Choosing LED Lighting for Your Light Duty or Heavy Duty Trucks

Choosing LED Lighting for Your Light Duty or Heavy Duty Trucks 

When considering LED lighting for your truck or fleet of trucks, start with the type of truck you are operating. A light duty truck will have completely different lighting requirements than a heavy duty truck in most cases. Start here with our guide on the LED lighting differences between light duty and heavy duty trucks.

Light Duty Trucks and LED Lighting

Light duty trucks are used primarily for recreation, transportation, and light duty hauls. A light duty truck includes all trucks in the Class and Class 2a, as well as some Class 2b trucks. Popular Class 1 trucks include Ford Ranger and Toyota Tacoma. With these types of trucks, you need certain types of lighting, as well as lighting electronics, such as 12V multi-socket vehicle accessories or a timer module.

LED lights for light duty trucks are far more extensive than just headlights and tail lamps. You also have LED fog lights, LED headlights, light bars, strobe beacons, and back up alarms–all of which can be used to increase visibility and safety for your trucks. Ensure your light duty truck is fully visible especially when in close proximity to pedestrians with proper LED lights by Hamsar.

Heavy Duty Trucks With LED Lights

In terms of LED lights, a heavy duty truck has an entirely different need for lighting, especially in the commercial sector. You are more focused on safety and durability rather than style and design. After all, your bottom line depends on you getting the most out of your purchase of LED lighting for your heavy duty trucks.

If you aren’t sure if you have a heavy duty truck, here’s a primer. A heavy duty truck consists of Class 7 and Class 8 trucks also referred to as tractors or semi-trailer trucks. Here you have Freightliner Cascadia, Kenworth T680, Peterbilt 389, and the Orange EV T-Series Electric truck, for example.

The type of lighting available for heavy duty trucks includes LED lights for the truck body and a heavy duty trailer that the truck is pulling. You need to account for adding lights for safety and illumination to the interior and exterior of the truck body. You also need to account for the LED lighting you need for the exterior of the heavy duty trailer.

FMCSA Truck and Trailer Lighting Regulations

There are also Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations that determine legally what kind of lighting you need. For example, the use of amber tail lamps are prohibited for truck and trailer lighting. Take a look at the Federal Regulations Title 49 on Transportation. Here Subpart B for Lamps, Reflective Devices, and Electrical Wiring covers:


  • Types of lamps required, such as headlamps, identification lamps, clearance lamps, and license plate lamps
  • Number of lights required
  • Color of lights, such as white, red, or amber
  • The location for lighting on trucks, as well as the position and height
  • Type of vehicles lights requiring certain types of lights

Types of LED Lighting for Heavy Truck

Take a look at examples of the LED lighting you can use just for accessory lighting in a truck. The list is quite extensive:

  • Accent lighting
  • Ambient lighting
  • Footwell lighting
  • General cabin lighting
  • Storage compartment lighting
  • Task lighting
  • Warning lighting
  • Forward and rear lighting


You also have LED work lights, LED light bars, and LED warning lights, as well as LED bulbs for forward lighting. For heavy duty truck drivers, there are certain situations where additional lighting is needed on the fly.

The most common situation is when hauling one-off oversized loads. If an OTR truck driver is taking an oversized load, one of the requirements can be to increase rear lighting for safety and visibility. Have a roll of LED flex-strip lights and a set of LED courtesy utility lights in your trucks ready to go. This way your drivers can pick up these oversized loads more efficiently and continue moving the freight for your company.

Choose LED for Light and Heavy Duty Truck Lights

To transform the illumination on your light duty and heavy duty trucks, choose the leaders in LED lights at Hamsar. Contact our representatives at 1-800-567-5483 to request a product catalogue or additional information about lighting for your trucks.

Strategies for Keeping Your Bus Passengers Safe: Reducing Accidents and Improving Service

In the transportation industry, protecting passengers has to be a high priority. For example, within the bus industry, it is critical to take every step possible to minimize falls and other accidents that increase liability insurance costs and drive passengers away to other services. In an industry that needs to increase passengers, working from a safety standpoint is an excellent place to start.

The Benefits of Improving Safety on Bus Transportation

The U.S. Department of Transportation reports that 10.2 billion people used public transportation of some type in 2016. That amount has grown by as much as 20 percent in the last two decades. And, with a stronger push towards reducing emissions and fewer people wanting to purchase cars themselves, bus transportation is on the way up.

