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About Interior Lighting

Most car owners, even those who customise their cars extensively, do not think much about the interior lights. A lot of them would even have custom headlamps and tail lamps. But the range of customisation you can add by changing the car interior lights is quite wide. Also, they are the only things you would notice inside the car after the sun goes down.

The main function of the lights in a car is to help you see inside the car at night. You need these lights when you want to look for something in the glove box, use the controls in the centre panel, or maybe read a book if you are not the one who is driving. The original intention behind the interior lights was purely functional. But that does not mean that you have to keep it that way. It is possible to keep all its functionality and still make it a signature feature in your car. Even better, you can add more helpful features with aftermarket car interior lights. This guide will tell you the various ways you can use lights inside your car.

A guide to car interior lights

There are a bunch of lights inside the car that come as default. They are there to help you see better inside the car. The most prominent of them all is the ceiling lights. But in some higher-end cars, you will also find footlights, under door lights, and dashboard lights as well. But couldn’t there be more? Yes, if you wish so. You can add even more lights to give the inside of your car a futuristic look. And if you want to get really creative, you can add a star chart on the car ceiling with minute LED bulbs as they do on Rolls Royce’s.

Car interior ceiling lights

These are also more commonly known as dome lights and are wired to work automatically when you open the door. They have two other modes as well. You can turn them on even when the car is moving in case you want to look for something in the car or anything like that. Because they only turn off when all the car doors are latched properly, they also function as a car door indicator. Inside the dome lights of old cars, you will find low wattage halogen bulbs. But it is not difficult to replace them with LED bulbs if you want. Dim, warm LEDs are preferable to use as they are less obtrusive than white LEDs for the driver.

Car ambient light

It is the soft lighting around the car dashboard, door handles and the cupholders. At night, these add both function and aesthetic quality to the interior of the car. Because they are soft, they do not distract the driver from the road but provide enough light to use the centre console and other accessories without having to fumble around in the dark. Studies prove that it also helps keep the driver alert and improves the mood of the passengers. The increase in the spatial perception will give a feeling of a bigger car interior and gives it a more premium look.

Underglow lights

These lights are a little more expressive than others on the list. In fact, these are not, strictly speaking, interior lights. Underglow lights illuminate the road underneath the car rather than the interior itself. For some, this can be a little too fancy for their style. But for the young ones, it is dope. With underglow lights, you can literally spread the light wherever you go. A little more subtle way of using the underflow lights is to fit them on the underside of the door. This will also be a helpful feature to help you see the ground as you step out of the car.

Installing new car interior lights

Even if you are not so much into customising the car, you might want to change the existing interior lights when they start malfunctioning. The common problems found in car lights are; dimming, flickering, and loss of automatic controls. If the lights are dimming, it might not be the problem with the light itself. Before changing the lights, you should check the health of the battery. The same holds if the lights are flickering as well. But flickering can also be due to some problems in the wiring. If the dome lights do not function automatically with the opening and closing of the car door, it is most probably a problem with the sensors. If none of the above fixes the issue, you can try installing a new set of car interior lights.

Tips on buying Interior Lighting

Car accessories can improve the experience inside your car. It can make things easier to do, give the car a luxury look, and make it more pleasing to be inside the car. But it is important to pick the right accessories. Following these tips will help you buy the right car interior lights.

  • Ease of installation – This is a big factor to consider, especially if you will be installing the lights yourself. If you are connecting to any of the spare 5V outlets that you can access behind the glove box, the installation will be easy. But you won’t get the benefit of the automatic controls in that case. If you want your lights to work in sync with the headlights or the dome lights, make sure to connect them in series with the toggle switches.
  • Power consumption – All of the lights will have their power rating on their packaging. It is better to look for the most efficient lights that use the minimum power. And depending on how many extra lights you add, you should make sure that you have a good enough car battery to power them all at the same time.
  • Colour – This is important in case of any lights you put on the car. There is a strict ban on using certain colours in vehicles. Also, in some countries, it is illegal to use underglow lights regardless of their colour. And even when they are legal, you should choose colours that are pleasing to the eye if you will be using them for most of the time.
  • Durability – LED bulbs have a longer lifespan than halogen bulbs. They are also shatter-proof and water-resistant to an extent. Some LED strips fail even when the bulb itself is in good condition. This happens when the electronic circuit that controls the bulbs fails.

Because you won’t be using the interior lights during the daytime, you should buy car interior lights that blend well with the overall design of the interior even when the lights are off. If you are buying LED strips for ambient lighting, pick an LED strip with a colour that suits the dashboard veneers. And look for the thinnest strips out there so that they won’t stand out too much. Finally, don’t forget to check out all the other amazing products in the car supplies category.

Question & Answer

Can interior car lights drain the battery?

There are a few factors that determine how fast the interior lights will drain your car’s battery. First and foremost is the power rating of the interior lights and how many you use. In older cars, halogen lamps were used for the lights. Despite the fact that they drew more power, there were only a few of them, and it wasn’t always on. Therefore, the power consumption was insignificant. But these days, although LEDs are very efficient, the lighting inside the car is much more extensive, and many of them are always on when the car runs. So, depending on how much power your car lights use, you will have to get a larger battery to compensate for it.

Are car interior led lights legal?

There is no law in any place that bans the use of any LED lights inside the car. If you want to switch the stock dome lights with a brighter LED, you can. Also, you can use an under-door light without getting into any kind of trouble with the law. But there are some legal restrictions regarding the underglow lights and interior ambient light. It is illegal to use any flashing lights in or on the cars to avoid confusion with police cars. This applies to any lights in the car. And when it comes to ambient lighting, lights that are too bright or too colourful to distract the driver from the road are illegal. Besides, you should not use any colours that are generally associated with government agencies, for example, blue and red.

Do car interior lights turn off automatically?

Car interior lights have a few modes of working. You can turn them on voluntarily with the switch whenever you want. Or if they are in automatic mode, they turn on and off with the opening and closing of the doors. But if you have a custom light in the car, it is a different story. You can connect them with the lighting circuit of the dashboard switches if you want them on with the headlights. You can also install them with separate switches as well. But in modern cars with power saving mode, all the electrical outlets turn off when the car is parked. So, you don’t have to worry about starting the engine when you come back after a while.

Where can I buy interior lights online in the UAE?

The best place to look for them is online. That way, you can browse through huge collections and find the one that suits your style. You might also come across some affordable car interior lights for sale. If you are looking for the best car interior lights to festoon your ride, look no further. Our retail search engine will make the task of picking one a whole lot easier. You can explore more than 500+ shops offering car interior lights here on Shops.ae including brands like Philips, Luyed, JDM Astar, Mictuning, and Hella.