An alternative replacement headlight bulb is claimed to be 10% brighter, costs 20% more, and has a projected life half that of the original equipment equivalent. Which bulb would you buy to replace a burned out bulb?
I ditched the factory halogens for led in my truck. The housings had been polished to their extent and would not come clear anymore. So I installed the leds and new housings along with led replacement fog lights made by Rigid. Just those alone made a huge difference. They are now brighter than my wife’s Navigator factory HID lights. Add to those the 20” led lightbar in the grille and 10” between the fog lights in the bumper, and while driving alone at night for work, they make a huge difference.
Having sold auto parts once...an observation. Nearly all parts have a price range from cheap to premium. Marketers have at least 3 levels of quality, usually more. You generally pay a 20-50% premium to get that last 10% of performance. Bulbs are a good example. Also works for batteries, tires, brakes, filters, etc. my two cents: Never buy the cheapest unless you are selling the vehicle...it’s garbage. The ‘mid tier’ is the best value....but it’s also the highest profit since it has the highest volume. My recommendation for those that pay for labor....go with the longest warranty/life. In my case...I’m not price sensitive and do my own work....so I buy the most expensive parts for my vehicles....including bulbs. I mitigate the expense by buying online. Headlight bulbs on Amazon cost less than half of what they run in a brick and mortar.
Locally available in a particular brand (Sylvania) there were four bulb options increasing in price. I ruled out the most expensive (Xenon) because I don’t like them. Left with three halogens, the choice was still not clear-cut, as the cheaper OEM equivalent has the longest projected life, by far, but being headlights, more light is kind of the whole point. I went with the middle option, because the more expensive of the three touted whiter light, which I don’t like to see coming at me. It’s such a miserable job to change them on that car, involving at least partially removing the inner fender liner and working by feel, that I'm wondering if anything is worth trading away longevity. If I find myself doing that job again within five years or so, the answer will be no.
Interesting. Given the effort I would have gone w longest life. Bulbs on my Tacoma & Miata are 3 minute jobs. I have the Sylvania ZXE Xenon bulbs for headlights. Plus I’ve upgraded my turn signals & reverse lights to led bulbs for brighter & longer life. On the Tacoma....I upgraded the entire headlight assembly to aftermarket with LED running lights and projector headlights. Nice looking improvement without blinding people.
Brighter is already becoming a problem with opposing traffic being blinded.
Technology has solved that. It’s only a matter of time until adaptive headlights like BMW's are standard equipment on cheap cars too:
That’s pretty cool. I have auto hi/lo bean led headlights with directional view in turns. The lights move with the steering. Works well because I drive mostly country roads.
How many people are going to crash before that time is up, though?
I saw my son-in-law get briefly blinded and feel almost out of control because of a set of lights like that, recently. That ain’t good.
They’ll invent auto dimming glasses.
Well, hurry up with that, guys, whoever you are!
Oh my Bob, people need to stop buying those damn super-bright bulbs. They are horribly blinding....
Well my standard bulb already has people flashing their lights at me thinking my high beams are on. I think the new bulb would be worse in every way.
Next it will be green lasers!