Note to self: turn on the headlights
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Thread: Note to self: turn on the headlights

  1. Note to self: turn on the headlights

    I own a 2003 Suzuki Aerio, but for the last year I have been driving my 2000 Crown Vic. The Ford has automatic headlights, and as such, I was not in the habit of turning them on. Two nights ago, I hopped into the Suzuki for a run into town.

    The Suzuki has a digital speedometer, so the instrument cluster lights up when the car is started. It also has daytime running lamps, which are as bright as the low-beam headlights. So I didn't think a thing about turning on my lights, and was oblivious to the fact that I had no taillights. The local police officer was not, however, oblivious, as indicated by the bright flashing lights that came on as soon as I passed him.

    I'm pretty picky about obedience to traffic laws, speed limits, and such, so I was wondering what the problem could be as I pulled over, retrieved my DL, CWL, and insurance card from the pocket in my wallet where they all reside. It wasn't until I had turned on the dome light, lowered the window, and turned off the engine that I realized what I had done, as the daytime running lamps shut off in concert with my application of the handbrake.

    The officer was quite professional. I immediately informed him that I had a concealed weapon license and that I was armed. He asked where my weapon was (right hip, where it should be), and then we laughed together at my stupidity for not turning on my headlights. He wrote me a warning and bid me a good evening.

    A good experience with a very courteous and professional local police officer, in spite of my own dumbness.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    637
    Glad to hear that it went well.
    That sounds like a serious design flaw on Suzuki's part. I am used to driving late 80's/ early 90's pickups. If my instrument cluster is not lit up, that tells me that I don't have my lights on. And with bright running lights automatically turning on, I could deffinetly see where a guy could forget to turn the headlights on, especially in town.
    I would probably make that same mistake a few times in that car.
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  4. I'm totally spoiled by my trucks auto headlight feature. Daytime lights turn off and headlights on automatically. What did we ever do before this technology?? Haha.

  5. Quote Originally Posted by ktodd View Post
    I'm totally spoiled by my trucks auto headlight feature. Daytime lights turn off and headlights on automatically. What did we ever do before this technology?? Haha.
    LOL I don't even know if my car has a switch for the lights.

  6. #5
    I'm so old, I still don't trust these new-fangled devices and almost always turn the lights on manually! Old dog...new tricks...

  7. I hate auto lights. My truck has them and i have to punch the dome override to shut them off, as i come throught the base gate. Takes 3 or 4 tries. The swapping vehicle thing gets me to. My truck is a 5-speed. The wifes car is an automatic. She hates it when i forget what i am driving an slam on the brake trying for a clutch. Or better yet bottom it out buy driving it over rough uneven lots in town. Things i don't worry about in the truck.

  8. Quote Originally Posted by Crew Dawg View Post
    I hate auto lights. My truck has them and i have to punch the dome override to shut them off, as i come throught the base gate. Takes 3 or 4 tries. The swapping vehicle thing gets me to. My truck is a 5-speed. The wifes car is an automatic. She hates it when i forget what i am driving an slam on the brake trying for a clutch. Or better yet bottom it out buy driving it over rough uneven lots in town. Things i don't worry about in the truck.
    Be glad you don't drive an 18 wheeler. You don't know how many times I've come out of high gear while trying to find the splitter to go into 6th gear in my 5 speed F-150.

    The only thing more embarrassing was back when I was in high school and college. My truck at the time had a 3 speed on the column. I bumped an automatic into neutral trying to change gears more than once.

    I also feel your pain where swapping over to an automatic is concerned. I wish I had a dollar for every time my left foot has been feeling for the clutch pedal in a car with an automatic transmission.

  9. #8
    I don't know that I ever had the problem with the automatic vs. straight gear as when I was younger I kept switching between the two types so much that I never got used to one over the other. When I finally got to where I had an automatic all the time a straight gear is such a novelty that I don't get complacent in it.

    My 4-wheeler does have an automatic or manual shift so if ever I switch it to manual I always seem to forget to change gears and keep wondering why it hasn't changed yet.

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by ktodd View Post
    I'm totally spoiled by my trucks auto headlight feature. Daytime lights turn off and headlights on automatically. What did we ever do before this technology?? Haha.
    Too bad they don't include auto dimming for those who drive with their brights on. Which is 1950s tech.

  11. I had a situation like that once in a rental. A guy was honking like crazy next to me and pointing. I thought it might be the tire, but nothing felt strange. Then, being paranoid, I thought it might be those people who try to get you to pull over and rob you. Turns out my dash was on and daytime running lamps but no headlights. The mandatory valet at the hotel turned it off auto like I always keep it.

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