HID's - What are they and how do I choose.
HID's? Kelvins? Colour temperatures? What are they and how the heck do I choose which one is best?
These are just a few of the common questions regarding HID replacement headlights. Lucky for you we have the answers and here to help with any quaestion you might have.
Click HERE for our Full Article along with our handy Colour Temp Chart.
What is H.I.D?
Xenon H.I.D. (High Intensity Discharge) lighting is the latest and greatest of superior lighting technology. Instead of having a filament inside the bulb, it is replaced with xenon gas. When the xenon gas ignites, it produces a vivid and bright light that is up to three times more powerful than that of your average halogen bulb.
This technology also allows for the bulb to ignite at a higher colour temperature: which gives it the white / blue colouration.
Xenon gas-filled bulbs and other halogen 'xenon' bulbs are simply a standard halogen bulb that is either coated with a blue film on the outside and/or filled with a gas to imitate the look of a true xenon HID bulb. These bulbs produces much less light than xenon HID bulbs and often less than that of a standard halogen bulb. Most ‘Xenon’ gas-filled bulbs also sometimes suffer from a short life-span. Much like your average headlight bulb of course.
What is colour temperature (K)?
The Kelvin (K) rating simply measures the colour output of the light on the Kelvin colour temperature scale. It does not measure the amount of light output of the bulbs: intensity of the bulb is measured by luminosity. This is one of the biggest misconceptions regarding lighting.
The lower the colour temperature, the more red/yellow the colouration. The higher the colour temperature, the more white/blue/purple the colouration.
How long will xenon HID bulbs last?
HID XENON lamps are usually designed to run from 2000 to 2500 hours. High quality HID lamp kits and bulbs are made of the finest materials available and are used on many OEM applications. The longer the warrantee, the better quality you can expect.
Why can I not just replace my headlight with a higher wattage bulb to get more output?
Well, you can. But keep in mind that with a higher wattage halogen bulb comes high temperatures that your headlight housing and wire connections were not designed to support. While wire upgrades and some aftermarket headlight housing are available, many of them cannot cannot be trusted with such an increase in temp safely. Also too, the cost involved to safely operate a high wattage halogen bulb with upgrades wiring and/or housings may quickly become much more than a far superior HID replacement install.
Can I just replace the halogen bulbs with XENON HID bulbs without having to buy an HID Conversion Kit?
Halogen bulbs work with the standard 12-Volt electricity that our cars and motorcycles provide. Xenon HID bulbs require a much higher voltage to ignite (over 20,000 volts) and 85 Volts to keep running. For this reason, a ballast (power transformer) is required to transform and regulate the voltage so the xenon HID bulb will ignite and operate. Without the ballast, the xenon HID bulb will not operate). In most cases, HID kits can actually plug directly into your existing sockets to make install a breeze.
Can I install the Xenon HID Conversion kit myself?
The installation is extremely simple. All the parts needed are included with the kit and a simple step-by-step instruction is included. It is considered “plug-and-play”. This kit typically takes an average person just 30 minutes to install. However, if you are apprehensive about the installation, any automotive mechanic or your local audio & visual installer should be able to install it for you without any trouble.
Once the Xenon HID conversion kit is installed, can I go back to the original halogen bulbs?
YES! The kit can be very easily removed (in the reverse order that it was installed) and the original halogen bulbs can be put back. You can then install the Xenon HID conversion kit on another vehicle that uses the same bulb size.
Will I be able to keep my high beams?
This varies from vehicle to vehicle. If your vehicle uses separate bulbs for low beam and high beam (most new vehicles), the conversion kit will not affect the function of the high beam bulbs as it simply replaces the low beam bulbs.
In vehicles where a single bulb is used for both high beam and low beam (like H4, 9004 and 9007) you can either use our standard Xenon HID Conversion Kit and lose your high beams, or you can use a Bi-Xenon HID Conversion Kit to keep your high beams. Keep in mind that a standard xenon HID bulbs put out 3X as much light as a halogen bulb, so the high beam is often not necessary: however, this choice is entirely up to you.
Please note that Xenon HID bulbs take about one minute to fully ignite. Using xenon HID bulbs will likely cause you to lose the ability to 'flash' another car.
Will DRL (daytime running lights) or Auto-Switch-On effect the HID kit?
For vehicles with DRL (daytime running lights) that use the same bulb for both DRL and low beam, you will need to deactivate your DRL. Most DRL operate on reduced wattage or fluctuating current levels. This will cause the HID ballast and bulb to flicker and burn out prematurely.
Are Xenon HID light systems street legal?
Every country and jurisdiction has its own rules and regulations governing the use of automotive lighting. Xenon HID lighting systems that are supplied with the vehicles from the factory are DOT approved. The same OEM manufacturers that supply all the major car companies of the world also make most kits. NO AFTERMARKET XENON HID lighting system from any source is DOT approved if installed unprofessionally. These kits are DOT approved as long as they are professionally installed. As a result, we officially endorse the kit for exhibition and off-road use and will always sell the kit to be used for these purposes. We are not responsible for customers who violate the terms of sale in which they will assume all responsibilities for any unauthorized or unintended use other than exhibition or off-road use.