Your car bulbs are not so bright anymore and you want to find the brightest LED bulbs that will provide the brightest coolest white light and will serve you for a very long time?
In this article, we will tell you what are the most popular Brightest LED Headlight Bulbs on the market and what you should pay attention to when choosing LED bulbs for your car.
Best LED Headlight Bulbs
LED Bulbs have become very popular among car owners in recent years. Affordable prices LED Bulbs allow you to buy them for any vehicle. All LED car bulbs have two supply voltages, 12 volts for cars and 24 volts for trucks. Thanks to the internal driver LED Bulb is universal and can operate at 12 and 24 volts.
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LED Car Lighting
It is based on the use of LEDs – semiconductor devices capable of creating optical radiation (in fact, light) by transmitting electrical current. The light emitted is in a fairly narrow range of the spectrum. Simply put, one LED can be red and another can be blue. These days, most LEDs used in household and industrial lighting are white. They are divided into two kinds:
- Three-component (RGG) or multi-crystal LEDs. They include red, blue, and green light emitters. Combined in one body emitters at the same time give a white light, although some “skew” in the direction of, for example, blue can be observed;
- Luminophore LEDs. Combine a violet or ultraviolet LED and a blue LED in the same body. Also, emitters have a layer of so-called phosphor, which gives the light some yellowing (depending on the color of the phosphor). The final palette tends to be pure white.
Both colored and white LEDs can boast a high light output – in this, they can compare and sometimes surpass metal halide and sodium discharge lamps. In contrast to these lamps, LEDs have the highest mechanical strength. Due to the absence of a filament, such a light source can withstand both shocks and strong vibrations. The basis of the LED – a crystal – has a long service life. The average lifespan is 30,000 hours, but potentially it can even reach 100,000 hours or more. However, the crystal “degrades”, as a result of which the brightness of the glow decreases, and the LED itself fails after a long time.
Some of the most important features of LEDs, which determined their success in the automotive industry, are the following: the lack of inertia (turn on the maximum brightness), different angles of radiation, low cost (so far it is relatively), high security. Although in some respects LEDs may be inferior to more familiar lighting fixtures, they have a whole set of advantages.
Briefly about the implementation of LED headlights
For a long time, it was thought that LEDs can not be used in the headlight of the car. The fact is that individual LEDs do not shine brightly enough. Modern LED lamps have whole blocks (modules), which are a lot of LEDs – this is something like a honeycomb filled with light emitters. Such blocks (modules) can act as a self-sufficient source of light. On average, one LED headlamp includes 2-3 dozen individual diodes, divided into 2-3 blocks (depending on the model). As already mentioned, diodes emit light in a fairly narrow range. This can be used.
Here’s how in what modes the LED headlight works:
- Daytime running light. In the work includes 18 white diodes, and they do not shine at full brightness. The brightness is adjusted by changing the duty cycle of the PWM-modulated signal;
- Middle beam. There are three light modules in operation: a pair of internal and one external. The number of LEDs in the internal module is different from the number in the external one, and in addition, the brightness can be adjusted;
- High beam. It switches on 3 modules + one more additional module. Also opening the reflector;
- Turn signal light. Implemented by the inclusion of 11 LED yellow lights at the bottom of the headlight;
- Static adaptive lighting, otherwise known as a sidelight. It works the same way as the dipped beam, the only difference being that another LED module on the inside of the headlight is activated. In this mode, the headlight illuminates the road in front of the car in a small cone;
- Highway lighting. The mode is similar to high beam, but the only difference is that the inner modules are slightly raised by the corrector motor;
- All-weather lighting. The mode is similar to static adaptive lighting, but with the difference that some of the LEDs are dimmed to 50% of maximum brightness;
- Tourist mode. A pair of internal LED modules are activated;
- Flexible mode coming home / leaving home. This mode helps the driver: it lights the area of the car at the moment of leaving the cabin or, conversely, unlocks the central lock in order to get into the cabin. Requires signals from the light and rain sensors.
And these are just options for one of the cars. Car companies are experimenting with LED headlights and creating new options.
The key points here are two.
- The first: the LED headlight is equipped with a reflector and electric motors, which raise the light sources and provide adaptability of the headlight.
- The second: the brightness of each LED module is quickly adjustable.
Brightest LED bulbs for vehicles
LED headlights are composed of the following elements: diode blocks (low, high beam), a set of diode turn signals and running lights, fans and cooling ducts, electronic control unit. Separately worth disassembling the control unit LEDs. The fact is that the lighting device is not powered directly from the battery, but through the so-called current limiter, which is the basis of the control unit. It includes resistors and diodes – they limit the current to a certain value. By the way, the operation of the current-limiter circuit will determine how bright the LED lights will shine.
