How Should I Aim My Car Headlights?

Written by tucker cummings
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How Should I Aim My Car Headlights?
The alignment of your car's headlights can affect your driving. (Vintage Car Headlight image by janr34 from

In order to ensure the safest possible driving experience, it is important to aim your car's headlights properly. This will give you maximum visibility when you are behind the wheel without blinding oncoming drivers.


The average car owner should adjust their headlights so that when the car is 25 feet away from a building, the headlights shine on the wall about the width of your hood apart.

Heavy Payloads

If you drive a car, truck or SUV with a lot of gear or equipment stored in the back, you may need to tilt your headlights lower. This is because the weight at the rear of the car lifts up the front axle slightly, which in turn affects the light beam.


You can purchase professional headlamp adjuster kits or have your mechanic check the aim of the car's headlights. However, the basic tools you will need are a flathead screwdriver, a roll of masking tape and a tape measure.


Park your car in front of a wall, and use masking tape on the wall to mark where the headlamps are shining. Place another piece of tape horizontally between those marks, creating a cross shape where the centre of each headlight shines. Back the car up 25 feet, and use the adjustment screws to aim the low beams 2 inches below those cross marks, and the high beams right on the crosses.


Check your headlight alignment every 12 months, whenever you change a bulb in the headlights, or after front bumper hits.

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