Xenon car lights, also known as high-intensity discharge headlamps (HIDs), have become increasingly popular since their launch. Some drivers install them for their aesthetic qualities because they offer a modern blue light. However, they also have important safety features. Studies show that a large proportion of car accidents occur in poorly lit conditions, with reduced visibility as a contributing factor. Understanding the advantages of xenon car bulbs helps buyers to choose the right products for their vehicles.
Xenon's Bright Light
Xenon headlamp bulbs are filled with xenon gas. They produce an arc of high voltage current to produce light of 3,000 lumens. This means that the bulbs emit brighter light than even halogen headlight bulbs, even for a low beam setting. More light at night makes it easier for the driver to see the road ahead, but the brightness may cause problems for motorists travelling in the opposite direction. This has prompted the use of adaptive directionality to guide the light down and away from oncoming drivers.
Xenon's Improved Safety
Other safety benefits of xenon bulbs include the auto-levelling system, which lowers the level of the light beam when the car travels over bumps or carries a heavy load in the boot. In addition, many newer headlight systems offer adaptive pivoting of the headlight beams as the car drives around corners. These two features direct the light in order to reduce glare for the drivers of oncoming cars.
Xenon's Longer Life
Xenon headlights cost more than halogen bulbs, but they last two to three times longer. Halogen lights bulbs route electricity through a thin wire filament housed in a halogen-filled chamber to produce light in a similar way to incandescent bulbs, and the filaments break over time. However, xenon bulbs have no filaments, so they conduct electricity directly through electrodes inside a chamber filled with xenon gas. The absence of a fragile filament means that xenon light bulbs last longer. A good quality halogen bulb lasts about 2,000 hours, whereas a xenon bulb lasts an average of 5,000 hours, which is 2.5 times longer.