FCA Customer Care
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: MOPAR World Headquarters
Here is an explanation of how SmartBeam® works:
The SmartBeam® automatic high beam control system uses digital light-sensing technology to monitor the lighting and traffic conditions in front of the vehicle. It helps improve forward visibility during nighttime driving by initiating high beam usage as ambient lighting and traffic conditions warrant. SmartBeam® communicates over the Controller Area Network (CAN) data bus with the ElectroMechanical Instrument Cluster (EMIC) (also known as the Cab Compartment Node/CCN), the Front Control Module (FCM) or the diagnostic scan tool. A demonstration mode allows the SmartBeam® system functionality to be demonstrated and may also be used to confirm that the system optics are operational.
SmartBeam® may be enabled or disabled by using the customer programmable features function of the EVIC and selecting or deselecting the AUTO HIGH BEAM feature. Then, the left (lighting) multi-function switch control knob, located on the left control stalk, must be in the A (Automatic) position and the high beams must be selected using the beam selector function the left multi-function switch control stalk for SmartBeam® to be operational. An AUTO HIGHBEAM ON or AUTO HIGHBEAM OFF textual message will temporarily appear in the instrument cluster reconfigurable dot matrix display to confirm the current system status.
When the SmartBeam® system is enabled, ambient light levels are low enough to require the use of high beams, the vehicle is moving over 32 kilometers-per-hour (20 miles-per-hour) and no other traffic is present; SmartBeam® will automatically turn the high beams ON. When the system detects the headlamps of an approaching vehicle or the tail lamps of a preceding vehicle, the high beams will automatically turn OFF. If the high beams are ON while decelerating and approaching a full stop, the system will turn them OFF automatically at below approximately 24 kilometers-per-hour (15 miles-per-hour).
Depending upon the driving situation, SmartBeam® may fade the high beams ON and OFF, or switch them OFF instantaneously. In either case, the high beam indicator in the instrument cluster will illuminate as soon as the high beams start to come ON, and will remain illuminated until the high beams are completely OFF. SmartBeam® will instantaneously turn the high beams OFF if the system detects the sudden presence of vehicle lights ahead. The vehicle operator can also override the SmartBeam® selection at any time manually using the beam selection function of the left multi-function switch control stalk to select the low beams, and the flash-to-pass (optical horn) feature is still functional with SmartBeam®.
SmartBeam® senses lighting conditions directly ahead of the vehicle. In certain situations, such as hills or winding roads, it may be more comfortable manually overriding the system because the vehicles in front may not be in the SmartBeam® imaging camera field of view. However, it is not likely that your high beams will cause discomforting glare to other drivers in this situation.
SmartBeam® may not function properly if its field of view is obscured. Because it looks through the windshield, the system may not function properly if this area is covered with ice, dirt, haze or any other obstruction. For optimal system performance, the lens of the imager camera must be cleaned periodically, as it may haze over due to the air quality in the vehicle passenger compartment. Spray a small amount of glass cleaner onto a soft cloth and gently clean the lens. Do not spray the glass cleaner directly onto the lens.
SmartBeam® uses a green Light Emitting Diode (LED) unit to indicate certain faults it detects in the imager camera and circuitry. A slow (once-per-second) continual flashing of this LED indicates the SmartBeam® camera requires aiming. A fast (twice-per-second) continual flashing of this LED indicates that a SmartBeam® fault has been detected and a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) has been stored. The LED is located to the right of the power button on ElectroChromic (EC) inside rear view mirrors.
The SmartBeam® circuitry within the EC mirror will store a DTC for any fault that is detected. The hard wired inputs and outputs of the EC mirror may be diagnosed using conventional diagnostic tools and procedures. Refer to the appropriate wiring information. However, conventional diagnostic methods will not prove conclusive in the diagnosis of the SmartBeam® unit, the EC mirror or the electronic controls or communication between modules and other devices that provide some features of the automatic high beam system. The most reliable, efficient, and accurate means to diagnose the SmartBeam®, the EC mirror or the electronic controls and communication related to automatic high beam system operation requires the use of a diagnostic scan tool. Refer to the appropriate diagnostic information.