Contrary to popular belief, any LEDs are heated during operation. For example, all LED lights are equipped with a so-called heat sink. The reason is simple: despite the high conversion efficiency of electrical energy into light, some of the energy is still converted into heat. Modern LED lamps to have an efficiency of 30-40%, which means that most of the energy of diodes is still spent on producing heat energy. In the case of LED lamps, the excess heat is forcibly removed by a fan and through special cooling channels.
LED Bulb Choice
It should be noted at once that the optics of each car has unique design features: the type of socket, headlights, size. If you want to pick up a LED lamp to replace, say, a halogen, then first you need to know the type of socket. It is listed in the “manual” for your car. You can also use the lamp selection service, which is available from many manufacturers of automobile optics. When this question is solved, you can proceed to the direct selection of lamps. Here are their main characteristics:
- Maximum power, W (Eng: W);
- Maximum current, A;
- Maximum luminous flux, Lm;
- Color temperature, K.
The vast majority of automotive bulbs are powered by 9-32 volts. It should be noted right away that it does not make sense to chase bulbs with high-power diodes. The fact is that the higher the quality of the diode, the higher its efficiency. This means that even at medium power they will shine quite brightly. As practice has shown, the optimum power of the lensed optics is 40-50 W. In some cases even a 70 W lamp makes sense, but the simplest optics without a lens perfectly “feels” with a 25-watt LED module. Important point: go to major video hosting sites and try to find videos of test lamps. Depending on the position of the diodes, lamps can give different light. You can find some high-powered models on the market that give a diffused light.
Another important point, which is not directly mentioned by all manufacturers of LED optics: the lamp does not open fully without quality cooling. In the previous section, we mentioned the cooling system of LED lamps. It can be active, i.e. using fans, and passive. Passive cooling depends solely on external conditions – natural air blowing, temperature, and humidity. This cooling allows effective operation of lamps up to 25 W. If you take a lamp with higher wattage, it must have active cooling. Otherwise, an optic with, for example, 50 W will work as an ordinary 25-watt bulb.
The maximum luminous flux of the LED lamp depends on its power. Along with other characteristics, some manufacturers give such an indicator as a return to power. The cheapest LEDs have a capacity of up to 190, while the expensive 170-245. If you want to install quality LED optics on your car, then pay attention to the maximum luminous flux (usually less than 6000-6500 lm) and the power. It makes sense to choose a lamp with a ratio of output to power up to 190 – it will give good light at low power consumption, and will last quite a long time. The higher the ratio, the lower the service life of the device.
Another important parameter of optics is the color temperature, which can also be called the shade of the light beam. Here everything is individual. If you like optics with a yellowish or bluish glow, then you need a lamp with a temperature of 3800-4200 K and 5500-6000 K, respectively. White is about 4800-5100 K. The color temperature of the whole luminous flux can be different in different modes.
The lamp may have additional functions, and in fact – modes of operation.
The cheaper the lamp, the fewer functions it has. The classic option: LED lamp low beam + high beam (combined). However, the cheaper the lamp with this duo of modes, the worse it works in each of them. Also, consider that more sophisticated optics can have specific body geometry. If you want to get an advanced model, pay attention to the layout. It should preferably be vertical with separated chips.
LED Bulbs Review
Best LED Bulb Manufacturers
Most of the LED bulbs on the market of automobile optics do not stand in comparison with the usual xenon and halogen analogs. Such optics can badly work on low or high beams, poorly illuminate the curb or give a blurred beam with areas of reduced light.
The most popular manufacturers of LED Bulbs:
- Philips (Netherlands)
- Osram (Germany)
- SYLVANIA (USA)
- Hikari (China)
- Fahren (China)
- Narva (Germany)
- Sho-Me (South Korea)
Worthy options can be found in the catalogs of companies: MTF Light, Carcam. But we still recommend splurging and getting the lamps from German and Dutch manufacturers – the quality of their performance is always very high.
Cheap analogs not only blind oncoming cars but also have a short service life. As a rule, they simply overheat and stop working after a few months of operation.
The price tag of good LED lamps starts at 55$, if you have found a product with a detailed description, pay attention to the manufacturer of the diodes themselves. Ideally, it should be a Cree company.
LED Bulbs Advantages
There are several reasons why LED bulbs are the best choice for installation in a car: LEDs can produce more light per watt of energy than any other household bulb. Their efficiency saves electricity and can be more than 10 times higher than conventional bulbs.
LED elements operate without heating, which distinguishes them from incandescent bulbs, which got their name precisely because of this feature. In some cars with classic devices melt the plastic that is near the light source. LED-lamps have a pure white light, which makes them more comfortable – such lighting does not distort the perception picture.
