Even the best driver is ill-prepared for sudden glare on a picture-perfect bright sunny day. Blinding light from the sun creates one of the most dangerous driving hazards faced by motorists –particularly during the morning and evening when the sun rises and sets.
Every year we see a lot of accidents resulting from “sun glare,” but your car insurance can’t blame the sun, and will assign driver liability. We’ve all experienced that brief moment—disability glare, veiling glare, sun blindness, or sun dazzle, call it what you will—where you can’t see because the sun is at the perfect apex to cause blindness.
You can’t control the sun, but you can follow these tips to stay safe and protect your family on the road:
- Use your car’s visor whenever possible, lower and adjust it as needed. To increase your visibility, it can help keep the sun directly out of your eyes.
- Use sunglasses with polarized lenses. Polarized glasses are designed to cut through sun glare and diminish the intensity of the sun. To reduce driver distraction, it’s good practice to wear them before you start driving.
- Keep your dashboard clean. Don’t store clutter or papers on your dashboard and avoid any cleaners that give your dash a high-gloss finish. The polishes look great, but they turn your dash into a mirror and create a “veiling glare” and obscure your view.
- Clean your windshield. Dirt and haze on your windshield build up over time and can worsen sun glare, further obstructing your view. Clean the inside and outside with a quality glass cleaner and check for any chips and cracks in your windshield. If caught in time, we can repair most chips and small cracks.
- Increase your following distance. If you can’t see due to glare, chances are neither can the car in front of you. Don’t tailgate and slow down.
- Reduce your speed. This serves as an advisory that visibility is compromised. You don’t have to slow to a crawl, but this will alert other drivers about the risks.
- Use Headlights. Yes, it’s bright out, but turning on your lights if you have an older model vehicle helps your car become more visible for both opposing traffic and any drivers behind you. Before you get on the road, make sure all of your vehicle’s lights are working properly.
- Change your driving route. If possible, use north-south streets until you find an east-west road with lots of trees or taller buildings.
Don’t let sun glare catch you unprepared. Making the proper adjustments minimize any additional risks that come with less-than-optimal visual conditions.
Summer is also an excellent time to check your tires. Call or ask your service advisor about our Goodyear tire mail-in rebates worth up to $160 on select tires.
Safe travels this summer.