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What’s The Difference Between LEDs, HIDs, and Halogen Headlight Bulbs

What's The Difference Between LEDs, HIDs, and Halogen Headlight Bulbs

Upgrading your headlight bulbs and undecided between choosing Halogen or LEDs? There are a plethora of headlight options available for cars, trucks, and SUVs and if you’re the driver looking to stand out from the ordinary on the roadways by enhancing the front end of your vehicle with a fresh new style and brightness for your nighttime commute,  choosing between LED, HID or Halogen headlights can revitalize your vehicle in a way you never thought possible. We go over the main differences between Halogen and LED bulbs in this in-depth headlight review

Which bulbs are better for my car? Halogen, HID or LEDs

A question many drivers ask when considering a bulb replacement for their vehicle’s headlamps. There are a handful of pros and cons for each bulb type, and if you’re curious about enhancing your on-road night time vision, here’s our breakdown of the bulb options available for your car, truck or SUV.

Which bulbs are better for my car Halogen, HID or LEDs

Halogen Headlight Bulbs

Most economic vehicles and standard trim levels on the auto market come equipped with Halogen bulbs. Halogen headlight bulbs are sold everywhere at an affordable cost and remain the go-to headlight for basic brightness when driving through the dawn hours.

Halogen bulbs typically give off more heat while using halogen gas which filters through a tungsten filament creating a chemical reaction that produces yellow or white light at 3200 K. Halogen lights offer a 900- 1,200 Lumens which is ideal for the economical commuter and at this level halogen bulbs do not give off as much glare at night time which may temporarily affect oncoming drivers.

Aside from these headlight bulbs burning hotter, the only downfall for the halogen bulb is it’s a less attractive look compared to the more updated HID Xenon or LED bulbs.

Halogen Headlight Bulbs

LED Headlight Bulbs

Fed up with the old stock headlights you’ve been driving with for the past few years? Do you ever feel behind the times because your vehicle still sports the regular old amber color headlights? Updating the style of your ride with LED bulbs adds a fresh new appeal to your car while also broadening the visibility of your nighttime commute.

LED bulbs require less power by using electric current like a circuit board, rather than the gaseous chemical reaction that Halogens use for brightness. Most LED lights offer white light with different shades of blue and yellow. With the LED bulb design offering two chips on each side of the bulb itself, keep in mind that depending on which way the light chips are facing upon installation inside a projector headlight, it may cause a faulty beam pattern. However, if your vehicle has reflector headlights, most LED bulbs will offer sufficiency.

With 6000 K brightness, LED headlight bulbs offer pure light performance and some brands offer low and high-beams in a 2-in-1 bulb. LED bulbs range in different brightness levels and do not take any time to warm up upon your vehicle’s ignition.

LED Headlight Bulbs

HID Xenon Headlight Bulbs

HID Xenon bulbs are a game-changer for your vehicle. With a brightness range that goes from 3000 K to 30,000 K which is significantly bright and preferred by many drivers. The HID tubes inside the bulbs vary with an abundance of colors and hues ranging from white, yellow, blue, green, and more. 3500 Lumens make the HID depending on the legality of headlight color and brightness in your state, consider researching regulations before purchasing HID lights for your car.

HID headlight bulbs are the brightest bulbs for your car and are preferred by drivers who have projector headlights but also work great inside reflector headlights. Though HID’s are on the popular side of the headlight spectrum, drivers should know that upon starting the car, HID bulbs take a short amount of time to warm up and may appear dim in the first 15 seconds of cranking over the ignition.

Which headlight bulbs are right for me?

All driving styles and vehicles differ and if you’re looking to enhance the appearance of an older model sports car, pickup truck, or SUV, choosing the right bulbs can transform an ordinary appearance into an expressive new look that can make a vehicle look five years newer.

If you wish to maintain the stock look for your vehicle, Halogen white or yellow bulbs are a great fit. However, if you wish to upgrade to a more sporty look with advanced brightness, HID and LED bulbs are a sure way to take your car’s style and visibility to the next level.

Learn more about the headlight bulbs that fit your vehicle’s year, make, and model here and enhance your car’s style and visibility with a pair of new bulbs that give your vehicle’s front end a facelift that takes your road image to an all-new high.

Patrick Kirk
I am a full-time copywriter from Naples, FL and living in Austin, TX. I have written for the automotive industry for three years, and enjoy other hobbies such as camping and mountain biking. I received my Bachelors from Florida Gulf Coast University, and served in the U.S Coast Guard.

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    7 Comments

    1. Once you go HID/LED you dont go back its a world of a difference.

    2. Hid conversion kits require more set up then a led upgrade. For easy installation, Led is the way to go!

    3. LEDs are definitely the way to go if considering an upgrade. The conversion can be so much smoother. If looking at different option when purchasing a new vehicle, HIDs are a very good option.

    4. LED conversion is SUPER easy with Diode Dynamics,
      Check them out
      https://www.headlightsdepot.com/catalogsearch/result/?q=Diode+Dynamics

    5. Whichever you choose, make sure it’s a high-quality brand like PERDE or Diode Dynamics. The good feeling you get of saving a few dollars will fade quickly when you’re stuck on a dark road. I prefer LED, so long as you have the room to install the larger bulb. Regardless of the technology you choose, upgrading stock halogen bulbs is a no brainer.

    6. LED lights make a world of difference. I dont think I will ever go back.

    7. I like that LED is more easier and with Diode Dynamics being a great USA company owned and made you cant go wrong they stand behind their products! https://www.headlightsdepot.com/catalogsearch/result/?q=Diode+Dynamics
      Also LED is just a newer way to shine out there cant go wrong!

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