By taking steps to improve the safety on your bus, you’re able to encourage increased ridership. Benefits of boosting safety include:

#1: Reducing Insurance Premiums

When fewer passengers fall and suffering injuries, there are fewer insurance claims to file. This is a fast and simple way of reducing costs.

#2: Improving Customer Service

With improved safety, consumers view bus transportation in a positive light. More so, they enjoy the atmosphere. Stepping onto a bus that’s well lit, pleasant, and easy to relax on, ensures a better experience every time.

#3: Serve More Consumers

It’s nearly always more cost-effective for a consumer to use bus transportation than to drive to and from locations such as work and school. Yet, perceives unsafe conditions often limit their willingness to do so. By improving conditions, it’s possible to boost ridership through better service.

The benefits are clear. And, in some situations, improving safety can also mean better revenue for companies. How do you do it?

How to Increase Bus Passenger Safety – Simple Steps to Make Significant Improvements

There are various ways to improve safety on buses. No one solution is best. Rather, an overall focus should be employed whenever possible.


#1: ADA Compliance Is a Must

Americans with Disabilities Act requirements are nothing to overlook when designing and improving bus transportation. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration spells out what these requirements are, including providing access. In many situations, a person with disabilities, such as someone requiring a wheelchair, needs to be able to have access to a bus route. Don’t overlook others, too. For example, accessible buses can include those that offer more handrails and more comfortable seating.

#2: Improve Interior Bus Lighting

Lighting is by far the most important investment for any bus safety improvement process. Consider simple and effective lighting solutions. This includes above head lighting, floor lighting to minimize tripping, and lights near seats to improve visibility.

#3: Improve Exterior Bus Lighting

Exterior lighting must meet SAE/DOT requirements. Never add any product to a bus that lacks the proper approval of DOT. However, there are many ways to add exterior lighting to minimize risks, especially to ensure other drivers don’t miss the loading of passengers. Bright light bars, for example, can enhance visibility significantly and inexpensively. Install rear lighting to minimize the risk of rear-end accidents.

#4: Provide Warning Signs on the Bus

Simple warning signs can be an important tool for most buses, but they can work to enhance safety easily. For example, place warning signs near steps to ensure there is no question that a step is present. If the bus entails an area where the doors swing and a person’s hand can get caught, place a warning sign. This helps minimize liability risks as well.

#5: Provide Clear Information on Routes and Locations

Educate riders about locations and routes. Ensure all routes are marked and understood not just prior to boarding, but also on the bus. The goal here is to ensure each person knows what to expect along the trip. Then, include wireless bell push features that allow passengers to communicate about their needs.

There are legal requirements for all lighting needs on public transportation. ADA requirements are also important. Yet, it is also financially wise to invest in any and all of these upgrades to bus safety to ensure each person is able to ride the bus safely and without any risk of injury. This reduces costs and enhances the customer experience.

Light Up The Night: Benefits of LED Light Bars

When upgrading your off-road vehicle with lighting stay on the brighter side of the law with compliant and road-legal lights. Here at Hamsar, we want to help you invest in the right lighting. Start with longer-lasting, light-emitting diodes (LED) light bars to improve the safety and visibility of your off-road vehicle after dusk. Discover the benefits of LED light bars along with how to determine if your lighting is road safe and Department of Transportation compliant. That way you can make sure you are investing in the best LED light bars for your fleet’s needs.

Benefits of LED Lighting

One of the reasons why customers go with LED lighting is to minimize the risk of noncompliance. You do not want to get a ticket by the local police or a driving inspector for the Department of Transportation due to a lack of proper lighting. More so, you want to avoid any accidents and risks to your safety and the safety of others due to improper lighting. The use of LED light bars is beneficial for seeing more clearly at dusk and when you are doing night driving.

LED light bars are lightweight and durable as well, making for the ideal option for off-road vehicles where balance is even more important. The Home Energy Pros points out that LED light bars are especially useful for off-road vehicles. LED lights are also energy-efficient, which means you save money by replacing your light bulbs and fixtures less often over the lifespan of your vehicle.

DOT Compliant Versus DOT Approved

The first step is to make sure you choose a DOT compliant light. The wording here is tricky because the Department of Transportation is a federal agency. The DOT does not approve equipment for certifications or recommendations. You cannot find a list of approved LED light bars for off-road vehicles. Instead, you have lighting regulations to guide your selection.

