From Halogen to LED Headlights: The DIY Upgrade for Better Automotive Lighting
Whether it is for purely aesthetic reasons or a road safety measure, upgrading your car headlights from stock halogen to powerful LED bulbs is a good decision. Gone are the days when you had to leave your car at the repair shop to install LEDs. Today, the job is simple, and you can accomplish it over the weekend without any stress.
Halogen to LED Headlights: DIY-ing your Way Successfully
If you want to fit LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs directly into the housing of stock halogen bulbs, you can do it on your own without any help from a mechanic. A few simple DIY steps will make the installation easy. However, before you take the leap, here are a few tips to make your job quick and effortless.
1. Finding the Right LED Headlight Conversion Kit
If your car does not have LED headlights, you can upgrade the outdated halogen bulbs on your own with the help of aftermarket LED headlight conversion kits. Before making the purchase, it is essential to find out how to choose the correct LED headlight conversion kit. You must know the kind of bulbs that your car needs, otherwise you may end up choosing the wrong type.
If you are confused about what bulbs to buy, there is an easy way out in the form of an online year make model finder. The online filter will help you choose LED bulbs compatible with your car's make and model. Also, check whether the headlights of your vehicle are dual beam or single beam. Additionally, check the vehicle's owner manual or contact your dealer. You can even chat with the online automotive lighting seller before placing your order.
2. Buying a Premium-Quality LED Conversion Kit
When buying the LED headlight conversion kit, you may come across several cheaper options, especially on Amazon and eBay. However, if you feel that the price is too good to be true, it probably is. Inexpensive LED headlight conversion kits may seem brighter in the beginning, but they lose their brightness quickly. They often overclock the CANBUS of your vehicle and soon fade away thus, leaving you with dodgy automotive lighting on the road.
A decent LED headlight conversion kit will cost you around $100. When buying an LED headlight kit, check the brand of the LED chips and the durability of the product in addition to lumens and color temperature. Ensure that the LED chips are built especially for automotive applications, or else you will fall victim to paid and fraudulent reviews online.
The LED bulbs will not require a ballast because, unlike HIDs, there is no need to draw a large amount of power in the beginning. LED headlight bulbs are smaller in size and more compact than halogen bulbs. They often do not need a ballast. You can directly plug and play the LED bulbs without any cutting and splicing. Instead, you will need an LED driver that ensures a steady power supply to bulbs. So, once you receive the kit, check whether you have two LED bulbs, LED drivers, and wiring along with the instruction manual. Nowadays, you find all-in-one LED headlight conversion kits that contain the LED driver, CANBUS, and cooling system in one design. If your car has smaller headlight housing, choose the all-in-one compact size for upgrading the headlights.
3. Replacing the Old Halogen Bulbs with Superior LEDs
Now that you know all about purchasing the LED headlight bulbs, all that is left is to install the superior LEDs and enjoy better illumination on the road. Here are the easy steps to change the headlight bulbs of your vehicle.
- The very first step is to take photos of the illumination pattern of your existing halogen headlights. You can park the car in front of a garage door or a straight wall. Then, switch on the headlights to understand more about the beam pattern. Click several pictures so that you can compare the LEDs later.
- Open the car's hood and find the original halogen lamp location. Do not forget to turn the engine off and put on the parking brake to avoid any accident. Once you locate the halogen bulbs, unplug them gently. You will have to remove the dust cover of the headlight housing and access the metal spring clip to remove the halogen bulbs. Keep the bulbs safe because you might want them later.
- While holding original halogen bulbs or the replacement LEDs, make sure you do not touch the glass part of the design. It can damage the bulbs quickly.
- Now comes the installation part. You can directly install modern plug-and-play LED bulbs into the headlight housing and clip the metal spring back in its place. Connect the LED drivers and wiring to the car’s lighting system.
- Power up the LED bulbs to check the headlight alignment and cut-off position. It will ensure your safety on the road as well as the convenience of others. Click pictures to compare the beam pattern with the old halogen bulbs. Adjust the LED bulbs and make sure you get the beam pattern to your liking with the help of headlight adjustment screws.
- Place the LED drivers and wiring into housing securely. Many car owners use zip ties to secure the LED drivers. Make sure that you do not expose them to unnecessary heat and moisture.
- Once you have achieved the desired result, install the dust cover and get ready for a test drive. Do not forget to show off your new car headlights in style.
When installed accurately, LED headlights can ensure minimal consumption of power and better illumination without any lag. LED bulbs have the potential to enhance the look of your car and make it more stylish than before! So, why wait? Upgrade the headlights of your car to LED bulbs today.
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