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Disabling Headlights / Running Lights



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I was driving through a holiday luminary the other night and realized how unenjoyable it is looking at bags with candles in them... when your headlights are on! Apparently other cars agreed since they repeatedly flashed their lights at me. So... how in the world can I get my headlights and running lights to go off while driving? Is there a way to do this or am I doomed to holiday misery thanks to the federal government requiring the use of DRL's.

I have an '05 Corolla S. And yes, I tried the emergency brake trick... to no avail.

I was driving through a holiday luminary the other night and realized how unenjoyable it is looking at bags with candles in them... when your headlights are on! Apparently other cars agreed since they repeatedly flashed their lights at me. So... how in the world can I get my headlights and running lights to go off while driving? Is there a way to do this or am I doomed to holiday misery thanks to the federal government requiring the use of DRL's.

I have an '05 Corolla S. And yes, I tried the emergency brake trick... to no avail.

You have to have the brake already set before you start the car. If you apply it after starting, it does not turn the lights off. Also, unless you live in Canada, the federal government doesn't require DRLs.

I was driving through a holiday luminary the other night and realized how unenjoyable it is looking at bags with candles in them... when your headlights are on! Apparently other cars agreed since they repeatedly flashed their lights at me. So... how in the world can I get my headlights and running lights to go off while driving? Is there a way to do this or am I doomed to holiday misery thanks to the federal government requiring the use of DRL's.

I have an '05 Corolla S. And yes, I tried the emergency brake trick... to no avail.

You have to have the brake already set before you start the car. If you apply it after starting, it does not turn the lights off. Also, unless you live in Canada, the federal government doesn't require DRLs.

Ahh, thanks. So how many clicks does the brake have to be up? Will this hurt the rear brakes if you drive like this for an extended period?

 

 

I was driving through a holiday luminary the other night and realized how unenjoyable it is looking at bags with candles in them... when your headlights are on! Apparently other cars agreed since they repeatedly flashed their lights at me. So... how in the world can I get my headlights and running lights to go off while driving? Is there a way to do this or am I doomed to holiday misery thanks to the federal government requiring the use of DRL's.

I have an '05 Corolla S. And yes, I tried the emergency brake trick... to no avail.

You have to have the brake already set before you start the car. If you apply it after starting, it does not turn the lights off. Also, unless you live in Canada, the federal government doesn't require DRLs.

Ahh, thanks. So how many clicks does the brake have to be up? Will this hurt the rear brakes if you drive like this for an extended period?

 

If you pull it up one click the DRL's will not come on. At 1 click, the brake isn't really set so you aren't causing any real wear. However, I would not drive around with the brake at 1 click up for any length of time because the whole time you have it on the brake light will be on and if you drive around with the parking brake on constantly, you won't know if the light is related to the brakes having a problem or the parking brake.

Our older 'Rolla's do not have auto anything. default_smile

We are left to simply enjoy happy holiday.

All of which begs the question -- why can't there be a "DRL override" switch? There are plenty of situations where the lights may need to be extinguished at night, while not necessarily making the car unable to be driven by shutting the engine off or applying the parking brake. One instance which comes readily to mind would be entering a gate at a military base, or other entry-controlled facility where they require headlights to be turned off to avoid blinding the guards. I've observed that most military bases have apparently accepted the fact that DRL-equipped automobiles cannot extinguish their headlights, but there are certainly other legitimate situations where this would be necessary.

 

I guess the main issue is whether or not this is a universal enough concern to cause Toyota, and other vehicle manufacturers, to include such a switch. I've driven GMC vans which did have a button to extinguish the DRL's.

DRL's were invented to help people be more visible and therefore safer during the day.

If they gave people the option of turning the lights off - people would forget to turn them back on, hence not as safe.

DRL's were invented to help people be more visible and therefore safer during the day.If they gave people the option of turning the lights off - people would forget to turn them back on, hence not as safe.

 

You are kidding, right? I think in the 21st century we can add a time switch to the setup so that after X minutes the lights come back on, or upon stopping and restarting the engine the car returns to the default setting. No, it is not about safety, it is about listening to customers and using your imagination.

Zsolt

DRL's were invented to help people be more visible and therefore safer during the day.If they gave people the option of turning the lights off - people would forget to turn them back on, hence not as safe.

