Tractor Lights: Choosing the Right Pattern and Technology

Another summer is turning to fall, which means many farmers are preparing for harvest season. As the days become shorter, tractor lights will be an important piece of equipment for working in the fields. And with so many types of lights available, choosing those that best fit your needs can be challenging. We’ve prepared a quick and easy guide of light patterns and technology to consider as you upgrade, replace or repair your tractor lights:

Light Patterns

  • Flood lights provide short-range, wide visibility. They’re a good option for general work, but you’ll likely need a narrower light pattern (trapezoidal or spot) to accompany a flood light.
  • Trapezoidal lights have a medium-range visibility. They’re often considered the ideal work light because its narrower pattern is more focused than flood lights, but less focused than spot lights.
  • Spot lights offer long-range visibility. Their narrow pattern is great for distance work like marking rows or fence lines, but they’re also harder to focus due to a lack of horizontal coverage.

Light Technology

  • Incandescent lights are the most common form of lighting available. They contain tungsten filament wire(s) that can be shaped differently to produce various light outputs. Incandescent lights are less expensive and easier to replace than other lighting technologies. They also produce a “warmer” color and don’t require any time to reach their maximum brightness. But incandescent lighting supplies are becoming limited, making them harder to replace.
  • Halogen lights are a type of incandescent bulb. The only difference between the two is halogen gas, which carries evaporated tungsten back into the filament rather than having it deposited on to the glass wall of the bulb. Halogen lights perform better than standard incandescent – they last longer and are more efficient.
  • LED (Light-Emitting Diode) lights use clusters of small diodes to create light while maintaining a far lower amp draw than incandescent or halogen lights, as well as a much longer active life. Use of LED lighting allows the addition of more lighting units to a circuit without the need to upgrade alternators or wiring.
  • HID (High-Intensity Discharge) lights work through the amplification of light by passing it through compressed gas with no filament to break. Lamps using HID technology are among the longest-lasting, the most efficient and the most powerful lighting options available on the market today.

Which tractor lights work best for you? Leave a comment and get the discussion started!

-Jared Johnson

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