How to Install Aftermarket HID Headlights

March 1, 2012

HID headlights are quickly becoming the new standard headlights. Learn how to get brighter beams in your own car by installing HID headlights yourself.

HID Headlight

HID headlights offer the absolute highest visibility of any lighting option available. They utilize the latest technology to produce brighter, whiter light which enables drivers to see much better than with standard headlights. That is why most premium cars now offer HID style lights as standard equipment. For example HIDs are standard equipment on every new Mercedes. Because of the advantages of HID technology, there are now a variety of custom upgrade kits available for vehicles that weren't equipped with HID lights as factory equipment. In fact, for most vehicles it should be relatively easy to find an upgrade kit that will be a direct replacement for your factory equipment. The process of upgrading to HID can be summarized in 3 easy steps:

Doing Your Homework

The most important part of the process is making sure that HID conversions are permitted in your area. Because HID lights are much brighter than standard bulbs, some localities have passed laws prohibiting them under certain circumstances (although as HIDs have become more prevalent, most areas now permit them). Check with your local Department of Motor Vehicles to make sure that you can legally upgrade. Another important thing to remember when upgrading to HID is to make sure that your headlights are properly aimed. Since HID bulbs are several times brighter than conventional ones, it's easy to blind other drivers if your lights aren't pointed in the right direction.

Finding the Correct Kit

Depending on your automotive experience, finding the correct kit can be done in a variety of ways. Of course the simplest way for people with little automotive experience is to go to a store that specializes in aftermarket accessories and have them order it for you. The nice thing about this option is that you're virtually guaranteed to get the HID kit that is the best fit for your vehicle. Also, most automotive shops of this type can do the installation for you as well. This might be a good thing to look in to. The biggest reason for this is that although accessories like HID kits might be a little more expensive at a shop like this, oftentimes they offer perks like free installation which makes the process much more convenient. Another option is ordering the kit online. You will probably find that ordering a kit online can be cheaper than buying it retail, although you should be aware that ordering a kit online doesn't offer you as much recourse as buying from a shop if you have problems with quality. Make sure you do your best to ensure that whatever kit you buy is from a reputable manufacturer. You can find HID conversion kits online in a variety of places, including and other online retailers.


Once you've found the proper equipment for your vehicle, the next step is getting them installed. Since every vehicle is different, it's important that you thoroughly follow the instructions included in your HID kit. The most important thing that you can do to make sure that installation goes smoothly is to purchase a kit that is tailor made for your car.

Related Questions and Answers

What are the Various Types of Aftermarket Headlights?

In the automotive aftermarket, headlights take up a large portion of the market. There are a number of manufacturers of aftermarket headlights, including Sylvania, Wagner and GE, among others. There are also a variety of different types of aftermarket headlights. Standard headlights are direct replacements for the headlights that came with your car. There are extra bright white headlamps that are approximately 25% brighter than the standard headlights. A third option, is the ultra white lights that have a blue tint to them and are advertised at about 50% brighter than standard headlights. The newest addition to the list of available aftermarket headlights use LED's instead of incandescent elements.