 

You are kidding, right? I think in the 21st century we can add a time switch to the setup so that after X minutes the lights come back on, or upon stopping and restarting the engine the car returns to the default setting. No, it is not about safety, it is about listening to customers and using your imagination.

Zsolt

Besides the holiday luminary experience (for which my solution would be to park the car and walk, but that's just me), and besides of course the typical libertarian argument of 'sticking it to the government, and I can do whatever I want', why on earth would anyone want to disable the DRL's?

Cops should give out tickets for this, just like for not wearing belts.

All of which begs the question -- why can't there be a "DRL override" switch? There are plenty of situations where the lights may need to be extinguished at night, while not necessarily making the car unable to be driven by shutting the engine off or applying the parking brake. One instance which comes readily to mind would be entering a gate at a military base, or other entry-controlled facility where they require headlights to be turned off to avoid blinding the guards. I've observed that most military bases have apparently accepted the fact that DRL-equipped automobiles cannot extinguish their headlights, but there are certainly other legitimate situations where this would be necessary. ...

 

 

I have the same problem at my workplace; the security guards are getting blinded by newer Toyotas and GMs, which puts them at greater risk because they can't see who is coming at them. I was able to disable my automatic headlight on my GM truck by eliminating the light sensor. I'm sure you can do something similar on Toyotas, and I would pay someone, maybe an alarm installer, to do it if I don't know how. The ability to turn off your headlight is not just about safety for security guards; it's also about curtesy. I'm sure the guards at my workplace appreciate what I've done for their eyes. Can you imagine what looking at headlights all night long would do to your eyes? Also, I turn off my headlight when I'm at a drive-thru window of a fast food restaurant, so that the customers with small car in front of me don't get blinded.

 

I don't think there's any evidence that driving with the headlight turned on during the day will help improve safety. On the other hand, I've heard concerns that headlights during the day causes distraction, and that some countries make driving with the headlights turned on during the day a traffic violation. You could argue that automatic headlight that turns on at night keeps people from forgetting to turn the light on; however, if you can't tell that the road in front of you is dark because you don't have the headlights on, you don't deserve the privilege of driving. You're probably too old and senile to drive, or in serious need of eye glasses. Besides, is there any evidence anywhere that we have a problem with a lot of accidents being caused by people are actually forgetting to turn their headlights on? I sure haven't seen any. In my opinion, the automatic headlight is a marketing gimmick, almost totally useless, and a classic case of a "solution looking for a problem."

however, if you can't tell that the road in front of you is dark because you don't have the headlights on, you don't deserve the privilege of driving. You're probably too old and senile to drive, or in serious need of eye glasses.

You forgot "retarded". At least, that seems to be the reasoning behind most of the drivers I see without their lights on.

Personally, I am strongly anti-DRL and anti-automatic headlights. I refuse to buy an automatic and avoid ABS all for the same reason - I need complete control of my car when I'm driving. When I bought my car the ABS was nonfunctional and there's no way I'm ever going to fix it. default_smile

however, if you can't tell that the road in front of you is dark because you don't have the headlights on, you don't deserve the privilege of driving. You're probably too old and senile to drive, or in serious need of eye glasses.

You forgot "retarded". At least, that seems to be the reasoning behind most of the drivers I see without their lights on.

Personally, I am strongly anti-DRL and anti-automatic headlights. I refuse to buy an automatic and avoid ABS all for the same reason - I need complete control of my car when I'm driving. When I bought my car the ABS was nonfunctional and there's no way I'm ever going to fix it. default_smile

The DRL can be disabled by your Dealer through the body computer.

 

 

The DRL can be disabled by your Dealer through the body computer.

It's good to know that Toyota had the acumen to allow its dealer easy way to disable these features. Unfortunately, on my GM truck, there is no easy way to disable it.

I'll bet motorcycle DRLs have saved many motorcyclists.

What I have more of a problem with is the latest bulb technologies....much too bright. Another is people who have no idea what they are doing taking it upon themselves to change their own bulbs or sealed beams and throwing the alignment off.

DRL's were invented to help people be more visible and therefore safer during the day.If they gave people the option of turning the lights off - people would forget to turn them back on, hence not as safe.

