This article is a summary of a YouTube video "Why it's not possible to synchronize turn signals (but also absolutely is)" by Technology Connections

The Science Behind Turn Signals: Why They Don't Always Sync Up

TLDRTurn signals on cars don't always sync up with each other due to differences in turn signal circuitry. In old car models, turn signal circuits used to work by bridging the common pin to one of the other pins when the turn signal is engaged. This system relied on a thermal flasher to repeatedly interrupt and reconnect the circuit. However, modern cars use electronic flashers that rely on fluctuating voltage to open and close the switch. These electronic flashers can be affected by system voltage changes, making it difficult for turn signals to sync up.

Key insights

🚦Turn signal circuits in old car models rely on thermal flashers, while modern cars use electronic flashers.

🔌Old turn signal circuits consist of a switch and a flasher relay, while modern circuits include a relay coil and a capacitor.

📈System voltage changes can affect the speed and timing of electronic flashers.

💡The honeycomb-shaped lenses on turn signals and brake lights are designed to magnify the filament of the lamp, making the signal appear brighter.

🔧Aftermarket LED replacement bulbs in cars can negatively impact the visibility and effectiveness of turn signals.

Q&A

Why don't turn signals on cars sync up with each other?

Turn signals on cars don't sync up with each other due to differences in turn signal circuitry. Older car models used thermal flashers, while modern cars use electronic flashers.

How do turn signals work in old car models?

In old car models, turn signal circuits work by bridging the common pin to one of the other pins when the turn signal is engaged. This system relies on a thermal flasher to repeatedly interrupt and reconnect the circuit.

How do turn signals work in modern cars?

Modern cars use electronic flashers for turn signals. These flashers rely on fluctuating voltage to open and close the switch, resulting in the flashing effect.

Can system voltage changes affect turn signal speed and timing?

Yes, system voltage changes can affect the speed and timing of turn signal flashers. Higher voltages can cause the flasher's capacitor to charge more quickly, resulting in shorter off times.

Why is it important to have honeycomb-shaped lenses on turn signals and brake lights?

The honeycomb-shaped lenses on turn signals and brake lights are designed to magnify the filament of the lamp, making the signal appear brighter. This helps improve visibility, especially in direct sunlight.

Timestamped Summary

00:00Turn signals on cars don't always sync up due to differences in turn signal circuitry.

05:21Old car models used thermal flashers to repeatedly interrupt and reconnect the circuit, while modern cars use electronic flashers that rely on fluctuating voltage.

16:23The honeycomb-shaped lenses on turn signals and brake lights are designed to magnify the filament of the lamp, making the signal appear brighter.

15:45Aftermarket LED replacement bulbs in cars can negatively impact the visibility and effectiveness of turn signals.