1. What is HID?
HID (or High Intensity Discharge) headlamps produce light with an electric arc rather than a glowing filament. The high intensity of the arc comes from metallic salts that are vaporized within the arc chamber. Because of the increased amounts of light available from HIDs relative to halogen bulbs, HID headlamps can be made smaller than halogen headlamps while still producing a comparable beam pattern. Alternatively, the larger size can be retained, allowing the HID lamp to produce a more robust beam pattern.
2. What is Xenon?
Xenon is a colorless noble gas found in trace amounts in the atmosphere. Automotive HID lamps are commonly called “xenon headlamps,” though they are actually metal halide lamps that contain a concentrated amount of xenon gas.
3. What Does “6000K” Mean?
When you see a number (such as 5000 or 6000) followed by K, it indicates the Kelvin color temperature. This is NOT a measurement of brightness. Kelvins (K) are the units used to measure color temperature. A Kelvin color temperature of 5000K, or what we like to call Pure White, offers the most usable light output. A higher Kelvin color temperature (such as 6000K) possesses a blue or purple hue, which gives HIDs the expensive, elegant appearance they are known for. For this reason, some HID kit manufacturers produce 5400K, 6500K, or 8000K bulbs, which give an even more distinct blue hue, but at the expense of overall usable light. For comparison, most halogen headlights have a color temperature around 3200K which gives them a pale yellow appearance compared to the pure or cool white of HIDs.[embedyt]https://youtu.be/8TMtJtOw7-k[/embedyt]
4. What is a Ballast?
A ballast is a device intended to limit the amount of current in an electrical circuit. Ballasts convert and regulate the flow of the electrical current from 55W (your vehicle’s current harness) to 35W (the typical wattage for HID bulbs). This ensures that the kit functions properly, and prevents the bulbs from shorting out.
5. What is a Relay Harness?
A relay harness is a wiring harness that draws power for your headlamps directly from the vehicles battery, providing consistent, sufficient power and operating independently from your vehicle’s stock wiring. While the factory wiring of some vehicles might be able to power HID systems normally without problems at the time of installation, over time connectors, switches, wiring, and fuse holders will slowly degrade due to heat buildup. Being hidden behind dashboards and other wiring looms, these components are very time consuming to troubleshoot and can be costly to replace. A relay harness helps to prevent unnecessary maintenance and repairs, saving you time, money, and frustration.
6. What is the Difference Between 35W and 55W HIDs?
Many people assume wattage and brightness are directly proportional. For example, if a 35W HID bulb produces a certain amount of light output, they would assume that since a 55W bulb is a 57% increase in wattage, it would be a 57% increase in brightness. In reality, it is only about a 15% increase, due to the way that energy is transformed. A good example is halogen bulbs produce a lot more heat than HIDs. HID technology gives off a more concentrated discharge, so more energy is transformed into light instead of heat.[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kaX0Lpz8riQ[/embedyt]
I know a lot about HID/Xenon lighting, but some of these answered questions I didn’t think about before.