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Date: Mon, 07 Jul 2003 01:51:42 GMT
From: 'nuther Bob <>
Subject: Re: Bought a 95 900S

On Sun, 06 Jul 2003 04:40:27 +0200, Nel Frikandel <> wrote: >On Sun, 06 Jul 2003 02:25:30 GMT, 'nuther Bob ><> wrote: > >>At the same time I suggest that you have the fog lights reprogrammed >>so that the can be turned on of off at any time by the switch >>(not tied to the high beam off). > >This amazes me. Are the fog lights actually programmed like that? >Fot what markets? What's the sense behind this? > Long story... USA. It dates back some years. For a long time, the only lights allowed were standard headlights. This was Federal law. States followed with their own laws (enforcement of vehicle regulations is a local issue) and some states/towns/officers would ticket you for even having fog lights. Eventually they smartened up a little. Now, fogs are allowed but they have to be tied in so that they only work when the high beams are _not_ in use. This regulation came from the early use of *driving* lights by some innovators (before they were legal). They'd turn on the driving lights along with the high beams and throw *lots* of light out the front. When the Feds legalized fog lights, they were worried about people blinding other drivers, so they allowed the use of fogs only with low beams... thereby limiting the about of total light you could throw. Now, we all know that fogs throw light mostly sideways, not forward. So, there's no real issue with total light. But, the Feds being the Feds, they wrote it into the law that way. So, cars that come with fogs have them tied to the low beam only. It actually has nothing to do with the fact that you should only use them with the low beams. Now, after all that, you might ask "so what about driving lights ?" As far as I know, driving lights are still illegal. (In fact, if you consider that the have to be tied into the low beam circuit, they make no sense at all under US regulations). That does not mean that you can't have/buy them. You just can't get caught. Since most cops are not familiar enough with lens design to tell the difference, you are usually safe unless you throw a _lot_ of light(like over 55W driving lights) and/or they just decide to bust your chops. Usually you're OK unless you blind a cop coming the other way. I like driving lights myself. I try to be courteous and dim them as I would the high beams for drivers coming the other way. In order to do this, you have to have a switch with fingertip access. That can involve some design or redesign in many cars. Bob

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