Best Halogen Headlight Bulbs: Drive at Night With More Confidence
Upgrade your old, dim headlight bulbs with whiter and brighter ones.
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If you don't want to spend money on LED lights, replacing your burned-out bulbs with halogen headlight bulbs is a good option. The automotive industry relied on halogen headlights for years because they are easy to produce and replace. Plus, they're brighter and often longer lasting than incandescent bulbs. Good-quality halogen headlight bulbs can illuminate the road properly and won't blind oncoming drivers because they're not as bright as some other types of bulbs. Check out some of the best available in our buying guide.
Philips CrystalVision Ultra Upgrade Bright White Headlight Bulb
These 12-volt, 55-watt bulbs produce a bright white look and resemble HID lights. During the day the bulbs' unique blue cap creates a cool blue effect in the headlamp’s reflector.
- These bulbs emit a bright white light without any harsh glare
- Light beam is focused and bright
- Cooler, whiter color than standard, stock halogen bulbs
- They do not have a blue tint
- They may burn out within a year and lose brightness within a few months
- They don't fit on some makes and models
Hella Standard Halogen H7 Bulbs
These 12-volt, 55-watt bulbs increase visibility and performance when compared to basic bulbs. The company guarantees optimum fit and function. The bulbs also come in yellow and +50.
- These bulbs emit a nice, clean light
- They are significantly cheaper than competitor products
- Easy to install
- Just as bright or brighter than OEM bulbs
- Bulbs don’t have a very long lifespan and may fail within a few months or a year
- They may also be dimmer than some competitor brands
Osram H1 Night Breaker Unlimited Halogen Bulbs
These 3400K, 12-volt, 55-watt bulbs produce a light beam up to 35 more meters longer than standard bulbs. Overall light is boosted by up to 110 percent.
- These bulbs produce a noticeably brighter and whiter light than stock halogen bulbs
- Color temperature is perfect for seeing far into the distance at night
- Bulbs may not last as long as some other H1 bulbs, and they may burn out after a few months
- Bulbs also have a slight yellow tint
Best Halogen Headlight Bulbs Reviews & Recommendations 2021
These 12-volt, 55-watt bulbs produce a bright white look and resemble HID lights. During the day, the bulbs' unique blue cap creates a cool blue effect in the headlamp’s reflector. The CrystalVision bulbs boost the style of your vehicle while offering enhanced performance compared to standard bulbs.
These bulbs are bright and crisp, project far, and help you see a few hundred feet ahead of your vehicle. They emit bright white light without any harsh glare. The light beam is focused and bright; and they have a cooler, whiter color than standard, stock halogen bulbs. They also help you see better in foggy conditions and are easy to install.
There have been some complaints that the lights do not have a blue tint on them. They may burn out within a year and lose brightness within a few months. In addition, the bulbs don't fit on some makes and models.
These 12-volt, 55-watt bulbs are DOT, ECE, and INMETRO certified for the United States, Europe, and Brazil. The package includes two bulbs that increase visibility and performance when compared to basic bulbs, and HELLA guarantees optimum fit and function. The bulbs also come in yellow and +50, which provide up to 50 percent more light output than standard bulbs.
These bulbs work great, are good quality and emit a nice, clean light. The biggest selling point is that they are significantly less expensive than competitor products of the same quality. They are easy to install, are just as bright or brighter than OEM bulbs, and fit perfectly as a replacement. They're also a cost-effective solution if your vehicle's headlights burn out on a regular basis.
There have been some complaints that the bulb doesn't have a very long lifespan and may fail within a few months or a year. Also, they may not be as bright as you expect and may be dimmer than some competitor brands.
These 3400K, 12-volt, 55-watt bulbs increase visibility by producing a light beam up to 35 more meters longer when compared to standard bulbs. Overall light is boosted by up to 110 percent, and the partial cobalt coating of the glass body contributes to up to 20 percent whiter light. In addition, the patented blue ring coating helps to reduce back glare.
These bulbs are great quality and produce a noticeably brighter light than stock halogen bulbs. The color temperature is perfect for seeing far into the distance at night. While they may not appear brighter when you look at them, you can see the difference when you're driving in the dark. They are also whiter than standard headlights with just a hint of yellow.
One problem is these bulbs may not last as long as some other H1 bulbs, and they may burn out after a few months. The OSRAM packaging even notes that the lifespan is shorter than standard bulbs. Also, there have been some complaints about the yellowish tint that the bulbs emit.
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Our pick for the best halogen headlight bulb is the Philips 9006 CrystalVision Ultra Upgrade Bright White Headlight Bulb. The bulbs produce a bright white look similar to HID lights. The light beam is focused and bright; and they have a cooler, whiter color than standard, stock halogen bulbs. They also help you see better in the fog. For a more budget-friendly option, consider the Hella Standard-55W Standard Halogen H7 Bulbs.
