A Complete Guide to Car Headlights

Types of car headlights

If you are indeed of automotive lighting, you are in the right place. This guide has the information you need to see the road ahead.Car headlights need no introduction to us. We all rely on them to see the way through rain, fog, darkness and other low visibility conditions.Dim car lights impair your driving and make driving dangerous. Do not put yourself, family or even friends at danger, protect yourself with the right car lighting.

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What are the different types of car headlights

Different types of car headlights

Good car headlights are the difference between seeing well and not seeing well while driving.They are the difference between knowing what is in the darkness and preventing danger. Sadly, there is no clear clarity on the different types of headlights on the market, and the advantages over one another. So this post will help you get this information.

Standard headlights

They feature a forward facing bulb in a reflective box or case. They have been in the industry for over 100 years ago.The bulbs wore hot and do not last long. They also offer muted light which in some cases is not useful. Thanks to technology halogen headlights were made using gas instead of filament replacing standard headlights.The halogen provided a much more uniform forward-facing light. Halogen standard is still in use at present but extinct standard headlights.

Projector Beam Headlights

The projection beam headlights work similarly to standard headlights, the only difference is projector beam headlights feature a special rear-facing bulb. The bulb cast a brighter and more focused lit spot compared to standard headlights. The headlights are standard on many 2018 Kia models.

Halo Headlights

These lights are generally popular for their stylish and sporty appearance. The headlights surround a projector beam with a halo of light to make a vehicle headlights appear like eyes.

HID Headlights

Also known as Xenon headlights. High-Intensity discharge is very popular in the market as they produce very clear visibility.Xenon is one of the gases the bulb that allows HID headlights to glow.

LED Headlights

They are the most popular car headlights at the present. LED headlights feature a more concentrated and uniform appearance than other types of the headlight. The headlights last longer and are used for both adding style and functionality to a car.

Laser Headlights

Laser headlights are the new kids in the block. The headlights are used instead of electricity to excite a gas that produces photons. They are more versatile and offer different shape and designs than other headlights.

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Which is better HID or LED driving lights?

HID vs LED–Are LED headlights really better than HID?

Headlights car bulbs are an essential part of car equipment. Over time the bulbs have developed into the halogen, high-intensity discharge and led headlights.But one may wonder, why to upgrade HID headlights into LED ones.Below is a comparison of HID vs LED which will help you understand them better.

LED-These lights are made from numerous light-emitting diodes and have become the most popular bulbs today thanks to advance in technology and unique performance compared to the older halogen bulbs. They are generally semiconductors that have no wear and tear parts, which should last in all lifetime of a car. The benefits of using a LED bulb include;

  • They are increasingly seen in daytime, the bright light they produce is closer to daylight .thus giving less glare
  • They require less electricity compared to halogen bulbs thus reducing the amount of energy consumed by a car
  • With the advance in technology, there are some upper-end LED bulb models
  • They look spectacular thus upgrading your car.

However, LED headlights are expensive and there may be issues with lenses frosting during winter as they produce much heat thus reducing light output.HID – These high-intensity discharge bulbs have a high-voltage current rather than a metal filament to produce light. They have become quite popular in the automotive industry both as a factory fitted option or aftermarket upgrade.They are cheap and most users claim they have a longer lifespan than halogen bulbs and can last for about ten years without requiring replacement.

LED vs HID Headlights
  • Led headlights bulbs to light up faster than HID bulbs-immediately you switch led bulb on it emits the needed strong light, unlike HID incandescent bulbs which may take a few seconds before the bulb gives it full luminescence.
  • Both bulbs do not burn out easily but HID burn out easily compared to LED ones
  • LED headlights to have waterproof designs which HID lacks. Therefore, LED is ideal for sailing and camping trips as there is no need to worry about the water.
  • Some LED headlights are made with withstand shock, so when they do not easily break on being dropped. This feature is lacking in HID bulbs.
  • Unlike HID bulbs most LED headlight bulbs are compact bulbs and give off bright lights.

