Green bulbs aren’t just about looking cool and protecting the environment. LED bulbs use up to 80% less electricity than regular bulbs. And if these LEDs are in your car, that means your battery lasts nearly twice a long before replacement. And the bulbs last five times longer!
So even if you’re put off by the buying price and technology, purchasing the best LED headlights will seriously cut down your car maintenance costs. But how can you tell which brand or design works best? Let’s look at ten popular models, then we can look at ‘buying tips and tricks’ later.
The Best LED Headlights on the Market of 2020
1. Akarui Cree LED Headlights
- EXTREMELY HIGH LED BRIGHTNESS -- Clear 6000K cool white light 4800 LMs each LED...
- CREE MK-R LED -- Made to last pretty much forever (50.000 hrs).
- HEAT SINK DESIGN -- Cold-Pressed Alumimum body with 15.000 RPM DUAL TurboCool...
Akarui LED headlights come as a pair, and each bulb emits 5,200 lumens. This means your conversion kit gives off a total of 10,400 lumens. The lighting chips aren’t centrally placed. They lie closer to the outer edge of their housing. This makes the light brighter and more directional.
The bulbs have a 2-year warranty, and they’re fully waterproof with an IP rating of 67. Akarui Cree chips produce extremely bright 6,000K beams. They’re plug-and-play lights so as soon as you install them they’re ready to use. They don’t need additional configuration or wiring. The headlights are compatible with any CPU or CanBUS system and have finned cooling fans.
These cold-pressed aluminum heat sink fans move at 15,000 RMP. The turbo coolers produce double the force and ten times the cooling speed of standard LED fans. The housing design provides a far larger surface area in the heat sink, which results in far faster cooling. These lights have zero glare, are more than 260% brighter than regular headlights, and last 50,000 hours.
Despite their hyper cooling turbofans, these 60W Akarui LED headlights are noiseless. They’re easy to install and are waterproof and shockproof, with guaranteed lifetime tech support.
2. Cougar Motor LED Headlights
- HIGH POWER: Top CREE LED chips with 60W per pair. Cool White 6000K. High...
- AIR COOLING: Whole aluminum housing 7,000 RPM Powerful TurboCool fan to ensures...
- EASY INSTALLATION: Can be installed in 20 mins. plug and play. These bulbs are...
While similar in structure to Akarui lights, these Cougar Motor headlights have centrally positioned LED chips. These elongated chips have three square diodes mounted in a trapezoid groove. The shape ensures a sharp, focused, consistent beam with no waves or dark spots. The lights have 360° beams and are rated IP 67, keeping them rain-proof and snow-proof.
The 60W lights give off 10,000 lumens of 6,000K light. The lights use flip chips for enhanced clarity and intensity. Flip-chip technology creates low-heat lights with minimal thermal resistance, so these lights have zero warm-up time. They illuminate instantly and darken just as fast when you turn the lights off. There are no stray rays since these bulbs have 95% efficiency.
Cougar lights have an extra-large heat sink, and since they produce less heat to begin with, they can run on a 10,000 RPM fan. They still maintain their 50,000-hour lifespan though. The lights have no glare and are sealed in aviation-grade aluminum. They’re 200% brighter than halogen headlights. But they’re carefully angled so they won’t blind oncoming drivers.
In terms of tech, Cougar lights are compatible with most CanBUS systems, but you may anti-flicker or headlight decoding technology if you drive a Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge, or European car. That said, these dual-drive dual-turbo LED headlights take less than half an hour to install.
Cougar Motor headlights take their inspiration from cats in the wild. These LEDs have long reach and extended lifespans. Each bulb gives off 30W so a pair produces 60W in total.
3. Beamtech H11 LED Headlights
- H11 led headlight bulb, Newest Korean CSP LED chips (Double-sided) Producing...
- Super long lifespan: > 30,000hrs,50W Per set,the power of each lamp only...
- Lamp low heat: far less than halogen lamp, greatly prolongs the service life of...
Beamtech bulbs are visually distinct from what we’ve looked at so far. At first glance, their profile looks like an extra-large pair of car keys. Beamtech mimics the filament length and bulb position of halogen headlights. But because they’re LEDs, each pair emits 8,000 lumens while only producing 50W. The triple-diode chips are mounted in a double-sided CSP structure.
