A Guide to Snow Plow LED Lights
January 5, 2024 54 min read

A Guide to Snow Plow LED Lights

Proper Snow Plow LED Lighting for Safety and Visibility

Proper lighting on a snow plow is crucial for the operator's and other drivers’ safety, allowing operators to see the road ahead and behind while also making sure other drivers see your plow and know to maintain distance as you continue to clear the roads ahead.

So, how do you properly illuminate your snow plow vehicle to increase visibility and safety? LED lights should be placed around the entirety of the vehicle and can be seen from all angles. During white-out conditions or on slippery roadways requiring extended stopping distances, it is essential to ensure that plows are visible to other vehicles and can see possible road obstructions ahead of time.

Types of LEDs Used on Snow Plows

Snow plows and trucks typically are well-lit around the entirety of the vehicle. Lighting choices can include light bars, pod lights, ditch or rock lights, strobe lights, beacons, and work lights, all in amber, green, blue, and white.

Mounting Locations for LED Lights

There are a variety of ideal locations for mounting your LED lights on a snow plow or truck. For safety reasons, plows should be brightly illuminated, especially in the heaviest snow conditions, such as blizzards and white-outs, including blowing snow and high winds with reduced visibility. Traditional lights produce less illumination and require more energy to function properly. LEDs last longer, reduce energy consumption, and are brighter. This reduces maintenance and replacement costs. 

Head Lights, Tail Lights, and Brake Lights 

One of the simplest upgrades to your existing plow lighting is replacing your original head, tail, and brake lights with LED bulbs.  Snow plows are often equipped with standard tail and brake lights like regular vehicles. These lights help indicate the plow's speed and direction to other drivers. Check out our variety of vehicle bulbs with our Vehicle Bulb Finder.

Front Light Bars

We offer a wide range of sizes and shapes of light bars in both amber and white. Front light bars on snow plows are essential, serving as a critical safety feature and enhancing operational efficiency during snow removal. These light bars significantly improve the plow's visibility to other road users in conditions like heavy snow, fog, and darkness while illuminating the path ahead for the operator.

This dual function reduces the risk of accidents by making the plow more visible and increasing snow removal efficiency by allowing for quicker and more precise navigation. These light bars are designed to withstand harsh weather conditions and are strategically mounted to provide optimal illumination without obstructing the plow blade. This ensures that the plow can effectively clear roads and maintain safety and accessibility during winter weather.

20"-30" light bars are generally recommended for mounting on the plow frame between the plow lights. 50" light bars are recommended for vehicle roof mounts. ATVs and UTVs with plows attached generally use a 40-50" light bar, depending on the position they want to mount it, or a 10-20" in the bumper position.

Rear Pod Lights for Salt Spreader

Rear pod lights on salt spreaders are vital for improving visibility and safety for snow plows, especially under adverse weather conditions. These lights make the snow plow more noticeable to other drivers, reducing the risk of accidents. They also serve as operational indicators, alerting others when the salt is being spread, which is crucial for signaling potentially slippery roads ahead. Additionally, they illuminate the work area behind the plow, aiding in effective and even salt distribution, which is particularly useful during nighttime operations.

Moreover, these lights can also function as communication tools, conveying warnings or directional signals to nearby drivers. This multifunctionality enhances the snowplow operator's safety and ensures the efficiency and effectiveness of road-clearing efforts. Overall, rear pod lights are essential for safe and effective snow plowing operations.

 

Photo Credit: Quality Earthworks and Hauling

Work Lights

Work lights on snow plows enhance visibility and safety during operations. These lights illuminate the area in front of and around the plow, crucial during the early morning, late evening, or nighttime when natural light is scarce. Yellow or amber lights are ideal for working in low light, dust, and snow due to the ability to see through dense weather conditions.

This improved visibility allows the operator to see the road surface, obstacles, and the snow being moved more clearly, making the snow plow more visible to other road users. As a result, the risk of accidents is significantly reduced, enhancing overall safety for the operator and others on the road.

Additionally, work lights increase the efficiency and effectiveness of snow plowing. With better visibility, operators can navigate and clear roads more quickly and accurately, ensuring thorough and precise snow removal. This is particularly vital during adverse weather conditions like blizzards or heavy snowfall, which can drastically reduce visibility. By enabling operators to continue working in challenging conditions and target areas that need to be plowed with greater precision, work lights are indispensable for maintaining road safety and accessibility during winter.

Strobe Lights for Salt Spreader, Side and Rear of Vehicle 

To enhance the visibility and safety of your salt spreader, especially during low-light or adverse weather, it's crucial to choose the right surface and grille strobe lights. Bright LED strobe lights are often the best for their visibility and long-lasting performance. Amber is the standard color for utility vehicles like salt spreaders, symbolizing caution, and having various flash patterns can boost attention in different scenarios. Ensure the lights are tough and weatherproof to endure harsh winter conditions, including salt, moisture, and extreme cold exposure.

Mounting your strobe lights is just as important. They need to be firmly attached to your salt spreader. Magnetic mounts offer flexibility, while permanent mounts provide more stability. The mounting should also not obstruct the spreader's functionality and maximize visibility. For dependable performance, ensure the lights are compatible with your salt spreader's power system, including correct wiring and connectors. For safety and efficiency, professional installation of the electrical components is advisable.

