What Headlights are the Brightest? (Complete Guide)

Headlight brightness may be a big concern for you as a driver. Maybe you have bad eyes, or most of your driving is done on dark rural streets and/or back roads.

If that’s the case, this article will answer some of the most common questions about the brightest headlights you can get for your vehicle. We’ll also go over some other things like how legal they might be from state to state.

What Headlights are the Brightest?

The brightest headlights you will find on the market today are Ring Xenon150 headlights, which produce more than double the amount of lumens than the older style OEM halogen lights. For some drivers, they might be too bright for comfortable driving on regular city roads. However, there are other bright options out there to explore, i.e. LED headlights. 

Does it matter what kind of headlights you have when driving in the dark? The answer is yes, and there is more than one option to choose from, so keep reading for more information!

Which Headlights are the Brightest?

Halogen, LED, and (HID) or High-Intensity headlights are the most common headlights you will come across on the market, and HID headlights are by far the brightest on the market.

LED headlights are a very competitive second, but the HID headlights light almost a third more area space than LED headlights. They are also known for lighting up the sides of the road better than both halogen and LED headlights.

What is the Brightest Headlight Bulb That’s Legal?

What is the Brightest Headlight Bulb That’s Legal? 

Currently, the brightest headlight you can purchase on the market today that still stays within the parameters of the law is the Ring Xenon 150. These headlights are completely legal and E marked for legal road use.

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Can I Make My Headlights Brighter?

If you have halogen bulbs and you really want or need a set of headlights that are bright for one reason or another, LED headlight conversion kits are not only very affordable, but also very easy to install.

Warning: Make sure to check with state law regulations, because all states might not allow this type of conversion, which might get you a traffic citation. You might also get a traffic citation if your lights exceed the state law brightness limitations.

Are 8000k Headlights Legal?

Generally, in most states and even countries, 8000k headlights will be too bright and deemed not legal. However, whether you are pulled over and ticketed would be up to the police.

Some states take these kinds of laws very seriously, while other states tend to find better things to do with their time. All and all, it’s a risk you have to be willing to take. For most states, 4300K is the cut-off when it comes to how bright a headlight can be.

What H7 Bulb is the Brightest?

If you already have a CANbus adaptor installed, then going with a Philips X-tremeUltinon gen2 bulb would be perfect for what direction you’re heading in.

The X-temeUlitnon gen2 bulb is 250-percent brighter than any other standard bulb on the market and is brighter than all the other H7 bulbs you can purchase at this time.

Are Ice Blue Headlights Legal?

Ice Blue OEM headlights that come straight from the factory are legal. Somehow, some manufacturers were able to get around the most common law there is about headlights, which is not allowing blue and red headlights.

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However, if you were to change your stock headlights over to Ice Blue headlights and police can spot this indiscretion or obvious breaking of the law, you will get a traffic ticket for it.

All blue headlights or red headlights have long since been illegal, because only emergency vehicles should have these colors in the front of their vehicle.

Are LED Headlights DOT Approved?

Are LED Headlights DOT Approved?

If you’re looking to replace or upgrade to an LED headlight setup, you’ll want to make sure that somewhere on the packaging and on the headlight says “DOT approved.”

If you don’t see DOT approved and you want your headlights for road use, you will be breaking the law. Most LED headlights should be DOT approved, but some are made strictly for show or off-road use.

Are 5000 Lumens Bright for Headlights?

Depending on where you live in the United States or other countries, 5000 lumens are extremely bright and probably illegal where you reside.

Although the laws on what is too bright vary from state to state and country to country, the most common law is that headlights should fall between 2000 – 4000 lumens.

Some people argue that anything above 4000 is too bright for oncoming traffic. This is even dangerous for the driver of the vehicle with lights that are too bright, because they could be blinding themselves from other vehicle’s headlights.

How Many Lumens are HID Headlights?

The most general spec for HID headlights is about 3500 lumens, making it approximately 3-times as bright as an average halogen light.

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How Many Lumens is a Car LED Headlight?

How Many Lumens is a Car LED Headlight?

LED headlights will fall in between the 2000 – 4000 lumen rating, though this will all depend on what kind of LED headlight you purchased and its brand, make, and model.

Are High Beams Brighter Than Low Beams?

High beams will always be brighter than your low beams, but that doesn’t mean they are bigger, brighter headlight bulbs. In fact, in a lot of cases, low beams are the same size bulb as high beams.

Low beams just seem like they’re less bright because they’re angled at the ground. This makes them emit light away from on-coming traffic to ensure other drivers don’t become blinded.

The same bulb is usually used for the high beam, but it’s angled more straight-ahead, giving you a better view of what’s in front of you.

This is why you should never drive with your high beams on when other people are on the road, as the headlights will be aimed right in their line of sight, ultimately blinding the other driver.

If you want to learn more, you might also be interested in reading up on when to use high beam headlights, how far should headlights shine, and how many lumens are car headlights.


The brightest headlights in the industry are HID headlights or High-Intensity headlights. They cover a wider span of an area in front of you and emit a brighter light than LED or halogen.

However, HID headlights fall behind in one aspect when put up against LED headlights, as LED’s offer a much more energy-efficient option for the consumer than HID headlights.

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