In your quest to upgrade the lighting on your off-road vehicle, most will encounter confusion and frustration. These emotions are often brought on by the myriad of both brand and industry specific terms used to measure brightness, types of lighting, measurement, and purpose. For example, some companies may discuss the brightness of their lights by using lumens, lux, or even effective lumens. Going even further their measurements may not even be taken using the same methods and tests. For example, one company may use one distance to measure the effective brightness of their lights while another company uses a completely different distance, dissimilar mounting position…or an entirely offbeat testing method. As a consumer, you need to educate yourself in order to find the perfect off road lighting solution for you. With that in mind, the crew here at Drops Mobile would like to help you make a wise and informed decision.
Uses For Off Road Lighting
Aside from looking cool on your lifted truck or Jeep, off road lighting has quite the number of practical applications. If you’re looking for an off road lighting solution, you may already have a couple of these practical applications in mind.
Added Illumination For Off Road Driving-When off the beaten path, a higher number of obstacles often exist. A solid lighting solution will help you to see these obstacles before they become a problem.
Yard Clean Up-Most off-road vehicle owners are hard working folks that don’t stop when the sun goes down, flip a switch on your truck and you can extend your work day so that the job gets done!
Field Parties-Like a country song, owning an off-road vehicle means that you work hard and play harder. Keep the good times going with a little light from your truck.
Safety-We’ve all driven in foul weather, a little extra illumination often increases the safety factor and gets you to your destination.
Measuring Illumination For Off Road Lighting
Like I mentioned above, most off road lighting companies measure the brightness of their lights using either Lumen, Lux, or Effective Lumens. While measuring them against each other will get you an “apples to oranges” comparison most often, understanding exactly what each unit of measurement is can give you a decent base point for comparing off-road lighting solutions.
According to Merriam-Webster, a Lumen is “a unit of luminous flux equal to the light emitted in a unit solid angle by a uniform point source of one candle intensity”. While this definition in itself doesn’t help most of us when shopping for off road lighting perhaps a comparison can. For example, a 23-watt spiral “green bulb” that most of us are using in our household lamps emits about 1100-1400 lumens. While that may be bright enough to light up the living room, we may want a little more to light up the wilderness that lies ahead of our off-road vehicle. Most Cree LED light bars are in the range of 18000-24000 Lumens.
LUX is another method of measuring illumination and is actually based off of the Lumen. Once again we’ll consult the Merriam-Webster dictionary for the definition. LUX is defined as “the SI unit of illuminance, equal to one lumen per square meter”. See what I mean? It is based on the Lumen! While not as commonly used as the Lumen, it is important to understand what LUX range most off road lighting units come in. For example, a 9” circular light will usually have illumination between 2000 and 2500 LUX for spot and 600-900 LUX for flood.
Another common measurement of illumination is the effective lumen. Where the raw lumen is a simple measurement of math…say we have 10 bulbs that are 100 lumens each we have a raw lumen of 1000, simple right? What the raw lumen doesn’t take into account are certain “real world” considerations that can reduce that number by up to 75%. Factors such as mounting position, the shape of the light cluster, and power being provided to the light can all play a factor in reducing the raw lumen measurement. It is for this reason why we have the measurement of the effective lumen. Measuring effective lumens requires the use of high-tech photometry equipment, which is why most manufacturers opt to advertise the raw lumen rating of their lighting solutions. Absent this equipment to check out the actual illumination of the lighting solution you are shopping for, using product reviews, and word of mouth advice goes a long way in selecting the right lighting solution for your off-road adventures.
The final measurement of off-road lighting we will discuss is the color spectrum. Simply put, it is the “color” of your lighting output. Measured in Kelvin or K, it ranges generally from 1000-10000. At the lower end of the spectrum is the “warmer” colors, for example, the orange/yellow of a candle sits at 1900k and the blue sky sits at 10,000K and above. As a general rule, LED lighting sits between 2700K and 7000k.
CREE LED Light Bars From Drops Mobile
Our LED Light Bar has strong CREE LED’s that produce a powerful beam for any off-road adventure, without draining your battery by only drawing a few amps. Strong, durable, and weatherproof, the LED Light Bars are carefully constructed to handle the toughest off-road applications. The LED boards are extremely resistant to impacts, vibration, and other intense conditions. The LEDs are protected behind thick polycarbonate lens technology while the system is encased in cast aluminum housing with a black powder coat finish and is rated IP67 waterproof and weatherproof. The light bar can operate in a temperature range of -40° to 145° Fahrenheit, making it suitable for any climate or application. Our Light Bars comes with simple two wire connection, making it easy to get your off-road journey started without the hassle of a complicated installation. The sheer brightness, intensity, and range of the Light Bar are ideal for high-performance off-road applications, especially night time adventures where plenty of advanced warning is required to avoid hidden obstacles or for any outdoor application where you need to light up the night. Ideal for bar or roof-top mounting, the Curved Series is the perfect lighting accessory for any truck, boat, tractor, trailer, or off-road toy and can be used for work, play, rescue, or response. Durable against time, weather, water, temperature, and vibration.
Professional Installation From Drops Mobile
The team at Drops Mobile have years of experience in the proper installation of off-road lighting solutions. We can make recommendations for the best light setup for your off-road vehicle and even will come to you to install it. Have questions before, during or after the install? We’re here…even long after your lights are on your off road vehicle!