 

You are kidding, right? I think in the 21st century we can add a time switch to the setup so that after X minutes the lights come back on, or upon stopping and restarting the engine the car returns to the default setting. No, it is not about safety, it is about listening to customers and using your imagination.

Zsolt

...The ability to turn off your headlight is not just about safety for security guards; it's also about curtesy. I'm sure the guards at my workplace appreciate what I've done for their eyes...

Sorry for guards hard working to recognize approaching vehicles. But what is the point? If I were to infiltrate a restricted area first I would get a car that can pass security.

... Can you imagine what looking at headlights all night long would do to your eyes?... In my opinion, the automatic headlight is a marketing gimmick, almost totally useless, and a classic case of a "solution looking for a problem

Try to pierce trhough the frequent fog we've got here in WA to see who is behind you in your blind spot. Changing lanes is unsafe without DRL. Period.

Other factors that deteriorates visibility - precipitation on a windshield or rear window. Some people are immature, drive irresponsibly or just drunk or high and forget to turn headlights on. Also when I feel fatigue after long drive I would react readily to a light.

Still I see many older cars on roads with drivers seemingly on purpose turning off headlights. I can't figure what is that these people gain.

Thanks to DRL. My battery last 7 years.

All of which begs the question -- why can't there be a "DRL override" switch? There are plenty of situations where the lights may need to be extinguished at night, while not necessarily making the car unable to be driven by shutting the engine off or applying the parking brake. One instance which comes readily to mind would be entering a gate at a military base, or other entry-controlled facility where they require headlights to be turned off to avoid blinding the guards. I've observed that most military bases have apparently accepted the fact that DRL-equipped automobiles cannot extinguish their headlights, but there are certainly other legitimate situations where this would be necessary.  

 

I guess the main issue is whether or not this is a universal enough concern to cause Toyota, and other vehicle manufacturers, to include such a switch. I've driven GMC vans which did have a button to extinguish the DRL's.

 

The compelling driver in this automatic headlights, chipped key, automatic seatbelt enforcement thing, etc etc, I believe is the insurance company pressure on the automakers. We pay the price in difficulty so they will not have to pay to replce stolen, wrecked vehicles. I dunno the right of it but i for one resent the automation of the lights and $100 car key replacement (or even more if you put a nonchipped key into a chipped key car ignition). So i suggest we find our own ways to circumvent the systems we don't like on the cars WE paid for. And i suggest we share that "how to" info with other interested owners.

Now, I am sure I can find the little switch in the brake console and "fix" it so it doesn't turn on the lights. I am confident the manual light switches remain perfectly functional. I'll get back to you on this. default_smile JP

We can modify our cars anyway we like - providing it is still within legal parameters.

The compelling driver in this automatic headlights, chipped key, automatic seatbelt enforcement thing, etc etc, I believe is the insurance company pressure on the automakers. We pay the price in difficulty so they will not have to pay to replce stolen, wrecked vehicles. I dunno the right of it but i for one resent the automation of the lights and $100 car key replacement (or even more if you put a nonchipped key into a chipped key car ignition). So i suggest we find our own ways to circumvent the systems we don't like on the cars WE paid for. And i suggest we share that "how to" info with other interested owners.

Those lousy insurance companies. Always trying to make our cars safer and more secure. How dare they!

I recently disabled my DRL on my 8th gen Corolla by cutting the wire for it. http://vamp.darkravers.net/cpg/thumbnails.php?album=107

This link will show you how to do it. The question I have, does cutting the DRL mean the automatic lights on/off system will go manual too? Or do I need to disable that as well?

I recently disabled my DRL on my 8th gen Corolla by cutting the wire for it. http://vamp.darkravers.net/cpg/thumbnails.php?album=107This link will show you how to do it. The question I have, does cutting the DRL mean the automatic lights on/off system will go manual too? Or do I need to disable that as well?

The DRL and automatic lights are 1 circuit. Disabling the DRL will kill the auto lights.

The 9th generation Corolla doesn't use the same DRL system, so it can't be disabled with the instructions in your post, just thought I'd warn those who may think this is something to try on their 2003+ Corolla.

