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Adding auxiliary lights to your motorcycle enhances safety

Some riders put auxiliary driving lights on their motorcycles simply because they look "cool." However, most riders want them for added safety. The age and electrical capacity of your bike dictate the type of lights you should purchase.

Two types

There are two main types of auxiliary driving lights. The wide light pattern gives you a spread of 30 to 35 degrees. This kind of short, wide arc of light extends the reach of your low beam headlight. It also adds to your ability to see objects along the side of the road, such as a deer, an after-dark jogger or a parked car. The other type of light offers a longer but narrower light pattern of 20 degrees. As a supplement to your long-range high beam, this auxiliary light provides you with a more concentrated focus on the road ahead.

About your power supply

The number of lights you can add to your motorcycle depends on the capacity of your electrical system. In terms of power, each new light draws about 55 watts and requires 110 watts more to operate efficiently. If you have an older bike with limited electrical capacity, you may want to consider adding LED lights, which are smaller and more energy efficient. Additional lighting of any kind enables you to see and be seen more clearly, an advantage for a motorcycle rider inherently vulnerable to accidents with larger vehicles.

An affordable project

If you have a late model cruiser or touring bike, the motorcycle may have had auxiliary driving lights when you bought it. However, if your bike is older, you want to explore your options. You should think about your reason for wanting this special set of lights before you buy. Aesthetics may be one goal, but safety is the far more important objective. Either way, the good news is that adding driving lights to your motorcycle is affordable. Once done, you have a safer ride regardless of your reason for the installation. 

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