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Obviously, you need bright headlights so that you can see the road at night. So then why are you driving around with those dull stock bulbs? They’re a bit dim and have a dingy yellow hue to them. Sure, they work well enough, but they could be better. Wouldn’t you rather have crisp white headlights that illuminate the entire road ahead of you?
Replacing and upgrading your headlights does more than making driving safer. They improve the look of your vehicle as well as its performance. LED bulbs have a lower power pull on your vehicle’s battery and system. They also give your vehicle a fresh and new feel with bright white light. This guide will help you choose the best quality LED bulbs for your ride.
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Benefits of LED Headlights
- 80 percent more efficient. The best LED headlights for trucks and cars will protect and preserve your vehicle’s battery, which will make it last longer.
- Affordable. While LED bulbs may cost more for the initial purchase, they last significantly longer than halogens. You’ll ultimately save money in the long run. LED bulbs can last years, while you would replace halogens several times over in that time period.
- Durability. When it comes to durability, LEDs outperform halogens. Halogens should never be touched because the salt and oil from your hands can damage them. LED bulbs can be thrown around and keep on working.
- Visibility. LED bulbs are bright and can illuminate the road ahead of you better. This gives you increased visibility. They also have anti-glare properties that help oncoming drivers see better.
Types of LED Headlights
A dual-beam bulb has both the high and low beam functions built into a single bulb unit. When the headlight is on, the single bulb is always on. It can be switched from low to high and back again. If you only have one headlight, then you have a dual-beam. Typically, bulbs that are labeled as H4, H13, 9004, and 9007 are dual-beam bulbs.
Some vehicle headlights have two separate spaces for the headlight bulbs. There’s one bulb for the high beam and another for the low beam. When the headlights are on, one of the bulbs is on, and the other is off. When you switch from low to high, the low beam bulb turns off, and the high beam bulb turns on. A typical example of this would be an H1 for the high beam and an H7 bulb for the low beam.
Auxbeam was founded in 2008 and is based in Fontana, Calif. It produces numerous products for drivers, including LED lights, racks, and carriers. One popular product is the Auxbeam LED Headlights Extremely Bright F-16 Series 9006 HB4 HB4U LED Headlight Bulbs.
GENSSI products are designed in the United States, and its LED lighting is used by many BAJA 500/1000 racing teams. The lights are tested to withstand high-pressure washing, extreme vibrations, and are made to last as long as 50,000 hours. One top product is the GENSSI Elite LED Headlight Bulbs Kit 6000K Super White Conversion.
Lasfit Automotive LED Lighting
Lasfit was established in 2015 in Ontario, Calif. The company focuses solely on automotive LED lighting. Though relatively new, it aims to produce high-quality products at competitive prices. One popular product is the LASFIT 9005 HB3 LED Headlight Bulbs 6000K Cool White LED Conversion Kit 60w 7600lm COB LED Chips.
LED Headlight Pricing
- Under $50: LED lights in this price range may be bright or super bright but may have lower lumens and shorter lifespans than pricier brands. Still, there are many good-quality LED headlights available for under $50.
- $50 to $100: These LED headlights typically have higher lumens and are capable of lighting up the road far and wide, but they will cost a little more.
- $100 and up: These LED headlights are generally better in quality than less-expensive versions and can have up to 10,000 lumens and really long lifespans, but you will pay the most for these features.
A light’s intensity and strength is measured in lumens. Lights with 6,000-6,400 lumens (small intensity) illuminate the road over 500 meters in a straight line and are adequate for most drivers. Lights with 8,000 lumens (medium intensity) illuminate the road 600-700 meters in a straight line. If used with bright and super bright colors, they create an intense light beam. Lights with 10,000 lumens (high intensity) brighten the road almost as much as daylight.
The brightness level of the light isn’t the only factor. The other is the color of the light. Most people avoid yellowish light because it doesn’t illuminate the road well. At the other end of the spectrum are blue- and purple-hued lights. In many states, these are illegal. This doesn’t mean you can’t buy them; just don’t be surprised if you get pulled over. In the middle of the spectrum is bright white light. This is the best because it’s legal and effectively illuminates the road.
Most LED headlights last between 30,000 and 50,000 hours compared to halogen lights, which typically last 6,000 hours. Top-rated LED headlights that last 30,000 hours work for about three years, due to a cooling fan or chip in the assembly. Lights that promise 50,000 working hours typically last at least six years, but they may be harder to find.
- Compatibility. It’s crucial that you check your owner’s manual to determine which LED bulb plug types and models will fit correctly in your vehicle. You may need to replace the entire headlight or use a conversion kit to make the change. Don’t purchase a product until you are certain it will be compatible with your car or truck.
