Too Many Tail Lights?

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Too Many Tail Lights?

Postby MJWBuffalo » Thu Mar 26, 2020 9:11 am

All:

Thanks for all the help! I'm nearing the end of my standie build and I'm curious if one could have too many brake lights?

I am using 15" LED strips for the two brake lights. My trailer is wide so I used another 15" strip for the 3 lights in the middle but I can also wire that up to go full on with the brake lights. I was going to add another brake/running light in the middle of the back wall around 4' off the ground to ensure I have good visibility.

What is the downside to too many tail lights? I could easily add a couple more 15" strips for brake lights but I'm concerned that I'm getting into overkill territory...

Thanks!

Matt
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Re: Too Many Tail Lights?

Postby MtnDon » Thu Mar 26, 2020 9:14 am

I don't think you need a wall of lights. Too much brightness can be as bad as too little. How bright are those strips to the driver following? I do like dual sets so if there is an outage on one there is another.
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Re: Too Many Tail Lights?

Postby rainjer » Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:20 am

There are DOT standard for trailer light. I would suggest looking at those and local/state requirements to avoid costly tickets.
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Re: Too Many Tail Lights?

Postby Squigie » Thu Mar 26, 2020 11:37 am

Too much light from running lights can make it difficult to notice the change when brake lights comes on -- or, with some LED typess, when the brightness increases. This is especially important with thin strip lights. The strip lights look cool, but they're harder for people to see brightness changes.

I look at trailer (rear) lights in two ways:
1. Minimum: tri-function brake/tail/turn. Two lights. Two brightness levels. Three functions.

2. Make sure you're seen: Dedicated brake, tail, and turn signals, and a third brake light. (And ID lights up top, if required.) Wide, obvious designs - never strips.


I can't buy steel right now ... and probably won't be able to for some time ... so perhaps my plans will have to be deferred another year. But, my tear design is currently slated to have five rear light housings that are already on-hand: 2 outboard housings with dedicated running lights and dedicated (amber) turn signals. 2 inboard dedicated brake lights. One center-mounted third brake light.
Any more, in my opinion, is too much light. ...And ugly.

I would have gone for strip lights if my primary tow vehicle was almost anything else and had brake lights visible (even only partially) with a trailer in tow. But, since I tow with a step side Ford Ranger, the vehicle's brake lights are only 44" apart and are not visible 'around' any trailer that I tow or intend to tow. Even though I am going with dedicated tail and turn lights, I don't really care about them. Their independence is a byproduct of wanting the brake lights to have ONE job to do. One job: Be obvious when I hit the brakes. That's it.
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Re: Too Many Tail Lights?

Postby MtnDon » Thu Mar 26, 2020 12:30 pm

I do prefer brake lights that are only brake and I also prefer amber-colored separate turn indicators. Much more noticeable.
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Re: Too Many Tail Lights?

Postby twisted lines » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:55 pm

I have one of the center lights and played with it a little, it's all getting wired up. 4 wire's 8)
Same side lights, So I say your doing good, IF

MJWBuffalo wrote:All:

Thanks for all the help! I'm nearing the end of my standie build and I'm curious if one could have too many brake lights? Yes

I used another 15" strip for the 3 lights in the middle but I can also wire that up to go full one with the brake lights. 4 Wires?

If so you may find the three lights and more are turn signals, with on wire off something is not going to work like, Three DOT'S / one side turn / brake, To nothing at all if the ground is off. That's how mine Works
I have been hit several times, The last one was at a stop light, My Bread maker wife and I Retired very early. So it's important to me

I was going to add another brake/running light in the middle of the back wall around 4' off the ground to ensure I have good visibility. No

What is the downside to too many tail lights? overkill territory...
Thanks! U bet :lol:
Matt
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