Grants Pass RV and Auto Repair

Headlights & RV Lighting: How To Keep The Dark Away After The Sun Sets


How to Keep the Dark Away After the Sun Sets 


Nighttime driving can be tricky in an RV, especially with poor lighting. RV’s often weigh well over 7,500 lbs; The last thing any driver of a large RV needs at night is poor lighting showing the way. In addition to asking the Lord to guide our way, it is best to take the time to head into your local RV repair shop before leaving on a trip, as they are an excellent resource for common lighting issues, spare lamps, and more.


Burned out light bulbs can happen to anyone at any time. With your daily driver, you can usually head down to any auto parts store to pick up an in-stock lamp. They are relatively easy to install in a short amount of time. With a motorhome, this experience can be quite different. Replacement lamps may not be readily available or as easy to install. It is best to order and keep on hand a couple of back up lamps just-in-case. If it is challenging tracking down the right type of lamp for your RV, you can also find many headlights online here; offering every kind of fog light, blinker, taillight, and signal that you may need.


You can find most instructions for replacing your lamp in your owner’s manual. If you don’t have one, or it doesn’t have the instructions, you can usually find a tutorial on Google to help. Be sure to be specific with your year, make, model, and chassis type, and type in headlamp replacement before using the tutorial to guide into tearing into your RV. The last thing anyone needs is to get elbow deep to find out you have the wrong guide pulled up.


Properly aligned headlamps can dramatically improve road visibility as well as the shoulder; it can also prevent blinding oncoming traffic. Luckily aligning headlamps can be an easy task. Some headlights have bubble levels right in them with a screw to adjust to set them. If aligning your lights is something you want to do yourself, here is an excellent article on how to align your headlamps yourself.


Electrical issues become more and more common as your RV ages. One common problem is lower voltage to the headlights when underway. It is essential when identifying voltage drop to measure when your lights are under load. Losing 2-4 volts can reduce your headlight brightness by nearly half! Relay switches or bad fuses can be an issue as well as broken, burned, or frayed wires. Again, a thorough Google search can help pull up an accurate wiring diagram and help you better understand your wiring.


Cloudy Lenses become an issue over time, especially with older motorhomes. The composite material gets small scratches and becomes cloudy. Over time this reduces light output and can become a hazard since it diminishes lumen output, which compromises your ability to see the road well. The good news is that this is a relatively simple fix. Toothpaste and a rag with a bit of elbow grease can usually clear up the lens. This will buff out tiny cracks which make your headlights cloudy. Once the buffing is complete, rinse and wipe off all residue, you should have a nice bright headlamp once again. You may need to do this more than once to clear them up, depending on how oxidized they are.


It is essential not to compromise when it comes to your headlights. We care about you and others and want you to stay safe on the road. Please ensure you have good quality bulbs and that they are in top working condition. 


The team at Henderson’s Line-Up in Grants Pass, Oregon, would love to consult, offer an RV inspection or repairs for you. We invite you to book an appointment with us today, and remember, Jesus loves you!

P.S. If you would like to see the first chapter of Robert Henderson’s new book, Living Life One Mile At A Time, click here.


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