Three of the most popular choices for car headlights on the market are Halogen, Xenon and LED lights. However, many people still don’t know what the difference is between them. To help, below is an outline of the differences between these car headlights and who they may benefit.
Currently, the most common option for car headlights on the market is Halogen Lights. One of the main benefits of halogen bulbs is longevity. In most cases, a halogen bulb will last for 1,000 hours of use. These lights are also inexpensive to replace. The biggest downside to halogen headlights is their lack of energy efficiency due to the amount of heat they waste. If you’re big on being “green,” halogen bulbs may not be your first choice.
Xenon headlights are also sometimes referred to as high intensity discharge headlights or HID headlights for short. These kinds of bulbs produce light by allowing electricity to pass through xenon gas inside the bulb at a very high pressure.
One benefit that Xenon bulbs have over halogen is the fact they are far more energy efficient; less heat is required to produce light inside a Xenon bulb. Unfortunately, this also produces a side effect; the light isn’t as strong as halogen overall. In fact, a halogen bulb can produce light that is over four times stronger in intensity. HID headlights also tend to be much higher in price.
Lastly, there are LED headlights. LED stands for Light Emitting Diode. LED lights use sets of diodes in a pin like configuration that produce light when electrons inside these diodes move and create photons.
The largest benefit of LED headlights is they do not require a lot of energy to operate. They require less power than a halogen bulb but more than a xenon bulb. However, LED headlights do produce some heat at the bottom of the emitter that may pose a risk for cables or components nearby. For this reason, they are rarely implemented as factory headlights by automakers. They are also quite expensive.
Halogen, Xenon and LED car headlights all have their own possible benefits and downsides. Decide what is important for you whether it is longevity, brightness, efficiency or cost and factor that into your decision when choosing between them. For any questions regarding car headlight installation or repair, please give us a call or swing by any of our two locations in San Diego, California.