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Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 #3322906
03/25/14 09:17 AM
03/25/14 09:17 AM
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 513
Tennessee
Best F100 Offline OP
Best F100  Offline OP
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 513
Tennessee
The first product I bought, that I recommended was turn signal daytime running lights from Webelectric. This is the second one that I recommend - which is a high compliment, since I am very picky.

For any of you have been rear ended by another vehicle before, you may also have interest in this product.

I recently bought a blinking (or pulsing) 3rd brake light for a 2004 Focus Sedan. Bought it from the Kahtec.com web site. Upon braking, it pulses something like 6X's/seconds for the first second, and then turns into a solid brake light. Various other versions from Kahtec repeat pulsing at a timed interval - if your foot stays on the brake.

This is the second one I have purchased. I realize, that if a driver following you who is not paying attention, you are still going to get rear ended. However, I believe this product does a great job of getting the attention of that daydreaming or cellphone talking, driver behind you - without being a nuisance. I also have one on my 2010 Fusion. I found that it has the side benefit of keeping highway tailgaters off your rear bumpers, with one tap of the brakes.

Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Best F100] #3322921
03/25/14 09:31 AM
03/25/14 09:31 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,753
PA
123Saab Offline
123Saab  Offline
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,753
PA
Interesting.

How do the cops feel about it?

Wonder if its legal in all states?


Anything can happen
The tallest towers be overturned
Those in high places be daunted
Those overlooked regarded
- Seamus Heaney
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Best F100] #3322925
03/25/14 09:32 AM
03/25/14 09:32 AM
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 12,991
Onondaga County
Miller88 Offline
Miller88  Offline
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 12,991
Onondaga County
I have seen them on a few passenger cars. Tempted to get one.

Mostly it's ambulances.


18 Forester 2.5I 6M
00 Jeep Cherokee
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Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Best F100] #3322928
03/25/14 09:35 AM
03/25/14 09:35 AM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 14,505
Top of Virginia
Hokiefyd Offline
Hokiefyd  Offline
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 14,505
Top of Virginia
These devices are illegal in all states and should not be used. Federal law requires that brake lamps on passenger vehicles to be steady-burning. You will note that a total of ZERO (0) vehicle manufacturers install pulsing brake lamps. There is a reason for that.

Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Hokiefyd] #3322966
03/25/14 10:04 AM
03/25/14 10:04 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,689
Charlotte, NC
Oldmoparguy1 Offline
Oldmoparguy1  Offline
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,689
Charlotte, NC
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
These devices are illegal in all states and should not be used. Federal law requires that brake lamps on passenger vehicles to be steady-burning. You will note that a total of ZERO (0) vehicle manufacturers install pulsing brake lamps. There is a reason for that.

What is the reason?


A Randomly Selected Thought For The Day:
If Noah had used Zip, he could have used a smaller boat.
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Best F100] #3322995
03/25/14 10:18 AM
03/25/14 10:18 AM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,645
SF Bay Area
EricF Offline
EricF  Offline
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 1,645
SF Bay Area
I'm not sure of a valid reason, but a guess would be that it resembles an emergency vehicle light.

I was going to put blue LED license plate screws on the front plate of my car and was told by a friend who was a police explorer that'd be a ticket if they were turned on and a cop saw it. They could be construed as an emergency vehicle.


1993 Ford Ranger XLT 4.0L 4x4 (240k) 5W-30 Synpower
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Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Hokiefyd] #3323000
03/25/14 10:22 AM
03/25/14 10:22 AM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 33,587
ME
eljefino Online content
eljefino  Online Content
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 33,587
ME
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
These devices are illegal in all states and should not be used. Federal law requires that brake lamps on passenger vehicles to be steady-burning. You will note that a total of ZERO (0) vehicle manufacturers install pulsing brake lamps. There is a reason for that.


They're legal in Maine (source- page 5) but I don't know how that trumps the NHTSA.

I figure the original CHMSL from 1986 should be enough to prevent rear-ending crashes.