These plug-and-play LED headlights can be slipped right into their designated socket. The quad-die housing has an unusual bulbous shape tipped with cooling fins. The duralumin heat sink measures 0.9 inches by 2 inches. Beamtech bulbs can last up to 30,000 hours. Duralumin is sometimes referred to as 6063 aviation aluminum and is used in aerospace devices.
These lights have an IP rating of 65, so they can resist angular water jets such as puddle splashes, sleet, and heavy rainfall. Their light temperature is 6,500K and their Korean CSP (Chip Size Package) diodes provide faster lighting and quicker cooling. Beamtech headlights don’t have a built-in fan, which explains their unusual shape. They were 9 ounces.
These Beamtech LED headlights have a unique footprint and bright, consistent lighting. They’re fan-free 25W bulbs with flipped CSP chips and a 30,000-hour lifespan.
4. SNGL LED Headlights
- The Brightest LED Headlight Bulbs available! Pumping out Crystal Clear 6000K...
- [ Few vehicles equipped with a idling stop systems or DRL application,LED Light...
- Online Bulb Replacement Guide may not be 100% accurate; Before ordering--Please...
We’re back to a more standard-looking LED conversion kit, except the aluminum fins are partially sealed. This may seem counter-intuitive, since encasing the heat sink should limit its ability to release heat. Luckily, SNGL offset this design decision with extra cooling features to counteract the effect. Let’s start by looking at the recessed dual diodes on these LEDs.
They’re 6,000K lights that may need anti-flicker settings for Jeeps, Dodges, and RMCs that are prone to inconsistent light beams. Each pair gives off a total of 55W, with 260% more light intensity than halogen. It measures 0.59 inches at the tip, 1.62 inches at the base, and is 3.51 inches deep, so double-check the size before you buy. The lights last 50,000 hours.
SNGL headlights work in both projector and reflector set-ups. Their housing is fully adjustable for directional lighting, a feature that is exclusive to this brand of LED headlights. Being a flip-chip, it needs no warm-up time, going off and on immediately you touch the switch. The light is housed in cold-pressed aluminum that is 40% more conductive than the competition.
To keep temperatures manageable, the bulbs use SICCS (SNGL Intelligent Constant Cooling Systems). This works through the combination of a red copper substrate, a 15,000 RPM cooling fan with double bearings, and an Intelligent Cooling (IC) headlight driver. The thermal copper tip works 15 times faster than standard frames, providing 300% better efficiency.
With SNGL LED headlights, you get a dual ball-bearing fan that cools twice as fast and delivers a reliable airflow of 6CFM. These keep your headlights beams smooth, focused, and instant.
5. DDM Tuning LED Headlights
- The all-new SaberLED 50W Pro Series is the new gold standard in ultra high...
- Each Bulb is 50W, for a rated output of 10000 Lumens per pair.High power HML...
- Innovative design ensures precise visual beam. Maximum anti-glare, and ensure...
Spark plugs have a stereotypical design, and it seems LED headlights do too! But with some innovation and creativity, you can tweak your brand just enough to stand out without befuddling your target market. DDM does this well with an encased heat sink and diagonally slanted fins.
Size-wise, the Saber Pro LED from DDM tuning measures 8.3mm at the tip and 31.5mm at the base. Each pair is 50W, shines with 10,000-lumen intensity, and has a color temperature of 6,000K. The bulbs come with a 2-year warranty and have an extended lifespan.
The lights use HML technology (Hand Magnetic Lights) and their square chip diodes keep beams steady and non-wavy with no breaks in your light rays. And despite their built-in magnet, these headlights won’t disrupt your radio signals, GPS, smartphone, or car WiFi.
These lights operate on a voltage of 10V to 30V and are rated IP67. Each bulb comes with an attached wire lead for plug-and-play installation. You don’t need any additional harnesses or capacitors. These bulbs are especially useful for DRL fittings (Daytime Running Lights).
The headlights have a heat sink that’s smaller than their competitors, but this light is highly conductive and its built-in fan has extra power for efficient cooling despite its size. It works well with most CanBUS systems, but your vendor can tell you whether your car needs an adapter.
DDM Tuning is pretty proud of the Saber Pro offering. It’s compact for easy installation and needs no additional hardware to set it up. And while it has a magnet, it won’t mess your radio.
