog or snow is thick enough, TOO MUCH light is bad, not good.

    Now......if it were possible to turn OFF the "regular" lights, then brighter fogs down near the road might help in some circumstances.
    In other circumstances, maybe not.
    And that is illegal.......although I have seen some big trucks that are equipped like that.
     
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  6. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    That's my impression. I've turned them on/off a few times on dark roads, just to see if I could tell the difference. Like you, just a "hint" of additional light, but pretty useless.
     
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  7. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    They seem to splay out to the sides of the car extra wide, I think mostly to help you decide where the road edges are, while picking your way slowly through dense fog. They seem to be marginally useful for that. But I have a IV so it came without the factory fogs, and the ones installed are aftermarket LED versions.
     
  8. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    I was carpooling in a Supra in mid-eighties; using that car's fog lights for a benchmark, our current fogs are candles in mason jars.
     
  9. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    Theyre useful if yellow or green color bulbs so on-coming traffic / drivers can see you in heavy snow or fog road conditions.
     
  10. Johnny Cakes

    Johnny Cakes Senior Member

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    No, you don't understand.

    Wasn't talking about fog/snow conditions. Only lighting the road.
     
  11. ther67m84

    ther67m84 New Member

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    I thought they were technically "Day Driving Lights". They are not spotlights that illuminate in front of you, they do let oncoming traffic see you and IMO they do help with illuminating the sides of the road. Great for driving in dense lane-ways and being able to see house numbers etc on the sides of the road.
     
  12. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    Your first post mentioned BOTH applications.
    "Fog Lights" usually are mounted too low to improve general lighting of the road ahead.......no matter how bright they are.
     
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  13. NewHybridOwner

    NewHybridOwner Active Member

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    I have aftermarket LED ones on our Four, but I still have to adjust them to shine a little higher. I think that in conjunction with parking lights -- no low beams on, even -- and while driving slowly enough for the road/weather conditions, they should do fine.
     
  14. Rmay635703

    Rmay635703 Senior Member

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    People do that to their trucks around here having 1m watt bulbs, they dim their normal headlights but leave their lower spotlights blazing in your eyeballs , totally sucks
     
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  15. Johnny Cakes

    Johnny Cakes Senior Member

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    Completely agree, especially having just driven 2,000 miles on I-95. I'm shocked at the number of motorist who won't turn off their "high beam," even after you flash at them. My inquiry was just for when no other motorists in range.
     
  16. Kenny94945

    Kenny94945 Active Member

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    Fog lights versus driving lights.

    FL should be low and not that bright.
    DL are much different and can have distance and side vision increases.

    I'd say wittingly, as written, the OP is having an issue with the OEM FL while driving in fog.
    Reading between the lines, OP is writing the OEM FL do not function well as DL.

    I'd bet there are options to increase the light output in the FL, but sadly I have no insights on that modding.
    Good luck.
     
  17. Johnny Cakes

    Johnny Cakes Senior Member

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    No, I never drive in fog. Apparently, its not a thing, but I wish I could re-imagine the fog light such that they would be supernova bright to light up the entire road (but, of course, never be used when there is other traffic on the road).
     
  18. Rmay635703

    Rmay635703 Senior Member

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    every jacked up Dodge has supernova bright LEDs or hids in the fog position, not a good thing for anyone when your fog lights illuminate the tree tops perfectly
    Also totally legal
     
  19. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Properly patterned and aimed fogs lights will not be supernovas blinding oncoming drivers. You can leave them on full time without blinding oncoming drivers, day and night, at least here in states that don't limit usage, because they are aimed low.

    Factory fogs lights are normally not "real" fogs lights, which are ( or used to be) illegal in a couple states. Instead, they are usually mostly just fog-like decorative lights legal in all 50 states, aimed too low for real fog use, and sometimes badly patterned.

    If you are thinking of something supernova-like that must be dimmed in oncoming traffic, then "fog light" is not a proper descriptive term. You'll want to start with something else.
    I put an official Honda fog light kit on my '86 Accord, and is was wonderful, filling in many holes and deficiencies in those archaic single rectangular sealed beams. They were actually a Bosch Pilot fog light set, with Accord-specific brackets.

    I put another set of Bosch Pilots, with generic brackets, on my other car with the less-bad double rectangular sealed beams. They were nice on that car too.

    My next car came with factory fogs, and significantly improved post-sealed-beam-era headlights. The factory headlights were a big improvement, but the factory fogs were a big step backwards, being those "decorative fog-like" lamps described above. And the internal brackets were very carefully engineered to prevent being shimmed to a higher aim, shims could only push them lower. My desired aiming would require major re-work. But at least the base headlights left less need for additive fog lighting.
     
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  20. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sunday driver DIY’r

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    Anyone know of and favour a replacement fog light that can be dropped in, good quality, effective?
     
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