Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

245 Published by admin Nov 15,2022

Whenever I see people planning to upgrade their headlights, but they have no idea where to start, just looking up random info online, the information is massive, everyone has opinions- people who understand and those who don’t understand well. A general car light modification tutorial, which brings together the ideas and experiences of countless car owner, as well as the mistakes that have been stepped on, analyzes the car lights as a whole from a professional point of view, and hopes to be helpful to everyone who plans to upgrade their car headlights or plan to retrofit. I believe you will have a new understanding of car lighting.

Guangzhou Aozoom Automobile Lantern Co., Ltd. is located in Huadu District, Guangzhou, China. It is a high -tech enterprise integrating R & D, production and sales. As a German car lighting brand (Aozoom) authorized Chinese manufacturers. The company is ISO9001: 2008 and TS16949: 2016 Quality System Certification Unit. It is a member unit of the China Automobile Industry Association. The company's main products are digital HID ballast, HID xenon lamps, HID lens, LED lens, bilaser lens LED turning lights, LED interior lights and other automotive lighting products.

The company has obtained more than 20 projects and 23 patents in invention and utility models. The "Aozoom " brand has won honors such as "Top Ten Brands of Automobile Lighting", "Five Brands of Automobile HID Lighting", and "Pacific Automobile Network Recommended Brand". Through lean production models, powerful brands and high -quality products, the company has been the top choice of car lighting products favored by consumers and customers. The products are exported to Europe, America, Russia, Africa, Southeast Asia and other countries and regions.

Aozoom Bi LED lens - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

Aozoom Bi-Led lens

1.   Halogen Headlights

Halogen- A gas that is used to create the halogen cycle processing a light bulb. During operation the tungsten molecules evaporate from the tungsten. In the cycle process they combine with the halogen molecules and fall back to the wire. This extends the lifetime of a bulb and allows operation at a higher intensity. Halogen bulbs contain a high-pressure halogen filling. Non-halogen incandescent bulbs often use a vacuum.

Halogen light has been around for some time and today is still being used in a large area. In fact, a single halogen bulb is 1,000 lumens. About 20 lumen per watt. The efficiency rate is about 40% Yes, only about 400 lumens come into play because the other light is neither being covered or eliminated. Besides, the light pattern appearance must be symmetrical, and the light pattern is just the opposite, so there is really little light that can be used.

1.1 Color temperature of halogen light

This is a measure of color temperature. The higher the color temperature, the whiter and cooler the light appears. The standard color temperature of the halogen lamp is 3200K, which is often referred to as candle color, and it is also the best color temperature in rain and mist, but the color temperature of 3200K is really a bit yellowish, because the warm yellow will give people an inexplicable ease, this kind The most suitable part of the color should be in the bedroom or winter living room. Warm yellow will give people a warm and warm feeling. In fact, there are many color temperatures on the market to choose from. If the bulb is higher than 3200K or less than 3200K. It comes with a coating to change the color temperature of the bulb, but this technology is quite mature, only the life of the bulb may be slightly compromised.

1.2 Halogen bulbs

Halogen bulbs - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

The above picture has most of the halogen front bulb lights. The specifications and base of halogen light bulb are the identical among different manufactures. Philip's H1 bulb is also interchangeable with Osram H1, but the only thing to note is that the power must be same as well as the length and focus point of all halogen bulbs, otherwise it will cause low light or beam deformation.

For example, If the original car has a 55W H4 light bulb, now the 100W H4 light bulb is installed. Although the shape and base same, then the following problems will appear:

  • The headlight wire excessive aging or fail.
  • melting of the headlight base and causing short circuit.
  • the high temperature may cause the headlight reflector to fade and turn yellowish or black, reduce the light output.
burned reflector due to high temperature - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading


The halogen headlights are consumable. The service life of the halogen bulbs is between 500 and 1,000 hours. In fact, even if the light bulbs are not burned out, the brightness will be reduced a lot after 500 hours. Almost 50% in a year. It is necessary to consider changing a pair of light bulbs in about two years.

1.3 Replace or change a halogen bulb

It is actually very simple to change the bulb. Find the original car Manu -the bulb specifications are clearly written on it. Buy a pair of the same specifications. Or check it online, or ask the customer service of the online car bulb store.

Open the headlights and take off the dust cover, buckle the bulb fixed buckle, remove the bulb and put on the new one. You can also go to the car dealer to help change it.

