A Beginner's Guide to Buying Headlights
Clear visibility is key to driving safety. Your headlights deliver improved vision in lowlight and poor weather conditions. The right bulbs will give you the right light for your environment and will add to the style of your car. Let's take a look at the variety of lights so you can find the perfect bulbs for your vehicle.
When to Replace Headlights
- Dim bulb - When you notice a headlight beginning to dim, replace it soon. Letting it burn out during your commute not only hinders your vision in the dark but can also attract a citation. If you do change one headlight, consider replacing the other to prevent uneven illumination.
- Overly bright bulb - Everyone wants headlights that burn brightly. If you have bulbs that just aren't cutting it, consider upgrading to LED or halogen models, which burn brighter than standard headlights.
- Cracked headlight - If one of your car's headlights cracks, it's important that a new one is installed immediately. A cracked lens can increase the chance of the headlight bulb burning out. It can also cause moisture to seep into the headlight and short the bulb.
- Upgrade from incandescent - With incandescent headlights becoming obsolete, you might want to upgrade to a new model ahead of time. Incandescent models are starting to be phased out because they use more energy than other headlights.
- Dark commute - If you commute in an area that is dimly lit, new headlights can greatly improve your vision. Also, consider an upgrade if you live in an area that experiences dense fog or mist. While fog lights or daytime running lights can aid you in these conditions, bright headlights will expand visibility.
Halogen headlights are filled with halogen gas to prolong the bulb filament's life, and they're built with a thin tungsten filament that emits a bright white light.
- Lifespan - These models typically last between 450 to 1,000 hours.
- Standard factory options - Most auto manufacturers use halogens as the standard headlights out of the factory. Upgrading to different headlights might require more extensive work.
- Affordable bulbs - High-end models can be a bit pricey if you're looking to upgrade. Halogen bulbs still burn brightly and last much longer than an incandescent light.
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Xenon headlights are filled with xenon gas and electrodes to produce a blue-colored light. These options burn brightly and are aesthetically pleasing.
Lifespan - These options typically last between 2,000 and 3,000 hours.
Perfect for rural or lowly lit areas - The bright light from xenon models significantly improves vision. These types of headlights are very beneficial if you drive in wooded areas or on roads that lack lighting.
Stylish options - The blue-tinted light that xenon headlights emit gives a stylish appearance to any flashy sports car or elegant luxury vehicle.
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LED headlights create light by moving electricity through semi-conductors and are very effective solutions.
- Lifespan - These models typically lasts up to 30,000 hours.
- Energy-efficient options - Unlike other types of headlights, LED models use less power from your vehicle and use energy efficiently.
- Offer a long-term solution - LED headlights emit a clean light that can last up to 30,000 hours. This is a perfect choice for someone that isn't interested in frequently replacing their headlights.
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