The compelling driver in this automatic headlights, chipped key, automatic seatbelt enforcement thing, etc etc, I believe is the insurance company pressure on the automakers. We pay the price in difficulty so they will not have to pay to replce stolen, wrecked vehicles. I dunno the right of it but i for one resent the automation of the lights and $100 car key replacement (or even more if you put a nonchipped key into a chipped key car ignition). So i suggest we find our own ways to circumvent the systems we don't like on the cars WE paid for. And i suggest we share that "how to" info with other interested owners.

 

Those lousy insurance companies. Always trying to make our cars safer and more secure. How dare they!

Safer cars mean less people dying and less suits against the auto manufacturers.

Auto accidents are still the number one cause of death in the U.S.

An interesting study proposal by the Australian Transport Safety Bureau. Doesn't take one side or another, just states pros and cons, and the underlying evidence. An interesting read:

http://www.atsb.gov.au/publications/2003/Cons_Lights.aspx

I think I'm the only one here who prefers DRLs. During low-light periods ( dusk/dawn ), I've personally experienced numerous drivers who almost pulled out in my (posted limit) 40+mph path because he didn't see me ( I was driving a dark-er colored car at the time ). Are they to blame? Of course, but that's little comfort if I'm killed or seriously injured from a car wreck that was not my fault.

Have any of you DRL opponents ever been in a major car accident? I mean, where you are carted away on an ambulance to a hospital for emergency surgery? This is the same argument that was made against mandatory seat belts & airbags. It saves lives. If it costs me an extra pair of headlight bulbs or battery during the cars life, so be it. My .02

I disabled them because I prefer this under my personal control. If I want to turn on the headlights, I will. I don't need some device doing it for me. The fact people need a switch to remember to turn on the headlights at night (automatic on/off system, not DRL) is just pure laziness. If I want to put on my seatbelt, I will. I don't need some annoying alarm beeping (as is the case on my Mom's 04' Corolla). I'm sure in 10 years, there are going to be people like arguing for manditory parallel parking systems or driver monitor systems like we are seeing today on the Lexus LS460, but I'm against all these new features. During my driving test 3 years ago, my jerk State Trooper made me park my Corolla between two cars in a tight spot, but I did it perfectly and he was very impressed. He said I was the only person that day who had managed to do it and it made me proud. So what is going to happen in 5-10 years, some inexperienced little 16 year old is going to be asked to perform that test. All he does is push a button and he passes the driving test??? Now I'm not trying to unbuild the car back to the Model-T days where you had crank start engines, but all these new features today are they take away from the driving experience and turning people into lazy (and possibly much more unsafe) drivers.

The fact people need a switch to remember to turn on the headlights at night (automatic on/off system, not DRL) is just pure laziness.

You can call automatic things laziness all you want, but they really aren't.

Do you know how much more you can concentrate on avoiding accidents when the car remembers you and your perfect seating/ mirror positions as well as your radio stations and your preferences for automatic locking, lights, etc? Or how much more you can concentrate on driving when you have all your mirrors dim automatically as some jerk with his high beams on pulls in behind you? Or how about how much more you can concentrate on driving when you don't have to look at the stereo or climate controls to change a radio station, CD track, stereo volume (which automatically increases as you drive faster) temperature, fanspeed or mode of the climate control because you have fingertip steering wheel controls of those functions.

The reality is that the fewer things you have to touch in a car the more you can concentrate on driving. If I can not ever look at a stereo, climate control, instrument panel, I can be looking at the road and cars around me always. If I don't have to touch a stereo, climate control, light switch, wiper switch, I never have to take my hand off the wheel. If I have my seats and mirrors adjusted to their perfect positions for my body, I'll be more alert and attentive. If my electronic companions, ESC, TC and ABS ride along with me, I don't have to worry about locking up brakes, spinning tires or sliding in a vehicle that is easy to do all those things in (because cars with these items as standard features are usually powerful and heavy). If I don't have to concentrate on pumping brakes I might actually have a chance at avoiding an object in the roadway.

Now if you don't like those type of features, fine, but don't say they are laziness and make people bad drivers. The people who have those type features may be bad drivers, but they are bad drivers because they choose to do other things than drive. They don't use the features they were provided with in the manner in which they were meant to be used. Those features were made solely to allow you to pay more attention to driving, not to allow you to have time to text while driving down the freeway.