Types of Headlight Bulbs
Halogen bulbs have been used in vehicle headlights for many years. This type of bulb contains halogen gas as well as a thin tungsten filament and a glass filament. The gas moves through the tungsten to the filament, producing a chemical reaction when the headlight is turned on. Halogen lights generate a white light with a tint of yellow.
Xenon headlights are also known as high-intensity discharge (HID) headlamps. They hit the market in the early '90s and eventually became the top headlight option for many car manufacturers. A xenon light produces 3,000 lumens compared to a halogen light, which produces just 1,400. Xenon headlights also have a longer lifespan than their halogen counterparts.
LED headlight bulbs were first used on vehicles in the early aughts. They need less power to function than classic halogen lights and are popular on hybrid models such as the Toyota Prius. They emit light similarly to HID and halogen bulbs but can produce a more focused ray of bright light as well as different shapes. You cannot, however, replace Xenon or Halogen bulbs with LED bulbs as it's illegal and dangerous to do so without replacing the entire headlight assembly that's designed for an LED bulb.
Luminance or Brightness
Halogen headlight bulbs that are vivid and bright will enable you to see more of the road's surface area. The brighter or more luminescent they are, the better, so look for something with at least 1,000 lumens. The only caveat with brighter headlights is that they tend to have a shorter lifespan and will need to be replaced more often.
Another one of the most important factors when selecting the best high or best low beam headlight bulb is how long it will last. Look for ones that last longer than a year or two. This will prevent you from having to change the bulb as often and will be less costly in the long run.
- Compatibility. Not all halogen bulbs will fit all vehicles. You need to check your vehicle's make, model, and year to make sure it lines up with a product's part number. This will ensure that the best halogen light bulbs will properly fit in your car, truck, or van's headlight assembly.
- Range. The best halogen headlight bulbs should give you a long field of vision and down road visibility at night. The further you can see on the highway or on a rural road, the safer you will be. Even just a few extra feet of light can make a big difference.
- Color Temperature. The brighter and whiter a bulb is the higher the color temperature is. In the past, halogen bulbs were yellow. These days you can find bright white halogen headlight bulbs for your car. In addition to producing excellent visibility, they also give your vehicle a stylized look. Bulbs with a temperature less than 3000K (Kelvin) will produce yellow light. If it's higher than 3000K, the bulb will be white. Bulbs over 4000K will produce bright white light.
- Ease of Installation. It's usually not too difficult to replace a halogen headlight bulb. Check your vehicle's owners manual as well as the product's instructions to do it properly. Just make sure you have the proper connections. For example, you may require the best H1 headlight bulb or you may need the best H7 halogen bulb.
- Under $10: Some halogen headlight bulbs are very inexpensive. They are good replacements for original equipment bulbs but generally won't increase your headlights' brightness or performance.
- $10-$20: Many high-quality halogen headlight bulbs are available at this price point. They are often brighter than stock bulbs and provide a better range of view at night.
- $20 and up: The more you spend on halogen headlight bulbs, the brighter and whiter they tend to be. Expect to spend $40 or more if you want lights that are extremely white and intense.
- Replacement halogen bulbs are usually available in a twin pack or single pack. Make sure you know the quantity you need when you’re selecting the best headlight bulb brand.
- If you decide to upgrade to a brighter bulb, it's a good idea to replace both bulbs at the same time. The brightest halogen light bulbs can be significantly brighter than standard halogens, and you don't want to produce an uneven light beam.
- When you're looking for replacement halogen headlights, make sure to choose ones that are street legal. Check that they are certified by the Department of Transportation (DOT). If they're not, review your state's regulations to make sure they won't cause you any legal problems.
- Headlight bulbs lose about 20 percent of their lighting capacity after about two or three years. If you want to ensure optimum visibility, consider changing the bulbs before they burn out.
- Be careful not to touch the glass surface of a halogen bulb during installation. Use gloves or a paper towel when handling a bulb to avoid contaminating the surface and to prolong its life.
Q: When do I need to replace my halogen bulbs?
Bulbs get old and deteriorate over time. If the bulb stops working, you need to replace it. A bulb also needs to be swapped out if it no longer shines light very far or is not as bright as it used to be.
Q: How long do halogen headlight bulbs last?
As we mentioned previously, halogen bulbs have a shorter lifespan than some other types of bulbs. Typically, a halogen bulb will last 2,000 hours or two years.
Q: Are halogen headlight bulbs safe?
Halogen light bulbs can get very hot. When the bulbs age, they can produce even more heat and can take a while to cool off. Like any other type of light, the glass can be dangerous if the bulb breaks.
Q: What is the best and brightest halogen headlight bulb?
There are several excellent halogen headlight bulbs available online and in stores. We include many options in this buying guide, so you’re sure to find one that suits your needs.
Q: Can you put LED bulbs in halogen headlights?
No, it's illegal to replace halogens with LED bulbs unless you get sealed complete headlight assemblies, not just the bulb. Just replacing the bulb is illegal. Don't do it.
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