Floodlights Vs. Spotlights: Which Is Best for an Off-Road Vehicle?

Floodlights Vs. SpotlightsWe often install vehicle work lights as part of a bigger upgrade for off-road SUVs and pickup trucks. Modifications of this kind usually include floodlights or spotlights, or both. Learn what the difference is and which is best for your type of off-roading adventure.

Floodlights vs. Spotlights Explained

The difference lies in how effectively the light travels. Typically, the narrower the beam the farther the light travels effectively.


A spotlight is a narrow beam that illuminates objects at a farther distance. The beam from a lighthouse is a perfect example of a spotlight. This is also the perfect form of lighting for most driving situations. The light pattern helps you identify road hazards farther out. This gives you more time to react. Most spotlights produce an angle of light of around 30 degrees.


Floodlights, by contrast, illuminate a wider area—usually encompassing a 120-degree angle—at a shorter distance. A wider beam is often more practical for off-road driving. A spotlight isn’t as important in this instance since you’re driving at a slower speed. A floodlight helps you see nearby hazards, such as deep potholes and crevices, rocks, and fallen limbs jutting out from the side. A wide beam is also preferable for certain applications, such as illuminating a nearby area where you need to set up camp.

The Best of Both Worlds

Our auto service often installs a combination light bar equipped with both spotlight and floodlight bulbs. This is an easy installment that can be placed on the edge of the roof or front bumper.

Increase Road Visibility with Versatile Lighting

Enhance nighttime vision for your off-roader by contacting Northwest Performance and Off Road. Even street-performance car owners have requested combination light bars due to their versatility. Both spotlights and floodlights are great additions that increase visibility and safety during nighttime excursions.

Edited by Justin Vorhees

Enhanced Lighting Installation for Off-Road Vehicles

Passionate auto repair service in Everett, Edmonds, Lake Stevens,
Lynnwood, Marysville, Monroe, Mill Creek, Mukilteo & Snohomish