6. Hikari Ultra LED Headlights
- The Most High-Tech Led Headlight Bulbs Ever! Uniform Beam Pattern, Patented...
- Best led headlight bulbs on the market. Used for dim halogen replacement ,fit...
- Max Light Output: 12000lm per pair.It has almost the same size with halogen...
From its name to its packaging, design, and iconography, Hikari headlights are distinctively Japanese. This squat headlight has three lumiled flip-chip diodes mounted on a recessed matte black base. Nicknamed the Eye of Megatron, these headlights produce 270% more light than their market rivals. The chip design ensures bright uniform, unbroken beams of light.
While the brand is Japanese, it’s popular among large American vehicles and is officially approved by the Texas Transit Authority and the Oregon School Bus Association (OPTA). In some LED bulbs, the light surface is flat or angled. In this one, the surface is gently curved for better control of light and heat. The aviation aluminum heat sink enhances heat dissipation.
And unlike stationary LED headlights, Hikari’s housing is adjustable so you can toggle the angle and beam patterns of your headlights. These beams reach further than the average LED, and while they hit the road with 12,000 lumens, they don’t disrupt oncoming traffic. They’re angled to illuminate your path. They point straight forward and don’t veer into other drivers’ eye-line.
Hikari lights are nearly the same size as halogen bulbs. Their patented design combats astigmatism, and their ultra-thin heat sinks match H8, H9, and H11 fittings.
7. Nineo H11 Cree LED Headlights
- SUPER BRIGHT - Utilizing Customized CREE Chips,each led headlight bulb can light...
- ADJUSTABLE ADAPTER DESIGN - You can make a simple angle adjustments for proper...
- WIDER WIEWING ANGLE - Boldly Utilizing ultra-thin side design ensure 360 Degree...
At first glance, Nineo looks a lot like Hikari. Their shape and color are similar, but they have a lot of differences ‘under the hood’. Both have rounded mounting chips and red rims, but their curvature varies slightly. Like Hikari, Nineo is a 12,000-lumen light. Its color temperature is 6,000K to 6,500K. But its light intensity is a 500% improvement on halogen headlights.
These lights use multi-core chips that provide 50% more brightness than the standard XHP50 chips used in competing brands. Their eutectic tech offers 5090 lux and their beams extend as far as 150 meters. The side fins are ultra-slim at just 3.45 mm a piece. However, this super slimness comes with a caveat. In some cars, you may need to buy an extended dust cover.
This adds depth and clearance for your heat sink in case your bulb is too shallow for your car’s headlight socket. The base of the bulb is 32 mm deep and 40 mm wide, so measure correctly – not just visually. Double-check your car’s manual to confirm whether you need that dust cover.
Meanwhile, the mounting bracket can be adjusted 360° for correct positioning. Ideally, the manufacturer advises that the bulb should be mounted vertically, with the fat side down and the slim side up. Installation sounds complex, but it barely takes 20 minutes. These headlights emit 36W per bulb and are rated IP 65. They rarely experience flickers and are 98% error-free.
The headlight has a muted fan for noise control. This dampened cooling rotor runs at 10,000 RPM and has dual ball bearings. It ensures your Nineo II headlights have a generous lifespan of 55,000 hours. The coverless case helps cooling, so be careful to check for heat loss if you add that dust cover – it may marginally affect your headlight’s ability to release heat.
Nineo II LED headlights are five times brighter than halogen lights and use up a fraction of battery power. They provide consistently luminant beams and are certified by DOT.
8. VoRock8 LED Headlights
- SMALLEST Led kit with the brightest light of its size: 4000lm output each....
- 【POLARITY SENSITIVE】For some vehicles,like many Honda vehicles,their...
- 【Size】9006,HB4,9006XS, aftermarket LED Headlights, perfect replacement for...
Very few people read the manuals that come with their electronics. And because the US is known for highly litigious spaces and generous return policies, you may rush to demand a replacement for your headlight if it doesn’t turn on. Well, if your LED headlight is a VoRock8 and your car is a Honda Civic or Accord, the fix is pretty simple – just flip it 180°!
Why? Because the VoRock8 has specific poles, and these pole positions are reversed in certain car brands. So if you fit your headlight and it won’t go on, try turning it the other way – that should immediately solve your problem. On to other points. The VoRock8 releases 4,000 lumens per bulb, so that’s 8,000 lumens for the pair. Light temperatures are 6,500K.