- Cooling Method. LED headlights get hot and need a cooling method to keep them from overheating. There are two types of cooling systems, heatsink and fan. Heat sink cooling systems use a passive mechanism for heat dissipation. The fan cooling system is an active cooling system that uses an external fan to reduce heat. The fan system is more effective at immediately removing heat but uses more power and is more expensive.
- Warranty. Most LED headlight brands have two-year warranties for their customers. This is reasonable considering that the best LED headlight bulbs last at least three years. Some manufacturers will even offer three-year warranties, demonstrating that they stand behind their products. Also, check to see if the company offers technical support.
Best LED Headlights Reviews & Recommendations 2021
This pair of LED bulbs fit H13 sockets, and they stand out because each bulb has four high-power CSP chips. They are also four times brighter than halogen bulbs. When illuminated, they produce a cool white light at 6500K. The bulbs are constructed of aircraft-grade aluminum with a highly conductive nano thermal layer and a .8 millimeter double-sided laminated copper substrate. They also have a fan built into the housing, which keeps the bulbs cool while turned on. They have an operating lifespan of more than 30,000 hours.
The downside of these LED bulbs is that the low beam flickers. This can force you to always drive with the high beams on. They also can be loose in the socket. While they have a universal fit, the seal won’t fit exactly, causing the light to wiggle.
See the entire road ahead of you with this pair of 6000K xenon white LED bulbs. They are compatible with 9006, HB4, HB4U, and 9006XS. They have a useful lifespan of up to 30,000 hours. You can use them as low beams or fog lights, and they’ll be 300 percent brighter than your halogen bulbs. They have no polarity and can be installed in as little as 10 minutes. The bulbs have built-in 3030 high-quality CSP chips for improving light efficiency. To keep the bulbs cool, they use heat dissipation with cold-pressed aviation-grade aluminum as the heat sink and a built-in two-ball fan.
Unfortunately, these lights can flicker during use. They can also negatively affect how your radio works. You may notice a significant drop in the station signal.
These lights are intended to replace the best 9006 LED bulbs for your low beams, high beams, and fog lights. The 55-watt bulbs are rain-resistant, emit 6,000K bright white light, and are 260 percent brighter than halogen bulbs. They feature adjustable-beam technology and can be used in both projectors and reflector beams. The lights use fans for cooling and last over 50,000 hours. The company offers a two-year warranty and lifetime support.
The lights are very sturdy, solid, and easy to install. Also, the ballasts are substantial. The ability to adjust the light output pattern is one of their greatest features, and the front and side outputs are wide and focused. They have a bright, crisp white hue with no hint of blue and don’t blind oncoming drivers. The LED stem length is the same length as the OEM bulb, which helps improve the beam output.
One downside is that you can hear a hum from the lights’ cooling fans, but you don’t hear it when you’re driving. The fan is also bulky and large, which may cause issues during installation. They can also develop an intermittent flicker a short time after installation.
This set of four LED bulbs is the perfect kit for vehicles with separate high and low beams. There’s one pair of 9005 and one pair of H11 bulbs. The H11 bulbs produce 10,000 lumens, 5,000 per bulb, and 6000K. What makes these bulbs stand out is the high-powered 6063 aviation aluminum heat sink, and CREE LED chips. This gives the bulbs a life span of 30,000 hours. Another nice quality of these bulbs is that they have a waterproof housing that’s rated level IP65, making them more durable.
One drawback of these lights is that there’s a large disparity between the high and low beams. This can lead to the low beams being too low and the high beams being too bright. They are also not legal for use on the road in many states.
Outfit your vehicle with LED bulbs with this four pack. They come outfitted with advanced LED chips that produce high and low beam output. They have H11 compatibility and produce 6500K of bright white light. You’ll find them easy to install thanks to their non-polarity design and compact size. The no-glare design delivers bright light for you without blinding other oncoming drivers. Inside of each bulb is a high-tech turbofan that achieves 10,0000 RPMs to deliver 50 percent better cooling power than bulbs that don’t have a fan. An aluminum alloy housing helps to dissipate heat quickly.
Unfortunately, these bulbs aren’t as easy to install as others. They have a locking ring that needs adjusting to ensure the bulb socket sits securely in your vehicle’s plug.
These H7 LED bulbs and conversion kit have CSP LED chips and can produce 6000K and 10,000 lumens of bright white light. It’s a clear central light that won’t blind oncoming traffic. They are ideal for the replacement of low beam or fog lights. To keep the bulbs cool, they have high-speed silent cooling fans. These bulbs stand out because they come with a removable aluminum adapter to give them broader compatibility. They also have anti-radio interference and a built-in EMC system. The compact size of the bulb makes it easier to install them.
The downside of these bulbs is that they may not fit your vehicle even with the universal adapter. The beam pattern may not work with your vehicle’s headlight position, giving you dark spots.