This also affects people outside the car, as LED headlights increase the visibility of the car for other drivers. In addition, for decorative purposes, you can buy LEDs of any color. LED sources have a longer life than incandescent bulbs, allowing for less frequent replacements. LEDs last about 50 times longer than incandescent bulbs and on average 10 times longer than fluorescent bulbs. They also have high bulb durability, protection from external influences including vibration and moisture. LED lights have a faster on-time, which can play a crucial role on the road, allowing to save the driver and passengers from an accident.
LED lights allow you to change the angle of radiation thanks to optical elements (lenses). LED lights are completely safe for the environment and the human body – they do not have a harmful effect. They do not poison the nature during recycling and do not contain mercury. LEDs are much smaller than other lamps.
Thus, LED sources to prove to be a much better choice than conventional incandescent or fluorescent bulbs. They are not in danger of filament rupture because they use gas-filled electrodes for lighting. They can be used in any type of lighting, whether it’s for headlights or interior lamps.
LED Bulbs Disadvantages
In addition to the many pluses, LED bulbs have a number of disadvantages that do not allow them to fully replace incandescent and halogen elements: High price, which is explained by the fact that the production requires a lot of expensive elements. In addition, the creation of such lamps requires sophisticated technological equipment. It is believed that LED sources do not pay for themselves either in terms of service life or quality – they are quite expensive.
If one or another element breaks, the LED source can not be repaired – this distinguishes LED from other lamps. Thus, if the LED breaks down, it is necessary to change the entire element, which requires additional costs. In Russia, most LED elements are produced contrary to laws and standards. This leads to the fact that in cars arises fires and short circuits, as well as overloading of the power grid.
In addition, another violation of the sales law is the occasional lack of labeling and characteristics on the packaging. This makes it very difficult to select the element. Most LED cells, whose role is to produce white light, have a dip in the spectrum at 480 nm. This causes the eye to fail to respond to the wavelength in the normal way, narrowing the pupil. Thus, an excessive amount of blue light enters the eye, which can disorient in the short term and damage the retina in the long term. Experiments on mice have confirmed this assumption. Anyway, some companies have already invented safe bulbs. LED elements are characterized by burnout, which leads to a decrease in brightness.
Types of bulb bases
- There is a wide variety of bases, which are used to install LED-lighting devices. But not all of them are universal. To understand the field of application of LED auto lamps, should be sure to understand the types of sockets and understand the situations in which each of them is used.
- W3W. Quite common in relation to the car cap. It is used for installing LED bulbs in the illumination of the instrument panel and for illumination of the control buttons. Available in a wide range of colors and in high demand. Lamps with this socket are notable for their compact size. Most often this base comes with SMD LEDs.
- T10 or W5W. This socket is used for installation in parking lights, turn signal indicators, interior lights, luggage compartment lights, license plate lights, etc. The lamps have two terminals for connection and are made based on different LEDs, including mixed LEDs. The T10 socket also includes pistons lamps. These LEDs are widely used in providing interior illumination of vehicles. Each piston type bulb has a connector to which any pista is connected.
- 1156 и 1157. A couple of common bases for LED bulbs. Most often used when installing LEDs in parking lights, turn signals and brake lights. Under the 1156 socket automobile single-pin lamps P21W are used. Devices may differ in different positions of the lugs for fixing. The 1157 socket is suitable for P21 and 5W bulbs. They are already two-pin, all their series are analogues of single-pin devices. They are used in the rear brake lights. SMD diodes and super bright devices are used as a light source.
- H1, H3, H4, HB3, HB4, H7, H11 etc. These bases are actively used in equipping LED headlight bulbs. Each cap has its own distinctive features and may vary depending on a particular car. Therefore, when replacing such devices motorist need to necessarily know what the actual socket for his vehicle.
Types of lamps in the car
Modern LED lamps are also commonly divided into single-beam and double-beam. The first category includes the type cap H1, H3, H7, H9, H11, etc. Devices with two beams or two-beam have bases H4, H13 and others. To help the motorist to understand the choice and suitable LEDs for your car, it is recommended to look at the technical documentation, to study the manual. If necessary, you can always contact the specialists of car service centers or consult with a representative of an official dealer.
LED headlight bulbs are the future of automotive optics. Within a few years, the vast majority of vehicles from major concerns will be equipped with LED lights near and far. In the future, ordinary motorists want to get closer and install such lamps along with regular halogen and xenon. Unfortunately, many LED lamps either do not meet the standards or are inferior to analogs in quality of illumination. The closest to the ideal optics came from well-known manufacturers, the list of which can be seen above, but it is not cheap.
Do you want to put fancy LED optics just to improve the look of the car, but do not want to spend a lot of money? Categorically do not advise to do so – it is not safe and will incur the wrath of other drivers on the road.