The bulbs each emit 36W, so 72W for both. The bulbs are rated IP 65 and have lifespans beyond 30,000 hours. The lights use imported COB-styled anti-static chips encased in silica gel. These Bridge Lux chips light up instantly with no lags times, no warm-up, and no delays. To cool the lights down, a dual-ball-bearing aluminum fan is installed in the heat sink.
The fan spins at 12,000 RPM and cools 20 times faster than typical headlight fans. The aluminum case comes as a sealed one-piece so you can’t root around inside it. This aluminum is aviation-grade cold-pressed metal. The headlights have built-in ballast/drivers and are compact so they fit with most car models. Don’t forget to cut the clip if you need to flip the chip.
For the most part, VoRock8 headlights are plug and play. But in some car models, you may have to turn it around then trim the overhanging clip to ensure a tight connection.
9. Opt7 Fluxbeam LED Headlights
- The ONLY LED HL with both 5000K and 6000K- OEM 5K and Cool White 6K @ 5,500Lms...
- The ALL new Roden LED Driver, redesigned inside and out to take advantage of the...
- Plug-N-Play: FluxBeam LED headlights are made to replace nearly all stock...
Most multi-core LED headlights have a single chip with two or three diodes. Opt7 was one of the first LED headlight converters, and its Fluxbeam offering has two quad-core chips in different sizes and capacities. This means the headlights can emit both 5,000K and 6,000K beams. Their Arc Beam v2 chipset technology is exclusive to their brand. It gives 5,500 lumens and 1,900 lux.
Because the Arc-Lenz has two chips, it needs extra cooling power. The trademark red aluminum fins ensure temperatures stay low. This helps Opt7 Fluxbeam outperform other brands in terms of lux (projection), lumens (intensity), and CRI (color rendering index). Its CRI is 79.
The brand offers a 2-year warranty and a 60-day money-back guarantee. The headlights are also fitted with Roden drivers for smoother performance and break-free beam patterns. They use up a lot of power though, at 65W per bulb, 130W per pair. The heat sink is cold-pressed aluminum and the headlights have built-in protections against electrical surges and short-circuiting.
The aluminum fins on the Opt7 Fluxbeam are extruded. And because this is the second upgraded version, it offers an 80% improvement on the original plus 60 days money-back.
10. Sealight Scoparc LED Headlights
- 10-minute installation: the durable non-polarity plug-and-play design typically...
- No glare or dark spots: although brighter than halogen bulbs, oncoming traffic...
- Compact fanless design: the latest non-integrated fanless design is compact and...
So far, we’ve been looking at models that boast a quick 20-minute installation. Sealight pushes that by installing in half the time, no tools required. It slips easily into the halogen bulb slot with no modifications and no additional wiring. Just position it and turn it clockwise until it clicks into place. It works without glare, shadows, or dark spots, offering 30,000 hours of use.
The heat sink is made of aluminum to keep your headlights cool. And the tip is loaded with double-sided chips for enhanced performance. These lights have no built-in fan, so their sizing is smaller and more compact. This allows a more universal fit. The Scoparc bulbs give off white lights at 6,000K and they don’t interfere with the visibility levels of oncoming traffic.
Scoparc LED headlights are 130% brighter than halogen bulbs. They can be installed in 10minutes and have quiet, fan-free cooling systems. They’re rated IP 67.
The first step in selecting the best LED headlights is compatibility. Will it fit your car without voiding your warranty? And is it legal to use those headlights in your state? These two requirements are mandatory. Let’s see what else goes into your purchasing decision.
In LEDs, nanometers (nM) are used to describe color temperature. But technically, white isn’t a color. (According to science, it’s the presence of ALL visible colors. These colors are reflected off the surface to show ‘white’.) Either way, white LEDs are described using Kelvins, not nM.
And the higher the Ks, the brighter and cooler the white. Coolness matters because it reduces overheating in your headlights. It also allows your headlights to light up further distances, which is essential for low visibility. Buy ‘daylight white’ LEDs, meaning they’re 5,000K or higher.
Electricity involves amps, volts, watts, and ohms, which can be confusing. But if you can accept that, then you won’t see the contradiction in light temperature versus light intensity. Temperature defines the brightness and reach of the light. This is sometimes described as warmth or coolness. But the intensity, ‘quantity’ of ‘amount’ of light is defined in lumens.
