Xenon Light FAQ's
- 1. What are HID's?
- 2. Why install HID's?
- 3. Why was Xenon Light developed?
- 4. What are the advantages of Xenon Light?
- 5. What is meant by color temperature?
- 6. Why does a Xenon bulb produce blue light?
- 7. Doesn't the use of Xenon lamps cause more irritation amongst other drivers?
- 8. What are some good quality brands to look for?
- 9. Are these HID systems easy to install?
- 10. Are these Xenon HID systems road legal?
- 11. Is this conversion kit reversible to my original factory halogen headlight?
1. What are HID's?
The best way to describe an HID headlight is to compare it to a more conventional halogen headlight. A halogen bulb consists of a wire filament surrounded by an inert gas. When electrical current is applied to the filament, it glows brightly to produce light. Contrast that with an HID bulb which has no filament, but instead consists of xenon gas, mercury, and metal halide salts. The xenon gas is ignited by an arc of high-voltage current and glows brightly. Also, the high voltage is supplied by a ballast, so in these respects it is like a fluorescent light. HID's are original equipment generally found on luxury and exotic cars but are progressively finding their way into the mainstream on all cars we will be buying in future years.
Why install HID's?
If chosen properly, the improved light output of HID's will give you a better field of vision and thus improved safety. Plus, let's admit it, they look cool.
Why was Xenon Light developed?
The car over the last decade has been made safer and more comfortable with the introduction of such technologies as ABS, Airbags and Air-conditioning. However 60% of all accidents take place in night driving. Therefore vehicle lighting plays a very big role in traffic safety. It is a fact that a 60 year old requires 10-11 times the amount of light to perform the same functions as a 20 years old. The overall increase in the average age of the population more light is required to drive safely.
What are the advantages of Xenon Light?
The xenon lamp produces 2 to 3 times as much light as an conventional halogen lamp whilst only consuming half of the power. Therefore the driver of the vehicle can see more clearly and the car is more safer and economical to run. The light produced by the Xenon bulb is the same as daylight. Research has shown that this encourages better driver concentration and obviously better safety. The life expectancy of the xenon lamp is that of the life of the car and only needs replacing in rare exceptional cases.
What is meant by color temperature?
The Kelvin (K) is the unit of color temperature. 4100K is the brightest, most natural white light similar to that of daytime sunlight, and therefore the HID color temperature used most in the OEM automotive industry. When you look at the light coming directly out of an HID headlight, it possesses a bit of a blue or purple hue which most people recognize as the expensive, elegant look characteristic of HID's. For this reason, some HID kit manufacturers produce 5400K, 6500K, 8000K, etc. bulbs that give an even more distinct blue hue but at the expense of overall light output. For comparison, most halogen headlights have a color temperature around 3200K which gives them a "dingy" yellowish appearance compared to HID's.
The most popular selling colour temperature we do is 6000k this gives an excellent looking white colour with a slight purple hue. This would be as fitted at factory on a BMW, AUDI or MERCEDES vehicle for example.
Why does a Xenon bulb produce blue light?
The light produced by a xenon HID bulb is not in fact BLUE but WHITE falling well within the International specification for white light. The light only appears blue compared to the warmer yellowier light produced by inefficient halogen lamps. It clearly appears white when compared to daylight. However with the introduction of certain crystals it is possible to create a stronger blue tint which gives a more distinct look to your headlights. If you want the stronger blue tint then please select the 8000K – 12000k systems will produce a more blue to purple light respectively.
Doesn't the use of Xenon lamps cause more irritation amongst other drivers?
The International regulations on light distribution and intensity on the road are very strict. Xenon light falls well within these standards. Technically speaking , xenon lighting is less irritating than halogen lamps. This is because the light darkness transition border are much more clearly seperated. Less light is reflected into the eyes of oncoming drivers on properly set height units. The increased light output is used to give more lush light distribution and to improve the illumination of the side verges.
What are some good quality brands to look for?
Generally speaking, Philips or Osram (division of Sylvania) kits are recommended because they are the brands used by the major automotive OEM's. (But be aware many are fakes). Our kits are made at the same facility as phillips kits so we can count on quality components because dependability is critical to auto manufacturers. Other brands may use bulbs or ballasts of inferior manufacture that are prone to early failure. Perhaps even more sinister, some kits tout their use of Philips or Osram ballasts while they covertly use cheap bulbs of unknown origin that burn out quickly. So it is a good idea to check the brands you buy. They likely won't be branded by Philips or Osram directly, rather they are usually rebranded by another company. If the seller doesn't specify who makes their components, it is a gamble. A low price is very tempting (believe me, I'm the same way), so my best advice is to solicit opinions and do your research before buying.
Are these HID systems easy to install?
Yes. Our HID systems are as far as we are aware to be the easiest systems to install. This is because they incorporate a fully plug n play wiring system with no soldering or re-wiring required. There is no wire cutting involved when fitting these and all connectors are colour coded and fitted with fool proof connectors. This ensures that they can only be connected the correct way. Full installation instructions are included. And the kits can be fitted in around 45 minutes usually. If in any doubt however we do suggest you get an auto electrician to install them.
Are these Xenon HID systems road legal?
According to EU legislation HID systems standard factory fitted from the factory require a self levelling system and a lens washer to be fitted. However this is not specified for aftermarket kits. Our kits have passed all safety and emmissions tests and produce the correct light pattern. We know they will pass an MOT (original bulbs can be reinstalled in minutes if required without uninstalling the HID system). We are not aware of any legality issues over the use of aftermarket HID kits when installed correctly and when the colour tempature is 6000k to 8000k but it should be worth noting that car headlights have to produce a white light so the 10000k and 12000k kits may be a bit blue / purple for legal road use.
All fitting and responsibility for the safe & legal operating of these lighting systems is left with the installer / owner of the vehicle not ourselves.
Is this conversion kit reversible to my original factory halogen headlight?
It is 100% reversible to your original factory halogen headlight, but we're sure you won't ever want to do that once you have started using these!