Q: What Are Xenon HID Headlight Bulbs?

asked by on November 18, 2015

What are Xenon HID headlight bulbs?

Xenon headlights are used in lights called HID (High Intensity Discharge lights). These lights do not use a traditional filament to provide the light but instead use xenon gas to produce the light. They provide more light output for better night vision but are not compatible with the original light sockets on your vehicle. You will need to purchase a kit to install or have them installed. They are factory installed on some vehicles, mostly high end cars, and are available as an add on or upgrade from aftermarket suppliers.

These light kits require a ballast assembly to run the lights which needs to be properly wired into the light system. This is a job that can be done by yourself but is best done by a professional due to the wiring of the HID’s, as it is not compatible with your original harness. They are considerably more expensive to buy and install than other forms of lighting available as well.

While these lights are growing in popularity you should consider what your overall outcome expectations are before replacing or installing these lights. You should also consider the quality of the headlight kit when purchasing these lights.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

What others are asking

Door ajar' light keeps dome light continually on

Hello. Normally, the cause of this problem is that the door lock switch is sticking or has failed completely. The door lock switch is located in the door jam, usually near the door latch. When the door lock switch gets...

Van experiencing electrical system problems

The turn signal lighting is all supplied power from the same turn signal relay. Since LED lighting consumes less power it should be heavy duty enough to use but you may want to check with LED lighting manufacturer through their...

No low beam lights, 2000 Chevrolet Metro

Hello. There could be a problem with the combination switch not turning on the low beams headlight. The combination switch is what turns on the headlights and turns on the high beams. When this switch fails, headlight operation can be...

Multiple car problems

Hello. It sounds like you have a bit of a complex issue going on. The Aveo has a problem with the ignition switch that can cause strange issues like the ones you have described. That would be where I would...

How do I flash the high beams?

You can flash the high beams to get someone’s attention, or to alert other drivers. To do so pull the turn signal lever towards you, and then release it. The high beams will flash on and then off, and the...

When I turn my headlights on my windshield wipers come on and they don't stop. Also the right side headlight get very dim.

Check the ballast resistor for the headlights and see if it has a burned wire or loose connection. If not, then the ballast resistor needs replaced for the headlights. A ballast resistor will balance the power to the headlights ensuring...

Car died, but restarts immediately

Your 2006 BMW 545i may be losing main power supply to the main fuse power module from the battery. If you lose the connection, it would also cause the loss of radio and clock memory. Check the battery connections and...

Whining noise, now car is dead

From the way you describe your concern, it leads me to believe that you do have something going on with the belt drive or possibly the charging system. For your safety, the belt drive, which is driven by the crankshaft...

How Does a Car's Light Bulb Wiring Get Damaged?

There are many factors to consider when dealing with damaged light bulb wiring both physical and heat related causes can be a concern. The location where the bulb is installed or the actual routing of the wiring to the bulb...

Related articles

How to Buy Good Quality Long Range Car Lights
Your Your car is equipped with two types of headlight functionality – low beams, which are used for general driving, particularly in areas with streetlights and oncoming traffic, and high beams, which provide long range illumination. Buying quality long range...
Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Courtesy Light Bulb
If your car's courtesy light, also known as the dome light, is dim, flickering, or not working at all, you may need to replace its bulb.
How to Buy Good Quality Headlights
You You may not even think about your headlights until you’re having problems with them, but head lights are an important part of your vehicle’s safety systems. They allow other cars and trucks to see you during the day, and...