If the model installed is not the same as the original car, then the light may out of focus. The beam pattern might come out disformed.

unfocused and disformed beam pattern - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

Unfocused or disformed light beam pattern

In summary, the halogen headlights are not so bright. For general driving environment it is okay. But for demanding roads, the lighting needs are higher than halogen light. Then we will talk about HID xenon projector and bi led projector retrofitting.

There are also people who directly change the halogen headlights with xenon hid light, but without the lens. Such modification may also be effective. but if the light type is not adjusted, the strong light will blind the driver of the oncoming ca, a great danger and harm to other road users. Thus, the xenon lights upgrade without lens is not the best option.

2.   HID Xenon Projector Lens

The HID xenon projector headlights were the mainstream auto headlight retrofitting products of the previous years. They are performing well and they can be installed with devil's eyes and angel's eyes It brings a characteristic and personality to vehicles. Yes, the cutting line is good, and the bright and dark boundary line is particularly obvious. The low beam light will not produce dazzling or glare to the traffic on the opposite side, and the safety of driving and comfort will be increase dramatically.

Most of the HID xenon projector headlights are composed of three parts: lens, Xenon bulbs, and ballast. Next, we briefly explain the products of these three parts.

HID xenon bulbs for projectors

There are some types of xenon bulbs that come with xenon projector very often and they are D1S,D2S,D3S,D4S, D2R, D4R.

“D”indicates it is xenon bulb-High Intensity Discharge,

“#”indicates it is number“1、2、3、4”,D1S and D3S means the bulb comes with a igniter and the D2S and D4S means it comes without igniter. D1S and D2S comes with a mercury as the burning material and D3S and D4S means it comes without.

“X”means letter“S、R”,,S means it is for projector lens and R means for reflective bowl.

For instance, D1S means it is a xenon bulb for projector, it comes with a built-in igniter and it is designed with mercury as the burning material.

R means the bulb has a coating on the glass and this is to reduce light output in certain direction to reduce glare for the on coming traffic. As the technology develops, D2R or xenon bulb with coating will come out of play and it is being replaced by LED more and more.

Color Temperature of Xenon Bulb

The xenon lamp has no filament. There is only a xenon ionized arc in the middle that emits light. After the electrodes at both ends are applied with high voltage, the salt-like substances in the central pill will be ignited to produce light of this color temperature. Therefore, by controlling the matching ratio of salt-like substances, you can get the color temperature desired.

Xenon lamps are generally equipped with ballast with constant power, so only under this power, such as 35W ballast, can the color temperature of the bulb remain constant. If the ballast rises from 35W ballast to 45W or 55W ballast, the bulb may not be the color temperature originally marked, which may be higher or lower, depending on the product of each manufacturer.

Xenon Ballast

Ballast (also known as rectifier and starter) boosts the DC 12V voltage on the vehicle to 23000V instantaneously, enabling xenon in the HID lamp glass tube to be ionized by electrons excited by high voltage, and generating a super arc light between the two poles. After the arc works stably, the voltage gradually decreases to about 85V+- 17V.

Xenon Ballast - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

HID Xenon Projector Lens

The automobile headlights lens refers to the combination of lens and the reflector cup, which should be said to be a lens assembly, and all lenses refer to this assembly. There are mainly two types of lenses on the market, namely, single light lens and dual light lens or the bi-xenon lens. The difference is that single light lens is generally with halogens, which are used in older cars, while dual light lenses bi-xenon lens is mostly used in newer version or higher version. Halogen and xenon dual light lenses are both available, the former is cheap, and the latter is more expensive. The brightness of halogen single lens is average, and most of them are plastic reflective cups. The dimmer plate in the middle of the single lens is fixed, and there is no dimmer motor. Don’t think about adding a dimmer motor to replace this single light lens with a dual light lens. The effect is not good, because the reflector cup design of the single light lens focuses most of the light on the lower beam. Even with the dimmer motor, there is not much light on the upper beam-the high beam.

The middle of the dual lens bi-xenon lens is equipped with a dimmer motor-or a solenoid.  When the low beam is in operation, the motor does not work. When the high beam is in operation, the dimmer motor sucks down the plate to let the high beam part shine out. The principle is shown in the following figure:

bi xenon Projector - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

High Clear Lens, Pitting Lens And Fresnel Lens

Pitting Lens - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

The high -clear Bi-xenon lens has the characteristics of clear-cutting lines, blue edges and higher brightness.

