- 1 8 tips for safer night driving
- 2 Here are a few other tips for driving at night:
- 3 Follow these tips below to see clearly while driving at night:
When the sun goes down, the number of people on the road decreases. Having fewer cars on the road may seem like a good thing, but at night, pedestrians and bicyclists are more difficult to see.
As we age, our eyes change in several ways that affect our vision. For example, over time we lose the ability to focus up close and our pupils become smaller and less responsive to light. These changes make it harder to see at night because it takes longer for our eyes to adjust when moving from light to dark areas or vice versa. In addition, it becomes more difficult for us to see things on the side of our visual field (peripheral vision) while driving at night, which makes seeing other cars or people crossing the street more challenging.
As a result of these changes, many older drivers find that they prefer driving during daylight hours rather than at night — especially when faced with headlights from oncoming traffic.
8 tips for safer night driving
Aging eyes are more susceptible to glare and reduced visibility at night, which can make it harder to see what’s in front of you.
For many drivers, this is a big adjustment as they get older. When you’re younger, your eyes naturally pull in more light. But as we age, the lenses in our eyes get cloudier and less effective at allowing light to pass through them.
Here are a few other tips for driving at night:
Keep your windshield clean. A dirty windshield makes it more difficult to see at night — especially if there is dust or dirt on the inside. Keep your windows clean both inside and out.
Wear the right eyewear
If you wear glasses for driving, consider adding anti-reflective coating to minimize glare from headlights and street lights. You should also consider picking up a good pair of polarized sunglasses for daytime driving; they reduce glare as well.
If you have cataracts, talk to your doctor about surgery to replace the cloudy lens with an artificial one that will improve how much light passes through your eye and into your retina. Cataract surgery has a high success rate and will likely improve your vision as you drive at night.
Driving at night can be more difficult for older folks because of a condition known as presbyopia. Presbyopia is the age-related loss of your ability to focus on nearby objects, and it’s one of the most common vision problems in people 50 and older.
Presbyopia may make driving at night more difficult, but it’s not impossible. Here are some ways to keep your eyes on the road:
Have your eyes checked regularly
Regular eye exams can help you spot any changes in your vision and determine if you need corrective lenses or a different prescription for your eyewear. If you already wear glasses or contacts, make sure to update your prescription accordingly.
Keep headlights clean
Brighter headlights can improve night vision and make it easier to see the road ahead. Regularly clean your car’s headlights, turn signals and taillights to ensure they’re not covered in dirt or debris that can make them less effective.
Replace windshield wipers regularly
Making sure you have fully functioning windshield wipers can help improve visibility during inclement weather, especially at night when rain or snow may be harder to see coming down through the headlights of oncoming traffic. Check your windshield wipers regularly for signs of wear and tear
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately half of all fatal vehicle accidents occur at night. The number was even higher for people over 65.
This is in large part because our eyesight deteriorates with age, making it more difficult to see in low light conditions. Yet, with a few simple adjustments, you can improve your night vision and make driving after dark safer for you and others on the road.
Follow these tips below to see clearly while driving at night:
Clean your windshield and headlights. Before you hit the road, clean your windshield and headlights so you can see better. You should also remove any dents or damage to your windows that could impair your vision.
Adjust your mirrors
Properly adjusted mirrors will help ensure that you don’t miss any blind spots along the way. Learn how to adjust your mirrors properly here.
Use your high beams when necessary
High beams are designed to “light up” the road ahead of you, providing better visibility while driving at night. However, high beams can also make it more difficult for other drivers to see the road ahead of them, so be sure to turn them off when a car is approaching from the opposite direction or behind you in traffic.*
The American Optometric Association recommends that people over 50 get a comprehensive eye exam at least once every two years.
If you wear glasses or contact lenses, your eye doctor can prescribe night driving glasses that help reduce glare from oncoming headlights. Clear anti-reflective coating on your regular glasses can also help.
To get the most out of your vision, don’t drive when you’re tired or after having alcohol or medications that make you drowsy.
Here are some tips to help you see clearly while driving at night.
Clean your headlights. When was the last time you cleaned your headlights? If it’s been a while, then head to your local auto store and pick up a headlight cleaning kit.
Replace your windshield wipers. Windshield wipers are like tires — they wear out over time and need to be replaced. If it’s been more than six months since you replaced them, now is a good time to do so.
Consider anti-reflective lenses. Anti-reflective (AR) lenses reduce glare from street lamps, oncoming traffic and other sources of light that can make driving at night difficult. AR lenses also provide superior clarity and enhanced contrast sensitivity, which can help drivers detect pedestrians in low-light situations.
Get an eye exam. Many drivers don’t realize that their night vision issues may be caused by an underlying eye condition that can be corrected with eyeglasses or contact lenses. Although eye exams should be performed every two years, if you think your impaired vision is making it harder for you to see at night, schedule an appointment with your eye doctor right away.
To help you maintain your vision and be safe, here are four tips for driving at night:
- Stay focused. During the day, our eyes constantly focus on objects in front of us. At night, our eyes have to re-adjust to seeing things at a distance again. When we’re tired, this adjustment can take longer. And of course, that also means we’re not focusing as well as we should on the road ahead. If you find yourself driving long distances at night, make an extra effort to stay alert and focused on the road.
- Avoid glare. Glare is any light source that prevents us from seeing clearly or causes pain in our eyes. The most common type of glare is caused by headlights from other vehicles and street lights while driving at night; however, this can be reduced by wearing sunglasses with polarized lenses designed to reduce glare. Another type of glare comes from reflections off wet roads and bodies of water. This glare can be reduced by turning your headlights down or pulling over until visibility improves.
- Check your prescriptions annually. Whether you wear glasses or contact lenses, it’s important to have your vision checked every year by an eye care professional to ensure your prescriptions are up-to-date and that your visual needs are being