Always check local laws regarding strobe lights on vehicles to comply with regulations for utility vehicles. Choose lights with user-friendly controls for easy operation, including remote control options for added convenience. Consider maintenance ease and support availability - opting for a reputable brand ensures better support and ready access to replacement parts. Safety and legal compliance are paramount when installing and using strobe lights on your salt spreader.

Side and rear strobe lights on a snow plow are crucial for several reasons, primarily centered around visibility, safety, and operational efficiency. These bright, flashing lights significantly enhance the snow plow's visibility in adverse weather conditions such as heavy snowfall or fog, making it noticeable from a greater distance and in poor visibility. This is vital for the safety of the snow plow operator and other road users.

The strobe lights serve as a clear warning to other drivers, signaling the presence of a slow-moving, heavy piece of equipment on the road. Snow plows often move slower than other traffic and may make sudden or unusual movements while clearing snow, so these lights are essential for alerting nearby vehicles. 


Additionally, for added awareness, another popular upgrade for strobe lighting is LED Hideaway Strobe lights. These strobes can be installed within your headlights, tail lights, reverse lights, and turn signals for increased visibility while on the road.

Beacon and Emergency Light Bars

Roof strobe lights, commonly installed on snow plow vehicles, have several crucial purposes. Primarily, they enhance visibility and provide a warning signal, vital for emergency vehicles and snow plows. These lights ensure that other drivers and pedestrians are alerted to their approach, allowing them to yield or clear the way, especially in poor weather conditions or low-light situations. 

They also serve a safety purpose for stationary vehicles in hazardous situations, such as tow trucks or road maintenance vehicles, by warning oncoming drivers to slow down or move aside. Additionally, strobe lights aid in the identification of the type of vehicle and the nature of its service.

Having roof strobe lights is a legal requirement for certain vehicles operating under specific conditions, such as emergency response or road maintenance.

View our stobe beacons here.

Explore our variety of emergency light bars here.

LED Colors: Amber, Green and White

Amber and white LEDs on snow plows are essential for visibility, safety, and operational efficiency, especially under adverse weather conditions. These lights make the plows easily noticeable in poor visibility, reducing the risk of accidents. Green lights have also become increasingly popular for plows in recent times.. Using different colors, like amber for general warning, helps signal the presence of a large, slow-moving vehicle.

Additionally, the flashing patterns can indicate active plowing or de-icing operations. These lights are also useful for indicating the plow's directional intent, aiding other drivers in making safe maneuvers. Compliance with regional regulations regarding vehicle lighting is another critical aspect these LEDs address

Furthermore, LEDs' durability and energy efficiency make them ideal for use in challenging weather conditions, ensuring continuous operation with minimal maintenance. This combination of functionality and efficiency highlights the importance of amber and white LEDs in enhancing the effectiveness and safety of snow plows.

Local and State Regulations

Depending on local regulations and the manufacturer's design, these lights' specific combination and arrangement on a snow plow can vary. Snow plow operators must follow safety guidelines and ensure that their plows are properly equipped with the necessary lighting to reduce the risk of accidents during snow removal operations.

IP Ratings for Environmental and Weather Protection

In snow plows, IP ratings play a critical role in ensuring the vehicles' durability and reliability under challenging environmental conditions. These ratings are a standardized measure of a device's ability to withstand exposure to elements like dust and water. The first digit in an IP rating indicates the level of protection against solid particles, which is crucial in preventing damage to the snow plow's electrical and mechanical components.

The second digit in the IP rating denotes the degree of protection against water, a vital aspect considering the wet and snowy conditions these vehicles regularly encounter. Common IP ratings for snow plows include IP65, which provides dust-tight protection and resistance to water jets; IP66, which is suitable for more severe water exposure; and IP67, which is ideal for situations where temporary immersion in water, such as in snow or slush, might occur.

Choosing the right IP rating for a snow plow involves considering the typical operating conditions and balancing the desired level of protection against budget constraints. The correct IP rating ensures that the snow plow can operate reliably across different weather conditions, reduces the need for maintenance, and enhances safety by minimizing the risk of equipment failure. This careful selection is crucial for optimal functioning and long-term durability for snow plow operations.

Conclusion 

Proper lighting on snow plows, encompassing LED light bars, strobe lights, and work lights in amber and white, is essential for visibility and safety in various conditions, including white-outs and nighttime operations. Upgrades like LED tail and brake lights and specialized lighting for salt spreaders enhance operational efficiency and safety. Adhering to local and state regulations and selecting appropriate IP ratings for environmental protection is crucial for reliable snow plow performance. This comprehensive lighting approach ensures the safety of the operator and other road users, facilitating efficient snow removal even in challenging weather conditions.

by Lauren Scott

SEO Copywriter


Lauren Scott is an SEO Copywriter for Super Bright LEDs.  She enjoys writing about off-road and power sports and indoor residential lighting. When she's not writing about LEDs, Lauren enjoys watching horror movies and spending time with family, friends, and her cats.

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