OT When cars started having DRLs motorcycles got (aftermarket) flashing highbeams. When will it end?

Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Hokiefyd] #3323012
03/25/14 10:28 AM
03/25/14 10:28 AM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 8,451
Illinois
mrsilv04 Offline
mrsilv04  Offline
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 8,451
Illinois
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
These devices are illegal in all states and should not be used. Federal law requires that brake lamps on passenger vehicles to be steady-burning. You will note that a total of ZERO (0) vehicle manufacturers install pulsing brake lamps. There is a reason for that.


Thankfully, these are legal on motorcycles.

The accepted standard seems to be that the brake light must go to a solid red after 4-5 seconds.

There isn't a Federal rule for this, but some states do address it. As an example, here is Tennessee's regulation:

"Continuous flashing brake light systems for motorcycles are permissible where the brake
lamp pulses rapidly for no more than five (5) seconds when the brake is applied and then
converts to a continuous light as a normal brake lamp until such time as the brake is released"



2004 Silverado - on its 3rd Jasper engine in less than one year.
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Hokiefyd] #3323017
03/25/14 10:33 AM
03/25/14 10:33 AM
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,627
London, ON, Canada
SLCraig Offline
SLCraig  Offline
Joined: Dec 2008
Posts: 5,627
London, ON, Canada
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
These devices are illegal in all states and should not be used. Federal law requires that brake lamps on passenger vehicles to be steady-burning. You will note that a total of ZERO (0) vehicle manufacturers install pulsing brake lamps. There is a reason for that.



That was my initial thoughts too.. I can only assume I'd get pulled over eventually for such a thing here.


2010 Civic SI sedan 6MT
PP 5w30 | Fram TG | Pennzoil MTF
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Best F100] #3323018
03/25/14 10:33 AM
03/25/14 10:33 AM
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 11,620
Santa Barbara, CA
bdcardinal Offline
bdcardinal  Offline
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 11,620
Santa Barbara, CA
I remember Citreon came out with this like 10-12 years ago, but only in Europe. The USDOT never approved this for use in the US and they are illegal. Awesome idea though. I think the Citreon system flashed the 4-way flasher if braking force exceeded a certain limit.


2014 Ford Mustang GT Track Pack
1995 Ford Mustang GT

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Opinions expressed are my own.
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Hokiefyd] #3323053
03/25/14 10:55 AM
03/25/14 10:55 AM
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 397
Tampa
kam327 Offline
kam327  Offline
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 397
Tampa
Originally Posted By: Hokiefyd
These devices are illegal in all states and should not be used. Federal law requires that brake lamps on passenger vehicles to be steady-burning. You will note that a total of ZERO (0) vehicle manufacturers install pulsing brake lamps. There is a reason for that.


I don't think so. There are at least two new car dealers in my area that install them on ALL cars on their lots. Many new Chrysler and Kia products I see on the roads have this. I find it very annoying though - I wouldn't want it.


2017 Mazda6 Touring 2.5L
2017 Ford Explorer Limited 3.5L
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: mrsilv04] #3323056
03/25/14 10:58 AM
03/25/14 10:58 AM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 14,505
Top of Virginia
Hokiefyd Offline
Hokiefyd  Offline
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 14,505
Top of Virginia
Originally Posted By: mrsilv04

Thankfully, these are legal on motorcycles.


They are not, not when operated in the United States. Tennessee has decided that it will allow certain exceptions; Tennessee cannot and does not over-rule the CFR.

The applicable regulation is: 49 CFR 571.108. For convenience, it is linked here.

Quote:

S3 Application. This standard applies to:

S3.1 Passenger cars, multipurpose passenger vehicles, trucks, buses, trailers (except pole trailers and trailer converter dollies), and motorcycles;


Quote:

Stop lamps are lamps giving a steady light to the rear of a vehicle to indicate a vehicle is stopping or diminishing speed by braking.


That's really it. Legal stop lamps are steady burning. Period.

