There’s a unique charm to riding your motorcycle at night with auxiliary lighting. The air is cooler and the road is less congested. You can almost instantly feel more connected with your ride.
But despite all of these, a nighttime ride poses a few unique challenges, chief of which is the limitation of your eyes in terms of seeing in low light levels. Here, it is doubly important to see incoming traffic (and the occasional wildlife crossing the road) and making yourself visible to other road users.
Whether you are planning to ride at night or it is inevitable that you’ll be spending a few hours on the road after sunset, it is important to understand the deficiencies of a stock bike and the need for auxiliary lighting and other accessories which can make you ready to face the challenges of nighttime riding.
Bikes come equipped with headlights of differing qualities. Most bikes come equipped with HID lighting which is often sufficient to get the job done. However, there is always room for improvement and you can upgrade your Harley-Davidson headlamp to improve your nighttime vision.
Your first option is to choose a brighter bulb for your headlight. Alternatively, you can opt either for LED or HID lighting which can improve your visibility and vision.
The stock tail lights on your bike can hardly provide illumination to make you visible to other road users at night. Consider upgrading to an LED tail light which is not only brighter but also requires less power. Plus, these lights are known for their durability and easy installation.
You can avoid surprising other vehicles by your intent to make a turn by upgrading your turn indicators to LED ones, which are brighter.
Light bars and fog or spot lights are popular among owners of tourers and cruisers, making these bikes visible while improving the rider’s nighttime vision. If you are planning to add these lights, check whether your motorcycle and its battery can handle the additional load.
Another auxiliary lighting option that was initially popular among owners of tourers and cruisers is accent lighting which is mounted anywhere on the bike’s surface. Your choice of where to place these lights will depend on your personal preference, but again, check whether your bike can handle the extra load.
Another effective yet simple way to boost your bike’s visibility is through the use of reflective accessories to supplement its reflectors. Some of the most effective of these are plastic reflectors. However, if there is little real estate available on your bike, you can also consider using reflective tape on the wheels.
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