Until the early 1990s, many cars had the same basic sealed-beam incandescent-bulb headlights that lit the road in front of the Ford Model T in 1908. These headlights were modest, and they served the automobile industry admirably for more than half a century. Fifteen years ago, the invention of “high-intensity discharge” (HID) vehicle headlights revolutionized lighting technology. HID headlights have been used since the early 1990s, and the 1991 BMW 7-Series was the first production automobile to use them. Despite automakers’ shifts to LED and laser technology, HID headlights are still popular and widely used on today’s vehicles.
High-intensity discharge (HID) means that the bulbs are brighter than regular headlights. Two tungsten electrodes are housed in a glass housing of a HID headlight.
In the glass housing, xenon gas and metal salts, commonly sodium and mercury. An arc is formed when electricity is supplied to the tungsten electrodes. The xenon gas aids in the initial start-up of the arc. When the electrical arc warms up, the metal salts evaporate, producing a dazzling visible light much brighter than any halogen or sealed beam light, hence the name “high-intensity discharge.” HID lights are also called xenon lights since the bulb is filled with xenon gas.
Standard HID, and Bi-Xenon HID headlights are the two types of HID headlights available. Standard HID lights are used in cars where one bulb is used for low beams and another for high beams. This is known as a single-beam headlight system, and in this case, the low beam is powered by an HID bulb, while a halogen bulb powers the high beam.
Bi-Xenon headlights are employed in dual-beam systems, where a single bulb provides the low and high beams. This sort of technology often uses a shield or reflector to switch from low to high beams, and it involves the use of moving parts inside the headlight assembly. The extra complexity raises the price of these units, and the system also needs regular maintenance to guarantee that everything functions properly. It’s worth noting that Bi-Xenon headlights aren’t compatible with single-beam headlights.
Benefits of HID headlight
We have received questions like “LED Vs HID Headlight which is better?” Well, it’s vital we point out that HID headlights have several advantages over a sealed beam or halogen headlights;
- For starters, they provide increased visibility and range. Better light means more visibility and range, which means your night travel will be safer. It’s always beneficial to see signs, road dangers, people, and animals early.
- Another benefit is that its energy consumption is low. HID bulbs are way more efficient than halogen or sealed beam bulbs, requiring less power from your car’s electrical system and making your car more efficient.
- HID headlight bulbs endure between 5,000 and 8,000 hours after the above-mentioned. This is a considerable benefit over halogen bulbs, typically lasting roughly 1,000 hours. Because HID bulbs do not contain filaments, they are less fragile than halogen lights in terms of durability. If you frequently drive on bad roads, this is a benefit.
- Most halogen bulbs emit a warm, yellowish light, whereas HID bulbs emit a brighter, whiter light. This is owing to the bulb’s increased brightness and temperature. Furthermore, HID bulbs offer a wider range of light color options due to their brightness. Colors range from dazzling white to deep blue. This allows you to customize your car’s performance, visibility, and “appearance” to fit your driving style and habits.
- HID lights are extremely simple to set up. Most HID bulb kits are simple to install and require only following simple instructions. They usually connect directly to existing factory installed connectors and do not require any major car wiring adjustments.
- Finally, installing HID headlights on your car will increase its worth in some scenarios. When it comes to selling your vehicle, many potential buyers like the look of HID headlights, but only if the headlight lenses are clear and free from oxidation. To achieve that, make use of a Headlight restoration kit.