The light transmission rate of high -definition mirrors is the best, But to see more clear is the most important, It is important to contrast. The light is uniform for pitting lens and Fresnel lens. It is like the mobile phone will automatically adjust the brightness of the screen in the room. The brightness of the screen is to maintain the same brightness as the surrounding environment to ensure that you can see it comfortably. The average lighting effect of the pitting lens and Fresnel lens is very good, and the lighting effect on road is good.

3.   Bi LED Projector

Majority of the world's auto lamp studios and workshop are now upgrading the existing car led lamp with bi-LED lens, which is the mainstream headlight retrofitting product. Its popularity is on the rise by the day. There are too many products brand to choose from.

Now the Bi-LED lens is integrated design-the led Chip, drivers, light sources, and heat dissipation fans are assembled on a lens module.

Any mal-function of the above-mentioned parts would cost the lens to fail and the entire lens needs to be replaced, re -disassembled the headlight and then replace with a new lens, which takes a lot of time and power.

So, the maintenance cost in the later period is relatively high. Therefore, it is best to choose a brand product with strong product quality at the first time.  It is suggested the headlight retrofit shop choose a quality product with a longer period or warranty, this saves the hassle and trouble afterwards.

Aozoom Bi-led lens are trusted by many headlight retrofitters home and abroad-about 8000 shops in China mainland and 4000 abroad, and this number is on the rising each moment.

projector headlight 2022 11 15 03 22 04 - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading


The Benefits of Bi-led Retrofitting Headlight

  • Brighter: The LED lens headlamp can output light brightness up to 3200 Lm, while the general halogen bulb can only produce 1000 Lumen. That is to say, the brightness of the car headlights will be increased by 300%, and they will shine brighter, wider and farther, without missing any dark corner.
  • Better Focused beam pattern. Because the light shape of the lens is the most standard, there can be obvious light and dark cutting lines, and the problem of glaring can be solved by focusing light. The light dispersion is very small, so its light range is farther and clearer than that of ordinary halogen lamps. It allows the car owner to see things in the distance at the first time to avoid potential danger objects;
  • comfort color temperature. The light with a color temperature of about 5500K emitted by the LED lens headlamp is close to the daylight which brings the acceptance and comfort for the human eye. Such lights can effectively reduce the driver's visual fatigue and directly improve the driving safety when used for night lighting.
  • Long lifespan. Halogen lamp uses tungsten wire to emit light. The tungsten wire is easy to evaporate and fuse under long-term high heat; The LED headlamp has no tungsten filament, so there is no tungsten filament fracture problem. Its service life can be up to 50000 hours
  • Easy to work. Compared with HID lens, LED lens has its own light source, and does not need a second bulb or ballast to drive it. It can have a simpler installation process, and it is simpler to deal with vehicle line modification.
  • Various models to choose from. At present, we provide many types of lenses, which can meet the needs of different users, including low color temperature lenses, high-power lenses, and laser lenses. No matter what the car owner's budget is, we can provide customers with products suitable for him.
  • Improve driving experience. The lens will present different visual effects at different angles. Its light brightness is uniform and its penetration is strong, no matter in rainy or foggy days. In addition, the light bulb is bright but does not glare. Its luminous brightness is 3 times that of a 55W halogen lamp, but only 35W power is needed, not affecting the configuration of the original vehicle line.
  • Safer driving - The compliant lighting cut line can ensure the driver's comfort and bright driving environment, and will not affect the driver's vision of the opposite lane and the safety of other road users, bringing up safety for all road users.

Bi Led Low Beam - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading Bi Led High Beam - Basics of Auto Headlights Retrofitting and Upgrading

4.   Summary

The retrofitting of car head lights is a process of imagination and fine work. Every shop has different processes and various customer needs. It does not mean that only certain products or process needs to be identical for each project.

In general, the halogen lamp is a relatively outdated product with low brightness and short service life. However, it is convenient to install and economical for most car owners. but its market share will be replaced by LED automobile lighting products - because the performance, brightness and reliability of LED automobile lighting products are better than halogen bulbs,

Lens modification, especially Bi-LED lens modification or retrofitting, although the cost is slightly high and the installation process is slightly complicated, its performance improvement is the best and the driving experience is the most obvious. More and more car owners will choose LED car lenses or laser lenses as replacement parts for modification and upgrading. Especially in areas with poor public transport road lighting, lens modification has obvious advantages.

If you want to know more about automotive lens products or automotive lighting products, please contact us.

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