How to Guides

Cornering Light

Zaki Moulvi posted this on Jun 16, 2014

Cornering lights, also known as cornering or turning lamps are installed on the some vehicles to provide extra illumination in the direction of an intended turn or lane change. They are often activated along with the turn signals or upon the turning of the front wheels while the vehicle is in motion. In some cases rear cornering lights double as back up or reverse lights, and in a few vehicles, all of the cornering lights illuminate when the car is put in reverse as a way to warn pedestrians and other drivers that the car is backing. 

History and Standards for Cornering Lights

Cadillac first introduced what they called cornering lights in 1962 as an added safety feature. These lights were installed on or near the front and rear bumpers of the car and activated along with turn indicators. They self-canceled when the steering wheel returned to center. Since then, many manufacturers followed suit. 

In the United States, cornering lights are not required for safe and legal operation of a vehicle, and they are not installed on many late model cars. However, if they are installed on your vehicle, they may be required to work properly in a safety inspection. They are governed by American and UN technical standards and are illegal in some parts of the world. In all cases they must only operate when the vehicle is traveling less than forty miles per hour.

Troubleshooting and Repair 

Because these lights only engage when the turn indicators are engaged, it is easiest to inspect them with a helper. The lights should illuminate when the turn indicators are on (and in some cases when the car is put in reverse).

A non-functioning light is usually the result of a failed bulb or fuse, both of which are straightforward to change using standard size replacements available at any auto parts store.

Any malfunction that is not fixed by either a bulb or fuse replacement will be the result of a larger issue with a switch, relay, or wiring issue.

Cornering lights are not common on late model vehicles, but many older vehicles and modern luxury cars are equipped with them, largely as a stylistic choice. 

Categories: Autowiki Car Systems