Rear Fog Lights

“What?” you may say. “There’s no such thing as rear fog lamps!!”

Oh, my noble reader, they do exist. Those of us who have owned a European car, and cared to read the owner’s manual (rather elite company) know of this feature called the rear fog lamp. These are one or two red lights on the rear of the car that meet or exceed the brightness of brake lights. Their purpose? To let you see a car ahead of you in the fog.

The Pet Peeve

People who turn them on all the time. I can somewhat stomach people who always have their fogs on, it’s dumb but it doesn’t hurt me. But these lights are very bright and if you are behind a car with them on, and I bet you have been at some point, you either think they are resting their foot on the brake or have a brake light out. The truth is, they have their dang rear fog lights on for no good reason! Example!!

Someone needs to read the owner's manual.
Someone needs to read the owner’s manual.
Note this is not only the daytime but it is very sunny out. In this case the Mercedes was turning and it’s more difficult to see but if you look to the right of the left turn signal you will see a very bright red light, it’s brighter than the brake lights. This is the rear fog light, there’s only one, and it had been on for miles.

When is the proper time to use them? Funny you should ask, but rear fog lights should be used, you guessed it, in heavy fog and not just a little fog, visibility shortening fog.

An Audi in very foggy conditions properly using rear fog lights (on either side of the license plate).
An Audi in very foggy conditions properly using rear fog lights (on either side of the license plate).
In this case I was in an elevated area where the fog was light but you can see it was very foggy out. This is a proper time to use rear fog lights which are usually on the same switch as front fog lights. You can see they help distinguish this car and because it’s dark and foggy the brightness is helpful and not hurtful.

So, friends don’t let friends drive European cars with rear fogs on okay? If you know someone please, the time is now, do an intervention!