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How to choose the headlight bulbs?

HID vs LED, which headlight would you go for? Of late LED headlights have become a great addition to vehicles. It would not be common for vehicle producers not to go for LED headlights when almost everyone sees them as a luxury benefit. To begin with, LED headlights are very attractive, long lasting and reliable. Not to forget that their car energy consumption is 65-75 percent less compared to the HID lights. All these factors have contributed to LED headlights being the most choice of many customers.

How to spot different types of car headlights?

<p “”=””>Let’s have a look at how to identify different car headlights as they blind us in our rear-view mirrors

  • Tungsten halogen-This headlight gives off a light with a warm yellow hue. It is made using tungsten filaments contained in an inertia gas with small amounts of halogen such as bromine. Halogen used prevents tungsten filament from blackening the glass of the head-map.
  • HID(xenon)– The Discharge bulbs can be identified with the cool blue tinge color they produce. HID bulbs vaporize metallic salts within an arc chamber containing xenon gas and create a high-intensity electrical arc. Thus the name xenon bulbs. The light from the arc is reflected to provide forward illumination for the vehicle which is a more efficient tungsten bulb. The HID bulbs remain common in the automotive industry despite complaints from motorists that they glare.
  • Laser– The laser headlamps are made safe by being filtered through fluorescent phosphor material, which changes color from blue to white. They also eliminate any harmful effects. Laser headlights are more advanced compared to LED bulbs. BMW is developing technology that can allow them to mount lasers to the front of their upcoming i8 Hybrid.

Photo on bestheadlightbulbs.com

How to clean car headlights?

You will require a few supplies and following the instructions below you will be happy with the results.Requirements:

  • Dish detergent
  • Car washcloth
  • Microfiber detail rags
  • Painter’s tape
  • Rubber spatula
  • Razor
  • Foam sanding block or thick household sponge
  • Five 8-inch strips of about 500-grit dry sandpaper
  • Five 1000- and 2000-grit wet sandpaper
  • Gallon pitcher
  • Spray bottle
  • Headlight lens or plastic polish
  • Headlight lens
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Headline lens sealer
  1. Start by washing the lens and surrounding area completely using dish detergent. Then rinse and let the lens to dry completely. Do one headlight at a time.
  2.  Apply painter’s tape to the car body around the headlight. Press the tape down using a rubber spatula and work it into the crevices around the light. Then use a razor to trim away excess tape where the rubber seal meets the lens.
  3. Wrap sandpaper (500- grit) round a foam sanding block. The foam helps prevent deep gouges being left in the lens by distributing pressure on the sandpaper.
  4. Start sanding the lens in a black and forth motion. After some time like 10 seconds or so, switch the direction of sanding. This will avoid putting circular swirls in the plastic, which will show in the finished product.
  5.  Keep on sanding until the surface is uniformly frosty and completely opaque. Then keep sanding until it feels like silky smooth as sanded pinewood.
  6. Using a microfiber wipe the headlight down. When you are completely sure it is clean, rinse the headlight with clean water.
  7. Fill the gallon pitcher with water. Then add dish detergent and drop in a few pieces of 1000 and 2000 grit sandpaper to soak.
  8. Fill soapy water in a spray bottle. Mist your headlight and wrap the foam block 1000-grit sandpaper and then sand the headlight similar to what you did with the 500-grit. Spray the lens every time you change sanding directions (hold the spray with your other hand).
  9. Sand until there is no rough spot-the paper will slide smoothly over the headlight lens. Use compressed air to rinse and dry the lens.Check for any irregularities and if any then re-wet the lens and keep sanding with a fresh piece of wet sandpaper.
  10.  Wash, rinse then repeat, this time use a 2000-grit paper. By this time the lens should be evenly clear.
  11.  Run a thick line of polish along the top of the headlight. If you are using a paste type plastic polish, apply about an ounce on your rug and smear it all over the lens.
  12. Smear the polish all over the lens until it is evenly distributed. Add more polish on your rug and polish the lens using the same method you used while sanding. Keep doing this until the surface feels uniform and smooth. It might take longer than you expected.
  13. Use detergent water to wash the headlights. Rinse and let it dry. Using alcohol and a clean lint-free towel wipe the lens then spray with lens sealer. Read instructions on sealer packaging to see how to wipe.
  14. Repeat the procedure for all the headlights. Your lens will not only be clear but smooth and should glitter like a jewel.


