31 January 2010

3 Major Differences between HID Lights and Halogen Lights

HID lights and halogen lights differ in three major ways: cost, durability, and efficiency.

HID light is a high intensity discharge light. The name is derived from the intense white light that comes from an electrical discharge. HID bulbs comprise of two electrodes. The sealed gas inside a lamp is ignited with the use of sparks that are jumping over electrodes. This gas comes in the form of paste in small amounts located on the glass, particularly the inside of the glass. As the paste is ignited by sparks, the HID bulbs are then filled with gas, either metal halide or xenon gas. Any of this gas type would direct the color of the light it produces. Halogen lights, on the other hand, use Edison’s concept in which positive to negative electricity flows across a filament. A filament is a thin, small wire and is a poor conductor of electricity. This explains why as halogen bulbs produce light, much heat is also produced. To understand better these two kinds of lights, let’s compare them according to:


HID lights are more costly than halogen lights. HID bulbs are complicated to manufacture and construct which makes them more expensive. HID lights use a ballast, an electronic device necessary in controlling the amount of electrodes current. It is an expensive component. Halogens don’t use ballasts at all, making halogen bulbs cost a little less. In the long run, using HID lights is more practical and cost-saving.

Although HID lights are more expensive, these are gaining popularity, especially in most of European cars because of their durability. In fact, HID lights are used to upgrade existing driving lights, specifically the headlights. This is because HID lights are durable and have a longer battery life. HID bulbs are resistant to excessive vibration even when driving at higher speeds on various road conditions. Excellently constructed bulbs can last about 5,000 hours as compared to halogen bulbs which can only last for 300 to 400 hours.


HID lights produce brighter lights than halogen bulbs making them very efficient for commercial use. More and better projected light from HID lights provide accuracy in the workplace. HID lights require less bulb replacements and at the same time can provide for more productivity in commercial use. This is because HID bulbs are not easily affected by extreme vibration and jolting brought about by heavy equipment and other work machines. Halogen incandescent bulbs, on the other hand, have filaments that are easily destroyed by vibrations and can cause several work stoppages and higher downtime to change bulbs.

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