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ASK A TROOPER: Discoloration in headlights

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Sgt. Troy Christianson mug

Sgt. Troy Christianson of the Minnesota State Patrol

Question: I have a question about headlights, it seems that drivers are using their high-beams to compensate for their cloudy headlights. Is this a equipment problem?

Answer: Using high beams to compensate for cloudy headlights is a hazard to oncoming traffic. If your headlights are cloudy it is recommended that you clean them. If they are still cloudy after cleaning them, you may have to replace them. When the driver of a vehicle approaches a vehicle in the oncoming lane, you are required to dim your headlights within a 1,000 feet. When following a vehicle, you are required to dim your lights within 200 feet.

You can avoid a ticket — and a crash — if you simply buckle up, drive at safe speeds, pay attention and always drive sober. Help us drive Minnesota Toward Zero Deaths.

If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota send your questions to Sgt. Troy Christianson – Minnesota State Patrol at 2900 48th Street NW, Rochester MN 55901-5848. (Or reach him at, Twitter: @MSPPIO_SOUTH


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