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Tips for driving in the dark

17th November 2021

Driving at night can be a daunting experience as your vision of the road is significantly reduced. To help you stay safe, we’ve put together a useful guide full of tips for night time driving. 

 Driving in the dark

  • Watch out for pedestrians: you are far less likely to see pedestrians in the dark, therefore there is a greater risk of accidents – take extra care when driving in residential areas or schools, as these areas are likely to have the most pedestrians.
  • Kill your speed: roads are usually quieter at night, but don't be tempted to drive at high speeds. Reducing your speed by just a bit can quite literally save lives, especially in poorly lit areas and country roads.
  • Take regular breaks: if you are driving long distances, then it is very important to take breaks often. Never get behind the wheel if you are feeling drowsy, as this will only reduce your reaction times and potentially increase the chance of accidents. 

How to see better when driving at night

The main issue when driving at night is the lack of visibility - these few tips will ensure that you have the best possible view in the dark.

  • Ensure your lights are fully functioning: it is illegal to drive in the UK without fully operating lights, which is why you should regularly check you lights to guarantee that they are functioning correctly. If a bulb needs changing, then you must do this as soon as possible to avoid getting stopped by the police. 
  • Never look directly into the headlights: sometimes other motorists can have their headlights glare on the wrong settings, which can impact your sight. If you are unable to see the road for even just a short amount of time, then you are most likely to panic and could cause a collision. In times of overbearing glare, try to focus your attention on the white lines on the left-hand side of the road. If the glare is becoming incredibly bad, then you should slow down – but avoid stopping abruptly, as this can could cause an accident.  
  • Maintain clean windows: an accumulation of dirt and condensation can seriously hinder your vision when driving, especially at night. To avoid this, regularly clean your windows before you set off, this can be as easily done with a handheld wiper. In addition, cold weather can often facilitate glare by causing condensation in the inside of your car, therefore it is important to keep your car well heated, but also utilise your cars windscreen de-mist air con function. 
  • Get your eyes tested: as a motorist, you have a responsibility to ensure that your eyesight is always up to scratch – so you can drive safely in the daytime as well as the night.
  • Don’t wear tinted glasses: although you may think tinted glasses will help with glare –this will do more harm than good and can worsen your vision at night.
  • Be equipped for a breakdown: your car breaking down in the night can feel especially scary, however, all you need to do is pack a few extra essentials. A torch is essential and will relieve the anxieties of being broken down at night, it is also a good idea to pack blankets so you can stay warm, just in case you are stranded for hours

To ensure you can drive at night time with your mind at ease, be sure to book your MOT with us at your nearest Merityre Specialist branch. For any other motor-related queries, be sure to get in touch with our helpful team.