Check the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard 108 by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for Lamps, reflective devices, and associated equipment. These lighting requirements are for all types of vehicles including commercial vehicles and tractor-trailers. However, there is not a specific set of rules for off-road vehicles. What the NHTSA provides are lighting requirements for the type of lighting equipment, number of fixtures, and headlighting applications for motorcycles. You can apply these rules to help you determine how to affix your LED light bars to an off-road vehicle.

SAE Standards for LED Lighting

Another source of information to utilize when researching the benefits of LED light bars is SAE International. The SAE Standards for lighting are recommended industry practices for the US and Canada. Here you have LED Signal and Marking Lighting Devices. These standards cover the actual lighting mechanics of LED lighting devices in terms of their application on off-road vehicles.

DOT Versus SAE Standards for Lighting

So which standard should you start with? Whenever the DOT has a regulation involving the use of lighting for motorcycles or vehicles applicable to off-road vehicles, you follow that federal ruling first and foremost. Next, the state-level department of transportation will provide you with the regulation to follow. And remember, SAE standards are not regulations that require you to comply or get certified. These are there for customers and manufacturers alike. Use the information to make sure the lighting choice you go with will be safe for your vehicle size and use.

Issues With Finding the Right Lighting

As you can see, there is a great deal of fog in the air in regard to choosing the right lighting for off-road vehicles. You want to be safe, and so does the federal government’s many agencies involved with recommended practices and compliance for lighting. By working with a company like Hamsar you get a head start on choosing the right lighting.

We begin by evaluating your off-road vehicle lighting needs. From there, we provide you with a personalized recommendation for the best LED light bars for your specific use, budget, and vehicle. This way you are investing in equipment you truly can benefit from—not just some fancy lighting bars tossed up on the top of your ATV.

Find LED Light Bars Now

Give yourself the safe driving experience you demand with the best lighting sources for off-road vehicles. Contact Hamsar at 1-800-567-5483 or email to request a product catalog or to learn where to buy LED light bars for your vehicles.

5 Ways LEDs are the Best Lights for Off-Roading

A good set of lights is a must when you’re off-roading. Whether you are joyriding over rough terrain or traveling down a long, dark road to a backcountry campsite, good visibility helps you have fun and stay safe. When it comes to lighting for off-roading, LEDs blow the competition away. Here are 5 reasons to switch to LEDs for your 4×4 or Jeep.

  1. LEDs are the Brightest Lights

The stock market lights that come with your 4×4 simply are not bright enough for nighttime off-roading. They are designed to supplement street lights. You may think that high beams are adequate for lighting, but that’s just not true. When you’re on a trail in the woods, high beams aren’t sufficient for visibility.

LED lights shine brighter than halogen or high intensity discharge lights, which makes them the best choice for aftermarket lights for off-roading. You may be tempted to try halogen bulbs instead, since they’re widely available and low cost, but the faint yellow light they emit won’t really help you when you need to see clearly. Save yourself time and effort and start out with the best lighting for off-roading.

  1. LEDs are Durable

LED lights are pricey but durable, which makes them a good investment. As any serious off-roader knows, it’s better to invest in the right equipment at the outset — something you know you can rely on when you’re out in the woods — than to get by with inadequate 4×4 lighting that needs frequent replacement.

LEDs have more in common with circuit boards than they do with light bulbs. If you picture the typical light bulb, then you see how easily it can shatter when you’re on rough roads. LEDs can handle vibrations and impact without breaking. The last thing you want to worry about when off-roading is whether you’ll break a critical piece of equipment you need to stay safe, so the durability of LEDs is key.

  1. LEDs Have Longevity

LEDs are not only brighter and more durable, they outlast the competition. You can expect that LED to last from 20,000 to 40,000 hours, depending on the quality and lighting output. When you think about their price point that way, it’s clear they are actually very efficient products.

Who knows? You might actually take those LED lights off your truck when you’re trading it in, to reuse the light on your new ride.

  1. LEDs are Energy Efficient

LEDs are far more energy efficient than other types of headlights. When it comes to your truck, the energy efficiency means that the lights won’t draw on your battery the way that halogen or xenon lights would. If you leave the lights on for visibility while off-roading — say, when setting up your campsite — you’ll never have to worry about the lights draining the battery. Without LEDs, there’s always the risk of needing a jump start.

