Sylvania.com, PhillipsAutoLighting.com, CarBulbsDirect.com and PowerBulbs.com have reference charts that help consumers determine the correct headlamp bulb size needed for most vehicles. Bulbs vary significantly in size and fitting style, so it is necessary to know the make, model and year of the automobile to ascertain the correct bulb needed.
Headlamps enable the driver to see, but also help the vehicle to be seen. To accomplish that, headlamp bulbs are available in different types of light generating technologies, such as halogen, xenon and LED. Choosing the right one for a vehicle depends on several factors, including cost, desired illumination, driver visibility needs and aesthetic preferences.
Halogen bulbs are typically a popular choice and one of the most common types used. They are the least expensive style, provide a bright, white light and usually have a long lifespan. However, they do generate excessive heat that wastes energy.
Xenon bulbs provide a higher intensity illumination than most other types of lamps. They also have a longer lifespan than halogen bulbs, and use less energy. However, they are more expensive and are criticized for the harsh glare they impose on approaching drivers.
LED lights are also expensive, but their small size allows for more design style options in headlamps to create different aesthetic effects. They also generate significantly more heat than either halogen or xenon light, so headlamp construction must allow for proper cooling.