This set of two LED headlight bulbs use superior CSP chips to make them 300 percent brighter. They are classified as H11 and deliver a clear white 6500K. They are plug-and-play with non-polarity for a quick 10-minute installation. What’s nice about these bulbs is that they have a perfect vertical alignment to mimic the original halogen beam pattern. You’ll appreciate the long useful life of up to 50,000 hours. It comes with a built-in driver and heat sink to dissipate the heat and keep your LEDs cool.
Unfortunately, you may not notice the 300 percent bright light claim, depending on how bright your stock headlights are. They also aren’t compatible with all vehicles that have H11 headlights, so confirm compatibility before buying.
These LED headlight/fog bulbs are compatible with 95 percent of vehicles. They feature a quiet, fanless design and an aviation aluminum body, which dissipates heat faster and provides a 30,000-hour lifespan. They are 40 watts, have a 6500K color temperature, and are 4500 lumens each. The bulbs are easy to fit into the housing and don’t blind or cause any glare to other drivers. The bulbs have an A side and a B side, so you can ensure that you have the correct sides pointing in the right direction. You can also adjust the beam pattern by rotating them because they have several clickable positions.
Unfortunately, while they’re compatible with most vehicles, they don’t fit all makes and models. The light pattern may be a little irregular, and they may cause radio feedback.
These bulbs are 300 percent brighter than halogens. They are 60 watts and 5,000 lumens each with a 6500K cool white temperature. They have a super-focused beam pattern, an aviation aluminum body, a cooling fan, and a lifespan of 50,000 hours. They feature plug-and-play installation and fit into the housing and factory sockets without requiring modification. They look amazing, are super bright, and are compatible with 98 percent of vehicle computer systems. They are also compact, easy to install, and inexpensive. The bulb is also adjustable, so you get the correct beam angle within your distinct housing.
Unfortunately, some modern Jeep, Dodge, Volvo, and European vehicles may require additional decoders during installation. It can also be a hassle to get the LED at the correct 9 o’clock and 3 o’clock angles. They may also flicker.
These 40-watt bulbs feature plug-and-play installation. They have 3000 lumens per bulb and a 6000K Xenon white color temperature. They are 150 percent brighter than stock halogen bulbs, so you can see much further down the road. The light is also focused, so it doesn’t blind other drivers. The bulbs have a fanless design, so they’re silent, unlike some competitor brands. The advanced heat sink increases performance, and they last more than 50,000 hours. They’re easy to install, and the light is even and consistent. Overall, the bulbs are bright and make driving at night easy.
However, there have been some complaints that the bulbs aren’t as bright as they could be. One or both may burn out after a short period of time, and they don’t fit on all vehicles.
- Some LED bulbs are not a direct replacement for halogens. You may need a heatsink or cooling fan to address the increased heat generated by the bulb. Otherwise, you risk it melting in the bulb socket.
- Align your headlights after you’ve installed the new bulbs. They should point down towards the road and slightly to the right. This avoids blinding oncoming drivers.
- Check your local laws to ensure you comply with light temperature and brightness. Some states have limits on what you can legally install in your vehicle.
Q: Are LED headlights legal?
Every state has its own laws about LED headlights, but they are usually legal if they project a light beam that illuminates the road ahead between 50 and 100 meters. This allows you to see the street and surrounding areas without blinding or distracting other drivers with your lights.
Q: LED headlights are ideal for what types of driving conditions?
Compared to halogen bulbs, LED headlights are better-equipped to handle extreme weather conditions, i.e., very hot or very cold temperatures. They’re also ideal in rainy and foggy weather as well as at night in dark areas.
Q: What’s the difference between LED headlights and HID headlights?
Both types are superior to halogen lights. HID lights tend to be brighter, but they can reflect light back at you in foggy conditions and blind other drivers. In addition, HID lights experience a delay before they turn on. The best LED headlights typically do not affect your vision and are less likely to blind other motorists as long as they are correctly aligned.
Q: How do I fix a flickering LED headlight?
Some LED headlights are not compatible with vehicles such as BMW, Audi, and Mercedes. To fix a flickering headlight, use an anti-flicker or warning canceler, a.k.a. a capacitor, between the plug of the LED bulb and the socket. Many of the best aftermarket LED headlights to include these capacitors in their products.
Q: How much power do LED headlights consume?
LED lights are relatively new technology, and they are incredibly energy efficient. Most models use between 30 and 60 watts.
Q: Do LED lenses turn yellow over time?
No. Most high-quality LED lenses are designed with a polycarbonate material that features an ultraviolet additive, which is not affected by sunlight. They also generally have a hard coat for extra protection.
Our top pick for the best LED headlights is the Beamtech LED Bulbs Conversion Kit because of their aircraft-grade aluminum and copper construction and four chip system.
For a less expensive option, Marsauto LED Headlight Bulbs won’t let you down with their 30,000-hour lifespan and bright 6000K light production.