A Guide to LED Light Bars for Trucks
Have you been daydreaming about how a brand new LED light bar would look below the grill of your truck?
What about driving down dark, twisting back roads with a powerful lighting setup that illuminates everything in your path?
If you answered yes to either of these, then we might know what is holding you back. The world of LED light bars has been expanding in recent years, and there is now a wide range of styles, mounting types, and other features.
Let’s cut through the noise. Read on for our guide to LED light bars for trucks so you can decide with confidence.
PS: If you are learning about light bars for the first time, we highly recommend reading our informative articles on lumens versus lux and choosing a beam pattern so that you understand the basics.
Where to Install Your LED Light Bar For Trucks
This is one of the first things you will need to determine when shopping for a light bar.
You will be limited in where you can place your LED light bar by its size. Generally, light bars under four feet (48 inches) have more mounting options around your truck. Anything larger than this might only fit on top of the cab.
Tailgate light bars are used for giving other drivers better visibility of your truck. They are often synched with your brake lights or used as running lights, which is most common with vehicles that need to make a lot of sudden stops.
To install a light bar on your tailgate, fix it directly above the bumper. The model that you purchase should include instructions about whether it requires tools or an adhesive to mount.
Rear bumper light bars are usually fixed close to tailgate lights, but they serve a different purpose. These light bars are useful for giving extra visibility to drivers who are hitching up to a trailer, or for avoiding obstacles while backing up.
This style is often sold as twin small light bars which are mounted into existing spaces in the bumper. This placement varies between vehicles.
Spotlights are made for working and driving in bad weather conditions. Their long range of illumination allows a longer field of view, or longer down the road and provides an area of strong visibility to get work done.
Spotlights often attach to the side mirror, the roof of the cab, or headache racks fixed to the back of your truck’s cab.
Hood, Cab, and Grille
These are by far the most common locations for drivers to mount their LED light bars. The placement on the front of the truck does not change the effectiveness of the lighting too much, but it is often an aesthetic choice.
Light bars are often mounted above the windshield, or in gaps in the grille or the front of the hood.
Our LED Light Bar Picks for Trucks
13.5” Extreme Single Series Single Row CREE LED
Modern LED technology allows smaller units to pack a big punch. The 13.5” Extreme Single Series Single Row CREE LED is made for intense conditions but emits 5,400lm from a small frame that can be easily configured or doubled up on your truck.
The difference-maker for this product is 3D Night Spot technology, which produces a combination beam that allows visibility for short and long distances.
20” Jet Black Series Double Row - Street Legal
The new 20” Jet Black Series Double Row - Street Legal is just straight-up good-looking, with an edgeless design and minimal blacked-out look.
But aside from looks, this thing gets the job done. With 16,800lm of illumination coming through hooded reflectors (which reduce glare), the light bar is ready to handle whatever you throw at it, and it's street legal. Need more power for work or sketchy off-roading? Upgrade to the High Power version instead.
40” Rider Series Double Row Curved CREE LED
If you often find yourself on the darkest, roughest back roads, where you won’t want to compromise on safety then the 40” Rider Series Double Row Curved CREE LED is right for you.
Three rows of 3W CREE LEDs project 19,200lm in a combination flood and spot pattern. The curved LED arrangement throws light further and wider, and is at home beneath the grill of many pickup trucks.
We Can Help You Light the Way
Don’t end up on the right road with the wrong lighting. We are here to help you find the perfect light bar for your truck - and our experienced team can help with your toughest questions.
Trust us, we’ve probably heard them before. Get in touch with us today.
Keep an eye on the Northern Light Bars blog for more useful tips on everything there is to know about light bars.