  • Avoid using toothpaste or baking soda-which is mostly recommended on various online sites. The amount of grit in the baking soda is insufficient to really remove oxidation. You could also accidentally sandblast your headlight with a paste far too coarse for headlights.
  • You can simplify the process of cleaning your car headlights by using a commercially available polishing kit, which you can buy in most of the auto parts store.

Other ways of restoring headlights include:

  • Use baking soda to clear up foggy headlights
  • Buy a spray cleaner you can use it to get rid of bugs and have a cleaner headlight in the process
  • Use toothpaste to restore foggy headlights
  • Restoring headlights with new UV coating
  • Buy headlight restoring kit

Photo on bestheadlightbulbs.com

What is the brightest headlight bulb?

6 brightest bulb 2018

Nothing gives a driver comfort and relaxation than owning the brightest headlights-you know you are safe when driving in darkest roads and places with low visibility. That is why this post is here to give you a guide to the brightest headlights out there.

Brightest LED headlights
  • SNGL Super Bright LED headlight bulbs with a light output of 12,400 lumens
  • Hikari LED headlight bulbs with a light output of 9,600 lumens.
Brightest HID Headlights
  • Kensun HID Headlights
  • Innovited Xenon HID Conversion Kit
Brightest Halogen Headlights
  • Philips X-tremeVision Halogen Headlight Bulbs with a light output of +100%
  • PIAA Night Tech Halogen Headlight Bulbs with a light output of +90%
SNGL Super Bright LED headlight

The SNGL headlights are the brightest headlights in the market. With perfectly clear 6000K bright white light, the bulbs give a perfect vision both vertically and horizontally.The best part is you can adjust the cone of light to your exact specifications.They can last you for a long time and have a cooling system which maintains temperatures in the LED.They come with two years warranty to ensure quality.

Hikari LED headlight

They are the second brightest bulb today in the market and they do this without even drawing as much power from your vehicle.They are great for use in normal high modes and fog lighting situations. The best part is HIKARI takes their customer service very seriously. But the bulbs are great you may not need the customer service.

Kensun HID Headlights

These are the brightest HID lights in the market at present. They have high customer service and are simple and easy to install.The Kensun headlight comes with all the accessories needed.The bulb also comes with different colors-pink green, blues and white and the list is not limited. However, for clear view 6000K bright white is highly preferred.

Innovited Xenon HID Conversion Kit

They are the second brightest HID bulbs. Like Kensum they have a big range of colors. The kit itself includes everything you need to install the bulbs. They also have a high warranty.

Philips X-tremeVision Halogen Headlight Bulbs

If you are looking for a good old-fashioned halogen, Philips X-treme Vision bulbs got you. The bulbs have awesome visibility and are the brightest halogen bulbs. With about 100% more light out, Philips bulb, are awesome for driving in any situation.

PIAA Night Tech Halogen Headlight Bulbs

PIAA headlights are plenty bright with white coloring. The bulbs have an added benefit of reaching out way further in front of your vehicle as they have dual band coating.They are also made of heat-resistant quartz so they are long lasting.

So what should you make sure you get out of headlights?

  • 6000K headlights are highly recommended, they have a bright light to help you see in places with low visibility
  • Preference-if you prefer halogen, LED or HID, just ensure you get the very best.