This article answers – What is HID for motorcycles? How can I install HID in my motorcycle? What is the cost of installing HID in my bike? etc
Note: This is an older article published at BikeAdvice. We are updating it and bumping it up for the larger interest as it will serve as a ready reckoner for the HID related queries we have been receiving.
This is SAJAN, from Bangalore. If you’re looking to replace your existing headlight bulbs to get brighter light or to enhance the style, then here is a quick snippet of information you can consider.
Before going to the topic let me give you some details about headlight bulbs.
In automotive lighting, “halogen bulb” has been the most widely used and predominantly talked bulb since the last 20 yrs in India. Halogen lighting involves a conventional direct-current direct-circuit setup. The bulb itself houses a filament commonly made of tungsten metal, which is basically a very delicate loose coil of wire.
When electrical current is supplied to the positive lead wire in the halogen bulb, it crosses a path of tungsten wire, which has very high electrical resistance. It is this high resistance that produces heat and ultimately emits light. Low beams of halogen bulb normally operate on 55 watts of power and high beams at 55 watts to 85 watts. These kind bulbs are filled with inert gases like argon, krypton.
Technology increases the effective luminous efficacy of a tungsten filament. When operating at a higher filament temperature which results in more lumens output per watt input, a tungsten-halogen lamp has a much longer brightness and lifetime than similar filaments operating without the halogen regeneration cycle.
HID AND PROJECT HEADLIGHTS
High-intensity discharge lamps (HID) produce light with an electric arc rather than a glowing filament. These lamps were formally known as gas-discharge burners and have a higher efficacy than the existing headlights. Xenon headlamp can produce a more robust beam pattern. Automotive HID may be called “xenon headlamps”.
In this kind of bulb instead of argon and krypton, XENON is filled. The sole purpose of these heavy gases is to create a level of pressure within the bulb that deters tungsten evaporation. Once a tungsten atom leaves the surface of the filament, it is immediately blocked by giant xenon particles that are crowding it and pushing it back towards the surface of the filament. Xenon is most commonly used because it is the heaviest of the inert gases and is used in HID lighting.
Components of HID
If you are purchasing BI xenon Headlight HID Kit for any two wheeler it generally includes the following components…
- Light Bulb
- Ballast Bracket
- Projector lens
- Power Cables
- Screws and Nuts
- Cable Ties
- English Instruction Manual
- Warranty Card with 1 Year Warranty
HID headlamp bulbs do not run on low-voltage DC current, so they require “ballast” with either an internal or external igniter. The ballast controls the current to the bulb and plays like a central processing unit. Projector lens controls the beam and produces the pattern, rest all the things are to fix and connect the projector.
Halogen filament headlamp bulbs produce between 700 and 2,100 lumens between 40 and 72 watts at 12.8 V while the HID headlamp burners produce between 2,800 and 3,500 lumens between 35 and 38 watts of electrical power.
What is Lumen?
If you have the same question – Lumen is a measure (unit) of how much light you are getting from a bulb. More the lumen number brighter is the light; fewer lumens means it’s a dimmer light.
Many people have a common misconception that higher the “K” (Kelvin temperature) brighter is the light on road but “K” rating is inversely proportional to the visibility. More the Kelvin ratings brighter the light but visibility on the road will be less. Lower the “K” brighter is the visibility.
Also, Xenon runs cooler than your traditional halogen, therefore it will not melt the surroundings of bulb and case. The light from HID headlamps can exhibit a distinct bluish tint when compared with tungsten-filament headlamps. Tungsten-halogen lamps produce 3000K to 3550K. While the HID xenon bulb emits color temperature- Ranges from 6,000K to 15,000K.
- Xenon Headlight Color Temperature 6000K: has an approximately 3200 lm output, it emits pure white light colored beam of light
- Xenon Headlight Color Temperature 8000K: has an approximately 2900 lm output, it will be slightly bluish
- Xenon Headlight Color Temperature 10000K: has an approximately 2650 lm output, 10000K produces deep bluish
- Xenon Headlight Color Temperature 12000K: has an approximately 2200 lm output. This color temperature produces violet light and is deeper colored than the 10000K. 15000K will produce deep violet colored light
Benefits of HID over Halogen Lighting
Some of the benefits of HID bulbs over halogen lighting are…
- Up to three times less wattage is used (HID = 35w, halogen = 55-100w)
- Up to four times more bright light produced (HID = 2400-3200lu, halogen = 800-1700lu)
- Up to ten times more intense light produced (HID = 202,500cd, halogen = 21,000cd)
- Up to six times longer lifespan (HID = 2500hr, halogen = 400hr)
- HID light contains less infrared and ultraviolet light, which fatigues the driver and surrounding motorists
- HID light illuminates the road with better contrast and more lifelike tones of color
- Halogen filaments naturally produce a color of 2300K to 4000K (2300K is yellowish, 4000K is whitish) Anything bluer requires the use of light-dimming color filters
- HID produces a natural color of 4100K to 6000K (4100K is daylight white, and 6000K is slightly bluish white) Anything bluer requires the use of light-dimming color filters
- HID lighting produces a wider and deeper beam pattern with razor sharp cut off lines
- HID has low lumen maintenance, meaning bulbs do not dim down as much towards the end of their lives
- HID has high flux properties, meaning light is very evenly distributed when installed properly
How to Install HID
After so much of gyan, the next questions will be – Is it possible to install this HID xenon to Indian made two wheelers, how to install the projector head light, what will be the cost and whom to contact for the installation?
A simple answer is – It is possible to install HIDs on any two wheelers which has a headlight! The only thing you need is to contact a good automotive decor retailer. If you are from Bangalore JC road is the best place.
Here you have two options in changing:
- Change headlight bulb to HID bulb
- Change it to projector head light
Both will give you same amount of brightness, changing bulb will cost you less. If you install projector type head light it will give you a stylish look as it has “angel light” in it. You can choose any colored angel light. Eg: Crystal white, blue, Red etc.
Installation of HID:
They will remove the headlight set from the bike, separate the headlight glass from the back cover. It is quite tough to separate as it comes with pressing kind of locks and it will be sealed with glue. The installer will heat the sealed portion with a hot air blower uniformly in the joining portion then with force they will separate the back cover from the glass.
Care should be taken while using screw driver and sharp tools as it may cause damage to the back cover and locks. Once it is done, they will place the bulb and projector inside the reflector and screw it tightly and seal back the cover.
As the HID xenon bulbs need more power to light, it will be directly connected to battery and this in turn drains the battery soon. If you have twin headlight bikes like Fazer, R15 etc, to avoid this battery draining problem in long run, you can opt for single light in lower beam and dual light when you use high beam. When you switch on parking lights both the angel lights will start glowing! If you want to change parking lights you can change them to LED bulbs. This will suit better for this kind of HID light.
HID Installation in Bikes: Cost
In Bangalore, it will cost you around Rs.3500/-, per head light. If you change only the bulb then it should cost you about Rs.2500.
Hope this helped. Please note that above 8000K is not allowed according to RTO rules. You can also read…
- KTM Duke Aftermarket Mods & Upgrades: Quest for Exclusivity!
- Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) in Motorcycles – Explained in Detail
With kind regards,