  1. LEDs are Flexible

You’ll find an LED for nearly any configuration you need. Light bars are one of the most popular 4×4 lighting products, because they can be mounted on the grille, bumper, or roof. Since they are so versatile, light bars are one of the first lighting products people usually install.

Spotlights add a supplementary beam of focused light, which helps direct light to a specific area. A favorite use of spotlights is to show obstacles hiding up ahead, such as a large boulder you’ll need to go around or climb over. Spotlights can attach to the light bar or mount separately.

Fog lights or floodlights are intended to illuminate fog on the road. These sit level with the wheels, often embedded in the bumper. Fog lights also provide a wide-angle view of what might be lurking on the shoulder, such as a wild animal.

Driving lights blend the function of fog lights and spotlights by shining farther than a fog light would, without the same intensity of the spotlight. They add forward visibility to the road, so they’re a good all-purpose lighting upgrade for your off-road ride.

The flexibility of LED lighting products for off-roading means that whatever you’re looking for, you can find a quality product that’s as rugged as your off-roading plans. Now that you understand what sets LED lights apart from the rest, find the right product for your needs.

Main Features and Benefits of Off-Road LED Lights for Jeeps

Lighting is essential when driving a jeep at night, but it’s especially important when going off-road. These activities include camping, driving over rugged terrain and splashing across muddy trails, all of which require more lighting than a jeep normally has. Halogen and high-intensity discharge (HID) lights have traditionally been the only choices for vehicle lighting, but LED technology has recently become sufficiently advanced to be a competitive choice for this type of lighting. The best choice of LED lighting for jeeps depends on the specific application among other factors.


LED lights last much longer than halogen or HID lights, which is a particular advantage when going off-road. LED lights typically last about 30,000 hours, whereas a halogen light only lasts about 1,000 hours. Furthermore, traditional light bulbs fail catastrophically, meaning they stop working completely without warning. In comparison, LED lights just get dimmer gradually. This difference means that LED lights are also safer, since they won’t suddenly go out while you’re off-roading.

LED lights are more energy efficient than other methods, which means they don’t drain batteries as quickly. This benefit is especially important for off-roading, where a service station can be a significant distance away. The increased efficiency of LED lights also means they don’t generate as much heat, making them safer to use than halogen bulbs. This advantage is particularly helpful in harsh operating conditions with a lot of dust in the air.

LED lights are also more environmentally friendly than other lighting technologies. They can be recycled more easily and are less toxic than both halogen and HID bulbs.


LED lights may generally be classified into flood lights, spot lights and light bars, each of which has specific uses for jeeps and other vehicles.

A flood light often has a large square shape and the LEDs are typically surrounded by a reflector cup that helps to concentrate the light they produce. They usually have a 60-degree field of vision with an adjustable mounting bracket that provides about 45 degrees of motion. LED flood lights are designed to provide strong illumination over a wide area, so you can use them to light camp sites.

Spot lights are usually smaller than a flood light and are intended to produce a concentrated beam of light that extends further than the other types of LED lights for jeeps. An adjustable mounting bracket on an LED spot light should provide a great degree of control over where the beam is pointed. Spotlights are typically used to illuminate a specific object, although you can also use them as fog lamps.

A light bar is a set of individual LEDs housed in a single package. They’re so named because the LEDs are typically arranged in a single row, giving them a long rectangular shape. The lighting characteristics of light bars are between those of flood lights and spot lights, so they provide a broad, clear view of the road ahead. They also have a long illumination distance, so you’ll have fewer surprises when off-roading at night. Like other forms of LED lighting, light bars for jeeps should have an adjustable mounting made of anti-corrosive material.


A jeep doesn’t need an LED light as large as other off-roading vehicles such as a truck, which means the cost will generally be less. A smaller LED light also has more mounting options than a larger model. Light bars are more versatile than other types, since you can often configure them as flood or spot lights. This capability makes it easier to transition between day and night driving, which requires illumination with a greater range.

Legal requirements are another important consideration for using LED lights, which can vary greatly between states. Generally speaking, however, the use of LED lights for off-roading purposes is much less restrictive than it is for regular driving. Check the laws in your jurisdiction to ensure you comply with local laws before purchasing LED lights for your jeep.


Hamsar is a Methode Electronics Company that has been designing and manufacturing custom lighting and other electronics for over 30 years. We specialize in vehicle lighting, including LED off-road lights, fog lights and light bars. Hamsar has lighting solutions that meet the budget and other requirements of any Jeep enthusiast. Contact us today to learn more about our LED products.