This shows you how strong the light is. This strength is sometimes affected by the type of bulb or the wattage it emits. LEDs offer more intensity per watt, so you get more illumination while using less electricity. For LED headlights, buy units that offer 6,000 lumens or more.
Duration and Warranty
Warranties are weird. Devices have a habit of breaking down two days after their warranty expires, and that’s not an accident. Manufacturers have a pretty clear idea of how long their products last, so they make their repair promises accordingly. Otherwise, they’d suffer losses due to constant replacements. So naturally, the longer your warranty, the better your quality.
Meaning while you could check the warranty, you should pay more attention to the lifespan of your lights. Halogen headlights last roughly 6,000 hours. LED headlights can last anywhere from 30,000 hours (3 years) to 50,000 hours (5 years). This makes them worth the extra purchase price. Look for these written durations plus a warranty of at least one year.
LEDs don’t generate as much heat as halogen bulbs or xenon lights. But they do still warm up as they work. This heat generation is both from the light itself and the surrounding car. Sunlight hits the metal parts of the car during daylight, and some of that heat stays overnight. Also, the usual movements and vibrations of the car can make components rise in temperature.
Find out the cooling methods on your LED headlights. These may include built-in fans, rear cooling fins, aluminum heat sinks, or physical mounting locations. You can also check whether the headlights have anti-glare mechanisms because glare heats up the light as well.
Previously, most cat headlights were fitted with halogen bulbs. These had to be replaced once or twice a year (or after 6,000 to 10,000 hours). They were all the same, so they could easily be interchanged. But LED bulbs have different mechanisms, and this tech requires varied housing. You can’t just fit an LED bulb into your headlight socket. And it’s not always a DIY task.
More likely you’ll need an LED conversion kit. If you can get one you can reconstruct yourself, that’s good. But a lot of them are complex and require professional installation. So in addition to the cost of the LED headlights, you’ll have to hire a mechanic to mount them for you. Work with someone you trust to avoid overcharging. And make sure they don’t void the warranty.
Type of LED Chip
Chip-type can sometimes affect the installation process. Do your headlights have a Flip Chip, COB (Chip-on-Board) or Surface-Mounted-Diode (SMD)? The latter two styles can have multiple chips inside the same bulb. SMDs can produce multiple colors from the same bulb, but COBs emit more lumens for every watt, so they glow brighter while using up less power.
Flip chips are square-shaped and their diodes are mounted ‘upside down’. This process is quicker than regular LED manufacture, and the shorter production time leads to a lower retail cost. This installation process also means the LEDs produce less heat and resistance.
You can forego dramatic heat sinks, meaning flip-chip LEDs are physically smaller than their curvy upright cousins. Plus, because the chip is more angular, it creates a more focused beam than regular chips, and may not need that trademark rounded reflective cup.
Car LEDs have a distinct appearance when compared to halogen bulbs. But even within these confines, there’s some design flexibility. For example, some LED headlights have a single bulb in every casing, so you need two separate headlights. Others have one bulb that serves both high and low-light needs. Then there are some lights that have several bulbs inside the same housing.
Since you need two single-beam lights, they may also occupy more physical space on your car’s front fender. Dual-beams use less space since one bulb does both jobs. And – of course – the single-beam and dual-beam bulbs aren’t interchangeable. So before you buy your LED or try to ram it into the wrong place, check whether it’s the right-fit for your beam requirements.
This could be a matter of size, but it could also be a matter of versatility. For example, halogen lights have regular beams and high beams. Similarly, off-road lights have spotlight beams, floodlight beams, and spread, diffuse fog-light beams. Don’t forget the presence (or absence) of a magnifying lens to heighten the effect of your reflective cups. These affect style and function.
After all our research, we can confidently recommend Beamtech H11. Here’s why:
- Each bulb only emits 25W but is still a 4,000-lumen 6,500K powerhouse.
- The bulbs have no fans, which gives them a gorgeously silent bulbous shape.
- The lights produce minimal heat and have a quick-cooling duralumin heat sink.
- Their filaments are the same length as halogen filaments.
- Their CSP technology employs double-sided flip chips.
- While their shape may be tricky to install, their IP 65 rating is decent.
Are you using LED headlights on your car right now? Show us some pictures in the comments!