When choosing fog lights, they are primarily guided by the need to position the car as clearly as possible in relation to its visibility for other road users, as well as ensuring visibility for the driver of road landmarks (markings, edges of the road surface, curbs) in adverse weather conditions. Currently, the most common types of fog lights are halogen lamps and led-lamps (light-emitting diodes). Let's take a closer look at their distinctive features, which allow, with all the variety of products on the market, to make the best choice.
Fog lights should provide maximum visibility of the road surface in the area of vehicle movement, which is achieved by focusing the light beam on the roadway and objects along its path. Usually, standard halogen optics do not provide such focusing, so it is often necessary to equip them with additional lenses or install lensed headlights, which requires additional costs. LED lamps are free from this drawback, since they themselves form a light beam and in this case the design of the headlight itself is not critical.
With the same power consumption, the luminous flux of a led lamp significantly exceeds the luminous flux of a halogen, i.e. efficiency and functional efficiency speaks in favor of the use of LED lamps.
In evaluating the compared types of lamps in terms of their use as position lights, one also has to state the preference for LED lamps. This is due to the distribution of the light source over the light-emitting surface: if in a led lamp light is emitted from a powerful point source, then in a halogen lamp the light source is distributed along the incandescent spiral, which makes the light beam diffuse, not concentrated.
It should also be taken into account that LED-lamps with the same values of the power of the applied diode at the output can give different power of the luminous flux. The more efficient the heat dissipation system, the closer the light characteristics to the declared power of the diode. What does this mean in practice? The large size of the lamp and the presence of a radiator (cooler) ensure the maximum compliance of the output light parameters with the declared diode power value.
It should be noted that small led lamps without cooling (up to 5 W) should not be used as independent devices in the car lighting system, they are usually used as additional ones and most often have an aesthetic function. As elements of the exterior of a car or DRL, LED lamps today have no alternative in terms of combination of price and consumer properties. But powerful diode lamps are much more efficient as independent lighting systems, their light output is several times higher than that of halogen headlights.
For any car owner, when buying car accessories and fog lights, an important factor in choosing a particular device is its durability while maintaining its original properties. The service life of devices is determined by their initial characteristics (materials used, workmanship) and the properties inherent in one or another method of obtaining a luminous flux. In this regard, it must be taken into account that halogen lamps, which provide for the presence of an incandescent spiral, have a high operating temperature, which creates prerequisites for reducing their service life and deteriorating consumer properties:
All the described phenomena are not characteristic of LED lamps in foglights, however, they are not without drawbacks associated with the negative effects of high temperatures. Although led-lamps do not warm up to high temperatures (the average temperature is 70-80 ºС), nevertheless, these parameter values are sufficient for the occurrence of destructive processes in led-diodes, which is accompanied by a loss of luminous flux and a decrease in the brightness of the device. To increase the service life of PTF based on the use of LED lamps, special materials and alloys are used, and additional radiators are installed to help dissipate heat energy. To date, the life of LED lamps reaches 50,000 hours, while for halogen lamps it is much lower.
Another feature of LED lamps is a wide range of color shades of the resulting light. This is achieved by combining diodes of different colors and special substances that change the wavelength - phosphors or the use of RGB tapes. At the same time, halogen lamps come in a standard range of shades, which significantly narrows the variability of the color gamut.
In general, if we compare halogen and led lamps of similar parameters, then the unambiguous choice will lean towards the use of LED lamps in fog lights. To date, the market for lighting devices led-lamps are presented in a large assortment. The available wide range of devices from various manufacturers with a wide range of power, light characteristics and properties allows the motorist to choose the optimal type of foglights for their specific purposes. At the same time, it should be taken into account that LED lamps of a high price category will definitely be better than halogen headlights in all possible parameters. In the middle price range, fog lights with led lamps will find the best use as DRLs or vehicle decoration elements. Among the presented inexpensive products, it is better for a motorist to give preference to halogen lamps for use in PTF.
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