I also direct your attention to Table I-A, I-B, and I-C further down in the document. You'll see that the requirements for Stop Lamps for all vehicle types specify Steady Burning. You'll see Steady Burning written over and over again. "Steady burning". "Steady burning". "Steady burning". Legal stop lamps are Steady Burning. It really doesn't matter what an aftermarket product manufacturer, a new car dealer who installs them, or the State of Tennessee has to say about it. Legal stop lamps to not flash or pulsate.

Reasons are very valid. Turn signals are permitted to be red in North America. Turn signals flash. If you see a red flashing lamp, it means "turn signal". If you see a (bright) steady red lamp, it means "stop". When folks install aftermarket devices like these, they introduce ambiguity to their vehicle.

Now, whether or not you actually get cited for a flashing stop lamp is something entirely different. Legality and enforcement are often not directly connected.

Edit: now, what IS allowed on a motorcycle are pulsating headlamps. Again, it's very straight-forward in the regulation. From the third row of Table I-C:

Quote:
The upper beam or the lower beam, but not both, may be wired to modulate from a higher intensity to a lower intensity in accordance with S10.17.5

Last edited by Hokiefyd; 03/25/14 11:03 AM. Reason: added bit about pulsaing headlamps on motorcycles
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Best F100] #3323063
03/25/14 11:00 AM
03/25/14 11:00 AM
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 8,806
Texas
440Magnum Offline
440Magnum  Offline
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 8,806
Texas
I personally find those things confusing. A lot of thought went into lighting design by engineers and regulators. Yes, there are flaws- allowable US headlamps range from excellent to sucktacular, for example- but the placement and illumination of brake lights are not up for debate IMO.

Causing stop lamps to flash, changing the color of signal lamps and headlamps... they all should be high-$$$ moving violations IMO. But they are obviously NOT strongly enforced in the real world. frown

I will add that a very strict interpretation of the rules would outlaw sequential turn-signals like old T-birds, Imperials, and modern Mustangs use (and are a Mopar Performance option for modern Challengers- which I installed on my SRT). But since the first lamp to light DOES burn continuously thereafter, an equally strict interpretation makes them allowable. Kinda a thin line- but I find that they help differentiate a turn signal from a brake light when you can only see half the car... which would also be alleviated by amber rear turn signals but that's another debate. wink


Last edited by 440Magnum; 03/25/14 11:08 AM.

'66 Dodge Polara & '69 Dodge Coronet R/T both 440/727
'08 Ram 1500 4.7/545RFE
'12 Challenger SRT8 392/6-speed
'99 XJ 4x4 4.0/AX15, '14 WK2 4x4 3.6/8HP
Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: Best F100] #3323068
03/25/14 11:08 AM
03/25/14 11:08 AM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,517
Alberta, Canada
Smokescreen Offline
Smokescreen  Offline
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 3,517
Alberta, Canada
While it would set your vehicle apart initially, a sea of pulsating red lamps in front of you would be very annoying, especially in stop and go traffic.

I would also imagine it would make determining distance from you to the stopping vehicle ahead more difficult to determine than a steady burn source.


13 Civic Si 2.4L- 69Kkms(43Kmi)-PP,Wix
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Re: Blinking 3rd Brake Light - Great Product #2 [Re: 440Magnum] #3323076
03/25/14 11:14 AM
03/25/14 11:14 AM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 14,505
Top of Virginia
Hokiefyd Offline
Hokiefyd  Offline
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 14,505
Top of Virginia
Originally Posted By: 440Magnum
Kinda a thin line- but I find that they help differentiate a turn signal from a brake light when you can only see half the car... which would also be alleviated by amber rear turn signals but that's another debate. wink


Not to take this thread in a different direction, but I have made it a personal choice of mine to avoid vehicles that either don't have amber turn signals or don't have available amber turn signal upgrades from the OEM that I can make myself (like from a different trim level). A great example is the previous generation Chrysler 300. The base model had a single red dual-function bulb where the 300C had separate stop and turn signal functions in the rear lamp.

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