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Firefighter emergency lights

Why Volunteer Firefighters Install LED Light Bars on their Vehicles

At LED Equipped, we often assist volunteer firefighters in selecting emergency lighting for their personal vehicles – and for many, LED light bars are the ideal choice.

A range of LED lighting options are available, all of which can be easily installed on cars, trucks and SUVs. From dash lights and beacon lights to grill lights, running board lights and more, we carry many different types of high-quality LED products. So, what makes our light bars so popular? And if you’re an on-call firefighter, is installing one on your vehicle a good idea?

We can answer the first question by explaining the ways volunteer firefighters benefit from having a LED light bar. As for the second question, that’s a bit more complicated — but you’ll find all of the information you need to consider in making the decision below.

Move Through Traffic More Quickly

Volunteer firefighters never know when they’re going to get called in to help with an emergency. Regardless, responding quickly is absolutely essential – and it could even make the difference in saving a life.

People have come to regard cars, trucks and SUVs equipped with LED light bars as emergency vehicles. Seeing the lighting, motorists move to the side, allowing on-call firefighters to quickly and safely move through traffic.

Keep Others Away from Danger

Once volunteer firefighters arrive at the scene of an emergency, the usefulness of their LED light bars doesn’t end. When their vehicles are parked, the LEDs can continue to flash – which serves to show others that they need to steer clear of the area.

This can, of course, be accomplished with other types of LED lighting. However, because of their size and placement, light bars provide optimal illumination with a far, 360-degree reach. As such, they effectively inform bystanders of the danger, warning them to remain away from the emergency scene.

Redirect Motorists on the Road

When the site of an accident or emergency is directly on or near a road, firefighters can’t be battling traffic as they try to work. Strategically parking their vehicles helps keep the area clear, but LED light bars do more, telling motorists to move to another lane.

Many light bars – including those sold here at LED Equipped – feature traffic advisors. In other words, they can be set to flash in a pattern that tells drivers which direction to go, which helps to keep the traffic moving.

Reliable Emergency Lighting

Many roads throughout the country are in less-than-stellar condition, and volunteer firefighters often have to drive over bumps and potholes to get to their destinations. LED lights are durable enough for off-road driving, so the chance of them being damaged on the way to an emergency is incredibly low.

In addition, LED lights don’t require any warm-up period, and they operate in all weather conditions – even brutal cold temperatures. LEDs can last for more than 10 years, too, even with 12 hours of use every single day. To sum up, they’re far more reliable than other vehicle emergency lighting options.

Should You Install an LED Light Bar on Your Personal Vehicle?

After reading everything above, you may be convinced that a light bar is the right choice for your car, truck or SUV. That could be the case, but before you head off to shop, consider the following.

Using LED lights doesn’t ensure right-of-way for volunteer firefighters.

Flicking on your light bar is likely going to encourage other motorists to move aside and let you through, they don’t legally have to do so in most states. On-call firefighters use emergency vehicle lighting to request right-of-way, but the LEDs are considered “courtesy lights.”

Firefighters with LED lights don’t have special driving rights.

Emergency vehicle lighting doesn’t grant most volunteer firefighters the right to go over the speed limit and skip stop signs. Obeying all of the local traffic laws is still required, and those who don’t run the risk of being pulled over as they rush to the emergency scene.

Local and state laws on LED lights for volunteer firefighters vary.

We wish we could provide a simple guide to the types of LED lighting firefighters can legally install on their personal vehicles, but every locality has its own rules and regulations. LED light bar colors, flash patterns and placements that are allowed in one city or state may be against the law in another. To understand the restrictions in your area, you’ll need to contact a local law enforcement agency.

How to Choose a LED Light Bar

If you’ve determined that a light bar is your best option, your next step is to figure out which model meets your needs. Your city and state laws may dictate some of the decisions, but making the right choice requires careful thought. Here’s what you’ll need to consider.


LED light bars come in a vast range of sizes. Here at LED Equipped, we have light bars as small as 12 inches and larger models of up to 60 inches in length. It should come as no surprise to learn that bigger bars produce more illumination, but you’re going to want lighting that fits your vehicle. So, make sure to take measurements before you begin shopping.


While straight LED light bars are preferred by many volunteer firefighters, curved bars are also available. Neither shape is clearly better than the other, so the decision comes down to which appeals to you the most. Picture each on your personal vehicle, and if you can’t work out which looks right, check out images online or ask friends and family members for opinions.

Number of Rows

Single-row and double-row LED light bars are available, with the latter being significantly more expensive. That said, double-row bars produce much more light than their single-row brethren, and most volunteer firefighters who shop with us opt for bars with two rows of LEDs. However, if you’d like emergency vehicle lighting that has a lower profile, a single-row bar may be the right choice.

Shop with a Trusted LED Lighting Supplier

Where you buy your LED lights matters, as you want high-quality products and fair, competitive pricing. You’ll find that with LED Equipped – and we have a reputation for excellence.

We have an A+ rating and accreditation with the Better Business Bureau. We’re also Shopper Approved, and we’re proud to have nearly 4.6 out of 5 stars and almost 800 reviews. We carry a selection of high-performance LED light bars from highly regarded manufacturers, and all of our emergency vehicle lighting comes with a 3-year warranty.

Fire departments around the country rely on LED Equipped to supply lights for their official vehicles. We’re also the go-to LED lighting supplier for ambulance fleets, law enforcement agencies, first responders, utility companies and service providers. You can be confident in shopping with us – and if you need help deciding which light bar to purchase, you can pick up the phone and give us a call.

Customer services is our top priority, and our expert team is always happy to answer questions and offer advice. Browse the selection of LED products on our website, or reach out to our emergency vehicle lighting specialists for personal guidance in choosing the right LED light bar today.

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